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Bible Commentaries

Garner-Howes Baptist Commentary

Psalms 147

Verses 1-20

Psalms 147

Just Praise the Lord

Scripture v. 1-20:

The following four Psalms all begin and end with "Hallelujah," translated, "Praise ye (you all praise) the Lord." Each calls for joyous praise and thanksgiving, void of any note of lamentation or grief, found in previous psalms. They were perhaps used for dedication of the walls of Jerusalem under Nehemiah, for the same instruments are used in praise (mentioned here and there) Psalms 147:7; Psalms 150:3-5; Nehemiah 12:27; Nehemiah 12:35; Nehemiah 12:41.

Verse 1 calls for all people and nature to praise the Lord for three reasons: 1) He is good, 2) it is pleasant, and 3) it is comely or becoming to do so, Psalms 92:1; Psalms 135:3; Psalms 33:1.

Verse 2 declares, "the Lord doth build up Jerusalem;" It was done by Nehemiah, first, the city, Nehemiah 2:5. Then, later, the walls, v.13; Nehemiah 3:6; Nehemiah 3:15. It is added, "He gathereth together, in unity, the outcast of Israel," those abandoned to captivity, for a time, in keeping with His promise, Deuteronomy 30:3; Isaiah 11:12; Isaiah 56:8. The full and final gathering is yet to come, Psalms 107:3; Ezekiel 36:24; Ezekiel 38:8.

Verses 3, 4 recount that this mighty God has and does: 1) Heal the broken in heart, and bind up their grief-wounds, Isaiah 61:1; Luke 4:18. This regarded both those wounds of Israel nationally and the miracle-working ministry of our Lord, Psalms 34:18; Psalms 103:3; Isaiah 57:18-19; Isaiah 2) Telleth of determines the number of stars in the sky and galaxies, Genesis 15:5; Isaiah 40:26; Isaiah , 3) Calleth them all by their names, as His own, knowing the character of each even as he calls His own people by name as peculiar possessions to Him, Exodus 33:12; John 10:3; Revelation 2:17; Revelation 3:12; Isaiah 40:26-27.

Verse 5 asserts, "Great is our Lord, and of great power," as also declared 1 Chronicles 16:25; Nahum 1:3. It is added that, "His understanding (comprehension) is infinite," meaning unlimited; There is no way of measuring or enumerating His understanding, Isaiah 40:28; From such emanates His wisdom for saving, preserving, or delivering His people from harm, Romans 11:26-36.

Verse 5 adds, ’The Lord lifteth up the meek," the humble, the lowly, continually, Psalms 22:26; Psalms 146:8-9. While "He casteth the wicked down to the ground," in judgment Psalms 149:4; Psalms 75:7; Mark 10:31; Proverbs 11:5.

Verse 7 exhorts, "Sing unto the Lord with thanksgiving; Sing praises upon the harp unto our God;" Literally, "respond" to the Lord in thanksgiving or gratitude for His exaltation of the meek and His judgment of the wicked Psalms 81:1; Psalms 119:172; See also Exodus 15:21; Ephesians 5:20; 1 Chronicles 16:8; Genesis 4:21.

Verses 8, 9 declare that God covers the heavens with clouds, prepares and sends the rain for the earth, and continually causes the grass to grow upon the mountains, as shelter and food for man, bird, and beast, Job 38:26; Psalms 104:13; Genesis 24:35.
Verse. 9 adds, "He giveth (doles out, makes available) to the beast his food, and to the young ravens which cry" Job 38:41; Genesis 8:7; Proverbs 30:17. See also Psalms 104:14; Psalms 104:21; Psalms 104:27-28; Psalms 145:15; Luke 12:24; Matthew 6:26.

Verses 10, 11 certify that God .does not delight, "in the strength of the horse," animal strength of chariots and cavalry, as the heathen do, Psalms 20:7; Psalms 33:16-18; Hosea 1:7; Nor does he, "take pleasure in the legs of a man," to run in battle, but "in them that fear Him," and "hope (trust) in his mercy," rather than their own confidence in the flesh, Isaiah 40:29; 1 Samuel 16:7; Proverbs 1:7; Psalms 31:24.

Verses 12, 13 call for Jerusalem and Zion, their people, to praise the Lord their God with "Hallelujah joy;" Because He had strengthened the "bars of their gates," and blessed their children with the gates of the city, Psalms 9:11; God had given them security again within their rebuilt walls, Nehemiah ch. 3; and Nehemiah 12:27; 2 Chronicles 16:9.

Verses 14, 15 declare that their God was continually causing peace at their borders, or frontiers, shielding them from invading armies, Isaiah 60:17; and filling them with the finest of wheat, causing it to grow to full and rich production and maturity, Deuteronomy 32:14; as promised, Leviticus 26:5; Exodus 9:32.
Verse 15 adds He continually sends forth (mandates) his word and it moves swiftly to fulfillment, Job 37:12; as the Centurion witnessed, of our Lord, Matthew 8:9; Matthew 8:13; Psalms 107:20; Hebrews 4:12.

Verse 16-18 describe His control over the elements as: 1) He gives "snow like wool," 2) Scatters the "hoarfrost like ashes," 2 Samuel 23:30; Psalms 148:8; Psalms 3) He casts forth ice like morsels of bread, inquiring "who can stand before His cold?" to defy it, or turn it back ... the inferred answer is, "no one," Job 6:16; Job 37:9; Proverbs 20:4; Proverbs Verse18 explains that it is this same living God of mercy who sends out his word, Jeremiah 5:14. It is concluded, "He causeth (continually) the soft warm wind to blow and waters to flow," Psalms 148:8.

Verse 19 asserts that, "He showeth, (continually shows) his word unto Jacob," or the house of Israel, "His statutes and his judgments unto Israel," through His law and the prophets, Deuteronomy 33:24; Malachi 4:4; Romans 3:2; 2 Timothy 3:15-17.

Verse 20 concludes, "He hath not dealt so with any nation," so graciously as with the house of Jacob; as related Deuteronomy 4:32; It is added "And as for his judgments, they (other nations) have not known them, Nehemiah 9:13-14; Nehemiah 10:29; See also Acts 14:16; Acts 26:17-18; Romans 3:1-2; Ephesians 2:12; 1 Peter 2:8. He adds, "Praise ye (you all praise) the Lord, or shout out Hallelujah, a joyful victory sound.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of Blessed Hope Foundation and the Baptist Training Center.
Bibliographical Information
Garner, Albert & Howes, J.C. "Commentary on Psalms 147". Garner-Howes Baptist Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/ghb/psalms-147.html. 1985.