Psalm 25:21
Let integrity and uprightness preserve me; for I wait on thee.
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Psalm 25:21. Let integrity and uprightness preserve me — Though I have greatly offended thee, yet remember that I have dealt honestly and sincerely with mine eugenics, while they have dealt falsely and injuriously with me; and therefore judge between them and me, and deal with me according to the righteousness of my cause and conduct toward them. David’s praying that integrity might preserve him, “intimates,” says Henry, “that he did not expect to be safe any longer than he continued in his integrity and uprightness; and that while he did continue in it, he did not doubt of being safe. Sincerity,” adds he, “will be our best security in the worst of times. Integrity and uprightness will be a man’s preservation more than the wealth and honour of the world can be; this will preserve us to the heavenly kingdom. We should therefore pray to God to preserve us in our integrity, and then be assured that that will preserve us.”

25:15-22 The psalmist concludes, as he began, with expressing dependence upon God, and desire toward him. It is good thus to hope, and quietly to wait for the salvation of the Lord. And if God turns to us, no matter who turns from us. He pleads his own integrity. Though guilty before God, yet, as to his enemies, he had the testimony of conscience that he had done them no wrong. God would, at length, give Israel rest from all their enemies round about. In heaven, God's Israel will be perfectly redeemed from all troubles. Blessed Saviour, thou hast graciously taught us that without thee we can do nothing. Do thou teach us how to pray, how to appear before thee in the way which thou shalt choose, and how to lift up our whole hearts and desires after thee, for thou art the Lord our righteousness.Let integrity and uprightness preserve me - The word here rendered "integrity" means properly "perfection." See it explained in the notes at Job 1:1. The language here may refer either:

(a) to God - as denoting His perfection and uprightness, and then the psalmist's prayer would be that He, a righteous God, would keep him; or

(b) to his own integrity and uprightness of character, and then the prayer would be that that might be the means of keeping him, as the ground of his safety, under the government of a righteous God; or,

(c) which I think the more probable meaning, it may be the utterance of a prayer that God would show Himself upright and perfect in protecting one who put his trust in Him; one who was wronged and injured by his fellow-men; one who fled to God for refuge in time of persecution and trouble.

It was not exactly the divine perfections, as such, on which he relied; nor was it the integrity and purity of his own life; but it was the government of God, considered as just and equal, as bearing on himself and those who had wronged him.

For I wait on thee - That is, I depend on thee, or I rely on thee. This is a reason why he pleaded that God would preserve him. See the notes at Psalm 25:20.

21. In conscious innocence of the faults charged by his enemies, he confidently commits his cause to God. Some refer—

integrity, &c.—to God, meaning His covenant faithfulness. This sense, though good, is an unusual application of the terms.

Though I have greatly offended thee, yet remember that I have dealt honestly and sincerely with mine enemies, whilst they have dealt falsely and injuriously with me; and therefore judge between them and me, and deal with me according to the righteousness of my cause, and carriage towards them.

Let integrity and uprightness preserve me,.... Meaning either his own, as in Psalm 7:8; and then the sense is, either that God would preserve him, seeing he had acted the faithful and upright part in the government of the people of Israel, and they had rebelled against him without a cause; see Psalm 78:72; or that those might be continued with him, that he might not be led aside by the corruptions of his heart, and the temptations of Satan, and by the provocations of his rebellious subjects, to act a part disagreeable to his character, as a man of integrity and uprightness; but that these remaining with him, might be a means of keeping him in the ways of God, Proverbs 13:6; or else the integrity and uprightness of God are designed, which are no other than his goodness and grace to his people, and his faithfulness in his covenant and promises, or his lovingkindness and his truth; see Psalm 40:11;

for I wait on thee: in the use of means for deliverance and safety; the Targum is, "for I trust in thy word".

Let {p} integrity and uprightness preserve me; for I wait on thee.

(p) As I have behaved myself uprightly toward my enemies, let them know that you are the defender of my just cause.

21. Let integrity and uprightness guard me. May single-hearted devotion to God and honourable behaviour to men be as it were guardian angels at my side (Psalm 61:7). He prays thus, not on the ground of his own merits, but in virtue of his patient dependence on God. Cp. Psalm 40:11. ‘Integrity’ is the virtue of the ‘perfect’ man. See Psalm 15:2; Psalm 18:23; cp. Psalm 7:8. Job was “perfect and upright” (Psalm 2:3). Cp. Psalm 37:37.

Verse 21. - Let integrity and uprightness preserve me. Scarcely his own inherent integrity and uprightness, the want of which he has deplored when confessing that his iniquity is great (ver. 11). Rather an integrity and uprightness whereto he hopes to attain, by the grace of God, in days to come - an integrity and uprightness for which he "waits" For I wait on thee. Psalm 25:21Devoutness that fills the whole man, that is not merely half-hearted and hypocritical, is called תּם; and uprightness that follows the will of God without any bypaths and forbidden ways is called ישׁר. These two radical virtues (cf. Job 1:1) he desires to have as his guardians on his way which is perilous not only by reason of outward foes, but also on account of his own sinfulness. These custodians are not to let him pass out of their sight, lest he should be taken away from them (cf. Psalm 40:12; Proverbs 20:28). He can claim this for himself, for the cynosure of his hope is God, from whom proceed תם and ישׁר like good angels.
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