Bible Verse Explanations and Resources


Psalms 131:1

Albert Barnes
Notes on the Whole Bible

Lord, my heart is not haughty - Though this is charged upon me; though I may have said things which seem to imply it; though this might appear a just inference from my conduct - yet I am conscious that this is not my real character. What I have said was not the result of ambition.

Nor mine eyes lofty - I am conscious that I am not ambitious and aspiring - as I am accused of being. What I have said is not the result of such a feeling, nor should such a charge be brought against me.

Neither do I exercise myself - Margin, as in Hebrew, walk. I do not walk about among such things; I do not pry into them; I do not meddle with them. What I have said or done is not, as has been said concerning me, the result of a meddlesome and interfering spirit. It may seem to be so; my own consciousness tells me it is not so. The interpretation put upon my conduct may be natural; but I am conscious to myself that it is not the right interpretation.

In great matters, or in things too high for me - Margin, as in Hebrew, wonderful. The word wonderful would apply to matters suited to excite astonishment by their vastness, or their unusual nature - as prodigies or miracles; and then, great and lofty truths. It would apply also to things which might be regarded as far above the capacity of a child, or of one in obscure life, and with slight advantages of education; and, as above suggested, it may have been the accusation brought against him, that, in respect to public matters, matters of state - or to the more elevated doctrines of religion - he had manifested a spirit unbecoming one in early years, and of humble rank, and that this indicated a desire to meddle with matters which he could not understand, and which could not pertain to him. He was conscious, he says, that he was not actuated by that spirit.