Psalms 107

* God's providential care of the children of men in distresses,

in banishment, and dispersion. (1-9) In captivity. (10-16) In

sickness. (17-22) Danger at sea.(23-32) God's hand is to be seen

by his own people. (33-43)1-9 In these verses there is reference to the deliverance from

Egypt, and perhaps that from Babylon: but the circumstances of

travellers in those countries are also noted. It is scarcely

possible to conceive the horrors suffered by the hapless

traveller, when crossing the trackless sands, exposed to the

burning rays of the sum. The words describe their case whom the

Lord has redeemed from the bondage of Satan; who pass through

the world as a dangerous and dreary wilderness, often ready to

faint through troubles, fears, and temptations. Those who hunger

and thirst after righteousness, after God, and communion with

him, shall be filled with the goodness of his house, both in

grace and glory.
10-16 This description of prisoners and captives intimates that

they are desolate and sorrowful. In the eastern prisons the

captives were and are treated with much severity. Afflicting

providences must be improved as humbling providences; and we

lose the benefit, if our hearts are unhumbled and unbroken under

them. This is a shadow of the sinner's deliverance from a far

worse confinement. The awakened sinner discovers his guilt and

misery. Having struggled in vain for deliverance, he finds there

is no help for him but in the mercy and grace of God. His sin is

forgiven by a merciful God, and his pardon is accompanied by

deliverance from the power of sin and Satan, and by the

sanctifying and comforting influences of God the Holy Spirit.
17-22 If we knew no sin, we should know no sickness. Sinners

are fools. They hurt their bodily health by intemperance, and

endanger their lives by indulging their appetites. This their

way is their folly. The weakness of the body is the effect of

sickness. It is by the power and mercy of God that we are

recovered from sickness, and it is our duty to be thankful. All

Christ's miraculous cures were emblems of his healing diseases

of the soul. It is also to be applied to the spiritual cures

which the Spirit of grace works. He sends his word, and heals

souls; convinces, converts them, makes them holy, and all by the

word. Even in common cases of recovery from sickness, God in his

providence speaks, and it is done; by his word and Spirit the

soul is restored to health and holiness.
23-32 Let those who go to sea, consider and adore the Lord.

Mariners have their business upon the tempestuous ocean, and

there witness deliverances of which others cannot form an idea.

How seasonable it is at such a time to pray! This may remind us

of the terrors and distress of conscience many experience, and

of those deep scenes of trouble which many pass through, in

their Christian course. Yet, in answer to their cries, the Lord

turns their storm into a calm, and causes their trials to end in

gladness.
33-43 What surprising changes are often made in the affairs of

men! Let the present desolate state of Judea, and of other

countries, explain this. If we look abroad in the world, we see

many greatly increase, whose beginning was small. We see many

who have thus suddenly risen, as suddenly brought to nothing.

Worldly wealth is uncertain; often those who are filled with it,

ere they are aware, lose it again. God has many ways of making

men poor. The righteous shall rejoice. It shall fully convince

all those who deny the Divine Providence. When sinners see how

justly God takes away the gifts they have abused, they will not

have a word to say. It is of great use to us to be fully assured

of God's goodness, and duly affected with it. It is our wisdom

to mind our duty, and to refer our comfort to him. A truly wise

person will treasure in his heart this delightful psalm. From

it, he will fully understand the weakness and wretchedness of

man, and the power and loving-kindness of God, not for our

merit, but for his mercy's sake.

$-$-$- PS:108

- We may usefully select passages from different psalms, as

here, #Ps 57; 60|, to help our devotions, and enliven our

gratitude. When the heart is firm in faith and love, the tongue,

being employed in grateful praises, is our glory. Every gift of

the Lord honours and profits the possessor, as it is employed in

God's service and to his glory. Believers may pray with assured

faith and hope, for all the blessings of salvation; which are

secured to them by the faithful promise and covenant of God.

Then let them expect from him help in every trouble, and victory

in every conflict. Whatever we do, whatever we gain, God must

have all the glory. Lord, visit all our souls with this

salvation, with this favour which thou bearest to thy chosen

people
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