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Blessedness)

PSALMS.

[of the righteous.

forth his fruit in his season; his leaf PSALM I.

also shall not wither; and whatsoever

he doeth shall prosper. BLESSED is the man that walketh 4 The ungodly are not so: but are

not in the counsel of the ungodly, like the chaff which the wind driveth nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor away. sitteth in the seat of the scornful. 5 Therefore the ungodly shall not

2 But his delight is in the law of stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the Lord; and in his law doth he the congregation of the righteous. meditate day and night.

6 For the LORD knoweth the way 3 And he shall be like a tree planted of the righteous : but the way

of the by the rivers of water, that bringeth ungodly shall perish. (A)

EXPOSITION.
PSALM I.

selves become tempters to others, and ad(A) Introductory Psalm.-The blessed- vocates for Baal." ness of the righteous, and misery of the But tlre blessed man “ delights in the wicked. The author of this psalm is un- law and in the word of God," and spends kpowa; but many have ascribed it to those hours in reading and meditation, Ezra, on the presumption that on his col- which others spend in sinful pursuits lecting these sacred poems into a volume, abroad, or revellings at home. The good he might prefix this didactic (or precep- man makes the lively oracles of God his tire) psalmi, as a proper introduction to companion, and will (as the excellent the whole. It does not follow, however, Bishop Horne observes) “ have recourse that it must have been his own compo- to them for direction in the bright and sition, and we know nothing of Ezra as a cheerful hours of prosperity;" and for poet.

“ comfort in the dark and dreary seasons This psalm contains a contrasted view of of adversity.” The enemy, when advancthe character of the righteous and the ing to the assault, will always find him well wicked, with the blessings which atteud employed, and will be received with — the former, and the miseries which await “Get thee behind me, Satan;" as he was the latter. The blessedness of the good repulsed by our divine Redeemer. man ariseth, not from riches, por pleasures, Such an one is compared to “a tree por gay companions, nor great connexions; planted by the rivers :" He is planted but, on the contrary, from a total separa- by the “river of the water of life;' and as tion from sin and sinners. “ Blessed is this nourishes his root, his leaves of prothe man that walketh not in the counsel fession are ever green, and his fruits of of the ungodly.” Ahaziah, we are told, righteousness abundant. (Jer. xvii. 11.) "walked in the way of Ahab; for his mo- But“ the ungodly are not so." Like chaft ther (Athaliah) was his counsellor to do winnowed in the open air, as in the eastern wickedly;" which led, as wickedness al. countries is the custom to this day, his ways does,“ to his destruction.” (2 Chron. hopes and expectations shall all be scatxii. 2–4.) Those who walk in the coun- tered. Neither his character nor his acsels of such men, will be found often tions will stand the trial of affliction, or of "standing," or stopping, in their way, and death; much less shall he “ stand in the sometimes seating themselves in the chair judgnient, or be numbered in the congre. of the scorners; those who make a scoff and gation of the righteous.” “ For the Lord ridicule of all religion.--Here is intimated knowetb them that are his :" (2 Tin. ii. 19.) a gradation in vice. “ The way of ini- his eye is upon the way of the righteous, quity, says Mr. Henry, “ is down hill; both to guide them and guard them; and the bad grow worse, and siuners then they are blessed, while sioners perish.

NOTES. PSALM L. Ver. 1. Blessed.-The Hebrew word produceth) shall prosper.” “ A tree is said to make is a sean plural, “ Blessings" on the man!

fruit when it beareth it." Jer. xvii. 8.--Ainsworth. Tel. The lan-is bere not to be taken for the Ver. 5. In the judgmentThe judgment here inen con mandmeats only, but for the whole revealed

tended, is evidently the last judgment; the congreyation of the righteous, is their assembly at the judg

ment-seat of Christ. Bishop Horne. Tel.3. Wither - Marg. “fade;"? more literally, Ver. 6. The Lord knoneth-That is, approveth and " (all." This may be rendered impersonally; Ils acknowledgeth. See Ps. xxxi. 7; Amos iij. ?; lear ball pot wither, and whatsoever it doulle (or Matt. xxv. 12.

will of God.

PSALMS. to admit a part only of the Levites at a time;" and on grand occasions, as the dedication of the temple, the chief parts of the performance must have been in the open air. After this time, every thing degenerated, and when the Jews went into captivity, they “hung their harps upon the willows." The fame of their former musical excellence must, however, have reached their enemies, for they • required of them a song,” to which they properly replied, “How can we sing the Lord's song in a strange laud ?" +

In entering upon this important book, we acknowledge ourselves first and principally indebted to Bishop Horne, whose expositions we have generally compared with the previous labours of Mr. Ainsworth and Bishop Patrick. Nor shall' we forget the evangelical paraphrase of Dr. Watts, whom we respect, both as an interpreter and a poet, and in whose first edition (now before us) are some useful hints, wbicb, we regret to say, are omitted in all the modern editions. And we shall occasionally enrich our Exposition with a verse from him, as well as from Milton, and other poetical translators of the Psalms. The beautiful Lectures of Bishop Lowth will be consulted on this book, as well as on Job; and in our Notes we shall not neglect the original criticisms of Dr. Kennicott and Bishop Horsley, though we confess we never follow without hesitation commentators on ihe sacred writers, who are so bold, as to treat an inspired writer with the same freedom as a leathen classic. We would use all diligence to ascertain the meaning of the sacred writers; but we would also treat then with all reverence, carefully avoiding to attach to them any meaving, but that of the inspired authors. For this reason, we must be excused from following systematically, the scheme of interpretation adopted' by Bishops Horne, Horsley, and other Hutchinsonian writers, though it will be seen we have seldom neglected to consult tbem.

We shall conclude this Introduction with another extract from the same learped and excellent writer with whose words we commenced. Speaking of David's Psalms, Bishop Horne adds, “ His invaluable Psalms convey those comforts to others which they afforded to himself. Composed upon particular occasions, yet designed for general use ; delivered out'as services for the Israelites under

the law, yet no less adapted to the circumstances of Christians under the gospel; they present religion to us in the most engaging dress, communicating truths which philosophy could never investigate, in a style which poetry can never equal; while history is made the vehicle of prophecy, and creation lends all its charms io paint the glories of redemption. Calculated alike to profit and to please, they inform the understanding, clevate the affections, and entertain the imagination. Indited under the influence of Him to whom all hearts are knowil, and all events foreknown, they suit mankind in all situations; grateful as the manna which descended from above, and conformed itself to every palate. The fairest productions of humau wit, after a few perusals, like gathered fowers, wither in our hands, and lose their fragrancy; but these unfading plants of Paradise become, as we are accustomed to them, still more and more beautiful; their bloom appears to be daily heightened; fresh odours are emitted, and new sweets extracted from them. He who bath once tasted their excellencies will desire to taste them yet again ; and he who tastes them oftenest, will relish them best." (Pref. p. lix.)

* See 1 Kings vi. 2, and Note.

+ Ps. cxxxvii. 1-4. On the Music of the He. brews, the Editor begs to refer to his “ Historical

Escay on Church Music,” which has been long out of print, but which, if his life is spared, may pro. bably be presented to the public in a new form.

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Blessedness)

PSALMS.

[of the righteous.

forth his fruit in his season; his leaf PSALM I.

also shall not wither; and whatsoever

he doeth shall prosper. BLESSED is the man that walketh 4 The ungodly are not so: but are

not in the counsel of the ungodly, like the chaff which the wind driveth Dor standeth in the way of sinners, nor away. sitteth in the seat of the scornful. 5 Therefore the ungodly shall not

2 But his delight is in the law of stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the Lord; and in his law doth he the congregation of the righteous. meditate day and night.

6 For the Lord knoweth the way 3 And he shall be like a tree planted of the righteous : but the way of the by the rivers of water, that bringeth ungodly shall perish. (A)

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EXPOSITION.
PSALM I.

selves become tempters to others, and ad(A) Introductory Psalm.-The blessed- vocates for Baal.” Bets of the righteous, and misery of the But the blessed man “ delights in the Kicked.The author of this psalo is un- law and in the word of God," and spends ktovn; but many have ascribed it to those hours in reading and meditation, Een on the presumption that on his col- which others spend in sinful pursuits letting these sacred poems into a volume, abroad, or revellings at home. The good be might prefix this didactic (or precep- man makes the lively oracles of God his are psalm, as a proper introduction to companion, and will" (as the excellent the whole. It does not follow, however, Bishop Horne observes) “ have recourse that it must have been his own compo- to them for direction in the bright and sition, and we know nothing of Ezra az a cheerful hours of prosperity;" and for

“ comfort in the dark and dreary seasons This psalm contains a contrasted view of of adversity." The enemy, when advane. the character of the righteous and the ing

to the assault, will always find him well wicked, with the blessings which atteud employed, and will received with the former, and the miseries which await “ Get thee behind me, Satan;" as he was the latter. The blessedness of the good repulsed by our divine Redeemer. man ariseth, not from riches, por pleasures, Such an one is compared to “a tree hot gay companions, nor great connexions; planted by the rivers :" He is planted but, on the contrary, from a total separa- by the “river of the water of life ; and as tion from sin and sioners.“ Blessed is this nourishes his root, his leaves of prothe man that walketh not in the counsel fession are ever green, and his fruits of dit the ungodly." Abaziah, we are told, righteousness abundant. (Jer. xvii. 11.) Falked in the way of Ahab; for his mo- But“ the ungodly are not so." Like chaft

was his counsellor to do winnowed in the open air, as in the eastern wickedly;" which led, as wickedness al- countries is the custom to this day, his ways does, " to his destruction." (2 Chron. hopes and expectations shall all be scatzi. 2-4.) Those who walk in the coun

tered. Neither his character nor his ac sels of such men, will be found often tions will stand the trial of affliction, or of

standing," or stopping, in their way, and death; much less shall he “stand in the Sometimes seating themselves in the chair judgment, or be numbered in the congreidicule of all religion.--Here is intimated knoweth them that are his :" (2 Tim. ii. 19.) agradation in vice. " The way of ini- his eye is upon the way of the righteous, uits, says Mr. Henry, " is down hill; both to guide them and guard them; and the bad grow worse, 'and siuners then they are blessed, while sinners perish.

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ther (Athaliah).

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NOTES. KALM I. Ver. 1. Blessed. - The Hebrew word

produceth) shall prosper." “ A tree is said to make di dala plural, “ Blessings” on the man!

fruit wlicn it beareth it.” Jer. xvii. 8.--Ainsworth, 12. The lar-is here not to be taken for the

Ver. 5. In the judgmen!--The judgment here inen tonbandments only, but for the whole revealed

tended, is evidently ihe last judgment; the congre

gation of the righteous, is their assembly at the judg. 1.3. Wither-Marg. "fade;"? more literally,

ment-seat of Christ. Bislop Horne. * This may be rendered impersonally ; "Its

Ver 6. The Lord knoneth-That is, approveth and

acknowledgeth. Sre Ps. xxxi. 7; Amos iii. 2: itas

Matt. xxv. 52.

vid Gud.

(of Christ.

The kingdom

PSALMS.

7 I will declare the decree: the PSALM II.

LORD hath said unto me, Thou art

my Son; this day have I begotten thee. WHY do the heathen rage, and the 8 Ask of me, and I shall give thee

people imagine a vain thing? the heathen for thine inheritance, and 2 The kings of the earth set them- the uttermost parts of the earth for thy selves, and the rulers take counsel to- possession. gether, against the Lord, and against 9 Thou shalt break them with a rod his anointed, saying,

of iron; thou shalt dash them in pieces 3 Let us break their bands asunder, like a potter's vessel. and cast away their cords from us. 10 Be wise now therefore, 0 ye

4 He that sitteth in the heavens kings: be instructed, ye judges of the shall laugh: the Lord shall have them earth. in derision.

Il Serve the LORD with fear, and 5 Then shall he speak unto them rejoice with trembling. in his wrath, and vex them in his 12 Kiss the Son, lest he be angry, sore displeasure.

and ye perish from the way, when his 6 Yet have I set my king upon my wrath is kindled but a little. Blessed are holy hill of Zion.

all they that put their trust in him. (B)

EXPOSITION.
PSALM II.

opposition. Ridicule can only be ascribed (B) The kingdom of Messiah. A Psalmi to Deity in the same figurative manner as of David.—The kings of the earth (or of grief and repentance are in other places ; the land) are explaineil(Acts iv. 26, 27.) to be God is not affected by human passions ; the Jewish and Roman governors, “Herod but his actions are explained in analogy and Pontius Pilate," who set themselves" with ours. Fools that scoff at God, and against Messiah ; particularly the former, make “a mock at sin," are given to who, as if purposely to fulfil this prediction, know that they will reap the fruit of their “ with his men of war sei him at nought, own fully; and He whom they now deride, mocked him," and having arrayed him in will then“ have them in derision." (See a gorgeons robe, sent him again to Pilate; Gen. iii. 20—24. aud Exposition.) " and the same day Pilate and! Hervd were But to apply to the great subject of this made friends together.” (Luke xxiii. 11.) psalm : “ The views which it gives of the “Thus they set themselves in array against Messiah (says Dr. P. Smith) are, that he him."

should be, in a peculiar sense, the Son o There is sometlıing peculiar in the man- God; that he should be entitled to th ner in which the Psalmist represents the homage of the world; that, pursuant t Lord Jenovan, as sitting upon the throne the appointment of the Almighty Fathe of the universe, and looking down with the he should support his own throne by th: most sovereigu contempt upon all humau rightevus exercise of authority and power

SC

NOTES. PSALM UI. David's name is not prefixed to this Ver. 4. The Lord -- Adonai, not JEHOVAR, as psalm in our bibles; it is so in the Septuagint trans- ver. 2. As we shall frequently meet with both th lation, and the whole assembly of the apostles at- words in this book, we inay here observe, that wh tribute it to his pen, and apply it to his illustrious the word "Lord" occurs in small letters, it is Son and Lord, as the anointed King of Israel, of former in the original, but the latter when in capita whom David was a type only. (Actsiv. 25, &c. xiii. 33.) here, however, all the printed Bibles in Hebrew The Targum also refers (it) to the Messiah. So do have consulted, read Adonai, " Lord;" yet u the Bereshith Rabba, the book Jalkuth,(Zohar) and copies of our authorized version we bave otbers of the Talmudical writings." So Solomon print the word in capitals, as if it were JKKOV Jarchi confesses, in these words.“ Oar masters have which Dr. Boothroyd says is the reading of n expounded (this psalm) of the King Messiah ; but, Hebrew MSS, and he thinks the true one. according to the letter, and for furnishing answers to Ver. 5. Ver-Marg. "trouble:”! “ rebuke," the Minim, (heretics, i.e. the Christians) it is better J.P. Smith : “confound," Dr. Chandler. to interpret it of David himself." (Dr. Smith's Ver. 6. I hare sel-Ileb. "anointed.”. Scripture Testimony to the Messiah, vol. i. pp. 213, hill-Marg. " Zion, the hill of my holiness." 215.)

Ver. 7. I will declare the decrre. --Messiais is Ver. 1. Why do the heathen-Heb. “ the nations." introduced as speaking in his own person. The Jews called all nations beside their own hea. Ver. 9. A rod of iron—" A sccptce of iron,” then: we restrain it to pagan, or idolatrous nations. Note on Genesis xlix. 10). -Rage? --Marg. " Tumultuously assemble.'

Ver. 12. Perish from the way-Or“ by the Miagine-Heb. **Meditate," design.

or on the road." Dr.J. P. Smith. - Kiss Ver. 3. Bands . . . . cords.This implies rebel. used not only as an act of submission, but a lion, or rebouncing all allegiance,

toolatry. 1 Kings xis, 18; Hos. xiii. 2,

-Aly

me.

A Morning]
PSALMS.

[Psalm. PSALM III.

voice, and he heard me out of his holy A Psalm of David, when he fled from hill. Selah. Absalom his son.

5 I laid me down and slept; I LORD, how are they increased that awaked; for the Lord sustained

trouble me? many are they that rise up against me.

6 I will not be afraid of ten thou2 Many there be which say of my sands of people, that have set themsoul, There is no help for him in God. selves against me round about. Selah.

7 Arise, O LORD; save me, O my 3 But thou, O LORD, art a shield God: for thou hast smitten all mine for me; my glory, and the lifter up of enemies upon the cheek bone; thou mine head.

hast broken the teeth of the ungodly, 4 I cried unto the Lord with my 8 Salvation belongeth unto the

was

EXPOSITION. and that the ovly way of safety and happi- and praised God.” (Luke ii. 13.) And Dess would lie in submission to him, and again, 3. When raised from the dead, he confidence in him." (Testimony to Mes- « declared to be the Son of God with siab, vul. i. p. 213.)

power, (i. e. most forcibly) by his resurThe august title, “ Son of God," is here rection from the dead.” (Rom. i. 4.) announced by a divine decree; which cer. This may with great propriety be called tainly, in its peculiarity, raises the Mes- a Missionary Psalm, since it relates espe. siah above men and angels; « For unto

cially to the conversion of the beathen. which of the angels said he at any time, In verses 7 and 8, the Son of God himself Thou art my Son, this

day have I begotten is personally introduced, as announcing the thee?" (Heb. i. 5.) But to him it is ap- decree by wbich he was declared to be plied, 1. As the essential word and wisdom “the Son of God," and the “ Heir of all of God; he was " set up from everlasting' things.” (Heb. i. 2.) And he is particuupon the throne of the divine glory : “Thy larly encouraged to “ask" of his heathrone, O God, is for ever and ever;' venly Father "the heathen for his inheritHeb. i. 3–9.) and to this our great poet, ance, and the uttermost parts of the earth Milton, thus alludes.

for his possession," In this petition it is * Hear, all ye angels, progeay of light,

certainly the duty of Cbristians to unite Thranes, dominations, priucedoms, virtues,

powers, with their Redeemer, and the more su, as Hear my decree, which anrevok'd shall stand. This day I have begot whom I declare

we already see the dawn of its accomMy only Son, and on this holy hill

plishment; for now “ verily" hath “ the Hue hare auainted, whom ye now behold

sound" of salvation gone forth “ into all At my right hand; your head I him appoint; And by myself have sworn, to him shall bow

the earth," and "the words" of the gospel All knees in heaven, and confess him Lord.” “ unto the ends of the world."

(Par. Lost, bk. v. 1.600.) The psalunist concludes with advising 2. This decree was repeated and con- all nations, with their chiefs and princes, frmed at his incarnation; for “when he to do homage to the Son of God : and as briogeth the first-begotten into the world, this homage was generally rendered by he saith, Let all the angels of God worship kissing the hand; so they are required to him." (Heb. i. 6.) And accordingly, “a kiss the Son, which implied not only submultitude of the heavenly host attended, mission, but adoration,

NOTES. PSALM III Ver.2,4,8. Selak.-No less than 12 dif- tempore flourish, which the Italians call a cantabile ; ferent senses have been given to this word; but eleva- but whether any thing of this kind were intended It seems the radical idea, from which many have in- here, we dare not say. The LXX render Selah by ferred that it signified an extraordinary elevation of Diapsalma, which is explained to intimate a pause, the voice; but as this word generally occurs at the end or division in the performance. fe verse, such an elevation seems most unnatural. Ver. 3. A shield for me-Marg." About me." We are not apt to speak confidently; but in this The shields of the ancients were sometimes so large fase we have no doubt, that the elevation was not that a man might be carried on them.-Orient. Lit. dat of the voice, but of the hund; a common and No.742. torp natural sign, inade by the leader of a choir, Ver. 7. On the cheek bone.-David's ungodly and when the performers are to hold a note begond its profane enemies are here compared to ravenous Fafer duration, or make a solemn puuse. In the beasts, who, being smitten upon the cheek bone, are fermer case, with us it often intimates permission for obliged to give up their prey. the prineipal vocal performer to introduce an ex

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