We are not only to adore the true God, but to do so in his own appointed way: the Jew looked to the temple, we are to look to Jesus, the living temple of the Godhead. Yea, they shall sing in the ways of the LORD. Many modern critics are to the word of God what blowflies are to the food of men: they cannot do any good, and unless relentlessly driven away they do great harm. —Philip Bennett Power, in "The I Wills' of the Psalms", 1861. Ver. EXPOSITION VERSE 138 Verse 138.—"Thy testimonies that thou hast commanded are righteous and very faithful." All the kings of the earth shall praise thee. —Ebenezer Erskine, 1680-1754. Because this psalm is a remembrance of Babylon, many commentators believe it was written after the return from exile. True believers hear the thunders of his justice, and yet they do not doubt his lovingkindness. —Charles Simeon, in Horae Homileticae. This is a disposition that best serves God's great design of lifting up and glorifying his free grace. Of course the critics have tried to rend the authorship from David on account of the mention of the temple, though it so happens that in one of the Psalms which is allowed to be David's the same word occurs. The proud he knoweth afar off. Ver. For I hear from thine apostle, "By grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God. Ver. Psalms 138 Commentary, this commentary is from the most widely read and often quoted preacher in history, Charles Haddon Spurgeon The Psalm is evidently of a Davidic character, exhibiting all the fidelity, courage, and decision of that King of Israel and Prince of Psalmists. Psalms 138:1-8; Psalms 139:1-24; Psalms 140:1-13; Psalms 141:1-10; Psalms 142:1-7; Psalms 143:1-12; Psalms 144:1-15; Psalms 145:1-21. 1. —Ebenezer Erskine. —William Gurnall. It is the distinguishing mark of the true and living God that he hears the pleadings of his people, and answers them; the gods hear not and answer not, but Jehovah's memorial is—"the God that heareth prayer." How will he act? He who fills the heavens, nay all things, will be our abiding guest and friend if we will but welcome him. Commentary Critical and Explanatory - Unabridged, Kretzmann's Popular Commentary of the Bible, Lange's Commentary on the Holy Scriptures. Assured of the love of God and the truth of his word, let us cling the closer to these. When God revives us, trouble will never harm us. I will praise thee. The word of promise made to David was in his eyes more glorious than all else that he had seen of the Most High. Pride passed by to its eternal mortification. It is a happy circumstance that, if God be away at any other time, yet he is pledged to be with us in trying hours: "when thou passest through the rivers I will be with thee." God is concerned in all that concerns his servants. Though a walk in the midst of trouble, thou wilt revive. This may refer to the Incarnate Word, the Son of God, who was called "the Word." Our soul shall become Christly. They reverence him, and he respects them. Right hand salvation. A complete set of The Treasury of David in book form is available from Pilgrim Publications, PO Box 66, Pasadena, TX 77501. For this worship and praise are for ever due! After a perfect courtship, they had a perfect wedding. —Franz Delitzsch. Note the combination. Because they think little of themselves he thinks much of them. Revelation excels creation in the clearness, definiteness, and fulness of its teaching. When they are miles away he knows all about them. Ver. See "Spurgeon's Sermons", Nos. This is a disposition that makes the soul like Christ; and the more alike that a person is to Christ, God loves him all the better. I will bow down toward your holy temple and will praise your name for your unfailing love and your faithfulness, for you have so exalted your solemn decree that it surpasses your fame. Psalms 138:5 - And they will sing of the ways of the Lord , For great is the glory of the Lord . The sweet singer rehearses his assurance of salvation, and sings of it in the ears of the Lord, addressing him with this confident language. It is a good road; prophets went by it, and the Lord of the prophets. II. The LORD is gracious and full of compassion, Slow to anger and great in mercy. 2. He looks back with thankfulness upon the experiences he had had of God’s goodness to him . Give me the homely vessel of humility, which God shall preserve, and fill with the wine of his grace; rather than the varnished cup of pride, which he will dash in pieces, like a potter's vessel. With strength in my soul - Thou hast endued my soul with many graces, blessings, and heavenly qualities. Ver. Even so, the true hearted believer of these days must not fall into the will worship of superstition, or the wild worship of scepticism, but reverently worship as the Lord himself prescribes. 2. Why should these idols rob Jehovah of his praises? Ver. As for us, we firmly believe that God is love, and that in the summing up of all things it will be seen that hell itself is not inconsistent with the beneficence of Jehovah, but is, indeed, a necessary part of his moral government now that sin has intruded into the universe. I will praise thee with my whole heart. Thou hast been pressed like a cluster of grapes, now give forth thy ripe juice. The LORD is good to all, And His tender mercies are over all His works. c) It would declare his joyful zeal for God. "Thou hast magnified thy word above all thy name." He has magnified it above all his name in the fulfilment of it: God's faithfulness being so dear to him, he has exalted his faithfulness above all his other perfections. Hebrews 1:2-3. "By the word of the Lord were the heavens made, and all the host of them by the breath of his mouth." Ver. —Ebenezer Erskine. Walking with God is a pleasant walk: the ways of wisdom are called "ways of pleasantness": Proverbs 3:17. Yet hath he respect unto the lowly. Psalm 138:1-2. Before the gods will I sing praises, &c. — Before kings and princes, or, before judges and great men, either those of other nations who visited him, or those of his own nation that attended on him. This is the first of a series of eight Psalms (Psalms 138:1-8; Psalms 139:1-24; Psalms 140:1-13; Psalms 141:1-10; Psalms 142:1-7; Psalms 143:1-12; Psalms 144:1-15; Psalms 145:1-21), probably the last composed by David, a kind of commentary on the great Messianic promise in 2 Samuel 7:1-29. Faith's full assurance: "The Lord will perfect that which concerneth me. Ver. Jehovah himself will see to this and therefore it is most sure. ). Prayer answered by giving strength for the day. Every man has a standard to which he may refer, for the rectifying of his judgment in every particular: so that nothing can be added for the instruction of our minds, or the regulation of our future expectations. 2. It sings the omniscience and omnipresence of God, inferring from these the overthrow of the powers of wickedness, since he who sees and hears the Before the gods, etc. Though the Lord be high. Ver. This glory shall overshadow all the greatness and glory of all kings: they shall be stirred by a sight of it to obey and adore. b) Truth. Think of that,— kings singing in the ways of the Lord, crowned princes becoming choristers in God’s service. David before the false gods first sang, then worshipped, and then proclaimed the grace and truth of Jehovah; let us do the same before the idols of the New Theology. Good men are sometimes in the midst of troubles: these are many, and continue long. Those Psalms were the united utterances of national devotion. But the proud he knoweth afar off. Thy mercy, O LORD, endureth for ever: forsake not the works of thine own hands. 2. Faith's fervent prayer: "Forsake not the works of thine own hands.". And hard following upon it comes tenderness in action. Ver. ", Ver. We can take no cognizance of the doctrine that is conveyed from heaven to earth, when it has only come the length of excogitation in the mind of an apostle; and it is not till brought the farther length of expression, either by speech or by writing, that it comes into contact with us. Though the LORD be high. This expression, as in Psalms 9:1, points to the surpassing greatness of the benefit received, which filled the whole heart with thankfulness, and did not proceed, as it were, from some particular corner of it. I believe David referred to the false gods of the neighbouring nations, and the deities of the surviving Canaanites. The Psalmist will not for a moment suspend his songs because there are images before him, and their foolish worshippers might not approve of his music. (third clause). If I am walking there now, or shall be doing so in years to come, I have no cause for fear; for God is with me, and will give me new life. Psalms 138:3. Commentary, Psalm 138:1-8, Nancy deClaissé-Walford , Preaching This Week, WorkingPreacher.org, 2014. But in the sacred volume all the glory of the Godhead shines: there we are admitted, so to speak, even to the council chamber of the Most High; to hear the covenant entered into between the Father and the Son; the Father engaging to give to him a seed, whom he should have for his inheritance, if he, on his part, would "make his soul an offering for their sins", and, in their nature, expiate the guilt of their iniquities. No man doubts the power of prayer after he has received an answer of peace to his supplication. I will...praise thy name for thy lovingkindness. These are but the fringes of th… I will worship toward thy holy temple. —John Goodwin, 1593-1665. 1. Psalms 138:5. Psalm 138’s distinctive emphasis on kings offering praise may mean that this psalm was composed by or for a king or governor. 1865-1885, Finding the new version too difficult to understand? His reviving us in trouble. Psalms 138 Commentary, One of over 110 Bible commentaries freely available, this seven volume magnum opus was first published in weekly installments in The Sword and the Trowel Hi, Sign out. Verses 1-8. God has a greater regard unto the words of his mouth, than to the works of his hand: heaven and earth shall pass away, but one jot or tittle of what he hath spoken shall never fall to the ground. Study the Bible online. Whatever its origin, all believers can sing and pray this psalm today with a realistic faith that lives between grief and joy, between unemployment and meaningful work, between loneliness and deep friendship, between an unrealized goal and its successful achievement. As a word of command it is supreme; and in the person of the incarnate Word it is set above all the works of God's hands. Though we may keep a well friend waiting should he send for us, yet we will give a sick friend leave to call us up at midnight. For thou wert far more glorious in revelation than in creation — thy promise did greatly transcend every other display of thyself above all we have ever known or conceived of thee. So be it. 231 and 1506: "Faith in Perfection", and, "Choice Comfort for a Young Believer.". For as they are rejoiced to discern a good frame of spirit in you, to see you keep that order God hath set in the church and state, to walk as Christians to the honour of God; so they are grieved to see the contrary, and you must answer for your sins against these great officers in the great family of heaven and earth. "They shall sing in the ways of the Lord." The sentence in the text is wonderfully full of meaning. b) Looking to the person of Christ, which was typified by the temple. Happy are those who can cause the word of the Lord to penetrate palaces; for the occupants of thrones are usually the last to know the joyful sounds of the gospel. But, in the sacred volume, all is written as with a sunbeam. Ver. Grace and truth Jesus Christ. All the kings of the earth shall praise thee, O Lord, when they hear the words of thy mouth. “But greatness, majesty, splendour, are not the Divinest parts of the Divine nature, as this singer had learned. 1. Ver. Ver. David vexed with rival gods, as we are with rival gospels. —William Seeker, in "The Nonsuch Professor in his Meridian Splendour", 1660. I will praise thee with my whole heart. Ver. What an assembly! Though the LORD be high, yet hath he respect unto the lowly: That is a sweet text. God has such a respect unto the lowly, not as if this frame of soul were meritorious of any good at his hand, but because. "C.H. When God will, he can make more such worlds as this; but he cannot make another truth, and therefore he will not lose one jot thereof.