Seek Peace and Pursue It: What Does Psalm 34:14 Mean?


Psalm 34:14, “Depart from evil, and do good; seek peace, and pursue it.” (King James Version)

TranslationPsalm 34:14
ESVTurn away from evil and do good; seek peace and pursue it.
NASBDepart from evil and do good; Seek peace and pursue it.
NIVTurn from evil and do good; seek peace and pursue it.
NLTTurn away from evil and do good. Search for peace, and work to maintain it.

Also see the meaning of Let All That You Do Be Done In Love

Seek Peace and Pursue It: Matthew Henry’s Concise Commentary

34:11-22 Let young persons set out in life with learning the fear of the Lord, if they desire true comfort here, and eternal happiness hereafter. Those will be most happy who begin the soonest to serve so good a Master.

All aim to be happy. Surely this must look further than the present world; for man’s life on earth consists but of few days, and those full of trouble. What man is he that would see the good of that where all bliss is perfect?

Alas! few have this good in their thoughts. That religion promises best which creates watchfulness over the heart and over the tongue. It is not enough not to do hurt, we must study to be useful, and to live to some purpose; we must seek peace and pursue it; be willing to deny ourselves a great deal for peace’ sake.

It is the constant practice of real believers, when in distress, to cry unto God, and it is their constant comfort that he hears them. The righteous are humbled for sin, and are low in their own eyes.

Also see the meaning of No Eye Has Seen

Nothing is more needful to true godliness than a contrite heart, broken off from every self-confidence. In this soil every grace will flourish, and nothing can encourage such a one but the free, rich grace of the gospel of Jesus Christ.

The righteous are taken under the special protection of the Lord, yet they have their share of crosses in this world, and there are those that hate them. Both from the mercy of Heaven, and the malice of hell, the afflictions of the righteous must be many.

But whatever troubles befal them, shall not hurt their souls, for God keeps them from sinning in troubles. No man is desolate, but he whom God has forsaken.

Psalm 34:14 | Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

13, 14. Sins of thought included in those of speech (Lu 6:45), avoiding evil and doing good in our relations to men are based on a right relation to God.

Also see the meaning of Earthquakes in Divers Places

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