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Sunday, July 14th, 2024
the Week of Proper 10 / Ordinary 15
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Bible Commentaries
Psalms 122

Scott's Explanatory Notes, Practical Observations on the book PsalmsScott on the Psalms

Verses 1-9

Psalms 122:1-9. V. 1, 2. This psalm seems to have been written for the use of the Israelites, when they went up to Jerusalem, after the ark was removed thither, to celebrate their sacred feasts, and to have communion with God and with their brethren. Their journey would often be inconvenient, wearisome, and expensive : but the holy joy and benefit, which thence accrued, would amply repay them. (Notes, Ixxxiv. 4 --10.) ’ David ...being, at this ’ time, upon some occasion in the country, heard the good ’ people there speak one to another, as some of them did ’ to him, of going to worship God, at some of the three ’ solemn feasts ; which devotion of their’ s, as it rejoiced ’ his heart, so it moved him, I conjecture, to compose this ’ psalm for their use, at such times.’ Bp. Patrick. Jerusalem was typical both of the church of true believers, and of the heavenly state ; and the solemnities of Israel were, like our publick ordinances, acts of sacred worship ; and, when attended on in faith and love, were earnests and foretastes of the worship and joy of heavem It may be supposed, that the Psalmist greatly rejoiced, not only in anticipating the pleasure of attending on the ordinances of God, but also in perceiving the people generally and zealously disposed to the duties of religion.

(Notes, Psalms 27:4-6. Psalms 42:1-5; Psalms 63:1-6; Psalms 66:13-14. Psalms 95:1-6. Psalms 116:17-19. Psalms 118:19-24. Psalms 132:7-10. Is. 2: 2 -5; 66. 19-23. Jeremiah 1:4-6. Micah 4:1-5.)

V. 3- 5. ’ By the artificial joining and beauty of the ’ houses, he meaneth the concord and love that was be’ tween the citizens.’ (Notes, Ephesians 2:19-22; Ephesians 4:1-6; Ephesians 4:11-13. Revelation 21:9-27.) Jerusalem, from the time of David, was considered as the centre of the worship and government of Israel, and as the bond of union among the tribes : and while that city remained compact and united, as their common head, they were safe and prosperous. The union also of the priesthood in Aaron’s family, with the kingdom in that of David, was very advantageous to their common interests civil and religious ; when justice was administered according to the law of God, and regal authority protected and supported the worship of God at his temple. This typified the union of the priesthood and kingdom in the person of the Redeemer. (Notes, Zechariah 6:12-13. Hebrews 8:1-2.) David’s sons were " chief rulers," soon after the removal of the ark to mount Zion ; (2 Samuel 8:18;) so that the thrones of his family, as well as his own throne, were then established at Jerusalem. Testimony. (4) Note, Exodus 25:10-21.

V. 6, 7 The members of the Israelitish church are ’ exhorted to pray for its peace and welfare. What that ’ church was, the Christian church militant upon earth ’ now is, and demandeth in like manner the prayers of all ’ Christian people, for its peace and welfare in a trouble’ some and contentious world. Its increase here below is. ’ in reality, the increase of Jerusalem above, of which ii ’ is a part, and ought to be a resemblance.’ Bp. Home.

’ Happy shall they be, who out of love to the religion ’ and justice administered in thee, O beloved city, con’ tribute their endeavours, as well as their prayers, for thy ’ safety and prosperity.’ Bp. Patrick. (Marg. Ref. Notes, Psalms 51:18-19. Psalms 137:1-6. Genesis 12:1-3.)

V. 8, 9. The Psalmist concludes, by declaring his full purpose of using his authority and influence for the benefit of the holy city, from love to his brethren and his pious friends, but especially from love to God and his sacred service. (Marg. Ref. Notes, 1 Chronicles 29:3-19.) Thus he gave all rulers, through succeeding generations, an example, in what manner to improve their talents, in promoting true religion among their subjects, without at all infringing on the rights of conscience. (Notes, 2 Chronicles 30:12. Is. 49: 22, 23. P. O. 2. Psalms 46:1-11.)


The servants of God should exhort others, and be glad to be exhorted themselves, to attend on his ordinances. Indeed those who love his name and seek his salvation, will " rejoice when it is said unto them, Let us go into " the house of the LORD ; " and the pleasure and profit, which they derive from ’ the means of grace,’ will make the zealous believer disregard inconvenience and fatigue in resorting thither. With what alacrity then should we think of going to the temple above, when our feet shall stand within the gates of the heavenly Jerusalem ! and how cheerfully should we bear the cross while we live, and welcome the stroke of death, in hopes of that immortal crown of glory ! Union and harmony are the ornament and stability of the church on earth : and if all the disciples of Christ were of one mind, and " endeavoured to keep the " unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace," their enemies would be deprived of their chief advantage against them. And if they were all more attentive to the commands of the Son of David, and more submissive to his authority, and referred their causes to his decision ; they would be more like " the tribes of Israel," even the " tribes of the " LORD, when they went up to the testimony of Israel," (the ark of the covenant and the mercy-seat,) " to give " thanks unto the name of the LORD." But Satan’s maxim has always been, to divide that he might conquer : and few Christians have been sufficiently aware of his design. Let all then, who love the cause of pure religion, " pray " for the peace," in order to the prosperity of the church. Let us consider every one, who bears the image and seeks the glory of the Redeemer, as our brother, our companion, our fellow-traveller, and our fellow-soldier; without greatly regarding unessential differences, or secular distinctions. Let us seek the peace and comfort of every true believer, the union and harmony of Christians among themselves, the security of the church against the assaults and devices of the common enemy, and the prosperity of all, whether in palaces or cottages, who use their influence and abilities to promote the cause of Christ, from love to his name. Let us, from zeal for the honour of our God, and good will to all our brethren, and delight in the ordinances of his house, seek to do good to every part of his church, by our prayers and example, and by every means in our power : and, while we lament the abuses and divisions which prevail in the church on earth, let us solace ourselves with a foresight of the perfect harmony and tranquillity of the church in heaven ; for perfect " peace will for ever be within her walls, and prosperity " within her palaces."

Bibliographical Information
Scott, Thomas. "Commentary on Psalms 122". Scott's Explanatory Notes, Practical Observations on the book Psalms. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/tsp/psalms-122.html. 1804.
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