Psalm 69:20
Parallel Verses
English Standard Version
Reproaches have broken my heart, so that I am in despair. I looked for pity, but there was none, and for comforters, but I found none.

King James Bible
Reproach hath broken my heart; and I am full of heaviness: and I looked for some to take pity, but there was none; and for comforters, but I found none.

American Standard Version
Reproach hath broken my heart; and I am full of heaviness: And I looked for some to take pity, but there was none; And for comforters, but I found none.

Douay-Rheims Bible
In thy sight are all they that afflict me; my heart hath expected reproach and misery. And I looked for one that would grieve together with me, but there was none: and for one that would comfort me, and I found none.

English Revised Version
Reproach hath broken my heart; and I am full of heaviness: and I looked for some to take pity, but there was none; and for comforters, but I found none.

Webster's Bible Translation
Reproach hath broken my heart; and I am full of heaviness: and I looked for some to take pity, but there was none; and for comforters, but I found none.

Psalm 69:20 Parallel
Commentary
Keil and Delitzsch Biblical Commentary on the Old Testament

In this second part the petition by which the first is as it were encircled, is continued; the peril grows greater the longer it lasts, and with it the importunity of the cry for help. The figure of sinking in the mire or mud and in the depths of the pit (בּאר, Psalm 55:24, cf. בור, Psalm 40:3) is again taken up, and so studiously wrought out, that the impression forces itself upon one that the poet is here describing something that has really taken place. The combination "from those who hate me and from the depths of the waters" shows that "the depths of the waters" is not a merely rhetorical figure; and the form of the prayer: let not the pit (the well-pit or covered tank) close (תּאטּר with Dagesh in the Teth, in order to guard against its being read תּאטר; cf. on the signification of אטּר, clausus equals claudus, scil. manu) its mouth (i.e., its upper opening) upon me, exceeds the limits of anything that can be allowed to mere rhetoric. "Let not the water-flood overflow me" is intended to say, since it has, according to Psalm 69:3, already happened, let it not go further to my entire destruction. The "answer me" in Psalm 69:17 is based upon the plea that God's loving-kindness is טּוב, i.e., good, absolutely good (as in the kindred passion-Psalm, Psalm 109:21), better than all besides (Psalm 63:4), the means of healing or salvation from all evil. On Psalm 69:17 cf. Psalm 51:3, Lamentations 3:32. In Psalm 69:18 the prayer is based upon the painful situation of the poet, which urgently calls for speedy help (מהר beside the imperative, Psalm 102:3; Psalm 143:7; Genesis 19:22; Esther 6:10, is certainly itself not an imperative like הרב, Psalm 51:4, but an adverbial infinitive as in Psalm 79:8). קרבה, or, in order to ensure the pronunciation ḳorbah in distinction from ḳārbah, Deuteronomy 15:9, קרבה (in Baer,

(Note: Originally - was the sign for every kind of o6, hence the Masora includes the חטוף also under the name קמץ חטף; vid., Luther. Zeitschrift, 1863, S. 412,f., cf. Wright, Genesis, p. xxix.))

is imperat. Kal; cf. the fulfilment in Lamentations 3:57. The reason assigned, "because of mine enemies," as in Psalm 5:9; Psalm 27:11, and frequently, is to be understood according to Psalm 13:5 : the honour of the all-holy One cannot suffer the enemies of the righteous to triumph over him.

(Note: Both נפשׁי and איבי, contrary to logical interpunction, are marked with Munach; the former ought properly to have Dech, and the latter Mugrash. But since neither the Athnach-word nor the Silluk-word has two syllables preceding the tone syllable, the accents are transformed according to Accentuationssystem, xviii. 2, 4.)

The accumulation of synonyms in Psalm 69:20 is Jeremiah's custom, Jeremiah 13:14; Jeremiah 21:5, Jeremiah 21:7; Jeremiah 32:37, and is found also in Psalm 31 (Psalm 31:10) and Psalm 44 (Psalm 44:4, Psalm 44:17, Psalm 44:25). On הרפּה שׁברה לבּי, cf. Psalm 51:19, Jeremiah 23:9. The ἅπαξ γεγραμ, ואנוּשׁה (historical tense), from נוּשׁ, is explained by ענוּשׁ from אנשׁ, sickly, dangerously ill, evil-disposed, which is a favourite word in Jeremiah. Moreover נוּד in the signification of manifesting pity, not found elsewhere in the Psalter, is common in Jeremiah, e.g., Psalm 15:5; it signifies originally to nod to any one as a sign of a pity that sympathizes with him and recognises the magnitude of the evil. "To give wormwood for meat and מי־ראשׁ to drink" is a Jeremianic (Jeremiah 8:14; Jeremiah 9:14; Jeremiah 23:15) designation for inflicting the extreme of pain and anguish upon one. ראשׁ (רושׁ) signifies first of all a poisonous plant with an umbellated head of flower or a capitate fruit; but then, since bitter and poisonous are interchangeable notions in the Semitic languages, it signifies gall as the bitterest of the bitter. The lxx renders: καὶ ἔδωκαν εἰς τὸ βρῶμά μου χολήν, καὶ εἰς τὴν δίψαν μου ἐπότισάν με ὄξος. Certainly נתן בּ can mean to put something into something, to mix something with it, but the parallel word לצמאי (for my thirst, i.e., for the quenching of it, Nehemiah 9:15, Nehemiah 9:20) favours the supposition that the בּ of בּברוּתי is Beth essentiae, after which Luther renders: "they give me gall to eat." The ἅπαξ γεγραμ. בּרוּת (Lamentations 4:10 בּרות) signifies βρῶσις, from בּרה, βιβρώσκειν (root βορ, Sanscrit gar, Latin vor-are).

Psalm 69:20 Parallel Commentaries

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

Reproach

Psalm 42:10 As with a sword in my bones, my enemies reproach me; while they say daily to me, Where is your God?

Psalm 123:4 Our soul is exceedingly filled with the scorning of those that are at ease, and with the contempt of the proud.

Hebrews 11:36 And others had trial of cruel mockings and scourgings, yes, moreover of bonds and imprisonment:

I am

Psalm 42:6 O my God, my soul is cast down within me: therefore will I remember you from the land of Jordan, and of the Hermonites...

Matthew 26:37,38 And he took with him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, and began to be sorrowful and very heavy...

John 12:27 Now is my soul troubled; and what shall I say? Father, save me from this hour: but for this cause came I to this hour.

I looked

Isaiah 63:5 And I looked, and there was none to help; and I wondered that there was none to uphold: therefore my own arm brought salvation to me...

Mark 14:37,50 And he comes, and finds them sleeping, and said to Peter, Simon, sleep you? could not you watch one hour...

take pity [heb.] to lament
with me, but there

Psalm 142:4 I looked on my right hand, and beheld, but there was no man that would know me: refuge failed me; no man cared for my soul.

John 16:32 Behold, the hour comes, yes, is now come, that you shall be scattered, every man to his own, and shall leave me alone...

2 Timothy 4:16,17 At my first answer no man stood with me, but all men forsook me: I pray God that it may not be laid to their charge...

comforters

Job 16:2 I have heard many such things: miserable comforters are you all.

Job 19:21,22 Have pity on me, have pity on me, O you my friends; for the hand of God has touched me...

Matthew 25:46 And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal.

Cross References
Job 16:2
"I have heard many such things; miserable comforters are you all.

Psalm 142:4
Look to the right and see: there is none who takes notice of me; no refuge remains to me; no one cares for my soul.

Isaiah 63:5
I looked, but there was no one to help; I was appalled, but there was no one to uphold; so my own arm brought me salvation, and my wrath upheld me.

Jeremiah 15:5
"Who will have pity on you, O Jerusalem, or who will grieve for you? Who will turn aside to ask about your welfare?

Jeremiah 23:9
Concerning the prophets: My heart is broken within me; all my bones shake; I am like a drunken man, like a man overcome by wine, because of the LORD and because of his holy words.

Lamentations 1:16
"For these things I weep; my eyes flow with tears; for a comforter is far from me, one to revive my spirit; my children are desolate, for the enemy has prevailed."

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