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Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Psalms 49:11

 

 

Their inner thought is that their houses are forever And their dwelling places to all generations; They have called their lands after their own names.

Adam Clarke Commentary

Their inward thought is, that their houses shall continue for ever - Thus, by interpolation, we have endeavored to patch up a sense to this clause. Instead of קרבם kirbam, their inward part, the Septuagint appear to have used a copy in which the second and third letters have been transposed קברם kibram, their sepulchres; for they translate: Και οἱ ταφοι αυτων οικιαι αυτων εις τον αιωνα· "For their graves are their dwellings for ever." So six or seven feet long, and two or three wide, is sufficient to hold the greatest conqueror in the universe! What a small house for the quondam possessor of numerous palaces and potent kingdoms!

They call their lands after their own names - There would have been no evil in this if it had not been done on an infidel principle. They expected no state but the present; and if they could not continue themselves, yet they took as much pains as possible to perpetuate their memorial.


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Bibliography
Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on Psalms 49:11". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/psalms-49.html. 1832.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

Their inward thought is - Their secret expectation and feeling is that they have secured permanency for their wealth in their own families, though they themselves may pass away. The essential thought in this verse is, that the rich people referred to in the foregoing verses imagine that their possessions will be perpetuated in their own families. The word rendered “inward thought” - קרב qereb - means properly “the midst, the middle, inner part;” and hence it comes to mean the heart, or the mind, as the seat of thought and affection: Psalm 5:9; Psalm 64:6. It means here, their hope, their calculation, their secret expectation; and the whole verse is designed to show the value or importance which they attach to wealth as being, in their apprehension, suited to build up their families forever.

That their houses shall continue “for ever - Either the dwellings which they rear, or - more probably - their families.

And their dwelling-places to all generations - Margin, as in Hebrew, “to generation and generation.” That is, forever. They expect that their possessions will always remain in the family, and be transmitted from one generation to another.

They call their lands after their own names - They give their own names to the farms or grounds which they own, in the hope that, though they must themselves pass away, their “names” may be handed down to future times. This practice, which is not uncommon in the world, shows how intense is the desire of people not to be forgotten; and at the same time illustrates the main thought in the psalm - the importance attached to wealth by its possessor, as if it could carry his “name” down to future times, when he shall have passed away. In this respect, too, wealth is commonly as powerless as it is in saving its possessor from the grave. It is not very far into future times that mere wealth can carry the name of a man after he is dead. lands and tenements pass into other hands, and the future owner soon ceases to have any concern about the “name” of the former occupier, and the world cares nothing about it. A man must have some other claim to be remembered than the mere fact of his having been rich, or he will be soon forgotten. Compare the notes at Isaiah 22:15-19.


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Bibliography
Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on Psalms 49:11". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/psalms-49.html. 1870.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

Their inward thought is, that their houses shall continue for ever,.... This is the thought of their hearts, what they secretly imagine, and conclude within themselves; either that their families, which may be meant by their houses, see 2 Samuel 3:1; shall continue in succeeding ages, to the end of the world, to inherit their possessions, and perpetuate their name; though often so it is, that great families become extinct, and the seed of the wicked is cut off: or that their magnificent buildings, which they have erected to dwell in, and for their honour and glory, shall abide for ever; though in a little time, so it is by one means or another, like the buildings of the temple, not one stone is left upon another. Or the words may be rendered, "in the midst of them" (their heirs to whom they leave their wealth) "their houses shall remain for ever", so Aben Ezra; that is, so they fancy they will; but this is not always true, for fine houses and large estates belonging to them often pass into other hands and families. The word קרבם, rendered "their inward part", by a transposition of two letters in it may be read קברם, "their graves", as Aben Ezra, Kimchi, and Ben Melech observe; and to this sense the Targum, Septuagint, Vulgate Latin, Syriac, and Arabic versions render the words: and then the meaning is, that of all the houses they have built or been possessed of, they have only one left, and that is the grave; in which they shall dwell until the resurrection, and therefore is called "a long home", Ecclesiastes 12:5; see Job 17:13;

and their dwelling places to all generations; which signify the same as before;

they call their lands after their own names; as Egypt was called Mizraim, Ethiopia was called Cush, and Palestine Canaan, from men who were the first possessors of them, Genesis 10:6. Or "they proclaim their names throughout the land"F24So Piscator, Gejerus, Michaelis. ; they seek to get a name, and spread and continue it in all part of the world; being unconcerned about their names being written in heaven, or about having a house not made with hands eternal there.


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The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rightes Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
A printed copy of this work can be ordered from: The Baptist Standard Bearer, 1 Iron Oaks Dr, Paris, AR, 72855

Bibliography
Gill, John. "Commentary on Psalms 49:11". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/psalms-49.html. 1999.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

Still infatuated and flattered with hopes of perpetuity, they call their lands, or “celebrate their names on account of (their) lands.”


Copyright Statement
These files are a derivative of an electronic edition prepared from text scanned by Woodside Bible Fellowship.
This expanded edition of the Jameison-Faussett-Brown Commentary is in the public domain and may be freely used and distributed.

Bibliography
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Psalms 49:11". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jfb/psalms-49.html. 1871-8.

Wesley's Explanatory Notes

Their inward thought is, that their houses shall continue for ever, and their dwelling places to all generations; they call their lands after their own names.

Thought — Tho' they are ashamed to express, yet it is their secret hope.

Houses — Either their posterity, often called mens houses: or their mansion-houses, as it is explained in the next clause.

For ever — To them and theirs in succeeding generations.

Call — Fondly dreaming by this means to immortalize their memories.


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These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website.

Bibliography
Wesley, John. "Commentary on Psalms 49:11". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/wen/psalms-49.html. 1765.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

Psalms 49:11 Their inward thought [is, that] their houses [shall continue] for ever, [and] their dwelling places to all generations; they call [their] lands after their own names.

Ver. 11. Their inward thought is, that their houses, &c.] Some join this verse to the former, and read the words thus: Whereas each of them seeth that wise men die, likewise the fool, &c., yet their inward thought is, &c., they have a secret fond conceit of their own immortality, they would fain believe that they shall dwell here for ever. The Hebrew runneth thus, Their inwards are their houses for ever; as if their houses were got within them, as the Pharisee’s goods were, Luke 11:14, τα ενοντα. So here, Internum vel interiora; not the thoughts only, but the very inmost of the thoughts of wicked worldlings, the most retired thoughts and recesses of their souls, are about these earthly things; these lie nearest to their hearts; as Queen Mary said when she died, Open me, and you shall find Calais at my heart. It was a pitiful case, that a rotten town lay where Christ should, and yet it is ordinary.

They call their lands after their own names] So to make them famous, and to immortalize them at once. Thus Cain called his newly built city Enoch, after the name of his son, whom he would thereby have to be called Lord Enoch of Enoch. This is the ambition still of many, that take little care to know that their names are written in heaven; but strive to propagate them, as they are able, upon earth, Nimrod by his tower, Absalom by his pillar, Alexander by his Alexandria, Adrian by his Adrianople, &c. But the name of the wicked shall rot, Proverbs 10:7, and those that depart from God shall be written in the earth, Jeremiah 17:13, &c.


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Bibliography
Trapp, John. "Commentary on Psalms 49:11". John Trapp Complete Commentary. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/psalms-49.html. 1865-1868.

Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible

Psalms 49:11. Their inward thought, &c.— Their sepulchre is their dwelling for ever; their abode to all generations: they put their names upon heaps of earth. So the LXX read, which seems to give the easier and more natural sense. The latter part refers to the monumental inscriptions. "There is nothing left but their names, inscribed on heaps of earth." Houbigant, who agrees in this interpretation, renders the latter clause somewhat differently. The sepulchre is their dwelling for ever, the habitation for many generations of those who have had a name upon earth.


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Bibliography
Coke, Thomas. "Commentary on Psalms 49:11". Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/tcc/psalms-49.html. 1801-1803.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

Their inward thought is; though they are ashamed to express it, yet it is their secret opinion, and hope, and wish.

Their houses; either,

1. Their posterity, oft called men’s houses 2 Samuel 7:11, &c.; Psalms 113:9 115:12. Or,

2. Their mansion houses, as it is explained in the next clause, which also serve for this purpose, to preserve a man name for ever.

Shall continue for ever; not to them in their own persons, but to them and theirs in succeeding generations, as it follows.

They call their lands after their own names; fondly dreaming by this means to immortalize their names and memories.


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Bibliography
Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Psalms 49:11". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/psalms-49.html. 1685.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

11. Unable to redeem themselves from death, (Psalms 49:6-8,) these worldlings bend their thoughts to schemes whereby they vainly hope to perpetuate an ideal immortality, as if they could secure a posthumous enjoyment of their earthly grandeur. The futility of this scheme is the psalmist’s second ground of argument.

Their inward thought—The thought of their inmost being, ( קרב, kereb,) the product of their profoundest faculty of reason and sensibility. The original is abrupt, but the sense is clear and pungent.

Here we have the true measurement of their moral manhood; the highest reach and deepest soundings of their soul-life, and their spirit-life.


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Bibliography
Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on Psalms 49:11". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/psalms-49.html. 1874-1909.

Joseph Benson's Commentary of the Old and New Testaments

Psalms 49:11. Their inward thought — Which they are ashamed to express, but which is yet their secret hope; is, that their houses — Either their families, or rather their mansion-houses, as it is explained in the next clause; shall continue for ever — To them and theirs in succeeding generations; they imagine, and secretly please themselves in this fancy, that when they can stay no longer in the world, their goodly houses which they have built shall stand for ever, and the places of their abode continue in their family from age to age. They call their lands after their own name — Though they cannot be immortal themselves, yet they hope their names, which they put upon their lands, shall never die. “Various are the contrivances,” says Dr. Horne, “of vain men, to have their names written on earth, and to procure, after their deaths, an imaginary immortality, for themselves and their families, in the memory and conversation of posterity; which is not often obtained; and, if obtained, is of no value; when, with less trouble, they might have had their names written in heaven, and have secured to themselves a blessed immortality in the glorious kingdom of their Redeemer.”


Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.

Bibliography
Benson, Joseph. "Commentary on Psalms 49:11". Joseph Benson's Commentary. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/rbc/psalms-49.html. 1857.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

I know your number, and have absolute dominion over all, Isaias xxxvii. 28. (Calmet) --- Field. Ripe fruits. (St. Cyril) (Alexandrian) --- With God all things are present. (St. Augustine; Lombard, 1 dist. 35.; F.; Amama)


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Bibliography
Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on Psalms 49:11". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/psalms-49.html. 1859.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(11) Their inward thought is, that their houses shall continue for ever.—These eleven words represent three in the Hebrew, and, as the text stands, give its sense, which is intelligible and consistent:

“They believe their houses will last for ever,

Their dwelling places from generation to generation;

They call the lands by their own names.”

The reading followed by the LXX., Chaldee, and Syriac, kibram for kirbam gives a different thought—

“Their graves are their homes,

Their dwelling places for ever.”

(Comp. “his long home,” Ecclesiastes 12:5.)

The last clause, which literally runs, they call in their names upon lands, is by some explained (see Isaiah 44:5) to mean, “they are celebrated in their lands,” which suits the text followed by the LXX.


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Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.

Bibliography
Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on Psalms 49:11". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/psalms-49.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

Their inward thought is, that their houses shall continue for ever, and their dwelling places to all generations; they call their lands after their own names.
Their inward, etc
Or, "Their grave is their house for ever, their dwelling place through all generations, though their names are celebrated over countries."
5:9; 64:6; Ezekiel 38:10; Luke 11:39; Acts 8:22
all generations
Heb. generation and generation. they call.
Genesis 4:17; 1 Samuel 15:12; 2 Samuel 18:18

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Bibliography
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Psalms 49:11". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/psalms-49.html.

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