So foolish was I, and ignorant - Such low and imperfect views did I take of the subject. The margin is, “I knew not.” So the Hebrew: “And I am brutish, and know not;” that is, I did not understand the case; I had no correct views in regard to it.
I was as a beast before thee - Margin, as in Hebrew, “with thee.” That is, in thy very presence; or, I was guilty of such foolishness in the very presence of my Maker. If it had been when I was alone, or when no one saw me, the folly would not have been so aggravated, and so much to be regretted, but it was when the very eye of God was upon me. Compare Isaiah 1:7; Jeremiah 7:30; Jeremiah 18:10; Psalm 51:4. When he says that he was as a beast, he means that he was stupid and senseless; he had no proper understanding of the case; he did not take any just views of it.