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Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Psalms 53:4

 

 

Have the workers of wickedness no knowledge, Who eat up My people as though they ate bread And have not called upon God?

Adam Clarke Commentary

Have the workers of iniquity - For פעלי , poaley, workers seventy-two of Kennicott's and De Rossi's MSS., with several ancient editions, the Chaldee, though not noticed in the Latin translation in the London Polyglot, the Syriac, Vulgate, Septuagint, Ethiopic, and the Arabic, with the Anglo-Saxon, add the word כל col, all, - All the workers of iniquity; which is the reading in the parallel place in Psalm 14:1-7; : It may be necessary to observe, that the Chaldee, in the Antwerp and Paris Polyglots, and in that of Justinianus, has not the word כל col, All.

Have not Called upon God - אלהים Elohim ; but many MSS. have יהוה Jehovah, Lord.


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Bibliography
Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on Psalms 53:4". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/psalms-53.html. 1832.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

Have the workers of iniquity no knowledge? - See the notes at Psalm 14:4. The only change in this verse is in the omission of the word “all.” This word, as it occurs in Psalm 14:1-7 (“all the workers of iniquity”), makes the sentence stronger and more emphatic. It is designed to affirm in the most absolute and unqualified manner that none of these workers of iniquity had any true knowledge of God. This has been noticed by critics as the only instance in which the expression in Psalm 14:1-7 is stronger than in the revised form of the psalm before us.


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Bibliography
Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on Psalms 53:4". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/psalms-53.html. 1870.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

Have the workers of iniquity no knowledge?.... In Psalm 14:4, it is, "have all the workers", &c. There are none of them but what have, unless given up to judicial blindness, and hardness of heart, to believe a lie, as antichrist and his followers, 2 Thessalonians 2:10; See Gill on Psalm 14:4;

who eat up my people, as they eat bread; and drink their blood, and are drunken with it, Revelation 17:6;

they have not called upon God; but upon their idols, upon the Virgin Mary, and saints departed. In Psalm 14:4, it is, "upon the Lord".


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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 53:4". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/psalms-53.html. 1999.

Geneva Study Bible

Have the d workers of iniquity no knowledge? who eat up my people [as] they eat bread: they have not called upon God.

(d) David pronounces God's vengeance against cruel governors who having charge to defend and preserve God's people, cruelly devour them.

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Bibliography
Beza, Theodore. "Commentary on Psalms 53:4". "The 1599 Geneva Study Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/gsb/psalms-53.html. 1599-1645.

Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament

Here in the first line the word כּל־ , which, as in Psalms 5:6; Psalms 6:9, is in its right place, is wanting. In Psalms 14:1-7 there then follow, instead of two tristichs, two distichs, which are perhaps each mutilated by the loss of a line. The writer who has retouched the Psalm has restored the tristichic symmetry that had been lost sight of, but he has adopted rather violent means: inasmuch as he has fused down the two distichs into a single tristich, which is as closely as possible adapted to the sound of their letters.


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The Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament is a derivative of a public domain electronic edition.

Bibliography
Keil, Carl Friedrich & Delitzsch, Franz. "Commentary on Psalms 53:4". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/kdo/psalms-53.html. 1854-1889.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

Psalms 53:4 Have the workers of iniquity no knowledge? who eat up my people [as] they eat bread: they have not called upon God.

Ver. 4. Have the workers of iniquity no knowledge?] Etiam scient in fine, et dolebunt, saith one, Know they shall, to their sorrow, in the end, that they have eaten that on earth which they must digest in hell.


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Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.

Bibliography
Trapp, John. "Commentary on Psalms 53:4". John Trapp Complete Commentary. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/psalms-53.html. 1865-1868.

Peter Pett's Commentary on the Bible

God Expresses His Surprise At The Inability Of The Nations To Recognise That Israel/Judah Are His People (Psalms 53:4)

Psalms 53:4

‘Have the workers of iniquity no knowledge,

Who eat up my people as they eat bread, and do not call on God?’

God is perplexed at the folly of men. He cannot believe that they are so lacking in wisdom and common sense. Do they have no knowledge and understanding? Do they not recognise that those who are in covenant with Him are His people? They neither call on God nor treat well those who do truly call on Him.

The fact that they do not call on God, that is on YHWH (Psalms 14:5), would appear to point to foreign nations. They ‘eat up My people as they eat bread’. ‘My people’ must refer here to Israel/Judah, but especially to those who truly call on Him, the faithful in Israel (Micah 2:9; Micah 3:5). For while ‘my people’ is used of Israel as a whole it is always with the understanding that they are potentially responding to the covenant. Those who fail to do so in the end cease to be ‘His people’. They are then seen as combined with the enemy (this is made clear in the Book of Ezra). Devouring or eating up His people refers both to depriving them of their possessions, devouring their wealth, and to oppressing them, giving them a hard time and even doing violence to them (compare Micah 3:1-3; Isaiah 3:14-15; Ezra 4-5). So the world is seen as in deliberate antagonism against God, and against true righteousness as personified in His true people.

‘The workers of iniquity’ are thus those who deliberately continue in the way of sin having refused to become one of His people. They have turned away from the covenant. They are not necessarily great sinners as the world would view it, but they are from God’s viewpoint, because they fail to truly respond to Him.


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Bibliography
Pett, Peter. "Commentary on Psalms 53:4". "Peter Pett's Commentary on the Bible ". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/pet/psalms-53.html. 2013.

Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable

The psalmist may have had some specific instance of God"s deliverance in mind, or he may have spoken of His future judgment as having already taken place because of its certainty. God Himself would terrorize and shame His enemies. Evidently David saw God"s people as playing some role in their enemies" defeat.


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Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.

Bibliography
Constable, Thomas. DD. "Commentary on Psalms 53:4". "Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/dcc/psalms-53.html. 2012.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

the workers. Some codices, with two early printed editions, Aramaean, Septuagint, Syriac, and Vulgate, read "all the workers".

iniquity. Hebrew. "avah. App-44.


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These files are public domain.
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Bibliography
Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on Psalms 53:4". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/psalms-53.html. 1909-1922.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(4) Notice the omission of the expressive “all” found in Psalms 14


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Bibliography
Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on Psalms 53:4". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/psalms-53.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

Have the workers of iniquity no knowledge? who eat up my people as they eat bread: they have not called upon God.
Have
Here 70 MSS., several editions, and the ancient versions add kol, "all," as in Ps 14.
94:8; Isaiah 27:11; Jeremiah 4:22; Matthew 23:17-39
who eat
27:2; Jeremiah 10:25; Revelation 17:16

Copyright Statement
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Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.

Bibliography
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Psalms 53:4". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/psalms-53.html.

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