Wesley's Notes on the Bible
Why standest thou afar off, O LORD? why hidest thou thyself in times of trouble?
The wicked in his pride doth persecute the poor: let them be taken in the devices that they have imagined.
For the wicked boasteth of his heart's desire, and blesseth the covetous, whom the LORD abhorreth.
10:3 Boasteth - He glorieth in his very sins which are his shame, and especially in the satisfaction of his desires.
The wicked, through the pride of his countenance, will not seek after God: God is not in all his thoughts.
10:4 Countenance - So called, because though pride be properly seated in the heart, yet it is manifest in the countenance.
His ways are always grievous; thy judgments are far above out of his sight: as for all his enemies, he puffeth at them.
10:5 Judgments - Thy threatenings denounced against, and punishments inflicted upon sinners. Are far - He doth not regard or fear them: yea he despises them, being confident that he can blow them away with a breath. This is a gesture of contempt or disdain, both in scripture, and other authors.
He hath said in his heart, I shall not be moved: for I shall never be in adversity.
His mouth is full of cursing and deceit and fraud: under his tongue is mischief and vanity.
10:7 Tongue - Under his fair and plausible speeches, mischief is hid and covered. Vanity - Or, injury, the vexation or oppression of other men.
He sitteth in the lurking places of the villages: in the secret places doth he murder the innocent: his eyes are privily set against the poor.
10:8 Sitteth - Not within the villages, but in the ways bordering upon them, or leading to them, as robbers use to do. Are set - Heb. Are hid. He watches and looks out of his lurking - place. He alludes still to the practices of robbers.
He lieth in wait secretly as a lion in his den: he lieth in wait to catch the poor: he doth catch the poor, when he draweth him into his net.
He croucheth, and humbleth himself, that the poor may fall by his strong ones.
10:10 Croucheth - Like a lion (for he continues the same metaphor) which lies close upon the ground, partly that he may not be discovered, and partly that he may more suddenly and surely lay hold on his prey.
He hath said in his heart, God hath forgotten: he hideth his face; he will never see it.
Arise, O LORD; O God, lift up thine hand: forget not the humble.
Wherefore doth the wicked contemn God? he hath said in his heart, Thou wilt not require it.
10:13 Contemn - Why dost thou by giving them impunity, suffer and occasion them to despise thee?
Thou hast seen it; for thou beholdest mischief and spite, to requite it with thy hand: the poor committeth himself unto thee; thou art the helper of the fatherless.
10:14 Requite - Heb. to give (to restore or pay the mischief which they have done to others) with thy hand, by thy own extraordinary providence, because the oppressed were destitute of all other succours. Fatherless - Of such as have no friend or helper, one kind of them being put for all.
Break thou the arm of the wicked and the evil man: seek out his wickedness till thou find none.
10:15 Seek - Search for it, and punish these wicked atheists. 'Till - No such wickedness be left in the world, or at least in the church.
The LORD is King for ever and ever: the heathen are perished out of his land.
10:16 Is king - To whom it belongs to protect his subjects. Therefore his peoples case is never desperate, seeing he ever lives to help them. The heathen - The Canaanites; whom God, as king of the world, expelled, and gave their land to his people. By which great example he confirms his faith and hope for the future. His land - Out of Canaan, which God calls his land, because he gave it to them, and fixed his presence and dwelling in it.
LORD, thou hast heard the desire of the humble: thou wilt prepare their heart, thou wilt cause thine ear to hear:
10:17 Prepare - By thy grace and good spirit, that they may so pray as thou wilt hear.
To judge the fatherless and the oppressed, that the man of the earth may no more oppress.
10:18 To judge - To give sentence for them, and against their enemies. The man - Earthly and mortal men, who yet presume to contend with thee their maker.