Psalms 71:3 MEANING

Psalm 71:3
(3) Rock.--Better, cliff (Hebrew selah), to distinguish it from ts-r, above.

Verse 3. - Be thou my strong Habitation; literally, be thou to me for a Rock of habitation; i.e. a rock upon which I may take up my abode. Whereunto I may continually resort. Exegetical of the preceding clause, habitation" Thou hast given "a rock of commandment to save me. It is in thy counsels that I am to be helped and saved - not left to the will of my enemies (comp. Psalm 68:28). This conviction lies at the root of the psalmist's faith and trust. For thou art my Rock and my Fortress (comp. Psalm 18:2; Psalm 61:2, 3, etc.).

71:1-13 David prays that he might never be made ashamed of dependence upon God. With this petition every true believer may come boldly to the throne of grace. The gracious care of Divine providence in our birth and infancy, should engage us to early piety. He that was our Help from our birth, ought to be our Hope from our youth. Let none expect ease or comfort from the world. Those who love the Lord, often are hated and persecuted; men wondered at for their principles and conduct; but the Lord has been their strong refuge. The faithful servants of God may be assured that he will not cast them off in old age, nor forsake them when their strength fails.Be thou my strong habitation,.... This is very appropiately said, when David was driven out of his dwelling place, and palace at Jerusalem, by his son, as Kimchi observes. When God's people have no certain dwelling place, which is sometimes their case, they always find one in the Lord; particularly in his heart's love; for he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, 1 John 4:16; and a strong habitation he is: wherefore he is called a strong rock, a strong hold, a strong tower; he is as a wall of fire around his people, a munition of rocks; his salvation is as walls and bulwarks, and his power as a garrison in which they are kept. The psalmist adds,

whereunto I may continually resort; or "may go into daily" (r), in times of danger and distress, for safety; the name of the Lord being a strong tower, whither the righteous run, and are safe, Proverbs 18:10; and his perfections, his power, faithfulness, lovingkindness, and unchangeableness, being as so many secret chambers, where they may enter into, and hide themselves, till calamities are over, Psalm 57:1; and every day indeed for food, for comfort, for refreshment and pleasure, through communion with him; and God in Christ is always to be come at: Christ is the way of access and acceptance; and through his blood, sacrifice, and righteousness, the believer has boldness to enter into the holiest of all, and go up to the seat of God, the throne of his grace; and even to enter into him himself, who has been the dwelling place of his people in all generations, Psalm 90:1;

thou hast given commandment to save me; either to the ministering angels, as Aben Ezra and Kimchi interpret it, comparing it with Psalm 91:11; or rather to his Son, in the council and covenant of grace and peace; when he enjoined him the salvation of his people, which he readily agreed to, and with which David was acquainted, Psalm 40:7; of this command our Lord speaks, John 10:18; and to which he was obedient, Philippians 2:8; it may respect David's salvation from present trouble, and his assurance of it, believing that the Lord had determined it, and by his mighty power would effect it; see Psalm 44:4;

for thou art my rock and my fortress; see Psalm 18:2.

(r) "ut ingrediar jugiter", Pagninus; so Junius & Tremellius, Piscator.

Courtesy of Open Bible