God’s Perfect Knowledge of Man

For the Chief Musician. A Psalm of David.

139 O Lord, (A)You have searched me and known me.
(B)You know my sitting down and my rising up;
You (C)understand my thought afar off.
(D)You [a]comprehend my path and my lying down,
And are acquainted with all my ways.
For there is not a word on my tongue,
But behold, O Lord, (E)You know it altogether.
You have [b]hedged me behind and before,
And laid Your hand upon me.
(F)Such knowledge is too wonderful for me;
It is high, I cannot attain it.

(G)Where can I go from Your Spirit?
Or where can I flee from Your presence?
(H)If I ascend into heaven, You are there;
(I)If I make my bed in [c]hell, behold, You are there.
If I take the wings of the morning,
And dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea,
10 Even there Your hand shall lead me,
And Your right hand shall hold me.
11 If I say, “Surely the darkness shall [d]fall on me,”
Even the night shall be light about me;
12 Indeed, (J)the darkness [e]shall not hide from You,
But the night shines as the day;
The darkness and the light are both alike to You.

13 For You formed my inward parts;
You [f]covered me in my mother’s womb.
14 I will praise You, for [g]I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
Marvelous are Your works,
And that my soul knows very well.
15 (K)My [h]frame was not hidden from You,
When I was made in secret,
And skillfully wrought in the lowest parts of the earth.
16 Your eyes saw my substance, being yet unformed.
And in Your book they all were written,
The days fashioned for me,
When as yet there were none of them.

17 (L)How precious also are Your thoughts to me, O God!
How great is the sum of them!
18 If I should count them, they would be more in number than the sand;
When I awake, I am still with You.

19 Oh, that You would (M)slay the wicked, O God!
(N)Depart from me, therefore, you [i]bloodthirsty men.
20 For they (O)speak against You wickedly;
[j]Your enemies take Your name in vain.
21 (P)Do I not hate them, O Lord, who hate You?
And do I not loathe those who rise up against You?
22 I hate them with [k]perfect hatred;
I count them my enemies.

23 (Q)Search me, O God, and know my heart;
Try me, and know my anxieties;
24 And see if there is any wicked way in me,
And (R)lead me in the way everlasting.

Footnotes

  1. Psalm 139:3 Lit. winnow
  2. Psalm 139:5 enclosed
  3. Psalm 139:8 Or Sheol
  4. Psalm 139:11 Vg., Symmachus cover
  5. Psalm 139:12 Lit. is not dark
  6. Psalm 139:13 wove
  7. Psalm 139:14 So with MT, Tg.; LXX, Syr., Vg. You are fearfully wonderful
  8. Psalm 139:15 Lit. bones were
  9. Psalm 139:19 Lit. men of bloodshed
  10. Psalm 139:20 LXX, Vg. They take Your cities in vain
  11. Psalm 139:22 complete

God’s Omnipresence and Omniscience.

For the choir director. A Psalm of David.

139 O Lord, You have (A)searched me and known me.
You (B)know [a]when I sit down and [b]when I rise up;
You (C)understand my thought from afar.
You [c](D)scrutinize my [d]path and my lying down,
And are intimately acquainted with all my ways.
[e]Even before there is a word on my tongue,
Behold, O Lord, You (E)know it all.
You have (F)enclosed me behind and before,
And (G)laid Your hand upon me.
Such (H)knowledge is (I)too wonderful for me;
It is too high, I cannot attain to it.

(J)Where can I go from Your Spirit?
Or where can I flee from Your presence?
(K)If I ascend to heaven, You are there;
If I make my bed in [f]Sheol, behold, (L)You are there.
If I take the wings of the dawn,
If I dwell in the remotest part of the sea,
10 Even there Your hand will (M)lead me,
And Your right hand will lay hold of me.
11 If I say, “Surely the (N)darkness will [g]overwhelm me,
And the light around me will be night,”
12 Even the (O)darkness is not dark [h]to You,
And the night is as bright as the day.
(P)Darkness and light are alike to You.

13 For You (Q)formed my [i]inward parts;
You (R)wove me in my mother’s womb.
14 I will give thanks to You, for [j]I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
(S)Wonderful are Your works,
And my soul knows it very well.
15 My [k](T)frame was not hidden from You,
When I was made in secret,
And skillfully wrought in the (U)depths of the earth;
16 Your (V)eyes have seen my unformed substance;
And in (W)Your book were all written
The (X)days that were ordained for me,
When as yet there was not one of them.

17 How precious also are Your (Y)thoughts to me, O God!
How vast is the sum of them!
18 If I should count them, they would (Z)outnumber the sand.
When (AA)I awake, I am still with You.

19 O that You would (AB)slay the wicked, O God;
(AC)Depart from me, therefore, (AD)men of bloodshed.
20 For they (AE)speak [l]against You wickedly,
And Your enemies [m](AF)take Your name in vain.
21 Do I not (AG)hate those who hate You, O Lord?
And do I not (AH)loathe those who rise up against You?
22 I hate them with the utmost hatred;
They have become my enemies.

23 (AI)Search me, O God, and know my heart;
(AJ)Try me and know my anxious thoughts;
24 And see if there be any [n](AK)hurtful way in me,
And (AL)lead me in the (AM)everlasting way.

Footnotes

  1. Psalm 139:2 Lit my sitting
  2. Psalm 139:2 Lit my rising
  3. Psalm 139:3 Lit winnow
  4. Psalm 139:3 Or journeying
  5. Psalm 139:4 Lit For there is not
  6. Psalm 139:8 I.e. the nether world
  7. Psalm 139:11 Lit bruise; some commentators read cover
  8. Psalm 139:12 Lit from
  9. Psalm 139:13 Lit kidneys
  10. Psalm 139:14 Some ancient versions read You are fearfully wonderful
  11. Psalm 139:15 Lit bones were
  12. Psalm 139:20 Or of
  13. Psalm 139:20 Some mss read lift themselves up against You
  14. Psalm 139:24 Lit way of pain

Psalm 139

To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David.

O Lord, thou hast searched me, and known me.
Thou knowest my downsitting and mine uprising,
thou understandest my thought afar off.
Thou compassest my path and my lying down,
and art acquainted with all my ways.
For there is not a word in my tongue,
but, lo, O Lord, thou knowest it altogether.
Thou hast beset me behind and before,
and laid thine hand upon me.
Such knowledge is too wonderful for me;
it is high, I cannot attain unto it.

Whither shall I go from thy spirit?
or whither shall I flee from thy presence?
If I ascend up into heaven, thou art there:
if I make my bed in hell, behold, thou art there.
If I take the wings of the morning,
and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea;
10 even there shall thy hand lead me,
and thy right hand shall hold me.
11 If I say, Surely the darkness shall cover me;
even the night shall be light about me.
12 Yea, the darkness hideth not from thee; but the night shineth as the day:
the darkness and the light are both alike to thee.

13 For thou hast possessed my reins:
thou hast covered me in my mother’s womb.
14 I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made:
marvellous are thy works;
and that my soul knoweth right well.
15 My substance was not hid from thee, when I was made in secret,
and curiously wrought in the lowest parts of the earth.
16 Thine eyes did see my substance, yet being unperfect;
and in thy book all my members were written,
which in continuance were fashioned,
when as yet there was none of them.
17 How precious also are thy thoughts unto me, O God!
how great is the sum of them!
18 If I should count them, they are more in number than the sand:
when I awake, I am still with thee.

19 Surely thou wilt slay the wicked, O God:
depart from me therefore, ye bloody men.
20 For they speak against thee wickedly,
and thine enemies take thy name in vain.
21 Do not I hate them, O Lord, that hate thee?
and am not I grieved with those that rise up against thee?
22 I hate them with perfect hatred:
I count them mine enemies.

23 Search me, O God, and know my heart:
try me, and know my thoughts:
24 and see if there be any wicked way in me,
and lead me in the way everlasting.