My soul faints for your salvation: but I hope in your word.
All Commentaries on Psalms 119:81 Go To Psalms 119
Augustine of Hippo
81. "My soul hath failed for Thy salvation: and I have hoped because of Thy word" (ver. 81). It is not every failing that should be supposed to be blameable or deserving punishment: there is also a failing that is laudable or desirable. ...For it is said of a good failing: "My soul hath a desire and failing to enter into the courts of the Lord." So also here he saith not, faileth away from Thy salvation, but "faileth for Thy salvation," that is, towards Thy salvation. This losing ground is therefore good: for it cloth indicate a longing after good, not as yet indeed gained, but most eagerly and earnestly desired.But who saith this, save the chosen generation, the royal priesthood, the holy nation, the peculiar people, longing for Christ from the origin of the human race even unto the end of this world, in the persons of those who, each in his own time, have lived, are living, or are to live here? ...The first seasons of the Church, therefore, had Saints, before the Virgin's delivery, who desired the advent of His Incarnation: but thesetimes, since He hath ascended into heaven, have Saints who desire His manifestation to judge the quick and the dead. ..."And I have hoped because of Thy word:" that is, of Thy promise; a hope which causeth us to await with patience that which is not seen by those who believe. Here also the Greek hath the word ephlpisa, which some of our translators have preferred rendering by, "hoped-more;" since beyond doubt it will be greater than can be described.