Psalm 38:2

For thine arrows stick fast in me, and thy hand presseth me sore.

For thine arrows stick fast in me,.... Meaning either words with which as a father the Lord rebuked him; and which were sharp and cutting, entered into him and abode with him, and gave him much pain and uneasiness; and by which he concluded that his rebukes were in wrath and hot displeasure; such as those in 2 Samuel 12:11; so the words of men are compared to arrows, Psalms 57:4 or outward afflictions, attended with inward trouble of soul; for as judgments are the arrows of God, such as famine, pestilence, &c. Ezekiel 5:16

Deuteronomy 32:21; so the chastening dispensations of Providence, under which the people of God themselves are, are so called, because they oftentimes come swiftly, suddenly, and at unawares, and are very pungent and distressing; and sometimes stick fast and continue long, by reason of which they are inwardly wounded, and conceive of God as sorely displeased with them; see Job 6:4;

and thy hand presseth me sore; the afflicting hand of God, which lay heavy upon him; and is a mighty hand when laid on such worms as mortal sinful men are, who cannot bear up under it, unless they have divine supports; see Job 19:21. This is by some supposed to be some bodily disease inflicted on him; some have thought of the leprosy, which was a stroke from the hand of God; but this is not likely, since he must have been deposed and shut up; the Jews indeed say {e} that he was a leper six months, and that the divine Presence was taken from him; a late learned man {f} thinks it was the smallpox, from the unsoundness of his flesh, the soreness of the disease, the stench of it, temporary blindness, and his friends standing aloof from him; though perhaps no other than affliction of mired for sin, comparable to the disease described, is meant.

{e} In R. Obadiah in loc.
{f} De Laney's Life of King David, vol. 2. p. 146.