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Bible Commentaries

Hamilton Smith's Writings

Psalms 21

Verses 1-13

PSALM 21

The testimony of the living Christ, exalted over all His enemies.

In this psalm we have the full answer to the desires expressed by the godly in Psalm 20 . There Christ is seen as the faithful witness for God in the midst of His enemies; here He is seen as the witness for God in exaltation over all His enemies (v. 1). Christ in exaltation becomes a witness to the power and salvation of Jehovah. The godly can say, “The King shall joy in thy strength, O Lord; and in thy salvation.”

(v. 2) Further, His exaltation is a witness that every desire of the heart of Christ was in accord with the thoughts of God, for the godly say, “Thou hast given him his heart's desire, and hast not withholden the request of his lips.”

(vv. 3-6) Moreover, the exaltation of Christ is a witness to God's infinite delight and satisfaction in the One whom men rejected. Gazing upon Christ in glory the godly can say, “Thou hast met him with the blessings of goodness; thou hast set a crown of pure gold on his head” (JND). At the hands of men His days were shortened; at the hands of God He is given length of days for ever and ever. They heaped upon Him shame and dishonour; God has given Him glory, honour and majesty. Men surrounded His path with trial and sorrow; God has blessed Him for ever, and made Him exceeding glad with divine favour.

(v. 7) This exaltation and blessing is viewed as the direct answer to the faithfulness of Christ when suffering from the hands of men. “For,” say the godly remnant, “the king confideth in Jehovah, and through the loving-kindness of the Most High he shall not be moved” (JND).

(vv. 8-12) In verses 3 to 7, the righteous government of God is borne witness to by the exaltation of Christ. It is only righteous that the One who was the faithful witness for God in the midst of evil should be exalted to a place of glory. In verses 8 to 12, the righteous government of God is borne witness to by the judgment executed upon the enemies of Christ. It is only righteous that those who have rejected Christ - the perfect witness for God - should come under judgment ( Joh_16:9-11 ). The One whom man rejected is appointed to execute the judgment ( Act_17:31 ). “Thine hand shall find out all thine enemies.” “Thy right hand shall find out those that hate thee.” Not only will the wicked be dealt with, but the “fruit” of their evil will be destroyed from the earth. The utter impotency of all those who oppose the Lord will be manifested. The evil they intended, and the mischievous devices they imagined, they were unable to perform.

(v. 13) Finally the exaltation of Christ, involving the judgment of His enemies will lead to the praise of God by the godly, “So will we sing and praise thy power.”

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Bibliographical Information
Smith, Hamilton. "Commentary on Psalms 21". "Hamilton Smith's Writings". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/hsw/psalms-21.html. 1832.