The Psalms

Psalm 106

The psalmist exhorts to praise God, 1-3. He prays for pardon of sin, as God pardoned the fathers, 4-6. The story of the people's rebellion and God's mercy, 7-46. He concludes with prayer and praise, 47, 48.

Praise the LORD./
O give thanks to the LORD, for he is good./
For his mercy endures forever.

Who can utter the mighty acts of the LORD?/
Who can show forth all his praise?

Blessed are those who keep judgment/
and he who does righteousness at all times.

Remember me, O LORD,/
with the favor that you bear to your people./
O visit me with your salvation,

So that I may see the good of your chosen,/
so that I may rejoice in the gladness of your nation,/
so that I may glory with your inheritance.

We have sinned with our fathers./
We have committed iniquity. We have done wickedly.

Our fathers did not understand your wonders in Egypt./
They did not remember the multitude of your mercies,/
but provoked him at the sea, even at the Red Sea.

Nevertheless, he saved them for his name's sake/
so that he might make his mighty power to be known.

He rebuked the Red Sea also, and it was dried up./
Thus he led them through the depths, as through the wilderness.

10 And he saved them from the hand of him who hated them/
and redeemed them from the hand of the enemy.

11 And the waters covered their enemies./
There was not one of them left.

12 Then they believed his words./
They sang his praise.

13 They soon forgot his works./
They did not wait for his counsel,

14 But lusted exceedingly in the wilderness/
and tested God in the desert.

15 And he gave them their request,/
but sent leanness into their soul.

16 They also envied Moses in the camp,/
and Aaron the saint of the LORD.

17 The earth opened and swallowed up Dathan/
and covered the company of Abiram.

18 And a fire was kindled in their company./
The flame burned up the wicked.

19 They made a calf in Horeb/
and worshiped the molten image.

20 Thus they changed their glory/
into the similitude of an ox that eats grass.

21 They forgot God their Savior/
who had done great things in Egypt,

22 Wondrous works in the land of Ham/
and awesome things by the Red Sea;

23 Therefore, he said that he would destroy them,/
had Moses his chosen not stood before him in the breach/
to turn away his wrath, lest he should destroy them.

24 They even despised the pleasant land/
and did not believe his word,

25 But murmured in their tents/
and did not listen to the voice of the LORD;

26 Therefore, he lifted up his hand against them/
to overthrow them in the wilderness,

27 To overthrow their offspring also among the nations,/
and to scatter them in the lands.

28 They joined themselves also to Baal-peor/
and ate the sacrifices of the dead.

29 Thus they provoked him to anger with their inventions,/
and the plague broke in upon them.

30 Then Phinehas stood up and executed judgment./
And so the plague was stayed.

31 And that was counted to him for righteousness/
to all generations forever.

32 They also angered him at the waters of strife/
so that it went ill with Moses for their sakes,

33 For they provoked his spirit/
and he spoke unadvisedly with his lips.

34 They did not destroy the nations,/
concerning whom the LORD commanded them,

35 But were mingled among the heathen/
and learned their works.

36 And they served their idols,/
which were a snare to them.

37 They even sacrificed their sons and their daughters to demons,

38 And shed innocent blood,/
even the blood of their sons and of their daughters,/
whom they sacrificed to the idols of Canaan./
And the land was polluted with blood.

39 Thus they were defiled with their own works/
and went astray with their own inventions.

40 Therefore, the wrath of the LORD was kindled against his people/
because he abhorred his own inheritance.

41 And he gave them into the hand of the heathen,/
and those who hated them ruled over them.

42 Their enemies also oppressed them,/
and they were brought into subjection under their hand.

43 Many times he delivered them,/
but they provoked him with their counsel/
and were brought low for their iniquity.

44 Nevertheless, he regarded their affliction/
when he heard their cry.

45 And he remembered for them his covenant/
and repented according to the multitude of his mercies.

46 He also made them to be pitied/
by all those who carried them captives.

47 Save us, O LORD our God,/
and gather us from among the heathen,/
so that we may give thanks to your holy name/
and triumph in your praise.

48 Blessed be the LORD God of Israel/
from everlasting to everlasting./
And let all the people say, "Amen."/
Praise the LORD.


Matthew Henry Commentary - Psalms, Chapter 106[➚]


John Calvin's Chapter Summary:

This psalm differs from the preceding, inasmuch as there the Psalmist showed that God had been more than a bountiful father to his chosen people, in order to procure for himself, in coming ages, a race of pure worshippers, while here he acknowledges that these remarkable benefits had been turned to a bad account; because the Jews from time to time threw off the yoke of God, basely abused his kindness, defiled themselves with many pollutions, and also perfidiously departed from his word. Nevertheless, it is not so much in the shape of a reproof or complaint, as a confession of their sins, in order to the obtaining the pardon of them. For the prophet commences with the praises of God, with the design of encouraging both himself and others to cherish good hope in him. Then he prays that God would continue his blessing to the seed of Abraham. But because the people, after so frequently revolting from God, were unworthy of the continuation of his kindness, he asks pardon to be extended to them, and this after he had confessed that from first to last, they had provoked God's wrath by their malice, ingratitude, pride, perfidy, and other vices.

[v.10] - Quoted in Luke 1:71.

[v.33] - "his spirit" - This is referring to the spirit of Moses.