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A CONTEMPLATION ON THE GREATNESS AND GOODNESS OF
GOD IN HIS WORKS AND PROVIDENCE.
God's glory is manifested by his works, and by his love to man. T To the chief Musician, upon Gittith, [i. e. upon the harp of Gath, or in the
Gathic style.] A Psalm of David.
1 0 LORD our Lord,
Hast thou 'ordained strength because of thine enemies,
fingers, The moon and the stars, which thou hast ordained; 4 What is man, that thou art mindful of him?
And the son of man, that thou visitest him? 5 For thou hast made him a little lower than the angels,
And hast crowned him with glory and honour. 6 Thou d madest him to have dominion over the works
of thy hands; Thou hast put all things under his feet: 7 'All sheep and oxen,
Yea, and the beasts of the field; 8 The fowl of the air, and the fish of the sea,
And whatsoever passeth through the paths of the seas. 9 O LORD our Lord, How excellent is thy name in all the earth!
a See Mat. 11. 25; 21. 16.
1 Cor. 1. 27. 1 Heb. founded.
b Psa. 111. 8. See Gen. 1. 1, 14.
e 1 Cor. 18. 27. Heb. 2. 8.
INTRODUCTION TO PSALM XIX.
PSALM OF DAVID,
This Psalm celebrates the glorious majesty and perfections of God in his works, and in his written word, or revelation. The former part is similar to Psalm viii, with this addition, that here the sun is mentioned, which is represented as having its tent pitched in the midst of the stars. Verse 4. The idea of verses 3 and 4 is better given in Mr. Noyes' translation. Speaking of the heavenly bodies the Psalmist says:
“They have no speech, nor language,
The transition from material nature to the moral law and government is very abrupt, (verses 6, 7, according to the cus tom of the Hebrew poets, but the subjects are treated with great clearness and precision, and the allusions to the physical universe are majestic and beautiful. Verse 1 seems to be the basis of Paul's declaration, Romans i, 19-20, that God may be known by his works sufficiently to condemn and leave without excuse all polytheism. Verse 4 is quoted by Paul, Romans x, 18, and applied to the general promulgation of the Gospel throughout the world. Before this God of majesty and glory, and before his pure, spiritual, and just laws, sin can find no apology, or tolerance, or hope of impunity; hence, the last three verses of the Psalm form the key and moral application of the whole.
THE GLORY OF GOD MANIFESTED IN HIS WORKS AND IN
HIS MORAL GOVERNMENT.
The works of God declare his glory, 1-6; the revelation of God, his grace and recti.
tude, 7-11; David prayeth for inward purity, and acceptance with God, 12–14.
I To the chief Musician. A Psalm of David.
1 The a heavens declare the glory of God;
And the firmament showeth his handiwork. 2 Day unto day uttereth speech,
And night unto night showeth knowledge. 3 There is no speech nor language,
Where their voice is not heard. 4 Their 'line is gone out through all the earth, And their words to the end of the world. In them hath he set a tabernacle for the sun, 5 Which is as a bridegroom coming out of his chamber,
And brejoiceth as a strong man to run a race.
The 'law of the LORD is perfect, “converting the soul: The testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the
simple. 8 The statutes of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart: The commandment of the Lord is pure, enlightening
. 9 The fear of the Lord is clean, enduring forever: The judgments of the Lord are 'true and righteous
* Or, restoring.
* Bee Gen. 1. 6, 14.
is heard. Heb. without
? Or, rule, or, direction,
Rorn, 10. 18.
10 More to be desired are they than gold,
Yea, ethan much fine gold:
Sweeter also than honey and 'the honeycomb. 11 Moreover by them is thy servant warned; And din keeping of them there is great reward.
Who can understand his errors? Cleanse e Thou me from secret faults. 13 Keep fback thy servant also from presumptuous sins;
Let them not have dominion over me:
And I shall be innocent from 'the great transgression. 14 Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my
heart, Be acceptable in thy sight, O Lord, my 'strength, and
c Prov. 8. 10, 11, 19. • Leb. the dropping
of honeycombs. d Prov. 29. 18.
e Lev. 4. 2. &c.
1 Sam. 25. 32–34, 89.
? Or, much.
1 Thes. 1. 10.
INTRODUCTION TO PSALM XXIII.
PSALM OF DAVID.
It is the opinion of some that David composed this beautiful Psalm while he was yet a shepherd boy, tending his father's flocks. The associations are purely pastoral, and the scene is evidently laid in the mountains and vales of the desert of Judah, where lofty, precipitous, barren hills, overshadow deep, narrow, verdant valleys; and thither the shepherds of Judah often repaired in the wet season, in quest of pasture. Here was solitude, and here was danger from robbers and wild animals, furnishing occasion for the various allusions in the Psalm.
But the Psalm before us was evidently written in David's
maturer life, when he had experienced the bitterness of having violent enemies, (verse 5,) and when he had become inured to the cares of government. “He speaks the language of experience, and sings,” says Hengstenberg, “from the soul of every pious man." There is in this Psalm an ineffable sweetness and simplicity of faith and hope, expressed in language and metaphors altogether inimitable.
1 The LORD is my shepherd—I shall not want. 2 He maketh me to lie down in 'green pastures:
He leadeth me beside the 'still waters. 3 He restoreth my soul: He e leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his
name's sake. 4 Yea, though I walk through the valley of fthe shadow
of death, I will fear no evil—for & Thou art with
me; Thy rod and thy staff they comfort me. 5 Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of
mine enemies: Thou 'anointest my head with oil—my cup runneth
6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the
life: And I will dwell in the house of the LORD 'forever.
Isa. 40. 11. Jer. 23. 4. Ezek.
34. 11, 12, 23. John 10.11.
1 Peter 2. 25. Rev. 7. 17. + Phil. 4. 19. e Ezek. 84. 14.
1 Heb. pastures of tender
See Job 8. 8.
Isa. 43. 2. 3 Heb. makest fut. * Heb. to length of