Psalm Forty Three

by Dr. Henry M. Morris

(taken from the Defender's Study Bible)

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Psalm 43 is the only psalm in Book II of the Psalms (except for Psalm 71, q.v.) which has no title. The reason is that it is, in effect, a continuation of Psalm 42, both concluding with the same question. Yet it is clearly a different psalm, evidently written by the same unnamed author at a later time.

Psalm 43:1 Judge me, O God, and plead my cause against an ungodly nation: O deliver me from the deceitful and unjust man.

Psalm 43:2 For thou art the God of my strength: why dost thou cast me off? why go I mourning because of the oppression of the enemy?

Psalm 43:3 O send out thy light and thy truth: let them lead me; let them bring me unto thy holy hill, and to thy tabernacles.

thy light and thy truth. The Lord has, indeed, sent out His light and His truth, and we have much more light and access to truth than the psalmist had in his day. God's completed written Word is both light for our path (Psalm 119:105, 130) and truth for our faith (John 17:17; Psalm 119:160).

Psalm 43:4 Then will I go unto the altar of God, unto God my exceeding joy: yea, upon the harp will I praise thee, O God my God.

Psalm 43:5 Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted within me? hope in God: for I shall yet praise him, who is the health of my countenance, and my God.

cast down. Compare Psalm 42:5, 11. Evidently Psalm 43 is essentially continuing the theme of Psalm 42.

O my soul! Note that, when Psalm 42 and 43 are combined into a continuous poem of sixteen verses, the first five verses, the next six verses, and the last five verses form a symmetrical pattern of three stanzas, each ending in essentially the same self-directed question and assurance.

health of my countenance. Note that the “help of [God's] countenance” in Psalm 42:5 became the “health of my countenance” in Psalms 42:11 and 43:5. The Hebrew words for “help” and “health” are actually the same.