Psalm 41

1650 psalter

The Righteous One unpitied in His time of need

The doxology at the end of the psalm marks the division of the first part from the remaining four parts of the Psalter. The psalm contains a clear reference to our Lord’s experience of Judas’ betrayal as a friend. Much of the experience recorded is David’s, and yet the hatred and malice against Christ is evidently spoken of. The psalm ends confidently and assuredly that God would deliver and uphold His servant, and concludes by the utterance of this glorious doxology. 

The double ‘Amen’ affirms and emphasises the praise, thankfulness and assurance of the psalmist. It is said that the word ‘everlasting’ means literally ‘the vanishing point.’ So praise has been, is, and will be given, even to the vanishing point. That point, none can see nor will see. 

Pastor Jeff O’ Neil

Recommended Tune: St Bernard

St Bernard

Psalm 41

¹Blessed is he that wisely doth
The poor man’s case consider;
For when the time of trouble is,
The LORD will him deliver.

²GOD will him keep, yea, save alive;
On earth he bless’d shall live;
And to his enemies’ desire
Thou wilt him not up give.

³GOD will give strength when he on bed
Of languishing doth mourn;
And in his sickness sore, O LORD,
Thou all his bed wilt turn.

⁴I said, O LORD, do thou extend
Thy mercy unto me;
O do thou heal my soul; for why?
I have offended thee.

⁵Those that to me are enemies,
Of me do evil say,
When shall he die, that so his name
May perish quite away?

⁶To see me if he comes, he speaks
Vain words: but then his heart
Heaps mischief to it, which he tells,
When forth he doth depart.

⁷My haters jointly whispering,
‘Gainst me my hurt devise.
⁸Mischief, say they, cleaves fast to him;
He lieth, and shall not rise.

⁹Yea, ev’n mine own familiar friend,
On whom I did rely,
Who ate my bread, ev’n he his heel
Against me lifted high.

¹⁰But, LORD, be merciful to me,
And up again me raise,
That I may justly them requite
According to their ways.

¹¹By this I know that certainly
I favour’d am by thee;
Because my hateful enemy
Triumphs not over me.

¹²But as for me, thou me uphold’st
In mine integrity;
And me before thy countenance
Thou sett’st continually.

¹³The LORD, the God of Israel,
Be bless’d for ever then,
From age to age eternally.
Amen, yea, and amen.