Psalm 44 Bible Commentary

Jamieson, Faussett, and Brown

(Read all of Psalm 44)

Ps 44:1-26. In a time of great national distress, probably in David's reign, the Psalmist recounts God's gracious dealings in former times, and the confidence they had learned to repose in Him. After a vivid picture of their calamities, he humbly expostulates against God's apparent forgetfulness, reminding Him of their faithfulness and mourning their heavy sorrows.

1-3. This period is that of the settlement of Canaan (Jos 24:12; Jud 6:3).
have told--or, "related" (compare Ex 10:2).

2. plantedst them--that is, "our fathers," who are also, from the parallel construction of the last clause, to be regarded as the object of "cast them out," which means--literally, "send" them out, or, "extend them." Heathen and people denote the nations who were driven out to make room for the Israelites.

4. Thou art my King--literally, "he who is my King," sustaining the same covenant relation as to the "fathers."

5. The figure drawn from the habits of the ox.

6-8. God is not only our sole help, but only worthy of praise.

7. put . . . to shame--(compare Ps 6:10), disgraced.

8. thy name--as in Ps 5:11.

9. But--contrasting, cast off as abhorrent (Ps 43:2).
goest not forth--literally, "will not go" (2Sa 5:23). In several consecutive verses the leading verb is future, and the following one past (in Hebrew), thus denoting the causes and effects. Thus (Ps 44:10-12), when defeated, spoiling follows; when delivered as sheep, dispersion follows, &c.

11. The Babylonian captivity not necessarily meant. There were others (compare 1Ki 8:46).

13, 14. (Compare De 28:37; Ps 79:4).

15. shame of . . . face--blushes in disgrace.

16. Its cause, the taunts and presence of malignant enemies (Ps 8:2).

17-19. They had not apostatized totally--were still God's people.

18. declined--turned aside from God's law.

19. sore broken--crushed.
place of dragons--desolate, barren, rocky wilderness (Ps 63:10; Isa 13:22),
shadow of death--(Compare Ps 23:4).

20, 21. A solemn appeal to God to witness their constancy.
stretched out . . . hands--gesture of worship (Ex 9:29; Ps 88:9).

22. Their protracted sufferings as God's people attests the constancy. Paul (Ro 8:36) uses this to describe Christian steadfastness in persecution.

23-26. This style of addressing God, as indifferent, is frequent (Ps 3:7; 9:19; 13:1, &c.). However low their condition, God is appealed to, on the ground, and for the honor, of His mercy.