Verses 28–29

Here is, 1. David’s representation of his own griefs: My soul melteth for heaviness, which is to the same purport with Ps. 119:25; My soul cleaveth to the dust. Heaviness in the heart of man makes it to melt, to drop away like a candle that wastes. The penitent soul melts in sorrow for sin, and even the patient soul may melt in the sense of affliction, and it is then its interest to pour out its supplication before God. 2. His request for God’s grace. (1.) That God would enable him to bear his affliction well and graciously support him under it: “Strengthen thou me with strength in my soul, according to thy word, which, as the bread of life, strengthens man’s heart to undergo whatever God is pleased to inflict. Strengthen me to do the duties, resist the temptations, and bear up under the burdens, of an afflicted state, that the spirit may not fail. Strengthen me according to that word (Deut. 33:25), As thy days so shall thy strength be.” (2.) That God would keep him from using any unlawful indirect means for the extricating of himself out of his troubles (Ps. 119:29): Remove from me the way of lying. David was conscious to himself of a proneness to this sin; he had, in a strait, cheated Ahimelech (1 Sam. 21:2), and Achish, 1 Sam. 21:13; 27:10. Great difficulties are great temptations to palliate a lie with the colour of a pious fraud and a necessary self-defence; therefore David prays that God would prevent him from falling into this sin any more, lest he should settle in the way of it. A course of lying, of deceit and dissimulation, is that which every good man dreads and which we are all concerned to beg of God by his grace to keep us from. (3.) That he might always be under the guidance and protection of God’s government: Grant me thy law graciously; grant me that to keep me from the way of lying. David had the law written with his own hand, for the king was obliged to transcribe a copy of it for his own use (Deut. 17:18); but he prays that he might have it written in his heart; for then, and then only, we have it indeed, and to good purpose. “Grant it me more and more.” Those that know and love the law of God cannot but desire to know it more and love it better. “Grant it me graciously;” he begs it as a special token of God’s favour. Note, We ought to reckon God’s law a grant, a gift, an unspeakable gift, to value it, and pray for it, and to give thanks for it accordingly. The divine code of institutes and precepts is indeed a charter of privileges; and God is truly gracious to those whom he makes gracious by giving them his law.