Psalms 100

PSALM C

All nations are exhorted to praise the Lord, 1, 2;

to acknowledge him to be the Sovereign God and their Creator

and that they are his people and the flock of his pasture, 3;

to worship him publicly, and be grateful for his mercies, 4.

The reasons on which this is founded; his own goodness, his

everlasting mercy, and his ever-during truth, 5.

NOTES ON PSALM C

This Psalm is entitled in the Hebrew mizmor

lethodah, not "A Psalm of Praise," as we have it, but "A Psalm

for the confession, or for the confession-offering," very properly

translated by the Chaldee: shibcha al kurban

todetha, "Praise for the sacrifice (or offering) of confession."

The Vulgate, Septuagint, and AEthiopic have followed this sense.

The Arabic attributes it to David. The Syriac has the following

prefixed: "Without a name. Concerning Joshua the son of Nun, when

he had ended the war with the Ammonites: but in the new covenant

it relates to the conversion of the Gentiles to the faith." It is

likely that it was composed after the captivity, as a form of

thanksgiving to God for that great deliverance, as well as an

inducement to the people to consecrate themselves to him, and to

be exact in the performance of the acts of public worship.

Verse 1. Make a joyful noise] hariu, exult, triumph, leap

for joy.

All ye lands.] Not only Jews, but Gentiles, for the Lord bestows

his benefits on all with a liberal hand.

Verse 2. Serve the Lord with gladness] It is your privilege and

duty to be happy in your religious worship. The religion of the

true God is intended to remove human misery, and to make mankind

happy. He whom the religion of Christ has not made happy does not

understand that religion, or does not make a proper use of it.

Verse 3. Know ye that the Lord he is God] Acknowledge in every

possible way, both in public and private, that Jehovah, the

uncreated self-existent, and eternal Being, is Elohim, the God who

is in covenant with man, to instruct, redeem, love, and make him

finally happy.

It is he that hath made us] He is our Creator and has

consequently the only right in and over us.

And not we ourselves] velo anachnu. I can never

think that this is the true reading, though found in the present

Hebrew text, in the Vulgate, Septuagint, AEthiopic, and Syriac.

Was there ever a people on earth, however grossly heathenish, that

did believe, or could believe, that they had made themselves? In

twenty-six of Kennicott's and De Rossi's MSS. we have

velo anachnu, "and HIS we are;" lo, the

pronoun, being put for lo, the negative particle. This is

the reading of the Targum, or Chaldee paraphrase

vedileyh anachna, "and his we are," and is the reading of the text

in the Complutensian Polyglot, of both the Psalters which were

printed in 1477, and is the keri, or marginal reading in most

Masoretic Bibles. Every person must see, from the nature of the

subject that it is the genuine reading. The position is founded on

the maxim that what a man invents, constructs out of his own

materials, without assistance in genius, materials or execution

from any other person, is HIS OWN; and to it, its use, and

produce, he has the only right. God made us, therefore we are HIS:

we are his people, and should acknowledge him for our God; we are

the sheep of his pasture, and should devote the lives to him

constantly which he continually supports.

Verse 4. Enter into his gates with thanksgiving] Publicly

worship God; and when ye come to the house of prayer, be thankful

that you have such a privilege; and when you enter his courts,

praise him for the permission. The word bethodah, which we

render with thanksgiving, is properly with the confession-offering

or sacrifice. See on the title. See Clarke on Ps 100:1.

Bless his name.] Bless Jehovah, that he is your Elohim; see

Ps 100:3. In our liturgic service we say, "Speak good of his

name;" we cannot do otherwise; we have nothing but good to speak

of our God.

Verse 5. For the Lord is good] GOODNESS, the perfect, eternal

opposition to all badness and evil, is essential to God. Mercy

and compassion are modifications of his goodness; and as his

nature is eternal, so his mercy, springing from his goodness,

must be everlasting. And as TRUTH is an essential characteristic

of an infinitely intelligent and perfect nature; therefore God's

truth must endure from generation to generation. Whatsoever he has

promised must be fulfilled, through all the successive generations

of men, as long as sun and moon shall last.

As this is a very important Psalm, and has long made a part of

our public worship, I shall lay it before the reader in the oldest

vernacular Versions I have hitherto met with,-the Anglo-Saxon and

the Anglo-Scottish, with a literal interlineary translation of the

former.

The Anglo-Saxon Hundredth Psalm

Rhyme ye the Lord all earth, serve the Lord in bliss;

1. [Anglo-Saxon]

Infare in sight his in blithness;

2. [Anglo-Saxon]

Wit ye, for that Lord he is God, he did us & not self we;

3. [Anglo-Saxon]

Folk his & sheep leeseway his; fare into gates his in

confession, into courts is in hymns confess him.

4. [Anglo-Saxon]

Praise name his, for that winsom is; Lord thro'

eternity mildheartedness his, & unto on kindred & kindred

sothfastnes his

5. [Anglo-Saxon]

The reader will see that, in order to make this translation as

literal as possible, I have preserved some old English words which

we had from the Anglo-Saxon, and which have nearly become

obsolete: e.g., Infare, "to go in;" blithness, "joy, exultation;"

wit ye, "know ye;" did, the preterite of to do, "made, created,"

the literal translation of the Hebrew, asah, he made;

leeseway, "pasturage on a common;" winsom, "cheerful, merry;"

mildheartedness, "tenderness of heart, compassion;"

sothfastness, "steady to the sooth or truth, fast to truth."

I might have noticed some various readings in Anglo-Saxon MSS.;

e.g., Ps 100:1. for [A.S.]

idrymeth, "rhyme ye;" [A.S.] winsumiath, "be winsom, be joyful."

And Ps 100:5, for [A.S.]

winsom, "cheerful;" [A.S.], swete, "sweet."

Anglo-Scottish Version of the Hundredth Psalm

1. Joyes to God al the erth; serves to Lord in gladnes.

2. Enters in his sight with joying.

3. Wittes for Lorde he is God; he made us and noght we;

4. Folke of hym, and schepe of his pasture; enters the gates

of hym in schrift; hys Halles in ympnys; schryves to hym.

5. Loues his name, for soft is Lorde; withouten end in his

mercy; and in generation and generation the sothfastnes

of hym.

Thus our forefathers said and sung in heart and mouth and with

their tongues made confession to salvation. There are but few

words here which require explanation: Ver. 3, Wittes, "wot ye,

know ye." Ver. 4, Schrift, "confession;" schryves, "confess ye."

Ver. 5, Loues, "praise ye, laud ye." Sothfastness, as above,

steadfastness in the truth.

ANALYSIS OF THE HUNDREDTH PSALM

There are two parts in this Psalm:-

I. An exhortation to praise God, and the manner in which it is

to be done, Ps 100:1-4.

II. The reasons on which this is founded, Ps 100:3-5.

I. In his exhortation to praise God it is required,-

1. That the praise be universal: "All ye lands."

2. That it be hearty: "Make a joyful noise." Let the soul be

cheerful in the work.

3. That it be not partial nor restrained: "Make a joyful

noise-serve-be glad-sing-be thankful-give praise-bless his name."

The various expressions show the completeness of this blessed

word.

4. That it be sincere-done in his presence.

5. That it be an intelligent service: "Know ye."

6. That it be frequent and public: "Enter his gates-go into his

courts."

7. That gratitude shall be a part of it: "With thanksgiving."

II. The reasons on which this is grounded; they are,-

1. Drawn from the nature of God: "Know ye that Jehovah is

Elohim," the true God; therefore, alone worthy to be worshipped.

2. Drawn from the benefits bestowed on us: 1. "He has made

us"-capable of knowing him, and being eternally happy with him. 2.

He has called upon us by his grace to be "his people, and the

sheep of his pasture." He both governs and feeds us.

And that we may be the more cheerful in this work he puts us in

mind of the Divine attributes engaged in our redemption, goodness,

mercy, and truth.

1. "He is good." This is his very nature.

2. "He is merciful." This flows from his goodness.

3. "He is true;" keeping covenant for ever with them that fear

him; and fulfilling all his promises to the believing and

obedient.

And that we may have the more confidence,

1. "His mercy is everlasting." It continues through all the

changes and chances of this life to them who trust in him; and

extends through all the generations of men.

2. His truth is like his mercy, it is pledged to fulfil his

promises. "God is not man that he should lie;" he has promised,

and will save to the uttermost all who come to him through Christ

Jesus: "Be therefore thankful to him, and speak good of his name."

Copyright information for Clarke