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the Week of Proper 7 / Ordinary 12
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Bible Commentaries
Psalms 28

Trapp's Complete CommentaryTrapp's Commentary

Verse 1

« [A Psalm] of David. » Unto thee will I cry, O LORD my rock; be not silent to me: lest, [if] thou be silent to me, I become like them that go down into the pit.

Unto thee will I cry, O Lord my rock — That thou mayest grant me what I begged so earnestly of thee in the former psalm especially, Psalms 28:4 , "One thing have I desired of the Lord, that I will seek after," … For this psalm is of the same subject with that; and seemeth to have been made much about the same time, viz. after that David had twice spared Saul’s life, 1 Samuel 24:4-6 , …; 1 Samuel 26:12 ; 1 Samuel 26:21 . Only here he expresseth himself, not as if he had been a private person, and in daily danger of his life; but as destined and designed to the kingdom by Almighty God, to whom, therefore, he prayeth for himself and the people, and against their implacable enemies, with so great confidence, as that he presently praiseth him for his request obtained, Psalms 28:6 .

Be not silent to me — Cease not, as deaf, from me. If God seem to be deaf to us, we must cry the louder; that, having prepared our hearts by such a seeming silence, he may cause his ears to hear, Psalms 10:17 , which he will not fail to do when once we set up our note, and make bitter moan.

Lest, if thou be silent, … — Here are his reasons to help his hope to be heard. God is well pleased that we argue it out with him in prayer.

Like them that go down into the pit — Or, dirty dungeon, that is, the grave; or, as Kimchi, lest I be as the wicked, that go down to hell. "The righteous perisheth," Isaiah 57:1 , that is, the world looks upon them as lost.

Verse 2

Hear the voice of my supplications, when I cry unto thee, when I lift up my hands toward thy holy oracle.

When I lift up my hands — An ordinary gesture in prayer, expressing faith (for they held out their open hands, as craving beggars with the palms upward, 1 Kings 8:22 ) and helping fervency; while hands and heart went up together to God in the heavens, Lamentations 3:40 . Preces fundimus, ecelum tundimus, miserieordiam extorquemus, … (Tertul.).

Toward thy holy oracle — Called Debhir, because therehence God spake and gave answer. Toward this (a type of Christ, the Word essential) David lifteth up his hands; that it might be as a ladder whereby his prayer might get up to heaven. The devil also, who delighteth to be God’s ape, but for man’s mischief, gave oracles at Delphi and elsewhere (Herod. Clio); but λοξα et mendacia, doubtful and lying; as to Croesus, Pyrrhus, others. But the eternity of Israel cannot lie, 1 Samuel 15:29 ; every word of God is pure, he is a shield to them that put their trust in him, Proverbs 30:5 .

Verse 3

Draw me not away with the wicked, and with the workers of iniquity, which speak peace to their neighbours, but mischief [is] in their hearts.

Draw me not away with the wicked — Who seek to draw me away from my settled purpose of attending upon thee, απερισπαστως , 1 Corinthians 7:35 , and are therefore likely to be drawn away by thee to execution, as malefactors are drawn, hanged, and quartered (there wanteth but a hurdle, a horse, and a halter, said Belknapp, to do me right), as Sisera was drawn by God to the river Kishon to be ruined, Judges 4:7 . - Ducunt volentem fata, nolentem trahunt (Sen.).

Which speak peace to their neighbours, but mischief is in their hearts — Saul and his courtiers are here noted.

The Florentine secretary (Machiavel) was not born of many years after; but the devil was as great a master then as afterwards; and David oft complaineth of it.

Verse 4

Give them according to their deeds, and according to the wickedness of their endeavours: give them after the work of their hands; render to them their desert.

Give them according to their deeds — God loveth to retaliate; and David, out of a public and prophetic spirit (not from private revenge, or troubled affections), taketh thus upon him to imprecate.

And according to the wickedness of their endeavours — They were therefore old, habituated, irreclaimable sinners whom he thus cursed, and against such this and such like imprecations are still in force.

Give them after the works of their hands — Because they regard not the works of thine hands, Psalms 28:5 . Par pari, saith Aben Ezra here.

Verse 5

Because they regard not the works of the LORD, nor the operation of his hands, he shall destroy them, and not build them up.

Because they regard not the works of the Lord — That is, saith Kimchi, the worship of God they care not for; but follow the vanities of the world. Or, the works of God in heaven and earth; the consideration whereof is a part of God’s worship. Or, "they regard not the works of the Lord," that is, the first making; nor

The operation of his hands — That is, the present disposing of his creatures, either by way of mercy or judgment, whereof these brutish persons make no observation at all, Psalms 92:5-7 Isaiah 5:12 ; particularly they neither regard my present affliction, Amos 6:6 , nor believe my future exaltation to the throne, as God hath promised me, but oppose it all they can, and would gladly prevent it, which yet they cannot, but will be found fighters against God.

He shall destroy them, and not build them up — Destroy them in this world, and not build them up in the world to come, say the Rabbis. Or, as others, he shall break them down, as men do old rotten ruinous houses, and never more repair or rebuild them. Non potest Deus non perdere iudiciis suis, qui non erudiuntur documentis (Jun.). They that will not be ruled shall be ruined. See 1 Samuel 2:25 .

Verse 6

Blessed [be] the LORD, because he hath heard the voice of my supplications.

Blessed be the Lord, because he hath heard, … — God will one day turn the prayers of his people into praises. David, Psalms 28:1 , had said, Be not silent to me; here, Blessed be God, for he hath answered me. So Jehoshaphat had his Baca soon turned into Berachah, 2 Chronicles 20:18-19 . See David’s syllogism; and mark his conclusion, Psalms 66:18-20 , not according to the rules of logic, but better.

Verse 7

The LORD [is] my strength and my shield; my heart trusted in him, and I am helped: therefore my heart greatly rejoiceth; and with my song will I praise him.

The Lord is my strength and my shield — So that I am furnished and harnessed within and without. See Psalms 18:2 .

My heart trusted in him, and I am helped — Faith substantiateth things not yet seen, Hebrews 11:1 , it altereth the tenses, saith one, and putteth the future into the present tense, as here.

My heart greatly rejoiceth, … — Inwardly I am glad, warmed at heart; and outwardly cheerful, even unto singing. And what will David sing? See his ditty in the next words.

Verse 8

The LORD [is] their strength, and he [is] the saving strength of his anointed.

The Lord is their strength — Not mine only, as Psalms 28:7 , but the strength of all and every one of the holy community, of true Christians, partakers of Christ’s unction, of his Spirit.

Verse 9

Save thy people, and bless thine inheritance: feed them also, and lift them up for ever.

Save thy people — The Church must share in our prayers.

And bless thine inheritance — Which cannot but be dear to thee.

Feed them also — For they are but ill-favouredly fed by Saul.

Lift them up — Over all their enemies, as Psalms 27:6 .

Bibliographical Information
Trapp, John. "Commentary on Psalms 28". Trapp's Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/jtc/psalms-28.html. 1865-1868.
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