Psalms 22

PSALM XXII

Under great affliction and distress, the psalmist prays unto

God, 1-3;

appeals to God's wonted kinkiness in behalf of his people, 4, 5;

relates the insults that he received, 6-8;

mentions the goodness of God to him in his youth, as a reason

why he should expect help now, 9-11;

details his sufferings, and the indignities offered to him,

12-18,

prays with the confidence of being heard and delivered, 19-24;

praises God. and foretells the conversion of the nations to the

true religion, 25-31.

NOTES ON PSALM XXII

The title of this Psalm, To the chief Musician upon Aijeleth

Shahar, A Psalm of David, has given rise to many conjectures. The

words aiyeleth hashshachar are translated in the margin,

"the hind of the morning;" but what was this? Was it the name of a

musical instrument? or of a tune? or of a band of music? Calmet

argues for the last, and translates "A Psalm of David, addressed

to the Musicmaster who presides over the Band called the Morning

Hind." This is more likely than any of the other conjectures I

have seen. But aiyeleth hashshachar may be the name of the Psalm

itself, for it was customary among the Asiatics to give names to

their poetic compositions which often bore no relation to the

subject itself. Mr. Harmer and others have collected a few

instances from D'Herbelot's Bibliotheque Orientale. I could add

many more from MSS. in my own collection:-thus Saady calls a

famous miscellaneous work of his Gulisstan, "The Country of

Roses," or, "The Rose Garden:" and yet there is nothing relative

to such a country, nor concerning roses nor rose gardens, in the

book. Another is called Negaristan, "The Gallery of Pictures; "

yet no picture gallery is mentioned. Another Beharistan, "The

Spring Season; " Bostan, "The Garden;" Anvar Soheely, "The Light

of Canopus;" Bahar Danush, "The Garden of Knowledge; " Tuhfit

Almumeneen, "The Gift of the Faithful," a treatise on medicine;

Kemeea Isadut, "The Alchymy of Life; " Mukhzeen al Asrar, "The

Magazine of Secrets;" Sulselet al Zahab, "The Golden Chain; "

Zuhfit al Abrar, "The Rosary of the Pious:" Merat al Asrar, "The

Mirror of Secrets; " Durj ul Durar, "The most precious Jewels;"

Deru Majlis, "The Jewel of the Assembly;" Al Bordah, "The

Variegated Garment;" a poem written by Al Basiree, in praise of

the Mohammedan religion, in gratitude for a cure which he believed

he received from the prophet who appeared to him in a dream. The

poem is written in one hundred and sixty-two couplets, each of

which ends with [Arabic] mim, the first letter in the name of

Mohammed.

Scarcely one of the above titles, and their number might be

easily trebled, bears any relation to the subject of the work to

which it is prefixed, no more than Aijeleth Shahar bears to the

matter contained in the twenty-second Psalm. Such titles are of

very little importance in themselves; and of no farther use to us

than as they serve to distinguish the different books, poems, or

Psalms, to which they are prefixed. To me, many seem to have

spent their time uselessly in the investigation of such subjects.

See Clarke on 2Sa 1:18.

On the subject of the Psalm itself, there is considerable

diversity of opinion: 1. Some referring it all to David; 2. Others

referring it all to Christ; and, 3. Some, because of the

application of several verses of it to our Lord in his sufferings,

take a middle way, and apply it primarily to David, and in a

secondary or accommodated sense, to Christ. Of this opinion was

Theodore of Mopsuestia. who gave a very rational account of his

own plan of interpretation; for which he was condemned by the

second council of Constantinople or fifth OEcumenic council.

Grotius and others have nearly copied his plan; and I think,

with a little correction, it is the only safe one. That several

parts of it relate to David, primarily, there is very little

reason to doubt; that several passages may be applied by way of

accommodation to our Lord, though originally belonging to and

expressing the state of David, may be piously believed; and that

it contains portions which are direct prophecies of our Lord's

passion, death, and victory, appears too evident to be safely

denied. On this plan I propose to treat it in the following

paraphrase; keeping it as near to the Gospel standard as I can.

Dr. Delaney supposes the Psalm to have been written by David when

he was at Mahanaim, the very place where God appeared to Jacob in

his distress. See Ge 32:2. And on this supposition the

third, fourth, and fifth verses may be easily and strikingly

illustrated: Our fathers trusted in thee; why may not I? Thou

didst deliver THEM; why may not I expect deliverance also? THEY

cried unto thee, trusted in thee, and were not confounded; I cry

until thee, trust in thee; and why should I be confounded? For

thou art the same God, thou changest not; and with thee there is

no respect of persons. Thus David encouraged himself in the Lord;

and these considerations helped to sustain him in his painful

exercises and heavy distresses.

Verse 1. My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?] Show me the

cause why thou hast abandoned me to my enemies; and why thou

seemest to disregard my prayers and cries? For a full illustration

of this passage, I beg the reader to refer to

Clarke's note on "Mt 27:46".

The words of my roaring?] shaagathi, The Vulgate,

Septuagint, Syriac, AEthiopic, and Arabic, with the Anglo-Saxon,

make use of terms which may be thus translated: "My sins (or

foolishness) are the cause why deliverance is so far from me." It

appears that these versions have read shegagathi, "my sin of

ignorance," instead of shaagathi, "my roaring:" but no MS.

extant supports this reading.

Verse 2. I cry in the day-time, and in the night-season] This

seems to be David's own experience; and the words seem to refer to

his own case alone. Though I am not heard, and thou appearest to

forget or abandon me; yet I continue to cry both day and night

after thy salvation.

Verse 3. But thou art holy] Though I be not heard, even while I

cry earnestly, yet I cannot impute any fault or unkindness to my

Maker; for thou art holy, and canst do nothing but what is right.

This is the language of profound resignation, in trials the most

difficult to be borne.

Inhabitest the praises of Israel.] Thou dwellest in the

sanctuary where the praises, thanksgivings, and sacrifices of

thy people are continually offered.

Verse 4. Our fathers trusted in thee] David is supposed to have

been, at the time of composing this Psalm, at Mahanaim, where

Jacob was once in such great distress; where he wrestled with the

angel, and was so signally blessed. David might well allude to

this circumstance in order to strengthen his faith in God. I am

now in the place where God so signally blessed the head and father

of our tribes. I wrestle with God, as he did; may I not expect

similar success?

Verse 5. They cried unto thee] So do I. THEY were delivered;

so may I. THEY trusted in thee; I also trust in thee. And were not

confounded; and is it likely that I shall be put to confusion?

Verse 6. But I am a worm, and no man] I can see no sense in

which our Lord could use these terms. David might well use them to

express his vileness and worthlessness. The old Psalter gives this

a remarkable turn: I am a worme, that es, I am borne of the mayden

with outen manseede; and nout man anely, bot god als so: and nevir

the latter, I am reprove of men. In spitting, buffetyng, and

punging with the thornes and outkasting of folk; for thai chesed

Barraban the thefe, and nought me.

Verse 7. Laugh me to scorn] They utterly despised me; set me at

naught; treated me with the utmost contempt. Laugh to scorn is so

completely antiquated that it should be no longer used; derided,

despised, treated with contempt, are much more expressive and are

still in common use.

They shoot out the lip, they shake the head] This is applied by

St. Matthew, Mt 27:39, to the conduct of the Jews towards our

Lord, when he hung upon the cross; as is also the following verse.

But both are primarily true of the insults which David suffered

from Shimei and others during the rebellion of Absalom; and, as

the cases were so similar, the evangelist thought proper to

express a similar conduct to Jesus Christ by the same expressions.

These insults our Lord literally received, no doubt David received

the same.

Verse 9. But thou art he that took me out of the womb] Thou hast

made me; and hast guided and defended me from my earliest infancy.

Verse 11. Be not far from me; for trouble is near] A present God

is a present blessing. We always need the Divine help; but more

especially when troubles and trials are at hand.

Verse 12. Many bulls have compassed me] The bull is the emblem

of brutal strength, that gores and tramples down all before it.

Such was Absalom, Ahithophel, and others, who rose up in rebellion

against David; and such were the Jewish rulers who conspired

against Christ.

Strong bulls of Bashan] Bashan was a district beyond Jordan,

very fertile, where they were accustomed to fatten cattle, which

became, in consequence of the excellent pasture, the largest, as

well as the fattest, in the country. See Calmet. All in whose

hands were the chief power and influence became David's enemies;

for Absalom had stolen away the hearts of all Israel. Against

Christ, the chiefs both of Jews and Gentiles were united.

Verse 13. They gaped upon me] They were fiercely and madly beat

on my destruction.

Verse 14. I am poured out like water] That is, as the old

Psalter: Thai rought na mare to sla me than to spil water.

The images in this verse are strongly descriptive of a person in

the deepest distress; whose strength, courage, hope, and

expectation of succour and relief, had entirely failed.

Our Lord's sufferings were extreme; but I cannot think there is

any sound theologic sense in which these things can be spoken of

Christ, either in his agony in the garden, or his death upon the

cross.

Verse 15. My strength is dried up] All these expressions mark a

most distressed and hopeless case.

Into the dust of death.] This means only that he was apparently

brought nigh to the grave, and consequent corruption; this latter

David saw; but Jesus Christ never saw corruption.

Verse 16. For dogs have compassed me] This may refer to the

Gentiles, the Roman soldiers, and others by whom our Lord was

surrounded in his trial, and at his cross.

They pierced my hands and my feet] The other sufferings David,

as a type of our Lord, might pass through; but the piercing of the

hands and feet was peculiar to our Lord; therefore, this verse may

pass for a direct revelation. Our Lord's hands and feet were

pierced when he was nailed to the cross, David's never were

pierced.

But there is a various reading here which is of great

importance. Instead of caaru, they pierced, which is what is

called the kethib, or marginal reading, and which our translators

have followed; the keri or textual reading is caari, as a

lion. In support of each reading there are both MSS. and eminent

critics. The Chaldee has, "Biting as a lion my hands and my feet;"

but the Syriac, Vulgate, Septuagint, AEthiopic, and Arabic read,

"they pierced or digged;" and in the Anglo-Saxon the words are,

[Anglo-Saxon]: "They dalve (digged) hands mine, and feet mine."

The Complutensian Polyglot has caaru, they digged or

pierced, in the text; for which it gives carah, to cut,

dig, or penetrate, in the margin, as the root whence is

derived. But the Polyglots of Potken, Antwerp, Paris, and London,

have caari in the text; and caaru is referred to

in the margin; and this is the case with the most correct Hebrew

Bibles. The whole difference here lies between yod and vau,

which might easily be mistaken for each other; the former making

like a lion; the latter, they pierced. The latter is to me most

evidently the true reading.

Verse 17. I may tell all my bones] This may refer to the violent

extension of his body when the whole of its weight hung upon the

nails which attached his hands to the transverse beam of the

cross. The body being thus extended, the principal bones became

prominent, and easily discernible.

Verse 18. They part my garments] This could be true in no sense

of David. The fact took place at the crucifixion of our Lord. The

soldiers divided his upper garment into four parts, each soldier

taking a part; but his tunic or inward vestment being without

seam, woven in one entire piece, they agreed not to divide, but to

cast lots whose the whole should be. Of this scripture the Roman

soldiers knew nothing; but they fulfilled it to the letter. This

was foreseen by the Spirit of God; and this is a direct revelation

concerning Jesus Christ, which impresses the whole account with

the broad seal of eternal truth.

Verse 19. Be not thou far from me] In the first verse he asks,

Why hast thou forsaken me? Or, as if astonished at their

wickedness, Into what hands hast thou permitted me to fall? Now he

prays, Be not far from me. St. Jerome observes here, that it is

the humanity of our blessed Lord which speaks to his divinity.

Jesus was perfect man; and as man he suffered and died. But this

perfect and sinless man could not have sustained those

sufferings so as to make them expiatory had he not been supported

by the Divine nature. All the expressions in this Psalm that

indicate any weakness, as far as it relates to Christ, (and indeed

it relates principally to him,) are to be understood of the human

nature; for, that in him God and man were united, but not

confounded, the whole New Testament to me bears evidence, the

manhood being a perfect man, the Godhead dwelling bodily in that

manhood. Jesus, as MAN, was conceived, born, grew up, increased in

wisdom, stature, and favour with God and man; hungered, thirsted,

suffered, and died. Jesus, as GOD, knew all things, was from the

beginning with God, healed the diseased, cleansed the lepers, and

raised the dead; calmed the raging of the sea, and laid the

tempest by a word; quickened the human nature, raised it from the

dead, took it up into heaven, where as the Lamb newly slain, it

ever appears in the presence of God for us. These are all

Scripture facts. The man Christ Jesus could not work those

miracles; the God in that man could not have suffered those

sufferings. Yet one person appears to do and suffer all; here then

is GOD manifested in the FLESH.

O my strength] The divinity being the power by which the

humanity was sustained in this dreadful conflict.

Verse 20. Deliver my soul from the sword] Deliver naphshi,

my life; save me alive, or raise me again.

My darling] yechidathi, my only one. The only human

being that was ever produced since the creation, even by the power

of God himself, without the agency of man. ADAM the first was

created out of the dust of the earth; that was his mother; God was

the framer. ADAM the second was produced in the womb of the

virgin; that was his mother. But that which was conceived in

her was by the power of the Holy Ghost; hence the man Christ Jesus

is the ONLY Son of God; God is his Father, and he is his ONLY ONE.

Verse 21. Save me from the lion's mouth] Probably our Lord here

includes his Church with himself. The lion may then mean the Jews;

the unicorns, remin (probably the rhinoceros,) the

Gentiles. For the unicorn,

See Clarke on Nu 23:22. There is

no quadruped or land animal with one horn only, except the

rhinoceros; but there is a marine animal, the narwhal or monodon,

a species of whale, that has a very fine curled ivory horn, which

projects from its snout. One in my own museum measures seven feet

four inches, and is very beautiful. Some of these animals have

struck their horn through the side of a ship; and with it they

easily transfix the whale, or any such animal. The old Psalter

says, "The unicorn es ane of the prudest best that es, so that he

wil dye for dedeyn if he be haldyn ogayn his wil."

Verse 22. I will declare the name unto my brethren] I will make

a complete revelation concerning the God of justice and love, to

my disciples; and I will announce to the Jewish people thy

merciful design in sending me to be the Saviour of the world.

Verse 23. Ye that fear the Lord] This is an exhortation to the

Jews particularly, to profit by the preaching of the Gospel.

Perhaps, by them that fear him, the Gentiles, and particularly the

proselytes, may be intended. The Jews are mentioned by name:

Glorify him, all ye seed of Jacob; fear him, all ye seed of

Israel.

Verse 24. For he hath not despised] It is his property to help

and save the poor and the humble; and he rejects not the sighings

of a contrite heart. Perhaps it may mean, Though ye have despised

me in my humiliation, yet God has graciously received me in the

character of a sufferer on account of sin; as by that humiliation

unto death the great atonement was made for the sin of the world.

Verse 25. The great congregation] In Ps 22:22 he declares that

he will praise God in the midst of the congregation. Here the Jews

seem to be intended. In this verse he says he will praise him in

the GREAT CONGREGATION. Here the Gentiles are probably meant. The

Jewish nation was but a small number in comparison of the Gentile

world. And those of the former who received the Gospel were very

few when compared with those among the Gentiles who received the

Divine testimony. The one was (for there is scarcely a converted

Jew now) kahal, an assembly; the other was, is, and

will be increasingly, kahal rab, a GREAT ASSEMBLY.

Salvation was of the Jews, it is now of the Gentiles.

Verse 26. The meek shall eat] anavim. the POOR, shall

eat. In the true only Sacrifice there shall be such a provision

for all believers, that they shall have a fulness of joy. Those

who offered the sacrifice, fed on what they offered. Jesus, the

true Sacrifice, is the bread that came down from heaven; they who

eat of this bread shall never die.

Verse 27. All the ends of the world] The Gospel shall be

preached to every nation under heaven; and all the kindred of

nations, mishpechoth, the families of the nations: not

only the nations of the world shall receive the Gospel as a

revelation from God, but each family shall embrace it for their

own salvation. They shall worship before Jesus the Saviour, and

through him shall all their praises be offered unto God.

Verse 28. The kingdom is the Lord's] That universal sway of the

Gospel which in the New Testament is called the kingdom of God; in

which all men shall be God's subjects; and righteousness, peace,

and joy in the Holy Ghost, be universally diffused.

Verse 29. All they that be fat upon earth] The rich, the

great, the mighty, even princes, governors, and kings, shall

embrace the Gospel. They shall count it their greatest honour to

be called Christian; to join in the assemblies of his people, to

commemorate his sacrificial death, to dispense the word of life,

to discourage vice, and to encourage the profession and practice

of pure and undefiled religion.

That go down to the dust] Every dying man shall put his trust in

Christ, and shall expect glory only through the great Saviour of

mankind.

None can keep alive his own soul.] The Vulgate has: Et anima mea

illi vivet, et semen meum serviet ipsi; "and my soul shall live to

him, and my seed shall serve him." And with this agree the Syriac,

Septuagint, AEthiopic, Arabic, and Anglo-Saxon. The old Psalter

follows them closely: And my saule sal lyf til him; and my sede

hym sal serve. I believe this to be the true reading. Instead of

naphsho, HIS soul, some MSS., in accordance with the above

ancient versions, have naphshi, MY soul. And instead of

lo, not, two MSS., with the versions, have lo, to HIM.

And for chiyah, shall vivify, some have yichyeh,

shall live. The text, therefore, should be read, My soul (

napshi) shall live ( lo) to him: my seed (

zari) shall serve him. These may be the words of David himself:

"I will live to this Saviour while I live; and my spiritual

posterity shall serve him through all generations."

Verse 30. Shall be accounted to the Lord for a generation.] They

shall be called Christians after the name of Christ.

Verse 31. Unto a people that shall be born] That is, one

generation shall continue to announce unto another the true

religion of the Lord Jesus; so that it shall be for ever

propagated in the earth. Of his kingdom there shall be no end.

ANALYSIS OF THE TWENTY-SECOND PSALM

This Psalm concerns the Messiah, his passion, and his kingdom.

Though, in some sense, it, may be applied to David as a type, yet

Christ is the thing signified, and therefore it is primarily and

principally verified of and in him; for he is brought in here,

speaking,

First, Of his dereliction; then showing his passion, and the

cruelty of his enemies.

Secondly, Entreating ease and deliverance from his sufferings.

Thirdly, Promising thanks to God; foretelling the preaching of

the Gospel, and the enlargement of his kingdom by the accession of

all nations.

There are three chief parts in this Psalm:-

I. Our Saviour's complaint, and the causes of it: prophetically

expressing his sufferings nearly throughout the whole Psalm.

II. His petition and prayer that God would not absent himself,

but deliver and save him, Ps 22:3-5, 9-11, 19-21.

III. His thanksgiving and prophetic declaration concerning the

conversion of the Gentiles; Ps 22:22-31.

I. He begins with a heavy complaint of dereliction in his

extremity; and that he was not heard, though he prayed with strong

crying and tears: "My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?" &c.

The words are repeated to show the deep anguish of his heart.

2. He shows how well-grounded his complaint was: for God had

dealt with him contrary to his usual method; for when his saints

called upon him, he heard them in their distress. Martyres si non

eripuit, tum non deseruit. "If he did not deliver the martyrs, yet

he did not desert them in their sufferings." His case was more

grievous than any that had gone before. Of this he speaks

particularly in the three succeeding verses, Ps 22:3-5, by which

he reminds God of his promise: "Call on me in the time of trouble,

and I will deliver thee." Of this they who went before had

experience: and as he was the same God still, why should this

Sufferer only be deserted? for they were heard and comforted.

1. "Thou art holy," propitious and benevolent. "Thou dwellest in

the praises of Israel;" thou art continually helping them, and

they are continually praising thee for this help.

To prove all this he brings the example of the fathers:-

2. "Our fathers trusted in thee, and thou didst deliver them."

3. "They cried unto thee-and were not confounded."

But my case is worse than any other: "I am a worm, and am no

man."

He then details his sufferings:-

1. The scoffs and scorns cast upon him: "I am become the

reproach of men, and the despised among the people."

2. Their contempt is expressed both by words and gestures: "All

they that see me laugh me to scorn: they shoot out the lip-and

shake the head."

3. They laboured to deprive him of his God. They uttered this

insulting sarcasm: "He trusted in the Lord that he would deliver

him; let him deliver him, since he delighted in him."

II. He now breaks off the narration of his sufferings, has

immediate recourse to God, refutes their irony, shows his

confidence in God, and prays for assistance. This he strengthens

by three arguments drawn from God's goodness towards him:-

1. His generation and birth: "Thou-tookest me out of my mother's

womb."

2. His sustenance and support ever since: "Thou didst make me

hope when I was upon my mother's breasts;-thou art my God from my

mother's belly." In a word, he was his Saviour, Protector, and

Preserver.

3. Trouble is near, and there is none to help. Therefore, "Be

not far from me."

Now he returns to the narration of his passion, in which he sets

forth the despite, cruelty, and rage of the Jews towards him, whom

he compares to bulls, lions, dogs, &c., Ps 22:16.

1. They apprehended him: "Many bulls have compassed me;" &c.

2. They longed to condemn and devour him: "They gaped on me with

their mouths, as a ravening and roaring lion."

3. This was the cruelty of the lions and bulls, the chief

rulers, and chief priests; and now follows the ravin of the

dogs, the "multitude of the people:" they were the "assembly

of the wicked;" and being stirred up by the priests and rulers,

"they compassed him round about."

4. They crucify him. And his passion is foretold, with what he

should suffer in body and soul.

1. "I am poured out like water." My blood is poured out freely;

and no more account taken of it, than if it were water spilt on

the ground.

2. "All my bones (when hung on the cross) are out of joint."

3. "My heart (at the sense of God's hatred to sin) is dissolved

and melted like wax."

4. "My strength (my animal spirits and muscular energy) is dried

up like a potsherd;" or like a pot, whose fluid is evaporated by

hanging long over a fierce fire.

5. "My tongue (for thirst) cleaveth to my jaws."

6. "Thou hast brought me to death-to the dust of death:" to the

grave.

7. "They pierced my hands and my feet." I am crucified also, and

die upon the cross.

8. By my long hanging upon the cross, my bones are so disjointed

that they may be easily told: "I may tell all my bones."

9. "They look and stare upon me." They feel no compassion, but

take pleasure in my agonies. This is an affection which is

characteristic only of a devil.

10. "They part my garments among them." They delighted in his

destruction for the sake of his spoils.

Having thus far described his sufferings, and the malice of his

enemies, he begins again to pray; which is, in effect, the same

with that ejaculation with which Christ gave up the ghost: "Into

thy hands, O Lord, I commend my spirit." "Be not thou far from me,

O Lord." "Deliver my soul from the sword, my darling from the

power of the dog." "Save me from the lion's mouth," &c.

III. This part, which is a profession of thanks for deliverance,

contains a clear prophecy of the resurrection of Christ; that,

having conquered death and Satan, he was to reign and gather a

Church out of all nations, which was to continue for ever. This is

amplified,

First, By a public profession of the benefit received from God:

"I will declare thy name in the midst of the congregation, I will

pay my vows." In which we have,

1. The propagation, proclamation, and preaching of the Gospel:

"I will declare thy name;" which is amplified,

(1.) By the notation of the objects to whom preached, honoured

here by the name of, 1. Brethren. 2. Those that fear the Lord. 3.

The seed of Jacob, the seed of Israel. 4. The meek or poor.

5. The fat-rich, great, or eminent of the earth. 6. They that go

down to the dust.

(2.) By the place: "The midst of the congregation"-the great

congregation, i.e., both among the Jews and among the Gentiles.

(3.) By the worship they were to pay: 1. Praise. 2. Paying of

vows. 3. Fear, or religious reverence.

2. An exhortation to his brethren, &c., to do this duty; and

they must be fit for it, for every one is not fit to take God's

name in his mouth. It is, Ye that fear the Lord-the seed of

Jacob-the seed of Israel, fear him, serve the Lord in fear,

rejoice before him with reverence. Give him both external and

internal worship.

3. And to engage them to this, he gives two reasons:

Reason 1. Drawn from God's goodness, his acceptance of our

worship, hearing our prayers, and affording help when we call:

"For the Lord hath not despised nor abhorred the affliction of the

afflicted. When he cried to him, he heard him."

Reason 2. The great good that should happen to them who would

believe and accept the Gospel; whom he calls here the meek, that

is, the humble, broken-hearted, the penitent, the heavy laden;

those who are oppressed with the burden of their sins, and

astonished at a sense of God's wrath. To them are made three

promises of comfort:-

1. "They shall eat, and be satisfied." They shall be fed with

the word and ordinances of God.

2. "They shall praise the Lord for his mercy;" seeking his

favour in his ordinances, which, under the Gospel, are generally

eucharistical.

3. "Their heart shall live for ever;" their conscience being

quieted and pacified, and freed from a sense of God's wrath.

Secondly, The prophet proceeds, and shows us the amplitude of

these benefits; that they belong, not only to the Jews but to the

Gentiles, by whose conversion the kingdom of Christ is to be

enlarged.

1. "All the ends of the world," being warned by the preaching of

the Gospel, and allured by these promises, shall remember-consider

the lamentable condition in which they are, and deplore their

former estate, impiety, and idolatry. And the mercy of God being

now manifested to them-

2. They shall cast away their gods, turn from their evil ways,

and seek that God from whom they have been alienated. And being

converted-

3. They shall embrace a new form of religion under the Gospel:

"All the kindreds of the nations shall worship before thee."

4. Of which the reason is, because Christ is advanced to the

throne; all power is given to him: "For the kingdom is the Lord's,

and he is governor among the people."

5. He then shows the two kinds of people who should become

subjects of the kingdom; in effect, rich and poor.

1. "The fat upon the earth." The wealthy, the mighty; kings,

princes, great men, are to be called into the kingdom, that they

may be partakers of its grace: "All they that be fat upon the

earth," &c.

2. "They also that go down to the dust." That is, the poor, the

neglected, who draw out their life in misery, and sit, as it were,

in the dust; those who are perpetual mourners, and have, as it

were, perpetual dust and ashes upon their heads: "These shall bow

before him."

Lastly. He amplifies the greatness of this benefit by the

perpetuity of Christ's kingdom. It was not a feast of one hour,

it was to continue.

1. "A seed shall serve him." But this and the preceding clause

may signify the psalmist's resolution to live to God himself, and

to show others the same way. See the notes.

This seed, however, shall be accounted to the Lord for a

generation. It shall be a peculiar people, a royal priesthood, a

holy nation, and called by Christ's own name-CHRISTIANS.

2. When one generation is past, another shall come up to perform

this duty, being instructed by their fathers: "They shall come and

declare his righteousness to a people that shall be born." Manebit

semper ecclesia, "the Church is immortal."

3. He concludes with the cause of all. Why called, justified,

sanctified, saved. He hath done it; the GOD, the Author of all;

the Fountain of all grace; the Giver of Jesus Christ, and eternal

life through him. For by him, and of him, and through him, are all

things; and to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever!

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