B1 W 1-6. Occupation with self. X 7-9. Its sure result. W 10-12. Occupation with God. X 13-20. Its sure result. Happiness.
1 I cried to God with my voice,
Even to God with my voice; and He [condescended] to give ear to me.
2 In the day of my trouble I sought the Lord:
My sore ran (Heb. hand was outstretched: i.e. in prayer) in the night, and ceased not: (I.e. to be outstretched.)
I refused to be comforted.
3 I remembered God, and was troubled:
I communed [with myself], and I (emphatic) was overwhelmed. Selah. (Connecting this self-introspection with its sure result - misery)
4 You hold my eyelids waking: (Or, You keep my eyelids from closing.)
I am so troubled that I cannot speak.
5 I have considered the days of old,
The years of ancient times.
6 I call to remembrance my song in the night:
I commune with my own heart:
And I made diligent search.
7 Will the Lord cast off for ever? (Emphasizing the consequence of this introspection.)
And will He be favorable no more?
8 Is His loving-kindness (or grace) clean gone for ever?
Does His word (put for promise given by it) fail for evermore?
9 Has GOD (El) forgotten to be gracious?
Has He in anger shut up His tender mercies? Selah. (Connecting all this misery with the only sure remedy - occupation with God: and passing from "I" and "my" to "You".)
10 And I said, "This is my infirmity:
But I will remember the years of the right hand of the Most High (Elyon).
11 I will remember the doings of The LORD (Yah):
Surely I will remember Your wonders (i.e. wonderful ways, or works) of old.
12 I will meditate also of all Your works,
And talk of Your doings."
X Y i 13. God's way in the Sanctuary. k 14,15. His People. Redeemed. Jacob and Joseph. Z l 16. The waters beneath. [Fear and trouble.] m 17. The heavens. [Clouds and skies.] Z m 18-. The heavens. [Thunder and lightning.] l -18. The earth beneath. [Trembling and shaking.] Y i 19. God's way in the sea. k 20. His People. Led by Moses and Aaron.
13 Your way, O God, is in the sanctuary: (Only here, in God's presence, is found peace and happiness.)
Who is so great a God as our God? (This is the cry resulting from occupation with God. Even the cry of His saints. See Ex. 15:11.)
14 You are the God that does wonders:
You have made known Your strength among the peoples.
15 You have with Your arm redeemed Your people,
The sons of Jacob and Joseph. (Because his sons were not the direct sons of Jacob) Selah. (Connecting the redemption from Egypt with the accomplishment of it as recorded in "the scriptures of truth".)
16 The waters (i.e. the waters of the Nile, and the Red Sea) saw You, O God,
The waters saw You; they were afraid:
The depths (not referring to the "abyss" of Babylonian mythology, which is a corruption of the primitive truth [Gen. 1:2], but the Red Sea emphasized in the preceding clause) also were troubled.
17 The thick (or dark) clouds poured out water:
The skies sent out a sound:
Your arrows (put for lightnings, mentioned below) also went abroad.
18 The voice of Your thunder was in the heaven:
The lightnings illuminated the world (Heb. rolled along):
The earth trembled and shook.
19 Your way was in the sea, (The Red Sea mentioned above.)
And Your paths in the great waters,
And Your footprints are not known. (I.e. when the waters return to their place)
20 You led Your People like a flock
By the hand of Moses and Aaron.