Psalm 37

By David.
1 Don’t fret because of evildoers, neither be envious against those who work unrighteousness. 2 For they shall soon be cut down like the grass, and wither like the green herb. 3 Trust in the LORD, and do good. Dwell in the land, and enjoy safe pasture. 4 Also delight yourself in the LORD, and he will give you the desires of your heart. 5 Commit your way to the LORD. Trust also in him, and he will do this: 6 he will make your righteousness go out as the light, and your justice as the noon day sun. 7 Rest in the LORD, and wait patiently for him. Don’t fret because of him who prospers in his way, because of the man who makes wicked plots happen. 8 Cease from anger, and forsake wrath. Don’t fret, it leads only to evildoing. 9 For evildoers shall be cut off, but those who wait for the LORD shall inherit the land. 10 For yet a little while, and the wicked will be no more. Yes, though you look for his place, he isn’t there. 11 But the humble shall inherit the land, and shall delight themselves in the abundance of peace. 12 The wicked plots against the just, and gnashes at him with his teeth. 13 The Lord will laugh at him, for he sees that his day is coming. 14 The wicked have drawn out the sword, and have bent their bow, to cast down the poor and needy, to kill those who are upright on the path. 15 Their sword shall enter into their own heart. Their bows shall be broken. 16 Better is a little that the righteous has, than the abundance of many wicked. 17 For the arms of the wicked shall be broken, but the LORD upholds the righteous. 18 The LORD knows the days of the perfect. Their inheritance shall be forever. 19 They shall not be disappointed in the time of evil. In the days of famine they shall be satisfied. 20 But the wicked shall perish. The enemies of the LORD shall be like the beauty of the fields. They will vanish—vanish like smoke. 21 The wicked borrow, and don’t pay back, but the righteous give generously. 22 For such as are blessed by him shall inherit the land. Those who are cursed by him shall be cut off. 23 A man’s goings are established by the LORD. He delights in his way. 24 Though he stumble, he shall not fall, for the LORD holds him up with his hand. 25 I have been young, and now am old, yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his children begging for bread. 26 All day long he deals graciously, and lends. His offspring is blessed. 27 Depart from evil, and do good. Live securely forever. 28 For the LORD loves justice, and doesn’t forsake his saints. They are preserved forever, but the children of the wicked shall be cut off. 29 The righteous shall inherit the land, and live in it forever. 30 The mouth of the righteous talks of wisdom. His tongue speaks justice. 31 The law of his God is in his heart. None of his steps shall slide. 32 The wicked watches the righteous, and seeks to kill him. 33 The LORD will not leave him in his hand, nor condemn him when he is judged. 34 Wait for the LORD, and keep his way, and he will exalt you to inherit the land. When the wicked are cut off, you shall see it. 35 I have seen the wicked in great power, spreading himself like a green tree in its native soil. 36 But he passed away, and behold, he was not. Yes, I sought him, but he could not be found. 37 Mark the perfect man, and see the upright, for there is a future for the man of peace. 38 As for transgressors, they shall be destroyed together. The future of the wicked shall be cut off. 39 But the salvation of the righteous is from the LORD. He is their stronghold in the time of trouble. 40 The LORD helps them, and rescues them. He rescues them from the wicked, and saves them, because they have taken refuge in him.

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Questions about today’s reading? See if Matthew Henry can help.
Matthew Henry’s Concise Commentary, 1706

Verses 1–6

When we look abroad we see the world full of evil-doers, that flourish and live in ease. So it was seen of old, therefore let us not marvel at the matter. We are tempted to fret at this, to think them the only happy people, and so we are prone to do like them: but this we are warned against. Outward prosperity is fading. When we look forward, with an eye of faith, we shall see no reason to envy the wicked. Their weeping and wailing will be everlasting. The life of religion is a believing trust in the Lord, and diligent care to serve him according to his will. It is not trusting God, but tempting him, if we do not make conscience of our duty to him. A man’s life consists not in abundance, but, Thou shalt have food convenient for thee. This is more than we deserve, and it is enough for one that is going to heaven. To delight in God is as much a privilege as a duty. He has not promised to gratify the appetites of the body, and the humours of the fancy, but the desires of the renewed, sanctified soul. What is the desire of the heart of a good man? It is this, to know, and love, and serve God. Commit thy way unto the Lord; roll thy way upon the Lord, so the margin reads it. Cast thy burden upon the Lord, the burden of thy care. We must roll it off ourselves, not afflict and perplex ourselves with thoughts about future events, but refer them to God. By prayer spread thy case and all thy cares before the Lord, and trust in him. We must do our duty, and then leave the event with God. The promise is very sweet: He shall bring that to pass, whatever it is, which thou has committed to him.

Verses 7–20

Let us be satisfied that God will make all to work for good to us. Let us not discompose ourselves at what we see in this world. A fretful, discontented spirit is open to many temptations. For, in all respects, the little which is allotted to the righteous, is more comfortable and more profitable than the ill-gotten and abused riches of ungodly men. It comes from a hand of special love. God provides plentifully and well, not only for his working servants, but for his waiting servants. They have that which is better than wealth, peace of mind, peace with God, and then peace in God; that peace which the world cannot give, and which the world cannot have. God knows the believer’s days. Not one day’s work shall go unrewarded. Their time on earth is reckoned by days, which will soon be numbered; but heavenly happiness shall be for ever. This will be a real support to believers in evil times. Those that rest on the Rock of ages, have no reason to envy the wicked the support of their broken reeds.

Verses 21–33

The Lord our God requires that we do justly, and render to all their due. It is a great sin for those that are able, to deny the payment of just debts; it is a great misery not to be able to pay them. He that is truly merciful, will be ever merciful. We must leave our sins; learn to do well, and cleave to it. This is true religion. The blessing of God is the spring, sweetness, and security of all earthly enjoyments. And if we are sure of this, we are sure not to want any thing good for us in this world. By his grace and Holy Spirit, he directs the thoughts, affections, and designs of good men. By his providence he overrules events, so as to make their way plain. He does not always show them his way for a distance, but leads them step by step, as children are led. God will keep them from being ruined by their falls, either into sin or into trouble, though such as fall into sin will be sorely hurt. Few, if any, have known the consistent believer, or his children, reduced to abject, friendless want. God forsakes not his saints in affliction; and in heaven only the righteous shall dwell for ever; that will be their everlasting habitation. A good man may fall into the hands of a messenger of Satan, and be sorely buffeted, but God will not leave him in his enemy’s hands.

Verses 34–40

Duty is ours, and we must mind it; but events are God’s, we must refer the disposal of them to him. What a striking picture is in ver. #(35, 36), of many a prosperous enemy of God! But God remarkably blights the projects of the prosperous wicked, especially persecutors. None are perfect in themselves, but believers are so in Christ Jesus. If all the saint’s days continue dark and cloudy, his dying day may prove comfortable, and his sun set bright; or, if it should set under a cloud, yet his future state will be everlasting peace. The salvation of the righteous will be the Lord’s doing. He will help them to do their duties, to bear their burdens; help them to bear their troubles well, and get good by them, and, in due time, will deliver them out of their troubles. Let sinners then depart from evil, and do good; repent of and forsake sin, and trust in the mercy of God through Jesus Christ. Let them take his yoke upon them, and learn of him, that they may dwell for evermore in heaven. Let us mark the closing scenes of different characters, and always depend on God’s mercy.

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