Psalms 109

PSALM CIX

The psalmist speaks against his inveterate enemies, 1-5.

He prays against them, and denounces God's judgments, 6-15.

The reason on which this is grounded, 16-20.

He prays for his own safety and salvation, using many arguments

to induce God to have mercy upon him, 21-31.

NOTES ON PSALMS CIX

The title of this Psalm, To the chief Musician, A Psalm of

David, has already often occurred, and on it the Versions offer

nothing new. The Syriac says it is "a Psalm of David, when the

people, without his knowledge, made Absalom king; on which account

he was slain: but to us (Christians) he details the passion of

Christ." That it contains a prophecy against Judas and the enemies

of our Lord, is evident from Ac 1:20. Probably, in its primary

meaning, (for such a meaning it certainly has,) it may refer to

Ahithophel. The execrations in it should be rendered in the

future tense, as they are mere prophetic denunciations of God's

displeasure against sinners. Taken in this light, it cannot be a

stumbling-block to any person. God has a right to denounce those

judgments which he will inflict on the workers of iniquity. But

perhaps the whole may be the execrations of David's enemies

against himself. See on Ps 107:20.

Ahithophel, who gave evil counsel against David, and being

frustrated hanged himself, was no mean prototype of Judas the

traitor; it was probably on this account that St. Peter, Ac 1:20,

applied it to the case of Judas, as a prophetic declaration

concerning him, or at least a subject that might be accommodated

to his case.

Verse 1. Hold not thy peace] Be not silent; arise and defend my

cause.

Verse 2. The mouth of the wicked and-the deceitful are opened

against me] Many persons are continually uttering calumnies

against me. Thou knowest my heart and its innocence; vindicate my

uprightness against these calumniators.

Verse 4. For my love they are my adversaries] In their behalf I

have performed many acts of kindness, and they are my adversaries

notwithstanding; this shows principles the most vicious, and

hearts the most corrupt. Many of the fathers and commentators have

understood the principal part of the things spoken here as

referring to our Lord, and the treatment he received from the

Jews; and whatever the original intention was, they may safely be

applied to this case, as the 2nd, 3rd, 4th, and 5th verses are as

highly illustrative of the conduct of the Jewish rulers towards

our Lord as the following verses are of the conduct of Judas; but

allowing these passages to be prophetic, it is the Jewish state

rather than an individual, against which these awful denunciations

are made, as it seems to be represented here under the person and

character of an extremely hardened and wicked man; unless we

consider the curses to be those of David's enemies.

See Clarke on Ps 109:20.

But I give myself unto prayer] vaani thephillah;

"And I prayer." The Chaldee: vaana atsalley, "but I

pray." This gives a good sense, which is followed by the Vulgate,

Septuagint, AEthiopic, Arabic, and Anglo-Saxon. The Syriac, "I

will pray for them." This, not so correctly; as dreadful

imprecations, not prayers, follow. But probably the whole ought

to be interpreted according to the mode laid down, Ps 109:20. The

translation and paraphrase in the old Psalter are very simple:-

Trans. For that thyng that thai sulde hafe lufed me, thai

bakbited me; bot I prayed.

Par. That is, that sulde haf lufed me for I was godson, and thai

bakbited me sayande, in Belzebub he castes oute fendes; bot I

prayed for thaim.

Verse 6. Let Satan stand at his right hand.] As the word

satan means an adversary simply, though sometimes it is used to

express the evil spirit Satan, I think it best to preserve here

its grammatical meaning: "Let an adversary stand at his right

hand:" i.e., Let him be opposed and thwarted in all his purposes.

All the Versions have devil, or some equivocal word. The ARABIC

has [Arabic] eblees, the chief of the apostate spirits; but the

name is probably corrupted from the GREEK διαβολος diabolos; from

which the LATIN diabolus. the ITALIAN diavolo, the SPANISH diablo,

the FRENCH diable, the IRISH or CELTIC diabal, the DUTCH duivel,

the GERMAN teufel, the ANGLO-SAXON deofal, and the ENGLISH devil,

are all derived. The original, διαβολος, comes from διαβαλλειν to

shoot or pierce through.

Verse 7. Let him be condemned] yetse rasha. "Let him

come out a wicked man;" that is let his wickedness be made

manifest.

Let his prayer become sin.] Thus paraphrased by Calmet: "Let him

be accused, convicted, and condemned, and let the defence which he

brings for his justification only serve to deepen his guilt, and

hasten his condemnation." I once more apprise the reader, that if

these are not the words of David's enemies against himself, (see

on Ps 109:20,) they are

prophetic denunciations against a rebellious and apostate person

or people, hardened in crime, and refusing to return to God.

Verse 8. Let another take his office.] The original is

pekuddatho, which the margin translates charge, and which

literally means superintendence, oversight, inspection from actual

visitations. The translation in our common Version is too

technical. His bishopric, following the Septuagint, επισκοπην,

and Vulgate, episcopatum, and has given cause to some light people

to be witty, who have said, "The first bishop we read of was

bishop Judas." But it would be easy to convict this witticism of

blasphemy, as the word is used in many parts of the sacred

writings, from Genesis downward, to signify offices and officers,

appointed either by God immediately, or in the course of his

providence, for the accomplishment of the most important purposes.

It is applied to the patriarch Joseph, Ge 39:4,

vaiyaphkidehu, he made him bishop, alias overseer; therefore it

might be as wisely said, and much more correctly, "The first

bishop we read of was bishop Joseph;" and many such bishops there

were of God's making long before Judas was born. After all, Judas

was no traitor when he was appointed to what is called his

bishopric, office, or charge in the apostolate. Such witticisms

as these amount to no argument, and serve no cause that is worthy

of defence.

Our common Version, however, was not the first to use the word:

it stands in the Anglo-Saxon [A.S.], "and his episcopacy let take

other." The old Psalter is nearly the same; I shall give the whole

verse: Fa be made his days, and his bysshopryk another take. "For

Mathai was sett in stede of Judas; and his days was fa that hynged

himself."

Verse 9. Let his children be fatherless, &c.] It is said that

Judas was a married man, against whom this verse, as well as the

preceding is supposed to be spoken; and that it was to support

them that he stole from the bag in which the property of the

apostles was put, and of which he was the treasurer.

Verse 10. Let his children-beg] The father having lost his

office, the children must necessarily be destitute; and this is

the hardest lot to which any can become subject, after having been

born to the expectation of an ample fortune.

Verse 11. Let the strangers spoil his labour.] Many of these

execrations were literally fulfilled in the case of the miserable

Jews, after the death of our Lord. They were not only expelled

from their own country, after the destruction of Jerusalem, but

they were prohibited from returning; and so taxed by the Roman

government, that they were reduced to the lowest degree of

poverty. Domitian expelled them from Rome; and they were obliged

to take up their habitation without the gate Capena, in a wood

contiguous to the city, for which they were obliged to pay a rent,

and where the whole of their property was only a basket and a

little hay. See JUVENAL, Sat. ver. 11:-

Substitit ad veteres arcus, madidamque Capenam:

Hic ubi nocturne Numa constituebat amicae,

Nunc sacri fontis nemus, et delubra locantur

Judaeis: quorum cophinus, foenumque supellex:

Omnis enim populo mercedem pendere jussa est

Arbor, et ejectis mendicat silva Camoenis.

He stopped a little at the conduit gate,

Where Numa modelled once the Roman state;

In nightly councils with his nymph retired:

Though now the sacred shades and founts are hired

By banished Jews, who their whole wealth can lay

In a small basket, on a wisp of hay.

Yet such our avarice is, that every tree

Pays for his head; nor sleep itself is free;

Nor place nor persons now are sacred held,

From their own grove the Muses are expelled.

DRYDEN.

The same poet refers again to this wretched state of the Jews,

Sat. vi., ver. 541; and shows to what vile extremities they were

reduced in order to get a morsel of bread:-

Cum dedit ille locum, cophino foenoque relicto,

Arcanam Judaea tremens mendicat in aurem,

Interpres legum Solymarum, et magna sacerdos

Arboris, ac summi fida internuncia coeli.

Implet et illa manum, sed parcius, aere minuto.

Qualia cunque voles Judaei somnia vendunt.

Here a Jewess is represented as coming from the wood mentioned

above, to gain a few oboli by fortune-telling; and, trembling lest

she should be discovered, she leaves her basket and hay, and

whispers lowly in the ear of some female, from whom she hopes

employment in her line. She is here called by the poet the

interpretess of the laws of Solymae, or Jerusalem, and the

priestess of a tree, because obliged, with the rest of her

nation, to lodge in a wood; so that she and her countrymen might

be said to seek their bread out of desolate places, the stranger

having spoiled their labour. Perhaps the whole of the Psalm

relates to their infidelities, rebellions, and the miseries

inflicted on them from the crucifixion of our Lord till the

present time. I should prefer this sense, if what is said on

Ps 109:20 be not considered a better mode of interpretation.

Verse 13. Let his posterity be cut off] It is a fact that the

distinction among the Jewish tribes in entirely lost. Not a Jew

in the world knows from what tribe he is sprung; and as to the

royal family, it remains nowhere but in the person of Jesus the

Messiah. He alone is the Lion of the tribe of Judah. Except as it

exists in him, the name is blotted out.

Verse 16. Persecuted the poor and needy man] In the case of

Jesus Christ all the dictates of justice and mercy were destroyed,

and they persecuted this poor man unto death. They acted from a

diabolical malice. On common principles, their opposition to

Christ cannot be accounted for.

Verse 17. As he loved cursing, so let it come unto him] The Jews

said, when crucifying our Lord, His blood be upon us and our

children! Never was an imprecation more dreadfully fulfilled.

Verse 18. Let it come into his bowels like water] Houbigant

thinks this is an allusion to the waters of jealousy; and he is

probably right,-the bitter waters that produce the curse. See

Nu 5:18.

Verse 19. And for a girdle] Let the curse cleave to him

throughout life: as the girdle binds all the clothes to the body,

let the curse of God bind all mischiefs and maladies to his body

and soul.

The Hindoos, Budhists, and others often wear a gold or silver

chain about their waist. One of those chains, once the ornament of

a Moudeliar in the island of Ceylon, lies now before me: it is

silver, and curiously wrought.

Verse 20. Let this be the reward of mine adversaries from the

Lord, and of them that speak evil against my soul.] Following the

mode of interpretation already adopted, this may mean: All these

maledictions shall be fulfilled on my enemies; they shall have

them for their reward. So all the opposition made by the Jews

against our Lord, and the obloquies and execrations wherewith they

have loaded him and his religion, have fallen upon themselves; and

they are awful examples of the wrath of God abiding on them that

believe not.

But is not this verse a key to all that preceded it? The

original, fairly interpreted, will lead us to a somewhat different

meaning: zoth peullath

soteney meeth Yehovah, vehaddoberim ra al naphshi. "This is the

work of my adversaries before the Lord, and of those who speak

evil against my soul," or life. That is, all that is said from the

sixth to the twentieth verse consists of the evil words and

imprecations of my enemies against my soul, laboring to set the

Lord, by imprecations, against me, that their curses may take

effect. This, which is a reasonable interpretation, frees the

whole Psalm from every difficulty. Surely, the curses contained in

it are more like those which proceed from the mouth of the wicked,

than from one inspired by the Spirit of the living God. Taking the

words in this sense, which I am persuaded is the best, and which

the original will well bear and several of the Versions

countenance, then our translation may stand just as it is, only

let the reader remember that at the sixth verse David begins to

tell how his enemies cursed HIM, while he prayed for THEM.

Verse 21. But do thou for me] While they use horrible

imprecations against me, and load me with their curses, act thou

for me, and deliver me from their maledictions. While they curse,

do thou bless. This verse is a farther proof of the correctness of

the interpretation given above.

Verse 22. I am poor and needy] I am afflicted and impoverished;

and my heart is wounded-my very life is sinking through distress.

Verse 23. I am gone like the shadow] "I have walked like the

declining shadow,"-I have passed my meridian of health and life;

and as the sun is going below the horizon, so am I about to go

under the earth.

I am tossed up and down as the locust.] When swarms of locusts

take wing, and infest the countries in the east, if the wind

happen to blow briskly, the swarms are agitated and driven upon

each other, so as to appear to be heaved to and fro, or tossed up

and down. Dr. Shaw, who has seen this, says it gives a lively idea

of the comparisons of the psalmist.

Verse 24. My knees are weak through fasting] That hunger is as

soon felt in weakening the knees, as in producing an uneasy

sensation in the stomach, is known by all who have ever felt it.

Writers in all countries have referred to this effect of hunger.

Thus Tryphioderus Il. Excid. ver 155:-

τειρομενουβαρυθειενατερπειγουναταλιμω

"Their knees might fail, by hunger's force subdued;

And sink, unable to sustain their load."

MERRICK.

SO PLAUTUS, Curcul, act. ii., scen. 3:-

Tenebrae oboriuntur, genua inedia succidunt.

"My eyes grow dim; my knees are weak with hunger."

And LUCRETIUS, lib. iv. ver. 950:-

Brachia, palpebraeque cadunt, poplitesque procumbunt.

"The arms, the eyelids fall; the knees give way."

Both the knees and the sight are particularly affected by hunger.

Verse 25. When they looked upon me they soaked their heads.]

Thus was David treated by Shimei, 2Sa 16:5, 6, and our blessed

Lord by the Jews, Mt 27:39.

Verse 27. That they may know that this is thy hand] Let thy help

be so manifest in my behalf, that they may see it is thy hand, and

that thou hast undertaken for me. Or, if the words refer to the

passion of our Lord, Let them see that I suffer not on my own

account; "for the transgression of my people am I smitten."

Verse 28. Let them curse, but bless thou] See on Ps 109:20: Of

the mode of interpretation recommended there, this verse gives

additional proof.

Verse 29. Let them cover themselves] He here retorts their own

curse, Ps 109:18.

Verse 30. I will greatly praise the Lord] I have the fullest

prospect of deliverance, and a plenary vindication of my

innocence.

Verse 31. He shall stand at the right hand of the poor] Even if

Satan himself be the accuser, God will vindicate the innocence of

his servant. Pilate and the Jews condemned our Lord to death as a

malefactor; God showed his immaculate innocence by his

resurrection from the dead.

The whole of this Psalm is understood by many as referring

solely to Christ, the traitor Judas, and the wicked Jews. This

is the view taken of it in the analysis.

ANALYSIS OF THE HUNDRED AND NINTH PSALM

The later expositors expound this Psalm of Doeg, Ahithophel, and

other persecutors of David; and so it may be understood in the

type; but the ancient fathers apply it to Judas, and the Jews who

put Christ to death; which opinion, being more probable, and

because Peter (Ac 1:20) applies a passage out of Ps 109:8 to

Judas, I shall expound the Psalm as of Christ, whom David

personated, and of Judas, and the malicious Jews, as understood in

the persons of his wicked and slanderous enemies.

The Psalm has four parts:-

I. A short ejaculation, Ps 109:1, and the reasons expressed in

a complaint of the fraud and malice of his enemies, Ps 109:6.

II. A bitter imprecation against their fury, Ps 109:6-21.

III. A supplication presented to God for himself, and the

reasons, Ps 109:21-30.

IV. A profession of thanks.

I. He begins with an ejaculation: "Hold not thy peace, O God of

my praise."

1. Either actively, that is, "O God, whom I praise," even in the

greatest calamities.

2. Or passively; "Who art my praise:" The Witness and Advocate

of my innocency when I am condemned by malicious tongues; which

sense appears best for this place.

"Hold not thy peace." Tacere, to be silent, in Scripture, when

referred to God, is to connive, to rest, to appear not to regard;

and, on the contrary, loqui, to speak, to do something for revenge

or deliverance; it is what David here asks, that, when the malice

of his enemies arrived at its height, God should not suffer them,

but show his displeasure.

Then by way of complaint, he describes their malicious nature,

which he aggravates by an elegant gradation. "For the mouth of the

wicked:" and they were, 1. Impious. 2. Deceitful. 3. Liars.

1. "For the mouth of the wicked:" Caiaphas, Judas, the priests,

Jews, &c.

2. "And the mouth of the deceitful," &c. They sought to entrap

him in his words.

3. "They have spoken against me," &c. "He casteth out devils

through Beelzebub," &c.

And yet the mischief rises higher, even to hatred and malice.

1. "They compassed me about," &c. Manifesting in plain words the

malice they carried in their hearts. "This man is not of God," &c.

2. "They hated me without a cause:" Wantonly, idly. They were

not only evil, deceitful, and malicious; but very ungrateful. "He

went about doing good;" and "How often would I have gathered you,"

&c.; and for this love they returned hatred.

1. "For my love, they are my adversaries:" But, nevertheless,

2. "I give myself to prayer:" "Father, forgive them; they know

not," &c. Which base ingratitude of theirs he opens in fuller

words. "They have rewarded me evil." And Theognis truly says,

ηχαριςαλλαξαιτηνφυσινουδυναται

No kindness can invert an evil nature:

A Jew will ever be a Jew.

II. The prophet, having complained of the malice, spiteful usage,

and ingratitude of his nation, their crafty dealing with him, and

their lies against him, proceeds to pray against them, and that in

most bitter and fearful imprecations. Enemies he foresaw they

would be to the flourishing state of Christ's Church, and that

nothing had power to restrain or amend them; and therefore he

curses them with a curse the most bitter that ever fell from the

lips of man. In particular Judas, who was guide to them who took

Jesus, is pointed out; but, as Augustine observes, he represented

the person of the whole synagogue; therefore, it is involved

necessarily. But some understanding these curses as uttered by the

Jews against David. See Clarke on Ps 109:20.

1. "Set thou a wicked man over him," &c.: A fearful imprecation.

Subject him to the will of some impious and wicked man, to whose

lust and violence he may be no better than a slave. Others

understand by a wicked man a false teacher, who may seduce him by

false doctrines.

2. "Let Satan stand at his right hand:" Have full power over

him. Let him stand; which signifies a perpetual endeavour to urge

him forward till he effect his intended mischief. And so it was

with Judas and the Jews; Satan was their guide, and they followed

him.

The second is, "When he shall be judged, let him be

condemned;"-find no mercy, no favour, at the judge's hands; thus,

when Judas, accused and condemned by his own conscience, went to

the high priest, who had bribed him, he would not acquit him; and

Judas, in despair and grief for his sin, "went out and hanged

himself."

The third, "Let his prayer become sin:" He turned his ear from

hearing God, why then should God hear him? No prayer is acceptable

to God but through Christ, and that out of a sincere heart; any

other prayers become sin.

The fourth is the shortening of their life and honour.

1. "Let his days be few:" Length of days is promised only to the

obedient, and is a blessing: but the prayer is that this man's

life be a short one, and so Judas's was.

2. "And let another take his office:" Which must be applied to

Judas, since St. Peter (Ac 1:20) so interprets it; and it is at

this day as true of the Jews, for they have no high priest.

Another, after the order of Melchizedek, has succeeded Aaron's

priesthood.

The fifth is-

1. "Let his children be fatherless," &c.: Which follows on the

former curse.

2. "Let his children be continually vagabonds, and beg:" And

such the Jews are to this day; and beggars they were for a long

time after the overthrow of Jerusalem.

The sixth execration is upon his goods.

1. "Let the extortioner catch all that he hath:" Probably the

publicans.

2. "And let the strangers spoil his labour:" Which was verified

by the soldiers of Titus, who ripped up the bellies of the captive

Jews to see if they had swallowed gold.

But the prophet again returns to his children.

1. "Let there be none to extend mercy unto him," &c.: To beg, or

to want, is a misery; but there is some comfort in it when beggars

meet with some to relieve it. But the prophet says, Let there be

none to pity him, or his. Judas found none to pity him.

2. Men, because they must die themselves, desire, if possible,

to be immortal in their issue. Bellarmine observes that Judas had

no issue; for that Matthias, who came in his place, did not derive

his office from him. Though a posterity of the Jews remained after

the flesh, yet, in the next generation, their ecclesiastical and

civil polity was at an end; and since their dispersion they are

without king, without priest, without sacrifice, without altar,

without ephod, and without teraphim, as foretold by Hosea.

3. "Let the iniquity of his fathers be remembered," &c.: This

imprecation answers God's threat: "I will visit the iniquity of

the fathers upon the children." And this curse has come upon the

Jews to the uttermost; they are self-devoted: "Let his blood be

upon us, and upon our children." The guilt of his blood is yet

upon them; the iniquity of their fathers is yet remembered; and

the sin of their mother, the synagogue, is not yet done away.

He repeats again the sin of their fathers, and the sin of the

synagogue; this verse being but the exposition of the former.

1. "Let them be before the Lord continually:" The sin their

father and mother committed, never let it be forgotten by God.

2. "That he may cut off the memory," &c.: Except it be in

contempt.

The prophet having now finished his execrations, acquaints us

with the causes of them.

1. Their want of pity to them in distress: "Have ye no regard,

all ye that pass by?" La 1:12. It is but just then "that they

find judgment without mercy, that would show no mercy."

2. So far from that, "that he persecuted the poor and needy

man," &c., which is the second cause; the inhumanity of Judas and

the Jews against Christ, who is here called-1. Poor, because,

"when he was rich, for our sakes he became poor, that we through

his poverty might be rich;" 2Co 9:2.

The needy man: "For the foxes have holes, &c., Lu 9:58. 3.

The broken in heart. For he was in agony, and his soul was

troubled, when he sweated great drops of blood; when he cried, "My

God, my God!" not with compunction or contrition for any fault he

had committed, but from a sense of pain, and his solicitude for

the salvation of mankind.

In this verse there is noted the extreme cruelty and inhumanity

of the Jews; for whoever persecutes a man for his life is inclined

to it either from some real or supposed injury, or else through

envy: but Christ was humble and lowly in heart; he went about

doing good, and yet they persecuted him.

But, thirdly, he complains: "He loved cursing;" therefore, it is

but reason that he should have what he loved: "As he clothed

himself with cursing-so let it come," &c. No man can love a curse

or hate a blessing, if it be proposed to the will under the form

of a curse or blessing: but a man is said to love a curse when he

follows a wicked course, and avoids the blessing of a good life.

This Judas and the Jews did: Judas, by loving money more than

his Master; the Jews, by-"Let his blood," &c.

Neque enim lex justior ulla est. &c.

It is just that a man should suffer for his own wicked

inventions. But the prophet adds, Let it sit close to him as a

garment; let it be converted into his substance: let him carry it

perpetually, &c.

1. "As he clothed himself with cursing," &c. As in clothes he

delights in.

2. "So let it come as waters," &c. As the stomach concocts and

turns every thing into the very flesh of the animal; so let his

curse be converted into his nature and manners.

3. "Let it come as oil into his bones," &c. Oil will pierce the

bones; water will not.

This curse must be of great efficacy; he must always carry it.

1. "Let it be unto him," &c. Stick close as a garment.

2. "And for a girdle," &c. Compass him round about.

For a garment some read pallium; a cloak that a man puts off at

home, and calls for when he goes abroad: thus let God set an

outward mark upon him; let him be known as a cast-away.

If Doeg were the type of Judas, as most agree, in this Psalm,

then by the girdle might be understood cingulum militare, the

military girdle, which, while they were of that profession they

cast not off: and he, Doeg, being a military man, the curse was to

cleave to him, and compass him as his girdle.

The prophet concludes this part of the Psalm with an

exclamation, as being persuaded his curses were not in vain.

"Let this be the reward of mine adversaries," &c., who say that

I am a deceiver, and deny me to be the Saviour of the world.

III. The prophet now turns from curses to prayer: and in the

person of Christ, directs it to God for protection and deliverance

both of himself and the whole Church.

1. "But do thou for me," &c. He asks help against his

persecutors on these three grounds: 1. Because his Lord was

Jehovah, the fountain of all being and power. 2. Because it

would be for his honour: "Do it for thy name's sake." Thy

faithfulness and goodness to the Church, and justice in executing

vengeance on her enemies. 3. Do it, because thy mercy is

good-easily inclined to succour the miserable.

2. "Deliver me," may have reference to Christ's prayer, "Father,

save me from this hour," &c.

1. "Deliver me," for I am destitute of all human help.

2. "Deliver me," for my heart is wounded within me.

And to these he adds many other reasons; and uses two similes,

the one drawn from the shadow of the evening, the other from the

locust.

1. "I am gone like a shadow: " &c. Which passes away in a moment

silently: so was Christ led away as a prisoner, without any

murmur: "He was led as a lamb," &c., Isa 53:7. Thus the apostles

and martyrs died patiently.

2. "I am tossed up and down as the locust." From one tribunal to

another, as the locust carried from place to place, Ex 10:12, 19.

Secondly, he reasons from his bodily debility.

1. "My knees are weak through fasting." The little sustenance

Christ took before his passion and his watching in prayer all

night.

2. "And my flesh faileth of fatness," through the excess of his

fatigue, and the anguish of his Spirit: thus he could not bear his

cross.

3. A third reason why God should pity and deliver is drawn from

the opprobrious usage and the scorn they put upon him, than which

there is nothing more painful to an ingenuous and noble nature: "I

am become also a reproach unto them," &c. The four Gospels are an

ample comment upon this verse.

The second part of his prayer is for a speedy resurrection:

"Help me, O Lord my God: O save me," &c. And he supports his

petition with a strong reason, drawn from the final cause: "Save

me, that they may know," &c. That all men, the Jews especially may

be convinced by my rising again, in despite of the watch and the

seal, that it was not their malice and power that brought me to

this ignominious death, but that my passion, suffering, and death

proceeded from thy hand: "By his resurrection he was declared,"

Ro 1:4. And in the close of his prayer he sings a triumph over

his enemies, the devil, Judas, the Jews, those bitter enemies, to

him and his Church.

1. "Let them curse." Speak evil of me and my followers.

2. "But bless thou." Bless all nations that have faith in me.

3. "When they arise." For, 1. Arise they will, and endeavour by

every means to destroy my kingdom; 2. But "let them be ashamed."

Confounded that their wishes are frustrated.

4. "But let thy servant (which condition Christ took upon

himself) rejoice;" because thy name is thereby glorified.

And he continues his exercrations by way of explanation. "Let

mine adversaries," &c, be confounded at the last day, for their

ingratitude and malice, before angels and men.

IV. He closes all with thanks, which he opposes to the confusion

of the wicked.

1. "I will greatly praise the Lord." With affection and a great

jubilee.

2. "I will praise him among the multitude." Before all the

world.

For which he assigns this reason,-

1. "He shall stand at the right hand of the poor." That is, such

as are poor in spirit, who ask and find mercy from God: to such I

will be as a shield and buckler.

2. "I will stand at the right hand of the poor, to save him,"

&c. From the devil and all his instruments. Christ is the

all-covering shield of his Church: "He hath blotted out the

handwriting of ordinances," &c. So that, cum a mundo damnamur, a

Christo ab solvemur. "When we are condemned by the world, we are

absolved by Christ."

Copyright information for Clarke