Psalm 102

The LORD God will arise and have mercy.



This is one of the eight “penitential” Psalms:

Psalm 6

Psalm 32

Psalm 38

Psalm 51

Psalm 102

Psalm 130

Psalm 143



A Prayer of the afflicted, when he is overwhelmed and pours out his complaint before the LORD.


VERSE 1. Hear my prayer, LORD! Let my cry come to you.

Hear my prayer. This is one of the eight “penitential” psalms.


VERSE 2. Don’t hide your face from me in the day of my distress. Turn your ear to me. Answer me quickly in the day when I call.

Don’t hide your face from me. The author felt he was being ignored by the LORD.

Have you ever felt that way?


VERSE 3. For my days consume away like smoke. My bones are burned as a torch.


VERSE 4. My heart is blighted like grass, and withered, for I forget to eat my bread.


VERSE 5. By reason of the voice of my groaning, my bones stick to my skin.


VERSE 6. I am like a pelican of the wilderness. I have become as an owl of the waste places.


VERSE 7. I watch, and have become like a sparrow that is alone on the housetop.



NOTE: The NAB translation adds this extra verse:

VERSE “8”. I lie awake and moan, like a lone sparrow on the roof.

I lie awake and moan. When you are ill, sometimes the only way you can pray is to lie still in bed. You reach out to the Lord in a moan, an inner groaning, an ascent of the heart, a sense of longing, an aspiration of love.

The Holy Spirit intercedes for us with groans. We call that the “groaning” ministry of the Holy Spirit.

John 11:38. Jesus therefore, again groaning in himself, came to the tomb. Now it was a cave, and a stone lay against it.

Romans 8:26. In the same way, the Spirit also helps our weaknesses, for we don’t know how to pray as we ought. But the Spirit himself makes intercession for us with groanings which can’t be uttered.



VERSE 8. My enemies reproach me all day. Those who are mad at me use my name as a curse.


VERSE 9. For I have eaten ashes like bread, and mixed my drink with tears,


VERSE 10. because of your indignation and your wrath; for you have taken me up and thrown me away.


VERSE 11. My days are like a long shadow. I have withered like grass.


VERSE 12. But you, LORD, will remain forever; your renown endures to all generations.


VERSE 13. You will arise and have mercy on Zion; for it is time to have pity on her. Yes, the set time has come.

This verse is fantastic! Would you consider memorizing it? More great verses to memorize from the Psalms and from the entire Bible.

You will arise. Sometimes it can seem like God is ignoring us. We wait and wait and wait. Yet nothing happens. But then, boom! Something falls into place. Suddenly.

have mercy on Zion. The thing that happens is an outpouring of God’s mercy. In the biblical days, God’s mercy was poured out on the nation. But in our day, it is poured out on us. “Zion” is us.

An extraordinary outpouring of mercy from God is steaming toward our lives. When it arrives, he will favor us with unprecedented mercy.

it is time. The appointed time arrived, and that was when God moved.

God does not seem to move until the time is right.

In your life, are you still waiting for God to move? Perhaps the time is not right. At least not yet, anyway. Keep your expectations high.

This is the acceptable year of the LORD!

Isaiah 61:2. to proclaim the year of the LORD’s favor and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all who mourn,

Luke 4:19. and to proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord.

it is time to have pity on her.  It is time to show favor to Zion.


VERSE 14. For your servants take pleasure in her stones, and have pity on her dust.


VERSE 15. So the nations will fear the LORD’s name; all the kings of the earth your glory.


VERSE 16. For the LORD has built up Zion. He has appeared in his glory.

has built up Zion. Formerly, the Holy City of Jerusalem had been sacked.

It was annihilated with extreme prejudice. It was plucked and ravaged by the ungodly. It was picked clean and there was nothing left over.

But now, the LORD God will rebuild them. They will come to a glory far beyond what they knew previously. They will be resplendent.

Further, the LORD God will manifest himself within the city, in a way that will be the greatest ever.


VERSE 17. He has responded to the prayer of the destitute, and has not despised their prayer.


VERSE 18. This will be written for the generation to come. A people which will be created will praise the LORD.

A people. Some Christians say this verse prohibits abortion.

However, it does not say “unborn humans” or “fetuses.”

Rather, it says “a people.” It is referring to a whole people-group, whether a tribe or an ethnicity or a nation.

which will be created. The author uses the future-tense.

In all likelihood, this verse refers to Christians. We are a people-group. And to this author, we are in his future.

will praise the LORD. We Christians praise the LORD God.


VERSE 19. For he has looked down from the height of his sanctuary. From heaven, the LORD saw the earth;


VERSE 20. to hear the groans of the prisoner; to free those who are condemned to death;


VERSE 21. that men may declare the LORD’s name in Zion, and his praise in Jerusalem;

praise in Jerusalem. That is,

Praise in the heart of Jerusalem” (ICEL translation).


VERSE 22. when the peoples are gathered together, the kingdoms, to serve the LORD.


VERSE 23. He weakened my strength along the course. He shortened my days.


VERSE 24. I said, “My God, don’t take me away in the middle of my days. Your years are throughout all generations.


VERSE 25. Of old, you laid the foundation of the earth. The heavens are the work of your hands.


VERSE 26. They will perish, but you will endure. Yes, all of them will wear out like a garment. You will change them like a cloak, and they will be changed.


VERSE 27. But you are the same. Your years will have no end.

you are the same. We humans change all the time. Our culture changes all the time. Our world changes all the time.

But the LORD God never changes. He is changeless. He is beyond time and space.

Jesus Christ calls himself the Beginning and the End, the First and the Last, the Alpha and the Omega. Here are the verses about this »


VERSE 28. The children of your servants will continue. Their offspring will be established before you.”


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Unless otherwise noted, all Bible quotations on this page are from the World English Bible and the World Messianic Edition. These translations have no copyright restrictions. They are in the Public Domain.


Author: todd

At Explore the Faith, I share insights into the Bible and theological writings. If you like what I write, become my partner by donating. Help me reach the world for the Lord Jesus Christ.