Psalm 17:3
Parallel Verses
New American Standard Bible
You have tried my heart; You have visited me by night; You have tested me and You find nothing; I have purposed that my mouth will not transgress.

King James Bible
Thou hast proved mine heart; thou hast visited me in the night; thou hast tried me, and shalt find nothing; I am purposed that my mouth shall not transgress.

Darby Bible Translation
Thou hast proved my heart, thou hast visited me by night; thou hast tried me, thou hast found nothing: my thought goeth not beyond my word.

World English Bible
You have proved my heart. You have visited me in the night. You have tried me, and found nothing. I have resolved that my mouth shall not disobey.

Young's Literal Translation
Thou hast proved my heart, Thou hast inspected by night, Thou hast tried me, Thou findest nothing; My thoughts pass not over my mouth.

Psalm 17:3 Parallel
Barnes' Notes on the Bible

Thou hast proved mine heart - In this verse he refers to his own character and life in the matter under consideration, or the consciousness of his own innocence in respect to his fellow-men who are persecuting and opposing him. He appeals to the Great Searcher of hearts in proof that, in this respect, he was innocent; and he refers to different forms of trial on the part of God to show that after the most thorough search he would find, and did find, that in these respects he was an innocent man, and that his enemies had no occasion to treat him as they had done. It is still to be borne in mind here that the trial which the psalmist asks at the hand of God was not to prove that he was innocent toward him, or that he had a claim to His favor on account of his own personal holiness, but it was that he was innocent of any wrong toward those who were persecuting him, or, in other words, that after the most searching trial, even by his Maker, it would be found that he had given them no cause for treating him thus. The word here rendered "proved" means "to try, to prove, to examine," especially metals, to test their genuineness. See Psalm 7:9-10, note; Job 12:11, note. The psalmist here says that God had tried or searched "his heart." He knew all his motives. He had examined all his desires and his thoughts. The psalmist felt assured that, after the most thorough trial, even God would not find anything in his heart that would justify the conduct of his enemies toward him.

Thou hast visited me - That is, for the purpose of inspecting my character, or of examining me. The English word "visit," like the Hebrew, is often used to denote a visitation for the purpose of inspection and examination. The idea is, that God had come to him for the very purpose of "examining" his character.

In the night - In solitude. In darkness. When I was alone. In the time when the thoughts are less under restraint than they are when surrounded by others. In a time when it can be seen what we really are; when we do not put on appearances to deceive others.

Thou hast tried me - The word used here - צרף tsâraph - means properly "to melt, to smelt," etc., metals, or separating the pure metal from the dross. The meaning is, that God, in examining into his character, had subjected him to a trial as searching as that employed in purifying metals by casting them into the fire.

And shalt find nothing - Thou wilt find nothing that could give occasion for the conduct of my enemies. The future tense is used here to denote that, even if the investigation were continued, God would find nothing in his heart or in his conduct that would warrant their treatment of him. He had the most full and settled determination not to do wrong to them in any respect whatever. Nothing had been found in him that would justify their treatment of him; he was determined so to live, and he felt assured that he would so live, that nothing of the kind would be found in him in time to come. "I am purposed." I am fully resolved.

My mouth shall not transgress - Transgress the law of God, or go beyond what is right. That is, I will utter nothing which is wrong, or which can give occasion for their harsh and unkind treatment. Much as he had been provoked and injured, he was determined not to retaliate, or to give occasion for their treating him in the manner in which they were now doing. Prof. Alexander renders this "My mouth shall not exceed my thought; "but the common version gives a better idea, and is sanctioned by the Hebrew. Compare Gesenius, Lexicon.

Psalm 17:3 Parallel Commentaries

Mysterious visits.
AN ADDRESS TO A LITTLE COMPANY AT THE COMMUNION TABLE AT MENTONE."Thou hast visited me in the night."--Psalm xvii. 3. MYSTERIOUS VISITS. IT is a theme for wonder that the glorious God should visit sinful man. "What is man, that Thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that Thou visitest him?" A divine visit is a joy to be treasured whenever we are favoured with it. David speaks of it with great solemnity. The Psalmist was not content barely to speak of it; but he wrote it down in plain terms,
Charles Hadden Spurgeon—Till He Come

My God Will Hear Me
"Therefore will the Lord wait, that He may be gracious unto you. Blessed are all they that wait for Him. He will be very gracious unto thee at the voice of thy cry; when He shall hear it, He will answer thee."--ISA. xxx. 18, 19. "The Lord will hear when I call upon Him."--PS. iv. 3. "I have called upon Thee, for Thou wilt hear me, O God!"--PS. xvii. 6. "I will look unto the Lord; I will wait for the God of my salvation: my God will hear me."--MIC. vii. 7. The power of prayer rests in the faith
Andrew Murray—The Ministry of Intercession

The piety of the Old Testament Church is reflected with more clearness and variety in the Psalter than in any other book of the Old Testament. It constitutes the response of the Church to the divine demands of prophecy, and, in a less degree, of law; or, rather, it expresses those emotions and aspirations of the universal heart which lie deeper than any formal demand. It is the speech of the soul face to face with God. Its words are as simple and unaffected as human words can be, for it is the genius
John Edgar McFadyen—Introduction to the Old Testament

Cross References
1 Peter 1:7
so that the proof of your faith, being more precious than gold which is perishable, even though tested by fire, may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ;

Job 23:10
"But He knows the way I take; When He has tried me, I shall come forth as gold.

Psalm 26:1
A Psalm of David. Vindicate me, O LORD, for I have walked in my integrity, And I have trusted in the LORD without wavering.

Psalm 26:2
Examine me, O LORD, and try me; Test my mind and my heart.

Psalm 39:1
For the choir director, for Jeduthun. A Psalm of David. I said, "I will guard my ways That I may not sin with my tongue; I will guard my mouth as with a muzzle While the wicked are in my presence."

Psalm 66:10
For You have tried us, O God; You have refined us as silver is refined.

Psalm 139:1
For the choir director. A Psalm of David. O LORD, You have searched me and known me.

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