Bible Verse Explanations and Resources


Psalms 62:12

Albert Barnes
Notes on the Whole Bible

Also unto thee, O Lord, belongeth mercy - Power, indeed, belongs to God Psalm 62:11; but this is an attribute to be feared, and while, in one respect, it will inspire confidence, or while it gives us the assurance that God is able to defend us when all else shall fail, yet, unattended by any other attribute, it might produce only apprehension and alarm. What man, weak and sinful man, needs to know is not merely that God has almighty power, but how that power will be wielded, or with what other attributes it is combined; whether it will be put forth to destroy or to save; to kill or to keep alive; to crush or to uphold. Man, therefore, needs the assurance that God is a benevolent Being, as really as that he is a powerful Being; that he is disposed to show mercy; that his power will be put forth in behalf of those who confide in him, and not employed against them. Hence, the attribute of mercy is so essential to a proper conception of God; and hence, the psalm so appropriately closes by a reference to his mercy and compassion.

For thou renderest to every man according to his work - As this stands in our version, it would seem that the psalmist regarded what is here referred to as a manifestation of mercy. Yet the “rendering to every man according to his work” is an act of justice rather than of mercy. It is probable, therefore, that the word rendered “for” - כי kı̂y - does not refer here to either of the attributes mentioned exclusively - either power or mercy - but is to be understood with reference to the general course of argument in the psalm, as adapted to lead to confidence in God. The fact that he is a God who will deal impartially with mankind, or who will regard what is right and proper to be done in view of the characters of mankind, is a reason why they should confide in God - since there could be no just ground of confidence in a Being who is not thus impartial and just. All these combined - power, mercy, equity - constitute a reason why people should confide in God. If either of these were missing in the divine character, man could have no confidence in God. If these things do exist in God, unlimited confidence may be placed in him as having all needful power to save; as being so merciful that sinful people may trust in him; and as being so just and equal in his dealings that all may feel that it is right to repose confidence in a Being by whom all the interests of the universe will be secured. Compare 1 John 1:9.

Matthew Henry
Concise Bible Commentary
Those who have found the comfort of the ways of God themselves, will invite others into those ways; we shall never have the less for others sharing with us. the good counsel given is, to trust wholly in God. We must so trust in him at all times, as not at any time to put that trust in ourselves, or in any creature, which is to be put in him only. Trust in him to guide us when in doubt, to protect us when in danger, to supply us when in want, to strengthen us for every good word and work. We must lay out wants and our wishes before him, and then patiently submit our wills to his: this is pouring out our hearts. God is a refuge for all, even for as many as will take shelter in him. The psalmist warns against trusting in men. The multitude, those of low degree, are changeable as the wind. The rich and noble seem to have much in their power, and lavish promises; but those that depend on them, are disappointed. Weighed in the balance of Scripture, all that man can do to make us happy is lighter than vanity itself. It is hard to have riches, and not to trust in them if they increase, though by lawful and honest means; but we must take heed, lest we set our affections unduly upon them. A smiling world is the most likely to draw the heart from God, on whom alone it should be set. The consistent believer receives all from God as a trust; and he seeks to use it to his glory, as a steward who must render an account. God hath spoken as it were once for all, that power belongs to him alone. He can punish and destroy. Mercy also belongs to him; and his recompensing the imperfect services of those that believe in him, blotting out their transgressions for the Redeemer's sake, is a proof of abundant mercy, and encourages us to trust in him. Let us trust in his mercy and grace, and abound in his work, expecting mercies from him alone.