We call a person that writes a psalm a "psalmist". Here it might have been David, or one of his friends. The psalmist saw that many evil people had everything that they wanted. They did what they liked. Nobody stopped them. They hurt poor people that did not have very much. The psalmist began to feel very angry. Then he thought that if he was angry it would not give him any help. He remembered that one day God would put things right. The psalmist just had to wait for that day.

Psalm 37 is an alphabet psalm. Verse 1 begins with the first letter of the Hebrew alphabet, verse 3 with the second letter, and so on. Other alphabet psalms are 9, 10, 25, 34, 111, 112, 119 and 145.


What Psalm 37: 1 – 11 means?


How do you wait for God to do something? How do you stop yourself getting angry because godless people have everything that they want? The psalmist tells us how: do something else! In verse 3 he starts telling us the things that we should do so that we do not become angry. He says:

   ·    trust in the LORD, or ask God for help

   ·    do good things, or give help to people around us

   ·    enjoy what the land gives, even if it is not much


We are happy with the LORD if we obey him. He will then give us all that we need. It might not happen immediately, but it will happen. We must learn to wait for God’s time. This means the time when God decides to do something.

In verse 6 there are 2 pictures. One is of the dawn, the other of the sun at midday. Just as everybody sees these things, so everybody will see what sort of people we are. But, as verse 7 says, we must wait for God to do something.

He will show people what we are like. We must not become angry if they do not see it. We must be still and wait! The Hebrew word for "be still" in verse 7 means "do not make a noise" as well as "do not move".

We have put "with God" in brackets ...( )... in verse 8. We usually do this when the words are not in the Hebrew Bible. We put them in to make it easier to understand. Bible translators have always done something like this. Some people think that we should put "with evil people" in brackets, not "with God". Both are probably true. We should not get angry with anyone. Another way to say "get angry" in English is "get heated (hot)" about something. As you can see in verse 8, it is the same in Hebrew. When we get angry with someone it usually leads to trouble.

The word "cut off" in verse 9 means "destroyed". When the Jews came from Egypt to Israel with Moses, God cut off or destroyed their enemies. Then the Jews received their land. The enemies were the Canaanites that lived in the land before the Jews. This verse tells us that what God did in the past he can do again. This time it is not the Canaanites that God will destroy. It will be all the evil people that make life hard for God's people.

Then there will be peace. There are 3 sorts of peace:

   ·    no fighting wars with other people

   ·    no fighting against yourself

   ·    no fighting between us and God


Jesus taught his people that the land that they would inherit (or receive) would be the kingdom of heaven. That is the place where Jesus is king. When the psalmist wrote Psalm 37, "the land" meant where the Jews lived. It is important to understand that Jesus said that it meant more than this. The psalmist thought that "waiting for God" "waiting for God" meant that one day things would change, perhaps for his children. Jesus taught that one day things would change for everyone. That day will be when Jesus comes back to the earth. But everybody must wait for God: he may do something now!


By: Pastor David Jones

Commentary taken from public domain