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Bible Commentaries
Psalms 99

Sutcliffe's Commentary on the Old and New TestamentsSutcliffe's Commentary

Verses 1-9

All the Versions ascribe this psalm to David, except the Chaldee, which, like the Hebrew, has no title. The occasion of its being composed is not known.

Psalms 99:1 . He sitteth between the cherubims, or mighty angels, as promised in Exodus 25:22; and when he is roused, all his enemies faint away.

Psalms 99:6 . Samuel among them that call upon his name. Samuel among the Jews is accounted the prince of the prophets; and scarcely a prophet of note is found, from Moses to this great and holy man. He was a spiritual father to David, and this might be one reason of ascribing to David, Psalms 91:0., and the ten that follow. The style has a resemblance to his, and many of the words are assuredly David’s, though some expressions may seem to refer to future times.


Fine motives are here deduced from the divine perfections, for reverence, piety, and justice the Lord reigneth. He sits enthroned between the cherubim in Zion: let all Israel and all the heathen adore. Israel especially are called to obedience, for no nation had God so nigh, and precepts so pure.

The terrors of God’s avenging arm are a farther motive to obedience. What vengeance had he not inflicted on nations who despised his law, and became insolent by impunity? And what might Israel expect, if after all these favours she forgot the rock of her salvation.

The love which the king’s strength, or the strong and mighty king, had to rectitude and equity was also urged. Princes, magistrates, and ministers have in the economy of providence a fine model of imitation on the bench, and to exalt and worship him in the sanctuary; and rulers should be well aware that justice cannot be adequately administered, and moral precepts enforced without the aids of religion. The terrors of God inspire with awe, and the grace of piety supplies with strength to obedience. Thus God has combined the fine code of equity and piety in his covenant; and he governs according to that covenant that man may imitate him. To encourage magistrates and ministers in these duties, the high example of Moses, who though not the firstborn, yet by a divine call is here called a priest, and he was the prince of priests, for God has the right to call whom he will. He exercised that office in Israel, he consecrated Aaron, and saved the nation by his intercession. Exodus 32:0. Aaron saved them also by incense, Numbers 16:47; and Samuel by sacrifice and devotion. 1 Samuel 7:0. When a suppliant nation, yea when one faithful man cries for mercy, heaven drops its thunder, the clouds disperse, and mercy smiles on the guilty crowd. Mercy then, more than terror, should prompt us to reformation, and to exalt the Lord in homage, for he is high and holy.

Bibliographical Information
Sutcliffe, Joseph. "Commentary on Psalms 99". Sutcliffe's Commentary on the Old and New Testaments. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/jsc/psalms-99.html. 1835.
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