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association with the priests and Levites, could, as the representative of the nation, make use of the language of ver. 17, 18, by the same authority wherewith he could conclude peace with Sennacherib.
Moreover, it is clear from Isa. Sxxviii. 9, that Hezekiah was inspired to write psalms; and, according to verse 11 of that chapter, had a hope of seeing “ the Lord”-meaning David's promised Son, the Redeemer of Israel—“in the land of the living." So that the references to that Redeemer in verses 4 and 23 of this psalm, may with entire propriety be ascribed to Hezekiah as their author.
The mention, too, in verse 16, of the “voice of him that reproacheth and blasphemeth,” well agrees with Hezekiah’s language concerning Rabshakah, in Isa. xxxvii. 3.
Granting, then, that this psalm was penned with reference to special circumstances befalling Judah in the writer's own day, this in nowise precludes us from recognising the design of Christ's Spirit to depict thereby the sufferings of Christians—"the only remnant of the true Israelites”-in this first age of the kingdom of heaven, (third Collect for Good Friday,) according to the use made of verse 22 by St. Paul in Rom. viii. 36.
But the Scripture teaches us to look forward to a time, when the Jews, as a nation and church combined in one, exactly as when the psalm was written, though dispersed in many countries, but under one King, (Micah ii. 12, 13,) and thus recovering their visibility as a Christian Church, shall take up the language of this psalm in the service of God with such force and propriety of interpretation, as to make it seem to have been rather written for that crisis in their national history, (Jer. xxx. 5—7,) than for the one at which the inspired writer penned it.
This final trouble of Jacob, before his redemption as a nation and church from further trials, (Luke i. 68-74,) the psalmist seems to me to have had before his mind; and to have depended for attain.
; ment of that salvation on the Most High, who sitteth over all from the beginning, whose zeal will perform for the Son of David all that He hath promised. (Isa. ix. 7.)
In testimony hereof may be adduced the expressions in verses 4 and 23-26.
To this point also, as it seems to me, may be referred that exhortation in the title to a right understanding of this psalm ; which is only to be attained through faith in God's promises to David concerning Christ-an exhortation which receives further light by observing how Jesus Himself in Matt. xxiv. 15, and St. Paul in 2 Tim. ii. 7, used the same.
If, indeed, Israel's ancient doctors entertained such views as these concerning the scope of this psalm, (and St. Paul's quotation of the twenty-second verse in the eighth chapter of Romans, where he had, at ver. 18—25, been speaking of Israel's sorrows until the redemption of the body, makes it probable,) how significant and suggestive of glorious hopes becomes that unquestionable reference to the first verse of this psalm in our Church's Litany, where it is provided that of this first age in the kingdom of heaven we shall, as the only true Israelites, say, “ We have heard with our ears, O God, and our fathers have declared unto us, the noble works that Thou didst in their days, and in the old time before them.”
It was not their own sword,
Sore did we push our foe,
1 Ver. 3. Ps. vii. 6. Gen. xv. 16. Exod. xii, 40, 41. 2 Vcr. 4. Deut. xii. 9. Ps. xxxiii. 12.
6. The safety that we knew --The shame our foes that whelm'dTo Thee were always due, And so by us proclaim’d.
3 Ver. 10. 2 Chron, xxviii. 18. 4 Ver, 12. 2 Chron. xxix. 9.
5 Ver. 12. The loss to ourselves is apparent, but not so the advantage thereby to Thy service: no other people or nation is taken into Thy service in our stead. (Isa. lxiii. 18. 1 Sam. xii. 9-22. Isa. lii. 3.)
And burst Thy captives' thrall.
TITLE. To the chief Musician upon Shoshannim, or lilies--probably, says Dr. Thrupp, a kind of cymbals of lily shape--for the sons of Korah, for instruction, or understanding. A Song of loved ones, being the virgins, probably, mentioned in the psalm.
ARGUMENT, This psalm, like the second, seems to treat of Christ primarily, without there having been any event in the author's own history to be in the first instance commemorated.
Aben Ezra reputes David to have been its author.
We have the inspired authority of the Apostle Paul, in Heb. i. 7-9, for affirming this psalm to be spoken primarily of Christ-yea, in some respects solely, where it is written :
"Unto the Son He saith, Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: a sceptre of righteousness is the sceptre of Thy kingdom. Thou hast loved righteousness and hated iniquity; therefore God, eren Thy God, hath anointed Thee with the oil of gladness above Thy fellowg."
The King, in verse 1, is Christ coming as the Bridegroom, (Matt. xxv. 10;) and it seems to me, that His coming to reign on earth in great glory is spoken of at verse 4 as the requital of His patience in awaiting the King His Father's time for exalting Him, according to the prediction in Ps. ii. 8, and cx. 1. See John xiv. 30, 31.
Upon this supposition, the gathering of the elect remnant out of Jews and Gentiles (Rom. xi. 5-25) during this first age of the kingdom of heaven, (which was a mystery-Ephes. iii. 3-rarely hinted at in Scripture,) seems to be merely glanced at in the words that “ because of truth and meekness and righteousness” His Father shall retributively exalt Him, (Isa. ix. 7,) when He shall at length have entered on His kingdom after a “terrible” manner. Compare Ps. lxvi. 5. But during this time in which the word of truth and meekness and righteousness is bring preached, the Hebrew-Christian Church, which is the Queen spoken of in verse 9, has been brought out of the world, and (after the manner of the Jews) betrothed in infancy to her Spouse.
Of this, the Epistle to the Hebrews may be regarded as testimony.
It was only upon the Hebrew-Christian Church losing her visibility, that any Christian Church from among the Gentiles ever thought of claiming to be mother of the Churches on earth.
But upon Jerusalem bring overthrown, a competition sprang up between the Churches of the chief cities of the then civilised world for the coveted pre-eminence.
The Romish Church at length, in the course of God's providence, was permitted to usurp this pre-eminence on the ground of “old Rome being the chief city." See the sixth canon of the Council of Nice, and the third canon of that of Constantinople. Thus it seems to me that any reference in this psalm to the gathering in of the elect remnant out of Jews and Gentiles in this first age of the kingdom of heaven is only by implication.
For the kings' daughters " that are among the honourable women of this Queen, must surely be such as avowedly attend upon the Queen, according to the custom of an ordinary Jewish marriage.