What does Psalm 10:16 mean?
ESV: The LORD is king forever and ever; the nations perish from his land.
NIV: The LORD is King for ever and ever; the nations will perish from his land.
NASB: The Lord is King forever and ever; Nations have perished from His land.
CSB: The Lord is King forever and ever; the nations will perish from his land.
NLT: The Lord is king forever and ever! The godless nations will vanish from the land.
KJV: The LORD is King for ever and ever: the heathen are perished out of his land.
NKJV: The Lord is King forever and ever; The nations have perished out of His land.
Verse Commentary:
David triumphantly declares that God is the eternal King. This declaration expresses not only David's confidence in the Lord to vanquish His enemies, but it also declares Israel's confidence in the Lord.

In the Old Testament, the term "the nations" was often used as a reference to Gentiles: those not part of the nation of Israel. Symbolically, this represents the separation between those who belong to God and those who defy Him. Since God said that certain lands would belong to Israel (Genesis 12:7), David is confident opposing nations would be displaced.

After the Lord destroyed the Egyptian cavalry in the Red Sea, the rescued Hebrews sang praises to the Lord. They declared of the Lord that He stretched out His right hand, and the earth swallowed the Egyptians (Exodus 15:12). They proclaimed, "The LORD will reign forever and ever" (Exodus 15:18).

The eternal nature of God is seen throughout all of Scripture. Revelation 4:8 pictures four living creatures that say day and night, "Holy, holy, holy, is the Lord God Almighty, who was and is and is to come." This eternal character of God also applies to the Lord Jesus Christ. He states in Revelation 1:8: "I am the Alpha and the Omega…who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty."
Verse Context:
Psalm 10:12–18 closes the song by asking God to avenge those harmed by wicked men. David trusts the Lord to hear the cry of the afflicted and end the persecution brought on by the wicked. These closing verses resemble the divine judgment Asaph predicted in Psalm 73:18–20, 27.
Chapter Summary:
This song opens with a common question humanity asks in hard times: "where are you, God?" There follows a description of wicked people and their deeds and motives. Evil people feel free to be depraved and arrogant, assuming there is no God to judge them. Like predators, these wicked people ambush helpless people. Despite their wrong assumptions, God keeps His promises. He will judge the wicked and defend His people. Helpless people can trust God to make matters right. Someday, He will rid the earth of all sin and suffering. His justice will prevail, and His people will never again experience persecution.
Chapter Context:
According to some scholars, Psalms 9 and 10 might have been composed together, possibly even as one psalm. No title is affixed to Psalm 10, and it seems to continue the acrostic pattern of Psalm 9, starting each section with a successive letter from the Hebrew alphabet. The Septuagint and the Vulgate place the two psalms as one. However, the mood shifts from one psalm to the other. Psalm 9 focuses on judgment to come; Psalm 10 focuses on the presence of widespread injustice. Whether literally composed together, or separately, they deal with related issues using profoundly different tones.
Book Summary:
The book of Psalms is composed of individual songs, hymns, or poems, each of which is a ''Psalm'' in and of itself. These works contain a wide variety of themes. Some Psalms focus on praising and worshipping God. Others cry out in anguish over the pain of life. Still other Psalms look forward to the coming of the Messiah. While some Psalms are related, each has its own historical and biblical context.
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