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PSALMS.

WH
WHY standest thou afar off, O
LORD? why hidest thou thyself
in times of trouble?

2 The wicked in his pride doth persecute the poor: let them be taken in the devices that they have imagined. 3 For the wicked boasteth of his heart's desire, and blesseth the covetous, whom the LORD abhorreth.

4 The wicked, through the pride of his countenance, will not seek after God: God is not in all his thoughts.

5 His ways are always grievous; thy judgments are far above out of his sight: as for all his enemies, he path at them.

6 He hath said in his heart, I shall at he moved: for I shall never be in adversity.

His mouth is full of cursing and deceit and fraud: under his tongue is mischief and vanity.

8 He sitteth in the lurking places of the villages in the secret places

[for deliverance.

doth he murder the innocent: his eyes are privily set against the poor.

9 He lieth in wait secretly as a lion in his den: he lieth in wait to catch the poor: he doth catch the poor, when he draweth him into his net.

10 He croucheth, and humbleth himself, that the poor may fall by his strong ones.

11 He hath said in his heart, God hath forgotten: he hideth his face; he will never see it.

12 Arise, O LORD; O God, lift up thine hand forget not the humble.

13 Wherefore doth the wicked con temn God? he hath said in his heart, Thou wilt not require it.

14 Thou hast seen it; for thou beholdest mischief and spite, to requite it with thy hand: the poor committeth himself unto thee; thou art the helper of the fatherless.

15 Break thou the arm of the wicked and the evil man; seek out his wickedness till thou find none.

16 The LORD is King for ever and

EXPOSITION.

enclosed many both of his enemies and friends; and determines, in consequence of being so spared, that he will enter the rates of the daughter of Zion, and worship among her children.

We have reason to bless God that we live in times of peace, and in a land that has long been exempted from the miseries

war. But all true Christians have enemies, if not externally, yet in their own bosoms; against these enemies they have Bred, most earnestly, to pray, and to rearm thanks for every victory obtained

wer them.

The church of God also, as a body, have

their enemies, and will always be liable t› suffer from the hostilities both of infidels and wicked men: and though, under the Christian dispensation, we are forbidden to pray for the destruction of our enemies, there is nothing unchristian in praying that they may be made sensible of their frailty and humbled before their Maker and their Judge, and thereby be prevented from showing their enmity against the people and the cause of God.

NOTES.

ALM X. The LXX have united this psalm to
receding, for which we know no reason, except
It has no distinct title; but this alteration makes
rence in the numbering, till we come to the
, which is divided into two, and makes
al number right. Father Calmet, Dr. Grey,
shop Horne, suppose it to have been com-
aring the time of the Babylonish captivity;
re is no certainty of this.
Heart's (Heb. "soul's) desire, and bless-
-Marg. The covetous blesseth (himself);
reth the Lord."

od is not in all his thoughts---Marg.
thoughts are, there is no God."
Neter be in adversity---Heb. “Not unto
and generation. ”

"Rise, great Redeemer, from thy seat, To judge and save the poor; Let nations tremb'e at thy feet,

And man prevail no more."-Watts.

Ver. 7. Vanity---Marg. "Iniquity." Ver. 8. His eyes are privily set --- Heb. "Hide themselves;" i. e. to watch for the poor.

Ver.9. Secretly---Heb. In secret places." Ver. 10. He croucheth Heb. "breaketh," or rather, bendeth himself, as a wild beast crouches down to spring at his prey.By his strong ones--Marg. "Into his strong parts," i. e. into his paws. Ainsworth.

Ver. 12. The humble---Marg. “Afflicted." Ver. 14. Committeth himself (Heb. “ cleaveth ") unto thee.

Ver. 15. Break thou the arm---' That is, the power of the wicked.

Ver. 17. Prepare (Marg, "establish”) their heart.

Confidence]

PSALMS.

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[in God. upon the string, that they may privily shoot at the upright in heart.

3 If the foundations be destroyed, what can the righteous do?

4 The LORD is in his holy temple, the LORD's throne is in heaven: his eyes behold, his eyelids try, the children of men.

5 The LORD trieth the righteous: but the wicked and him that loveth violence his soul hateth.

6 Upon the wicked he shall rain snares, fire and brimstone, and an horrible tempest: this shall be the portion of their cup.

7 For the righteous LORD loveth righteousness; his countenance doth behold the upright. (L)

EXPOSITION.

(K) A Prayer for deliverance from atheistical and cruel enemies.-This psalm having no title, it is in vain to guess at either its author or occasion. Bishop Horsley calls it "a supplication in behalf of certain helpless people cruelly persecuted by a powerful enemy; who, renouncing all fear of God and regard of men, uses both force and deceit as meaus of oppression." The heathen formerly, as well as at present, were divisible into two classes; the one extremely ignorant and superstitious-the other more enlightened, as to general knowledge, but atheistical and profane. Persecutors may be found in both classes; the one jealous for their favourite superstition-the other rejecting superstition, and with it all religious worship; the true God as well as idols. The Lord Jehovah is, however, the universal sovereign. He will punish impenitent sinners of every class. At the same time, he hears the desire of the humble, before that desire is expressed in words; and will never fail to answer the prayer which his spirit teaches them to offer.

God will "prepare their hearts to pray,
And cause his ear to hear;
He hearkens what his children say,
And puts the world in fear."

PSALM XI.

Watts.

(L) A Psalm of David, expressive of his confidence in God.-Whether this was writ

PSALM XI. Ver. 2. Privily shoot "Shoot in darkness."

ten during Saul's persecution of him, when some advised him to seek his safety in flight; or during the rebellion of Absalom, when the foundations of the kingdom appeared to be subverted (as intimated ver. 3.) we cannot ascertain. But it was certainly during a time of great danger and alarm when the fate of his kingdom seeme very precarious, and when his friend seemed utterly in despair. David, how ever, strengthened himself in the Lord h God, and trusted in him for support an deliverance.

"As the choicest of heavenly blessin (says Bishop Horne) are frequently scripture represented by the salutary fects of wine, a cup of which the mast of the family is supposed to hold in 1 hand, ready to distribute due portions it to those around him; so, from the no ous and intoxicating qualities of that liqu when drunk strong, and in too larg quantity, is borrowed a most tremend image of the wrath and indignation Almighty God. Calamity and sorrow, and trembling, infatuation and desp the evils of the present life, and of which is to come, are the bitter ingredi which compose this most horrible cu mixture. It is entirely in the hand disposal of God, who, through every has been pouring out its contents, mo less, in proportion to the sins of men. much of the strength and power o liquor still remains behind, until the

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Ver. 3. If the foundations---Heb. "For the foun The just, what hath he

dations are cast down."

done?" Ainsworth,

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Ver. 6. Upon the wicked he shall rain snare ...Bishop Lowth renders this verse,

He shall rain live coals upon the ungodly Fire, and sulphur, and a burning storm; This shall be the contents of their cup."

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PSALM XII.

PSALMS.

To the chief Musician upon Sheminith. A
Psalm of David.

HELP, LORD; for the godly man ceaseth; for the faithful fail from among the children of men.

2 They speak vanity every one with his neighbour; with flattering lips, and with a double heart do they speak.

3 The LORD shall cut off all flattering lips, and the tongue that speaketh proud things:

4 Who have said, With our tongue will we prevail; our lips are our own: who is lord over us?

5 For the oppression of the poor, for the sighing of the needy, now will Iarise, saith the LORD; I will set

[implored.

him in safety from him that puffeth

at him.

6 The words of the LORD are pure words: as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times.

7 Thou shalt keep them, O LORD, thou shalt preserve them from this generation for ever.

8 The wicked walk on every side, when the vilest men are exalted. (M) PSALM XIII. To the chief Musician. A Psalm of David. How [OW long wilt thou forget me, O LORD? for ever? How long wilt thou hide thy face from me?

2 How long shall I take counsel in my soul, having sorrow in my heart daily? how long shall mine enemy be exalted over me?

EXPOSITION.

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not forsake his people. His word is pure, and his promises have been often tried.

Among the signs of our Lord's second coming, we have been taught to consider this as one, that "the love of many shall wax cold" toward him. (Matt. xxiv. 12.) Many such seasons have occurred, and the Lord has been pleased, by signal appearances, to produce revivals in his church, and such we still expect, even in an unprecedented degree. But even the millennium itself is to be followed with a degeneracy equally remarkable. Satan, though bound for a thousand years, will be again let loose with all the powers of infidelity, (Rev. xx. 7 -11.) so that finally, when the Son of Man cometh, he shall find little faith upon the earth. (Luke xviii. 8.) "When the wicked walk around on every side, the vilest of men shall be exalted;" and when the thrones of earth are filled with infidels an tyrants, then-when good men shall shrink in despair under the power of the last tyranny-then shall the "sign of the Son of Man" suddenly appear, and his "trumpėt sound to judgment."

NOTES.
See

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nd things-Heb. "Great things." on him that puffeth at him. The t of the phrase is, that disregardeth = Hebrew rather means, probably, to reatenings and slaughter against him." 1.) The margin reads, From him snare bim " Bishop Horsley says, per.

haps it might be rendered, "I will put him in safety for whom the snare is laid."

Ver. 6. Furnace-Bp. Horne, “ Crucible" of earth. Ver. 7. Preserve them-Heb. " him ;" i. e. every one of them

Ver. 8. The vilest men-Heb. "The vilest of the sons of men."

PSALM. XIII. Title,-To the chief Musician, See title of Psalm iv.

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PSALM XIII.

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[of man. see if there were any that did understand, and seek God.

3 They are all gone aside, they are all together become filthy: there is none that doeth good, no, not one.

4 Have all the workers of iniquity no knowledge? who eat up my people as they eat bread, and call not upon the LORD..

5 There were they in great fear: for God is in the generation of the righ

teous.

6 Ye have shamed the counsel of the poor, because the LORD is his refuge.

7 Oh that the salvation of Israel were come out of Zion! when the LORD bringeth back the captivity of his people, Jacob shall rejoice, and Israel shall be glad. (0)

EXPOSITION.

(N) A Psalm of David, complaining of desertion, and imploring divine aid."While God permits his servants to continue under affliction, he is said, after the manner of men, to have forgotten and hid his face from them.' For the use, therefore, of persous in such circumstances, is this psalm intended; and consequently, it suits the different cases of the church universal, languishing for the advent of our Lord to deliver her from this evil world; of any particular church, in time of persecution, and of each individual, when harrassed by temptations, or broken by sickness, pain, and sorrow. He who bore our sins, and carried our sorrows, may likewise be presumed to have made it a part of his devotions in the day of trouble."(Bishop Horne.)

The complaint of desertion here resembles that in the beginning of the twentysecond Psalm, which we know was used by our blessed Lord upon the cross; and the complaint is not of desertion only, but

also of persecution from the enemy. In both, deliverance is implored and confidence expressed, with a promise of the like grateful return of praise. "The heart which trusteth in God's mercy (says the above excellent writer) shall alone rejoice in his salvation, and celebrate by the tongue, in songs of praise, the loving-kindness of the Lord. It is observable, that this and many other psalms with a mournful beginning, have a triumphant ending; to show us the prevailing power of devo tion, and to convince us of the certain return of prayer, sooner or later, bringing with it the comforts of heaven, to revive and enrich our weary and barren spirits in the gloomy seasons of sorrow and temptation, like the dew descending by night upon the withered summit of an eastern mountain."

PSALM XIV.

(0) A Psalm of David, lamenting the de pravity of human nature.-This psalmi also ascribed to David, but the occasion

NOTES.

Ver. 3. Lighten mine eyes-That is, res'ore to me health and joy and comfort; for darkness is the shadow of death.

Ver. 5. I have trusted.—Or, “I trust." Bp. Horne.

PSALM XIV. This psalm bears the name of David, and is addressed likewise to the chief Musician. Another copy of it is given, with some slight variations, Psalm li., and a difference in the title, which will be there noticed.

Ver. 3. Gone aside-Become filthy.-The expressions, Mr. Hervey suggests, "are borrowed from wines soured or turned) and meats putrified." The

word for the latter is used Job xv. 16. At the e of this verse, the present copies of the LXX ins three verses quoted by St. Paul in the third chap of Romans from the other psalms, and which h thence been also introduced into this psalm in Common Prayer-Book.

Ver. 4. Who (or they eat up my people.-That devour the poor. See Micah iii. 3.

Ver. 5. There were they in great fear.—E They feared a fear: the parallel passage, Ps. lii it is added "where no fear was," see that Psalm Ver. 7. O that, &c.—Marg, “ Who will give,”

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uncertain. From the last verse some learned men have supposed it to have been tea daring the time of Absalom's rebelion, when the ark was in possession of his party: (See 2 Sam, xix. 9-15,) others refer it to the period of the Babylouish cap. tivity; but St. Paul plainly refers us to the days of Messiah, and to a future restoration of the Jews subsequent to their version. (Rom. xi. 26, &c. compare Pram cx. 2; Isa. Ixii. 11; Zech. ix. 9.) The chief subject of this psalm, however, is the indelity of the human heart, for infibility is unquestionably more a disease of the heart than of the head; the corruption of our nature gives an unhappy bias to the dgment. S:n makes fools of us all; and is the greatest fool whose mind is most the influence of depraved passious, not only lead to abominable actions, capacitate for doing good. "The conation of the apostacy and corruption ukind, described in this psaim, the prophet express a longing de

the salvation of Israel,' which go forth out of Zion,' and to bring = people of God from that most of all captivities, the captivity and death; a salvation at which d indeed rejoice, and Israel be Shop Horne

PSALM XV.

of David, describing a citiWe agree with Bishop Horspsalin has “no allusion to

the offices of the Levitical priesthood;" but is simply intended to point out, that moral "righteousness is the qualification which alone can fit any one to be a guest in God's tabernacle,”—a citizen of Zion. This qualification, however, implies no claim of merit, but simply moral fitness. "The man (says Bishop Horne,) who would be a citizen of Zion, and there enter into the rest and joy of his Lord, must set that Lord always before him. Renewed through grace, endued with a lively faith, and an operative charity, he must consider and imitate the life of that blessed Person, who walked amongst men without partaking of their corruptions; who conversed unblameably with sinners; who could give this challenge to his inveterate enemies, Which of you convinceth_me of sin?' in whom the grand accuser, when he came found nothing;' who being himself the truth,' thought and spake of nothing else, making many promises and performing them all,

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"In the above comment (says Bishop Horne) it was thought most advisable to open and display the full intent of what was both enjoined aud forbidden, by exemplifying each particular. Whoever shall survey and copy these virtues and graces as they present themselves in his life, [relying at the same time on his atonement,] will, it is humbly apprehended, take the best and shortest way to the heavenly Zion;" and shall never be expelled from the eternal city.

NOTES.

Ver. 3-Nor taketh up. — Heb. ndureth."

not-That is, will not violate his

rest.

-See Exod. xxii. 25, 23; Lev. 1.8.5-7.

PSALM XVI. Title, Michtam.-Marg. "A golden (psalm) of David." D'Herbetot observes of the works of seven of the most excellent Arabian poets, that they are called Al Modkakebat, which signifies golden, because they were written in letters of gold upon Egyptian paper. Might not the six psalms which are thus distinguished 'viz, this

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