In Psalm 46:2, it is said that "G-d is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble."

How is this compatible with Psalm 10:1 which reads "Why standest Thou afar off, O LORD? Why hidest Thou Thyself in times of trouble?"

Additionally, what does David mean when he said he was forsaken in Psalm 22:2-3?

  • 1
    Simple answer is that we do not always feel His presence, but He is still watching over us. Jun 5, 2016 at 3:30
  • you often find verses that seem to contradict each other in tanach.
    – ray
    Jun 5, 2016 at 6:01
  • This kind of expressions are allegoric ("from the side of the receiver" as said many times the Chinuch). G_d has a symetric attitude with man, if man is near to G_d, this will be the same from the second side.
    – kouty
    Jun 5, 2016 at 6:50
  • Compare similar phrasing in Psalm 145 - "G-d is near to those that call to him. To those that call to him with truth." Have to investigate further, but, I think this verse supplements the one you cited. I.e., just because one is in trouble, doesn't mean that the person will ask for G-d' help. There is a concept that G-d seeks our prayers, as well. Sometimes, G-d places us in "trouble" in order that we will pray to him. The reason, sometimes is to humble us so that we realize that things aren't coincidence or random but come because of G-d's will.
    – DanF
    Jun 6, 2016 at 15:41

2 Answers 2


It is not always good for a person to be saved from a trouble. God looks at what is best for a person in his final end and sometimes does not save him or even actively brings on the trouble.

similarly Rabeinu Bachye writes in Duties of the Heart gate 4:

But one who trusts in God, is immune from sickness and disease except as an atonement or to increase his reward, as written "Now youths shall become tired and weary, and young men shall stumble" (Yeshaya 40:30), "those who hope in G-d will renew strength" (Yeshaya 40:31), and "For the arms of the wicked shall be broken, but the Lord supports the righteous" (Tehilim 37:17).


When your God has become to you a God that stands far off in times of trouble then you need to determine if your God has been manufactured by yourself.

In other words there are many levels of comprehension of God, given that the true God is merciful, we may need to pray that our current perception of a God who stands far off in times of trouble be removed from our minds or act as the gateway to a higher perception of a close God.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .