The Treasury of David

The Treasury of David is one of several C.H. Spurgeon books that are in the public domain. If you propose to study the Psalms, I suggest you download this as a companion for your other references.

Psalm 35

Title. A Psalm of David. Here is all we know concerning this Psalm, but internal evidence seems to fix the date of its composition in those troublous times when Saul hunted David over hill and dale, and when those who fawned upon the cruel king, slandered the innocent object of his wrath, or it may be referred to the unquiet days of frequent insurrections in David’s old age. The whole Psalm is the appeal to heaven of a bold heart and a clear conscience, irritated beyond measure by oppression and malice. Beyond a doubt David’s Lord may be seen here by the spiritual eye.

Divisions. The most natural mode of dividing this Psalm is to note its triple character. Its complaint, prayer, and promise of praise are repeated with remarkable parallelism three times, even as our Lord in the Garden prayed three times, using the same words. The first portion occupies from Psalms 35:1-10, the second from Psalms 35:11-18, and the last from Psalms 35:19-28; each section ending with a note of grateful song.
The Treasury of David.

Psalm 35:21


“Yea, they opened their mouth wide against me.” As if they would swallow him. Uttering great lies which needed wide mouths. They set no bounds to their infamous charges, but poured out wholesale abuse, trusting that if all did not stick, some of it would. “And said, Aha, aha, our eye hath seen it.” Glad to find out a fault or a misfortune, or to swear they had seen evil where there was none. Malice has but one eye; it is blind to all virtue in its enemy. Eyes can generally see what hearts wish. A man with a mote in his eye sees a spot in the sun. How like a man is to an ass when he brays over another’s misfortunes! how like to a devil when he laughs a hyæna-laugh over a good man’s slip! Malice is folly, and when it holds a festival its tones and gestures far exceed all the freaks and mummeries of the lord of misrule.

Explanatory Notes and Quaint Sayings

“Our eye hath seen.” Eye for eyes, unless we would say that all the wicked are so conjoined, that they may seem to have but one eye, heart, head. John Trapp.

Yet, O ye saints, divulge not these things to wicked men; whisper them softly one to another, with fear and trembling, lest some profane wretch or other overhear you, and take that for encouragement that was only meant for caution. What is more common than for the vilest sinners to plead for their excuse, or warrant rather, the foul miscarriages of God’s dearest saints? Thus the drunkard looks upon holy Noah as a pot-companion, whereby he discovers his nakedness in a worse sense than ever Cham did; and thus the unclean sensualist quotes David, and calls him in to be the patron of his debauchery. Certainly, if their be any grief that can overcast the perfect joys of the saints in heaven, it is that their names and examples should, to the great dishonour of God, be produced by wicked and sinful men, to countenance their grossest sins and wickednesses. But let such know, that God hath set up these in his church to be monuments of his mercy, to declare to humble and penitent sinners how great sins he can pardon; yet if any hereupon embolden themselves in sin, instead of being set up as monuments of mercy, God will set them up as pillars of salt. Ezekiel Hopkins (Bishop).

He who rejoices in another’s fall rejoices in the devil’s victory. Ambrose, quoted in Nichol’s Proverbs.

Ver. 21, 22:—

They gape and drawe their mouthes in scornful wise.

And crie, fie, fie, wee sawe it with our eyes.

But thou their deed, (O Lord!) dost also see;

Then bee not silent soe, nor farr from mee
The Treasury of David.

Singing psalms


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