Bible Verse Explanations and Resources


Psalms 73:16

King James Version (KJV)
Adam Clarke
Bible Commentary

When I thought to know this - When I reviewed the history of our fathers, I saw that, though thou hadst from time to time hidden thy face because of their sins, yet thou hadst never utterly abandoned them to their adversaries; and it was not reasonable to conclude that thou wouldst do now what thou hadst never done before; and yet the continuance of our captivity, the oppressive hardships which we suffer, and the small prospect there is of release, puzzle me again. These things have been very painful to me.

Albert Barnes
Notes on the Whole Bible

When I thought to know this - When I endeavored to comprehend this, or to explain it to myself. The idea is that he “thought” on the subject, or “meditated” on it with a view to be able to understand it. He did not express his opinions and feelings to others, but he dwelt on them in his own mind; not to find additional difficulties, not to confirm himself in opposition to God, and not to find new occasions for distrusting the divine government, but to understand exactly how this was. It was his object to seek and understand “the truth.”

It was too painful for me - Margin, “It was labor in mine eyes.” The Hebrew word rendered “painful,” means properly labor, toil, a burden; and the idea is, that the question was a burden - was too weighty for his weak powers.

Matthew Henry
Concise Bible Commentary
The psalmist having shown the progress of his temptation, shows how faith and grace prevailed. He kept up respect for God's people, and with that he restrained himself from speaking what he had thought amiss. It is a sign that we repent of the evil thoughts of the heart, if we suppress them. Nothing gives more offence to God's children, than to say it is vain to serve God; for there is nothing more contrary to their universal experience. He prayed to God to make this matter plain to him; and he understood the wretched end of wicked people; even in the height of their prosperity they were but ripening for ruin. The sanctuary must be the resort of a tempted soul. The righteous man's afflictions end in peace, therefore he is happy; the wicked man's enjoyments end in destruction, therefore he is miserable. The prosperity of the wicked is short and uncertain, slippery places. See what their prosperity is; it is but a vain show, it is only a corrupt imagination, not substance, but a mere shadow; it is as a dream, which may please us a little while we are slumbering, yet even then it disturbs our repose.