Verse

Psalm 22:2

ESV O my God, I cry by day, but you do not answer, and by night, but I find no rest.
NIV My God, I cry out by day, but you do not answer, by night, but I find no rest.
NASB My God, I cry out by day, but You do not answer; And by night, but I have no rest.
CSB My God, I cry by day, but you do not answer, by night, yet I have no rest.
NLT Every day I call to you, my God, but you do not answer. Every night I lift my voice, but I find no relief.
KJV O my God, I cry in the daytime, but thou hearest not; and in the night season, and am not silent.
NKJV O My God, I cry in the daytime, but You do not hear; And in the night season, and am not silent.

What does Psalm 22:2 mean?

This verse depicts someone mourning over what seems like an unanswered prayer. In fact, the voice speaking here feels abandoned by God (Psalm 22:1). David has begged God to help, but he did not receive the answer he was expecting. This is not an uncommon complaint in the Old Testament. Prophets like Habakkuk (Habakkuk 1:2–4) and other psalmists (Psalm 44:23–24) voiced that frustration at times.

Since this psalm matches no known incident in David's life, the description here is both symbolic and prophetic. Jesus referred to this psalm during His crucifixion (Matthew 27:46; Mark 15:34). This passage is also quoted in the book of Hebrews (Hebrews 2:12; Psalm 22:22).

In the garden of Gethsemane Jesus prayed through the night fervently and urgently for deliverance from death (Matthew 26:39). Hebrews 5:7 tells us that "in the days of his flesh, Jesus offered up prayers and supplications, with loud cries and tears, to him who was able to save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverence."

God did not deliver Jesus from dying on the cross for our sins, but He delivered Him out of the clutches of death by raising Him from the dead. The word "from" in Hebrews 5:7 is ek, literally meaning out of. God didn't prevent Christ from dying, but He did rescue Jesus out of death. It may seem at times that God is not listening to our prayers, but often He answers in unexpected ways. During times of what seems to be unanswered prayer, we should keep on trusting God and wait for Him to answer in a way that is for our ultimate good and His glory.
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