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8 On each side walk the wieked, when
Vile men are high in place.
PSALM XIII. In this psalm David prays for deliverance from his deep and long-con tinued distresses. He expostulates with God respecting his delay in help ing him, and the triumph of his enemies; prays for preventing graci and professes his trust in God, in whose mercy he exults. I How long wilt thou forget me, LORD?
Shall it for ever be?
Wilt hide thy face from me?
Still sad in heart, shall I? assomnamumunununsumuinusummummanvera ing verse, these lively and life-giving oracles. Accordingly, it is rende ed in some versions in the neuter plural. The generation from who these oracles are to be kept for ever, or to the age, (legnolam) are 11 enemies of David, as a figure of those of Messiah. The two verbs ? which this exclusion is expressed are very strong, intimating that t} saving knowlege of God's word and promises shall be kept, as by a guar from the wicked, who die such, till the times of the Restitution of ai THINGS; that till then they shall not enjoy the blessings promised. Th appears to be the real sense, and not what is commonly assigned; the pr roun in both clauses intending the same.
Verse 8. The wicked walk on every side, &c. intimating their gre numbers, that they filled all places of trust in the reign of Saul, and th they had freedom and safety, when they should have been restrained a punished; that they were bold and secure, going about whither th pleased, while David enjoyed no such liberty, and that they succeeded their unlawful measures. The term rendered vilest men, is the abstra in the plural, vilenesses; and is derived from a word which signifi a glutton, or drunkard; whence it denotes any vile person. The wick walk on every side, and vile men are exalted; because it is now the kour, and the power of darkness. But that hour is of short duratio the power of darkness shall be overthrown, and the day of mourning the righteous be soon over; when the wicked, who now go at large, sh be confined till their bondage, and the Lord's indignation be overpast.
Verse 1. How long wilt thou forget me, I LORD, for ever? fc. God said to forget his people, and to hide his face from them, when he de not interpose for their deliverance in distress. The wicked he will forget for ever, but not his faithful people. Our Lord cried in days of his flesh in a similar manner; and appeared to be forgotten fo season, that he might learn to sympathize with those who are so really,
How long exalted over me
Shall be mine enemy?
And answer to me make:
Of death me overtake:
Against him I prevail'd;
When I am mov'di and failid.
Thy mercy set upon;
In thy salvation,
Sing praises cheerfully,
Verse 2 How long shall | tate counsel, &c? Here the Psalmist inforces his prayer by the consideration of the perplexity of his soul, not knowing where or to whom to turn his heart felt sorrow expressing itself in sighs and moans--and by the exultation of his enemies over him in his distress. Prayers of faith, so inforced, will obtain an answer of peace,
Verse 3. Consider and hear me, O LORD my God; 8c. lhis prayer is suitable for every one; for till the eyes of the mind are enlightened, we are unfit to die. Though the language used applies fitly to recovery from bodily illness; yet is it more expressive when applied to disorders of the inward man. The sleep of sin is more fatal to the latter than the sleep of death is to the former.
Verse 4. Lest mine enemy say, &c. When our enemies are God's enemies also, we may in confidence pray, as here, that he would not leave these to triumph in our removal by death, or by the failure of the cause of truth in our hand. The Jews rejoiced when they got Christ. confined in the grave, but their triumph was short; for his speedy resurrection soon blasted all their hopes from that quarter,
Verses 5, 6. But I have trusted, fc. Here he expresses, not only his past, but also his present exercise, that having trusted in the divine mercy. he continued to do so still. As the words may be rendered in the past or present tense, so what follows may be expressed also in the future, My heart rejoices, or shall rejoice in thy salvation. His declared purpose to sing to the LORD is founded upon his having dealt, and still continued to deal, bountifully with him.
Thiis, like other psalms that begin with mournful complaints, ends in
Because he hath his bounty shown
To me abundantly.
PSALM XIV. Tuis psalm is repeated in the liïd, to mark the general interest of it: contents; and in both places it is ascribed to David. If it had a prima ry reference to Absalom's unnatural rebellion, as is supposed, the sami things will apply, with still greater emphasis, to Messiah's enemies, ani those of his people. The state and sufferings of David on that occasion when forced to leave his house and capital in the greatest distress, and o our blessed Lord, on the gloomy night he crossed, like his type, the brool Kedron, and entered on his passion, coincide in too many particulars, ti escape the pious reader of the sacred history. What leads infidels to de ny the being, or providence of God, induces the fearers of his name ti acknowlege and adore both. See 2 Sam. xv. John xviï 1. I THAT there is not a God, the fool
Doth in his heart conclude:
praise, to shew the efficacy of the prayer of faith, in inspiring lively hop in the season of affliction; like the dew by night that refreshes the scorch ad fields.
Verse 1. The fool hath said in his heart, ~There is no God: &c. I the principles and conduct of David's enemies, we have the corruptio of the world, and its enmity against Messiah and his people, described i their leading features. Reading the first clause without the supplement it expresses the language of desire, but not of conviction; whence th depravity of the human heart, unrenewed by grace, may be justly infer red. But such a wicked and delusive wish gradually operates in produc ing a fond hope of the latter; whence poor sinners act as if there was n God to inspect their conduct, or call them to a future account. Thoug David's enemies were men of this cast; yet is it evident, from Rom, ü 20, &c. that the apostacy oi Jews and Gentiles, and their being both un der the guilt and dominion of sin, are truths here intended.
The opposers of the gospel in every age, are to be viewed in this light though they may profess their belief of God's being and providence. TI term fool, in David's and Solomon's writings, always imports a pract cal atheist at least; whence our Lord approves of the judgment of th Jews, in making the application of the term to a brother, a crime. H does not deny the being of God, which is denoted by the name Jehoval but the plurality of his existence, and the universality of his providence the term used here, and Ps. liiid, being ELOHIM, the mighty, governin ones, one in being, yet plural and distinct in subsistence. See Ps. XXXV 1. and Tit. i. 16.
They are corrupt, Heb. they have corrupted, viz. themselves or the 'ways, and such as they could influence, A foolish, darkened heart is 11
They are corrupt, their works are vile;
Not one of them doth good.
Did cast his eyes abroad,
And did seek after God.
They all aside are gone;
Yea, sure there is not one.
Do they not know at all,
And on God do not call?
parent of pride, self-confidence, and infidelity; and these produce corruption in morals, issuing like a stream from its fountain. Paul comments on this passage, Rom. i. 28-32. From the text and comment we see, that whatever apparently good works men may do, all are essentially wanting in the sight of God, so long as they are devoid of faith in the Mediator, and unrenewed by the grace of his Spirit, without which it is impossible to please Him. When God, from his celestial throne, sur. veyed the sons of Adam, and their proceedings, such is the judgment which he passeth upon both, as appears from next verse.
Verses 2, & 3. The Lord looked down from heaven upon the children of men, Heb. the sons of Adam, &c. This is spoken after the manner of men. That these sons of Adam are here, and often elsewhere, to be viewed as distinct from the faithful, is evident; for none of them had a proper understanding of divine things, or truly sought the Lord. They are all gone aside, i. e. from the path of truth and duty, they are all together become filthy, or putrified, and ncisome like an unripe sepulchre, there is none that doth good, no not one, viz. of these sons of Adam. Viewed in this light, Jews and Gentiles are found guilty before God, and every mouth shut in regard of self-justification. Vessels of honour formed out of so corrupt a mass, must be washed in the laver of regeneration, and renewed by the Holy Spirit. See Rom, iii, 11, 12.
Verse 4. Have all the workers of iniquity no knowledge? fc. Such as slander and misrepresent God's people, or persecute them to the death, are here said to eat them as they eat bread, with a malicious gratification, and keen appetite, and call not upon the LORD, in their disloyalty and treason, refuse to pay him religious homage. Such fight against GOD and their own souls, and work for the wages of death in supreme degree. Be they ever so prudent in worldly concerns, they are fools in the things of God, and must feel and confess that they are so, before they become
5 There fear'd they much; for God is with
The whole race of the just.
Because God is his trust.
When back the Lord shall bring nnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnn wise to salvation. By such conduct, men exchange happiness for misery now in possession, and also in reversion hereafter.
Verse 5. There were they in great fear, or shall be greatly afraid; the past time being put for the future, the usual form of predictions.The reason is added, for or since God is in the congregation of the righteous,-is on their side, and ready to plead their cause; whence their enemies have cause to tremble. In Ps. liii. 5. the clause is added, where na fear was, or as a question,-and was there not a cause to fear? Thus read, it coincides with the sense given; because God, Elohim, the mighty Ones, Father, Son and Spirit, is in the congregation of the righteous. But if we view that clause, where no fear, or cause of fear, was, as referring primarily to Israel's defection from their lawful king, to the standard of Absalom, then it will assign the motive of that revolt in many, fear of the growing power of the rebels, and distrust of David's ability to protect them, arising from the want of faith in God's promises and provi. dence. Such fear and distrust were groundless, as the God of Israel was on his side, and against his enemies.-Many are disposed still to join the party that appear for the time to have power on their side, be their cause right or wrong, without calculating upon consequences, They who are on Christ's side, or are fighting his battles, will finally triumph; be they ever so weak or unworthy in themselves.
As this psalm partly coincides, in sentiment and expression, with the Liid, David, in revising it, may, have made the small alteration in the 5th verse there, for the reason assigned above, and added the following clause: For God hath scattered the bones of him that encampeth against thee: thou (O Zion) hast put them to shame, because God hath despised them, or rejected them because of their rebellious conduct; whence their BONES, their strength and force, were broken and brought to nought.This clause expresses the consequence of God's being in the congregation of the righteous, of those that adhered to David on that occasion, and of all that cleave to his Lord, with full purpose of heart; when many apos- tatize from his truths and ways.
Verse 6. Ye have shumed fc. This is evidently addressed to David's enemies, and represents them as scoffing at the humble dependance which he and his friends expressed on the mournful occasion, as placing their trust in God, as their refuge in the time of danger and trouble. These things apply to Christ and his people, in similar circumstances; the cause of truth, and its enemies, being ever the same.
Verse 7. 0 That the salvation of Israel &c. The state of scattered Israel, after the defeat of Absalom and his party, was a figure of their state, - who are in arms against the King of glory, and are dispersed, like