Psalm 18:11
Parallel Verses
New American Standard Bible
He made darkness His hiding place, His canopy around Him, Darkness of waters, thick clouds of the skies.

King James Bible
He made darkness his secret place; his pavilion round about him were dark waters and thick clouds of the skies.

Darby Bible Translation
He made darkness his secret place, his tent round about him: darkness of waters, thick clouds of the skies.

World English Bible
He made darkness his hiding place, his pavilion around him, darkness of waters, thick clouds of the skies.

Young's Literal Translation
He maketh darkness His secret place, Round about Him His tabernacle, Darkness of waters, thick clouds of the skies.

Psalm 18:11 Parallel
Barnes' Notes on the Bible

He made darkness his secret place - Herder has beautifully rendered this verse,

"Now he wrapped himself in darkness;

Clouds on clouds enclosed him round."

The word rendered "secret place" - סתר sêther - means properly a hiding; then something hidden, private, secret. Hence, it means a covering, a veil. Compare Job 22:14; Job 24:15. In Psalm 81:7 it is applied to thunder: "I answered thee in the secret place of thunder;" that is, in the secret place or retreat - the deep, dark cloud, from where the thunder seems to come. Here the meaning seems to be, that God was encompassed with darkness. He had, as it were, wrapped himself in night, and made his abode in the gloom of the storm.

His pavilion - His tent, for so the word means. Compare Psalm 27:5; Psalm 31:20. His abode was in the midst of clouds and waters, or watery clouds.

Round about him - Perhaps a more literal translation would be, "the things round about him - his tent (shelter, or cover) - were the darkness of waters, the clouds of the skies." The idea is that he seemed to be encompassed with watery clouds.

Dark waters - Hebrew, darkness of waters. The allusion is to clouds filled with water; charged with rain.

Thick clouds of the skies - The word rendered skies in this place - שׁחקים shachaqiym - means, in the singular, dust, as being fine; then a cloud, as a cloud of dust; then, in the plural, it is used to denote clouds, Job 38:37; and hence, it is used to denote the region of the clouds; the firmament; the sky; Job 37:18. Perhaps a not-inaccurate rendering here would be, "clouds of clouds;" that is, clouds rolled in with clouds; clouds of one kind rapidly succeeding those of another kind - inrolling and piled on each other. There are four different kinds of clouds; and though we cannot suppose that the distinction was accurately marked in the time of the psalmist, yet to the slightest observation there is a distinction in the clouds, and it is possible that by the use of two terms here, both denoting clouds - one thick and dense, and the other clouds as resembling dust - the psalmist meant to intimate that clouds of all kinds rolled over the firmament, and that these constituted the "pavilion" of God.

Psalm 18:11 Parallel Commentaries

Conviction of Weakness.
The soul in the state of abandonment can abstain from justifying itself by word or deed. The divine action justifies it. This order of the divine will is the solid and firm rock on which the submissive soul reposes, sheltered from change and tempest. It is continually present under the veil of crosses, and of the most ordinary actions. Behind this veil the hand of God is hidden to sustain and to support those who abandon themselves entirely to Him. From the time that a soul becomes firmly established
Jean-Pierre de Caussade—Abandonment to Divine Providence

The King --Continued.
In our last chapter we have seen that the key-note of "The Songs of the King" may be said to be struck in Psalm xviii. Its complete analysis would carry us far beyond our limits. We can but glance at some of the more prominent points of the psalm. The first clause strikes the key-note. "I love Thee, O Jehovah, my strength." That personal attachment to God, which is so characteristic of David's religion, can no longer be pent up in silence, but gushes forth like some imprisoned stream, broad and full
Alexander Maclaren—The Life of David

In the Present Crusade against the Bible and the Faith of Christian Men...
IN the present crusade against the Bible and the Faith of Christian men, the task of destroying confidence in the first chapter of Genesis has been undertaken by Mr. C. W. Goodwin, M.A. He requires us to "regard it as the speculation of some Hebrew Descartes or Newton, promulgated in all good faith as the best and most probable account that could be then given of God's Universe." (p. 252.) Mr. Goodwin remarks with scorn, that "we are asked to believe that a vision of Creation was presented to him
John William Burgon—Inspiration and Interpretation

Twenty-Third Lesson Bear Fruit, that the Father May Give what Ye Ask;'
Bear fruit, that the Father may give what ye ask;' Or, Obedience the Path to Power in Prayer. Ye did not choose me, but I chose you, and appointed you, that ye should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should abide: that whatsoever ye shall ask the Father in my name, He may give it you.'--John xv. 16. The fervent effectual prayer of a righteous man availeth much.'--James. v. 16. THE promise of the Father's giving whatsoever we ask is here once again renewed, in such a connection as
Andrew Murray—With Christ in the School of Prayer

Cross References
Deuteronomy 4:11
"You came near and stood at the foot of the mountain, and the mountain burned with fire to the very heart of the heavens: darkness, cloud and thick gloom.

1 Kings 8:12
Then Solomon said, "The LORD has said that He would dwell in the thick cloud.

Psalm 97:2
Clouds and thick darkness surround Him; Righteousness and justice are the foundation of His throne.

Isaiah 40:22
It is He who sits above the circle of the earth, And its inhabitants are like grasshoppers, Who stretches out the heavens like a curtain And spreads them out like a tent to dwell in.

Jeremiah 43:10
and say to them, 'Thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel, "Behold, I am going to send and get Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon, My servant, and I am going to set his throne right over these stones that I have hidden; and he will spread his canopy over them.

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