Psalm 11 A Song Of Trust In God
1 In the Lord I take refuge;
how can you say to me,
“Flee like a bird to the mountains;
2 for lo, the wicked bend the bow,
they have fitted their arrow to the string,
to shoot in the dark at the upright in heart;
3 if the foundations are destroyed,
what can the righteous do?”
4 The Lord is in His holy temple,
the Lord’s throne is in heaven;
His eyes behold, His eyelids test, the children of men.
5 The Lord tests the righteous and the wicked,
and His soul hates him that loves violence.
6 On the wicked He will rain coals of fire and brimstone;
a scorching wind shall be the portion of their cup.
7 For the Lord is righteous, He loves righteous deeds;
the upright shall behold His face.
- – Psalm 11
Commentary based on St. Thomas Aquinas
In Psalm 11, David shows the confidence brought about by having received liberation. And he speaks from the stance of one desiring God’s kindnesses which follows upon freedom from danger.
This psalm can be explained literally of David, or mystically of Christ, or allegorically. Morally it concerns the just man, and heretics.
David first sets forth his confidence as liberated by God’s righteous judgment, weighing sinners down and lifting up the poor. He describes the assault upon his confidence, which was effected through the spoken word, How then do you say…
If a judge always punishes, he is cruel; if he always pardons, he is remiss. God, however, both pardons and punishes; for that reason, the judgment seat of mercy has a place, and this is the temple.
The faithful are called “a temple” on account of their devotion, and “heaven” because of their wisdom. Again, “heaven” is said to be the cradle in which God sits so that he makes a heaven in him (namely, the faithful), that is, (making him to) know secret things.
Again, the soul is called the temple of God, because God is adored in the temple. In like fashion is God adored in the soul of the faithful.
The equity of God’s judgment is set forth because He sends afflictions upon the just and the unjust, and bestows worldly goods upon the good and the bad.