Psalm 76:9-11 (NASB 2020)

9 When God arose to judgment, To save all the humble of the earth. Selah
10 For the wrath of mankind shall praise You; You will encircle Yourself with a remnant of wrath.
11 Make vows to the Lord your God and fulfill them; All who are around Him are to bring gifts to Him who is to be feared.

Psalm 76:9-11 (KJV)

9 When God arose to judgment, to save all the meek of the earth. Selah.
10 Surely the wrath of man shall praise thee: the remainder of wrath shalt thou restrain.
11 Vow, and pay unto the Lord your God: let all that be round about him bring presents unto him that ought to be feared.

Psalm 76:9-11 (NKJV)

9 When God arose to judgment, To deliver all the oppressed of the earth. Selah
10 Surely the wrath of man shall praise You; With the remainder of wrath You shall gird Yourself.
11 Make vows to the Lord your God, and pay them; Let all who are around Him bring presents to Him who ought to be feared.

Psalm 76:10 verse is difficult to understand. When I looked at the BibleHub commentaries, the only commentary that seemed interesting and credible to me was "Barnes' Notes on the Bible"

Excerpt from "Barnes' Notes on the Bible" ( https://biblehub.com/commentaries/psalms/76-10.htm )

Thus he made use of the treasonable purpose of Judas, and the mad passions and the angry feelings of the Jews, in bringing about the work of redemption by the death of his Son; thus be made use of the purposes of Sennacherib in order to punish his own people (see the notes at Isaiah 10:5-7); thus he employed Cyrus to "execute his counsel" Isaiah 46:10; and thus he made use of the wrath evinced in persecuting the church to secure its permanent establishment in the world. Whether these things could be accomplished "without" that wrath, is a question which is too high for man to determine. It is certain, also, that the fact that God overrules the wrath of people does not justify that wrath. The purposes of people are, like the pestilence and the storm, what they are in themselves; and the nature of their conduct is not affected by any use that God may make of it. People must be judged according to their own deeds, not for what God does through their wickedness.

I found the aforementioned explanation interesting because it implies that God tactfully and intelligently used the wrath of the Jewish Pharisees and their followers that was targeted at Jesus Christ in such a way that it glorified God by allowing His Only Begotten Son to be crucified on the cross which led to his death to pay for the sins of Christians, and his ultimate resurrection to life which means victory over death which in turn led Christians to Praise God. Thus, Psalm 76:10a makes sense based on the aforementioned explanation.

Psalm 76:10a (NKJV)

10a Surely the wrath of man shall praise You;

However, Psalm 76:10b is a little bit more confusing:

Psalm 76:10b (NKJV)

10b With the remainder of wrath You shall gird Yourself.

I can only think of Psalm 76:10b corresponding to Revelation 19:11-21

Excerpt from https://bible.org/seriespage/10-wrath-christ-revelation-1910-21

This passage details the second coming of Christ and the final destruction of His enemies. Many place this event before a 1000 year reign of Christ on the earth, when He destroys all earthly enemies. (The final destruction of Satan and the lake of fire judgment comes at the end of Chapter 20.) Yet regardless of one’s view of the end times, this is the most graphic picture of the judgment of Christ we have in the Scriptures.

It's probably is not really credible, and somewhat of a poor argument but the reason why I think Psalm 76:10b corresponds to Revelation 19:11-21 is because it seems like the remainder of wrath is associated with the enemies of God who exist upon Jesus Christ's return to earth, and thus he the remainder of the enemies' wrath is restrained/subdued by Jesus Christ when (Revelation 19:15). He uses a sharp sword from his mouth to strike the nations. Therefore, the enemies are brought to justice due to remainder of their wrath upon Jesus Christ's return.

In any case, could someone please provide their insight on Psalm 76:10?

Update: @robert gives an answer that seems far more credible than my evaluation above. Thanks to @robert

2 Answers 2


The Barnes commentary is a homiletic commentary and in my opinion is not a good exegesis of this difficult passage.

As a background, you are reading ancient semitic poetry, and a psalm of Asaph. Many of these are violent poems about God conquering his enemies.

A common ancient near formula would show how great the king is, how devastating his power is, he defeats his enemies, and then his vanquished enemies praise his might and power.

This Psalm needs to be read in the context of this genre.

However there are two factors that show this verse is inspired and not just a typical example of the triumphant king.

  1. God is waging a war on violence itself. As king of the universe, the only forces that oppose God are forces of rebellion/chaos/disorder, as submission to God is the natural order. That is peace. Hence the use of the archaic "salem" for Jerusalem (verse 2) and the destruction of the weapons of war themselves (verse 3) and the general language of quieting down his enemies (v5-6) (making them slumber -- most likely a metaphor for death, but the language is of imposing peace).

  2. In v10a, we have the standard formula that the defeated will praise their vanquisher, but in this case the enemies of God is the humanity (adam) of wrath (hemah). These are the ones who, having been vanquished, praise the one who defeated them. See also "every knee should bow and every tongue confess" (Isa 45.23) for another prediction of how rebellious man will praise God. This is so far standard in the genre, but the second part says that a remnant of the men of wrath will be treated differently: God will gird himself with them. A remnant (sheerith) usually refers to the portion of a group that God sets apart for himself, the chosen group. And this group will not just praise him with the defeated, but will be reconciled to God in a more intimate way -- God will literally wear them, with the connotation that they will be an adornment like part of the body. So I would interpet this remnant as the redeemed from adam, which suggests a reconciliation of this remnant of the defeated group, which also breaks the standard genre.

Note the same theme echoed in Isaiah 45:24-25

  • The praising of Yahweh by the defeated (ashamed) people: ‘Only in Yahweh,’ one shall say to me, ‘are righteousness and strength.’ He shall come to him, and all those who were angry with him shall be ashamed.

  • But the remnant (Israel views itself as God's portion from the nations) will be "in Yahweh" and in they shall boast of this (new) position. In Yahweh all the offspring of Israel shall be in the right, and they shall boast.”

So no, there is no trickery or discreetly doing anything. This is big and bold as the other Psalms of Asaph. God will cause the whole world to praise him and be ashamed, but he will redeem a portion for himself and gird himself with that portion.


Following Rashi (a medieval biblical commentator) we can interpret this verse using contrastive parallelism as follows:

a) The anger of man acnkowledges you [Here Rashi interprets todekah from the root yud-daleth-hey = confession; I think "acknowledge captures the nuances better] Rashi brings an example from (Dan. 3:28): Nevuchadnetzar was "angry" and wanted to kill Chananiah Mishael and Azariah but didn't succeed at which point he acknowledged God.

b) Using contrastive parallelism we have "Although man fails when he is angry" to You God, "girding yourself with anger is befitting"

We of course must remember that this is a Psalm, and it contains elements of petition and praise. The Psalmist prays that "anger" by man should fail leading to acknowledgement of God and then praises God who knows how to use anger. This interpretation fits nicely into the surrounding verses.

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