Attention!
10 million Ukrainians without power because of Russia. Help us purchase electrical generators for churches.
Consider helping today!

Bible Commentaries

Garner-Howes Baptist Commentary

Psalms 48

Verses 1-14

Psalms 48

A Psalm-Song, Zion’s Beauty and Joy

Scripture v. 1-14:

Verse 1 extols the Lord as greatly to be praised, as greatly worthy of the highest order of praise, with sheer joy to His people; Such is to be given in the "city of our God, in the mountain, great government of His holiness," centered in Jerusalem, Isaiah 2:2; Malachi 4:1; Obadiah 1:17; Zechariah 8:3; Psalms 46:4; Psalms 87:3.

Verse 2 describes as "beautiful for situation," or elevation, above both physically and spiritually, other mountains of Israel, where God desired to dwell, Psalms 68:16; Jar. 3:19; La 2:15; Daniel 8:9. Zion was described as the "joy of the whole earth," or center for joy, Ezekiel 20:6, located on the sides of the north, the "city of the great King," where the high towers were located, Isaiah 14:13; Matthew 5:35.

Verses 3-5 assert that God is known in her palaces, as a source of refuge, Psalms 46:1; Psalms 46:7; Psalms 46:11. He is thus known by experience to be the true refuge, Proverbs 18:10. ft is added that the kings of the earth (heathen kings) in assembly-collusion assembled, then passed by or passed on; they marveled, were troubled, fearful, and went away in hasty retreat. Fear seized them so that they were gripped with pain as a woman trembling in child-bearing travail, Psalms 83:3-8; Psalms 83:12; 2 Kings 7:15. Their fear-pains were sudden and violent, a foreview of all men, at the hour of judgment who have not feared God, Ecclesiastes 12:13-14; Hebrews 9:27; Revelation 6:14-17; 1 Thessalonians 5:3;2 Thessalonians 1:6-10.

Verse 7 declares that God repeatedly broke the ships of Tar­shish, in judgment, by and ,with a furious east wind, Ezekiel 27:26. These were the merchant ships of an enemy people, not war ships, Isaiah 2; Isaiah 16.

Verse 8 relates that "as we have heard," from forefathers, their testimony on the matter, "so have we seen (observed) in the city of the ruling Lord of hosts, of heaven’s hosts, even observed in the city of God, Jerusalem." It is added, "God will establish it, (this city, Jerusalem) forever, Psalms 87:5; Isaiah 2:2; Micah 4:1. Even as His church will be in the New Jerusalem, forever, Matthew 16:18; Ephesians 3:21.

Verse 9 continues "we have thought of thy loving kindness, O God, in the midst of thy temple," where He met His people, even as He does in the church today, 2 Chronicles 7:14-15; Matthew 18:20; Matthew 28:20; John 14:16-17, Hebrews 10:24-25; Revelation 1:13; Revelation 1:18 describe Him as in the midst of the churches, observing and encouraging them in their labors, till He comes again, 1 Corinthians 15:58; Hebrews 10:36-37; Titus 2:11-14.

Verse 10 appeals "according to (or in harmony with) thy name, O God," "that is above every name," Philippians 2:9-11. So is His praise to exist unto the ends (all parts) of the earth. For His right hand, His administrative hand of strength, is full of righteousness, in all that He does, as set forth repeatedly, Exodus 3:13; Exodus 3:15; Exodus 34:5; Exodus 34:7; Deuteronomy 28:58; Joshua 7:9; Psalms 113:3; Psalms 138:2; Psalms 138:4; Malachi 1:11.

Verses 11, 12 add "let mount Zion (her people) rejoice and the daughters, other cities of Judah, be glad, filled with gladness, because of His judgments upon her foes and blessings on her and them of Judah, Joshua 15:5; Philippians 4:4. They are then charged to "walk about Zion," not just stand there, and go around her towers and talk to them, rejoice over their symbol of the all seeing and caring eye of their God, in whom they had found refuge, Psalms 46:1; Psalms 46:7; Psalms 46:11; Proverbs 3:3-5. The redeemed are to "say so" walk about in good works, witnessing, letting their light shine, Ephesians 2:10; Acts 1:8; John 15:16; John 15:27; Matthew 5:15-16.

Verse 13 admonishes that all of Israel mark well the bulwarks of Jerusalem and Zion, the city and mountain of God, together with her palaces, in order that they might tell it to, share it with, the generation following ... the idea is "pass it on! and on! and on! and on!" For:

"One by one God sends His call, One by one the workers fall, One by one through God’s own grace, Other workers take their place. The workers fall, But the work goes on," see Matthew 16:18.

Let us have the spirit of Paul and of Peter as we approach the end of our life’s little day for Him, 2 Timothy 4:1-8; 2 Peter 1:12-14.

Verse 14 affirms in triumph, "for this God (living God) is our God for ever and ever," Psalms 16:2; Psalms 31:14; Psalms 73:25; Isaiah 25:9; La 3:24. Then it is concluded joyfully, "He will be (exist as) our guide, even unto death," What a guide! Isaiah 58:11; He will guide us in, through, and over death’s dark vale, without a shadow through which to pass, Psalms 23; Romans 8:37-38; 1 Corinthians 15:57; Hebrews 2:14-15.

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 48". Garner-Howes Baptist Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/ghb/psalms-48.html. 1985.