on Psalms 10 :8
He sitteth in the lurking places - In this and the following verse there appears to be an allusion to espionage, or setting of spies on a man's conduct; or to the conduct of an assassin or private murderer. He sitteth in lurking places - in secret places; his eyes - spies - are privily set; he lieth in wait secretly: he doth catch the poor, when he draweth him into his net. He is like a hunter that lays his traps and gins, digs his pits, sets his nets; and when the prey falls into them, he destroys its life.
on Psalms 10 :8
He sitteth in the lurking-places of the villages - As robbers do, who hide themselves in the vicinity of villages, that they make a sudden descent upon them in the silence of the night, or that they may seize and rob the inhabitants as they go forth in the morning to attend their flocks to the pastures, or to labor in the fields. The word rendered "villages" means properly an enclosure, as a court before a building; and then a village or hamlet, farm-buildings, or farm hamlets, usually erected around an open space; and it is then used to denote the encampment of nomadic tribes, who usually pitch their tents in a circle so as to form an enclosure, Genesis 25:16; Isaiah 42:11. In the neighborhood of such places - in the thickets, bushes, or ravines, that might be near such encampments or enclosures - robbers would naturally secrete themselves, that they might fall upon them suddenly, or that they might seize anyone who left the village or encampment for ally purpose. So Frazer remarks in his Travels in Chorasan, i.:437: "When the Turkomans design to fall upon a village, they take a position near it in the rear, until in the morning the unsuspecting inhabitants drive out their herds, or leave the villages for some other purpose, and then they suddenly fall upon them." DeWette, in loc.
In the secret places doth he murder the innocent - From these retreats he suddenly falls upon those who are unsuspicious, and who have done him no wrong. The word "innocent" here does not mean sinless in the absolute sense, but it means that they were innocent so far as the robber was concerned. They had done him no wrong; they had given him no occasion to make war upon them.
His eyes are privily set - Margin, "hide themselves." The Hebrew word means to hide, to conceal; to lay up in private; to hoard; to keep back; to hold back, etc. Here it means to conceal, to lurk in ambush; and the idea is that his eyes will secretly watch, or keep a lookout for them; that is, that his eyes, or that he himself will be concealed, that he may observe the goings of those whom he intends to make his prey.
Against the poor - Or, the wretched, the afflicted, the defenseless. The meaning is, that instead of being a helper of the poor and wretched, he is disposed to take every advantage of them, and deprive them of all their rights and comforts.
on Psalms 10 :8
10:8 Sitteth - Not within the villages, but in the ways bordering upon them, or leading to them, as robbers use to do. Are set - Heb. Are hid. He watches and looks out of his lurking - place. He alludes still to the practices of robbers.