Note: This is a psalm of thanksgiving for national deliverance.
A song of ascents. Of David.
124:1 If the Lord had not been on our side — let Israel say [this was to be a national confession] —
124:2 [opening line repeated for emphasis] if the Lord had not been on our side when people attacked us,
124:3 they [their enemies; “The fury of the enemies of the church is raised to the highest pitch; nothing will content them but the total annihilation of God’s chosen.” (Spurgeon)] would have swallowed [a metaphor for death; “They were so eager for our destruction that they would have made only one morsel of us and have swallowed us up alive and whole in a single instant.” (Spurgeon)] us alive when their anger flared [“Anger is never more fiery than when the people of God are its objects.” (Spurgeon)] against us;
124:4 [the potential destruction described in three ways…]  the flood [water is used here as a metaphor for destructive forces] would have engulfed us,  the torrent would have swept over us,
124:5  the raging waters would have swept us away.
124:6 [a confession of confidence in the Lord, their protector] Praise be to the Lord, who has not let us be torn by their teeth.
124:7 We have escaped like a bird from the fowler’s snare; the snare has been broken, and we have escaped [this deliverance is the Lord’s doing and therefore He is to be praised].
124:8 Our help is in the name of the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth [the One who made heaven and earth can do anything].