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Bible Commentaries

Dummelow's Commentary on the Bible

Psalms 66

Verses 1-20

This Ps. triumphantly celebrates a great national deliverance. The whole earth is summoned to join in the chorus of praise (Psalms 66:1-4). The memories of the exodus are recalled (Psalms 66:5-7), but only as an introduction to more recent trials and triumphs (Psalms 66:8-12), and the Ps. ends with vows of lavish sacrifice (Psalms 66:13-15), and with enthusiastic testimony to God’s great goodness (Psalms 66:16-20). The failure of Sennacherib’s invasion, and the return from Babylon have each been suggested as the occasion of the Ps., and the former is the more probable. There is a striking change from ’we’ and ’us’ (Psalms 66:1-12) to ’I’ and ’me’ (Psalms 66:13-20), which is best explained by supposing that the Psalmist at first merges himself in the nation, and afterwards regards his people’s deliverance in the light of a personal blessing, as it has been an answer to personal prayer.

3. Art thou in thy works] RV ’are thy works’: see 65s.

6. The sea] the Red Sea. Flood] RV ’river,’ the Jordan. There] both at the Red Sea and at the Jordan.

8. People] RV ’peoples.’ These foreign nations are to praise ’our God,’ Israel’s God.

9. Holdeth] RM ’putteth,’ or better, ’hath set.’ There is a definite allusion to a recent deliverance from national ruin. Suffereth not] better, ’hath not suffered.’

10-12. The peril is described in a succession of figures, the refining furnace, the net, the burden, the prostration of the vanquished under the trampling of the victors’ horses, fire, water.

11. Affliction] RV ’a sore burden.’

13. Pay.. my vows] make the offerings I promised.

15. Incense of rams] not actual incense, but the ’sweet savour’ of the burning flesh.

16. For my soul] for the deliverance of my life: see Psalms 66:9.

17. He was extolled, etc.] RM ’high praise was under my tongue,’ ready to break forth when prayer should be answered.

18. RM ’If I had regarded iniquity.. the Lord would not hear.’ The answer of God was the proof that the prayer had been offered from an upright heart.

Verses 1-20

This Ps. triumphantly celebrates a great national deliverance. The whole earth is summoned to join in the chorus of praise (Psalms 66:1-4). The memories of the exodus are recalled (Psalms 66:5-7), but only as an introduction to more recent trials and triumphs (Psalms 66:8-12), and the Ps. ends with vows of lavish sacrifice (Psalms 66:13-15), and with enthusiastic testimony to God’s great goodness (Psalms 66:16-20). The failure of Sennacherib’s invasion, and the return from Babylon have each been suggested as the occasion of the Ps., and the former is the more probable. There is a striking change from ’we’ and ’us’ (Psalms 66:1-12) to ’I’ and ’me’ (Psalms 66:13-20), which is best explained by supposing that the Psalmist at first merges himself in the nation, and afterwards regards his people’s deliverance in the light of a personal blessing, as it has been an answer to personal prayer.

3. Art thou in thy works] RV ’are thy works’: see 65s.

6. The sea] the Red Sea. Flood] RV ’river,’ the Jordan. There] both at the Red Sea and at the Jordan.

8. People] RV ’peoples.’ These foreign nations are to praise ’our God,’ Israel’s God.

9. Holdeth] RM ’putteth,’ or better, ’hath set.’ There is a definite allusion to a recent deliverance from national ruin. Suffereth not] better, ’hath not suffered.’

10-12. The peril is described in a succession of figures, the refining furnace, the net, the burden, the prostration of the vanquished under the trampling of the victors’ horses, fire, water.

11. Affliction] RV ’a sore burden.’

13. Pay.. my vows] make the offerings I promised.

15. Incense of rams] not actual incense, but the ’sweet savour’ of the burning flesh.

16. For my soul] for the deliverance of my life: see Psalms 66:9.

17. He was extolled, etc.] RM ’high praise was under my tongue,’ ready to break forth when prayer should be answered.

18. RM ’If I had regarded iniquity.. the Lord would not hear.’ The answer of God was the proof that the prayer had been offered from an upright heart.

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Bibliographical Information
Dummelow, John. "Commentary on Psalms 66". "Dummelow's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/dcb/psalms-66.html. 1909.