Psalm 10 Bible Commentary

Jamieson, Faussett, and Brown

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(Read all of Psalm 10)
Psalms 10:1-18. The Psalmist mourns God's apparent indifference to his troubles, which are aggravated by the successful malice, blasphemy, pride, deceit, and profanity of the wicked. On the just and discriminating providence of God he relies for the destruction of their false security, and the defense of the needy.

1. These are, of course, figurative terms (compare Psalms 7:6, 13:1, &c.).
hidest--Supply "thine eyes" or "face."

2. Literally, "In pride of the wicked they (the poor or humble, Psalms 10:17, Psalms 12:5) shall be taken in the devices they (the proud) have imagined."

3. heart's--or, "soul's."
desire--that is, his success in evil.
and blesseth, &c.--he (the wicked) blesseth the covetous, he despiseth the Lord.

4. The face expresses the self-conceit, whose fruit is practical atheism (Psalms 14:1).

5, 6. Such is his confidence in the permanence of his way or course of life, that he disregards God's providential government (out of sight, because he will not look, Isaiah 26:11), sneers at his enemies, and boasts perpetual freedom from evil.

7-10. The malignity and deceit (Psalms 140:3) of such are followed by acts combining cunning, fraud, and violence (compare Proverbs 1:11,18), aptly illustrated by the habits of the lion, and of hunters taking their prey. "Poor," in Psalms 10:8,10,14, represents a word peculiar to this Psalm, meaning the sad or sorrowful; in Psalms 10:9, as usual, it means the pious or meek sufferer.

8. eyes . . . privily--He watches with half-closed eyes, appearing not to see.

10. croucheth--as a lion gathers himself into as small compass as possible to make the greater spring.
fall by his strong ones--The figure of the lion is dropped, and this phrase means the accomplices of the chief or leading wicked man.

11. As before, such conduct implies disbelief or disregard of God's government.

12. (Compare Psalms 9:19, 3:7).
the humble--(Compare Psalms 10:17, and Margin.)
lift up thine hand--exert thy power.

13, 14. It is in vain to suppose God will overlook sin, however forbearing; for He carefully examines or beholds all wickedness, and will mark it by His providential (Thine hand) punishment.

14. mischief and spite--provocation and trouble of the sufferer (compare Psalms 6:7, 7:14).
committeth--or, "leaves (his burden) on Thee."

15. arm--power.
till thou find none--So far from not requiting (Psalms 10:11,13), God will utterly destroy the wicked and his deeds (Psalms 9:5,6, 34:16, 37:36).

16-18. God reigns. The wicked, if for a time successful, shall be cut off. He hears and confirms the hearts of His suffering people (Psalms 112:7), executes justice for the feeble, and represses the pride and violence of conceited, though frail, men (compare Psalms 9:16).