1 Surely God is good to Israel,
Even to such as are pure in heart.
2 But as for me, my feet were almost gone;
My steps had well nigh slipped.
3 For I was envious at the arrogant,
When I saw the prosperity of the wicked.
4 For there are no pangs in their death;
But their strength is firm.
5 They are not in trouble as other men;
Neither are they plagued like other men.
6 Therefore pride is as a chain about their neck;
Violence covereth them as a garment.
7 Their eyes stand out with fatness:
They have more than heart could wish.
8 They scoff, and in wickedness utter oppression:
They speak loftily.
9 They have set their mouth in the heavens,
And their tongue walketh through the earth.
1-9. A matter of wonder to some, that the evil vaunt themselves and prosper. P. P.
11 And they say, How doth God know?
And is there knowledge in the Most High ?
12 Behold, these are the wicked;
And, being always at ease, they increase in riches.
10-14. Whereby the good are led astray, imagining that good is of no use, neither affliction. P. P.
12 Here an age signifies the world and the life therein. A. 10248.
13 Surely in vain have I cleansed my heart,
And washed my hands in innocency;
14 For all the day long have I been plagued,
And chastened every morning.
15 If I had said, I will speak thus;
Behold, I had dealt treacherously with the generation
of thy children.
16 When I thought how I might know this,
It was too painful for me;
13 See Psalm xxvi. 6. A. 9262.
To render the heart pure is to be purified interiorly, and to wash the hands in innocence is exteriorly. A. 10296.
Here to wash his hands in innocency means to testify himself to be innocent and pure from evils and falsities, for the washing of the hands was also a proof of innocence, as may further appear from what is recorded of Pilate in Matthew xxvii. 24. E. 475.
17 Until I went into the sanctuary of God,
And considered their latter end.
18 Surely thou settest them in slippery places:
Thou castest thern down to destruction.
19 How are they become a desolation in a moment!
They are utterly consumed with terrors.
20 As a dream when one awaketh,
So, O Lord, when thou awakest, thou wilt despise
15-20, 27. But afterward it is granted them to know that the evil are nevertheless devastated and consumed. P. P.
17-19. Vastation, desolation, and consummation of the Israelitish and Jewish church are here still further mentioned. Coro. 59.
I discern their latter end, thou setteth them in slippery places, they become a waste in a moment, they are at an end. D. P., Page 32.
20 All spiritual things may be exhibited by images in the spiritual world, also by idols, and all the particulars of doctrine may be thereby portrayed. E. 827.
21 For my soul was grieved,
And I was pricked in my heart;
22 So brutish was I, and ignorant;
I was as a beast before thee:
21 22. See Psalm vii. 10. R. 140.
The infestation of good by evil, and truth by falsity is described by these words. E. 167.
They do not know this. P. P.
22 Beasts signify affections in man, evil with the evil, good with good. A. 46.
See Psalm xlix. 11. A. 9140.
23 Nevertheless I am continually with thee:
Thou hast holden my right hand.
24 Thou wilt guide me with thy counsel,
And afterward receive me to glory.
25 Whom have I in heaven but thee?
And there is none upon earth that I desire besides thee.
26 My flesh and my heart faileth;
But God is the strength of my heart and my portion for
27 For, lo, they that are far from thee shall perish:
Thou hast destroyed all them that play the harlot, departing
22-24. By the right hand when predicated of man is signified wisdom from Divine truth. To lead with counsel is to lead by Divine truth, to receive to glory is to bless with intelligence, for glory when predicated of the Lord signifies Divine truth and Divine wisdom, but when predicated of man it signifies intelligence thence derived. E. 298.
28 But it is good for me to draw near unto God:
I have made the Lord Jehovah my refuge,
That I may tell of all thy works.
23-26. But the good are always upheld and live with the Lord. P. P.
Author: EMANUEL SWEDENBORG (1688-1772)