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Bible Commentaries
Psalms 26

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

Verses 1-12

Psalms 26:1-12

V. 1. It is the general opinion, and indeed it seems very probable, that this psalm was written by David, in Philistia. (Notes, 141: 1 Samuel 27:1-12:) Exposed to envenomed slanders and cruel persecutions, he had been driven from the ordinances of God, into the society of idolaters : but he appealed to him who searched all hearts, to judge between him and his enemies. He was conscious of having uniformly and perseveringly acted an upright part towards Saul, and in all other respects ; and he had also trusted in God alone.

(Notes, Psalms 7:1-5; Psalms 25:1-3; Psalms 43:1; Psalms 143:1-2.) He therefore was confident, that he should not be left to fall into any of the snares which were laid for him ; or in any future season of temptation.

V. 2. The original word (ncns) is derived from the fire, with which metals are tried and purified: and it shews the earnest desire of the Psalmist, even by sharp trials, to have his character ascertained, and his holiness improved. (Notes, Psalms 17:13. Psalms 139:23-24. Job 23:8-12. Zechariah 13:8-9. 1 Peter 1:6-7; 1 Peter 4:12-16.)

V. 3. By meditating on the kindness, mercy, and faithfulness of God, David had learned to copy them in his habitual conduct. (Marg. Ref. Note, 2 Corinthians 3:17-18.)

V. 4. (Note, Psalms 1:1-3. Psalms 139:19-22. Jeremiah 15:15-18.)

" Dissemblers," here denote hypocrites, or those who under specious pretensions cloked their unjust and malicious designs. Persons who are hidden , artfully concealing their real characters and designs.

V. 5. Evil doers meet together for various purposes : but whether treacherous policy, or malignant enmity, or sensual and festive indulgence, formed the bond of theif union, David hated their company, and shunned their assemblies. (Notes, Genesis 49:5?. Proverbs 13:20. 2 Corinthians 6:14-18.)

V. 6- 8. By repentance and conscientious obedience,, as well as by faith, expressed in attending on the typical purifications, the Psalmist purposed to prepare for offering those sacrifices, which prefigured the atonement of Christ ; and especially for presenting his thank-offerings for deliverance, which he anticipated with cheerful hope.

Notes Psalms 24:3-6. Psalms 50:16-21. Psalms 73:12-14. Proverbs 15:8-9. Is. 1:10-20. Matthew 5:23-24. 1 Corinthians 11:29-34.)

He trusted, that he should soon be restored to the land of Israel, and to the courts of God in which he greatly delighted ; and while the worshippers compassed the altar, he purposed to celebrate the wonderful works of God in his be-half.

(Notes, Psalms 27:4-6. Psalms 42:1-3. Psalms 63:1-4. Psalms 84:1-3; Psalms 84:10. Psalms 116:17-19..)

The glory of God was manifested at the sanctuary, from above the mercy-seat ; and in those ordinances which typified the Redeemer. Thus the tent, where the ark was placed, might be considered as " the house of "God," in which his honour dwelt; where he met his worshippers and blessed them, and was glorified by them. (Marg. Ref. p.)

V. 9-11. As the Psalmist had thus by choice separated from the wicked, he prayed in faith and confidence that God would distinguish between him and them ; espeally referring to Saul, Doeg, and others who gave or received bribes, in order to murder him and his pious adherents. (Notes, Psalms 52:1-9 : 1 Samuel 22:6-19.) In this conduct they resembled, and in some respects prefigured,

Caiapha-s Judas, and the false witnesses and wicked priests, who combined to murder the Prince of life. David, though conscious of integrity, and determined to persist in it, trusted only in the redeeming mercy and grace of God. (Note, Psalms 4:3-5.)

V. 12. He, who confides in the gracious promises and providence of God, and cleaves stedfastly to him in upright and unreserved obedience, stands on firm and even ground, and may cheerfully bless and praise the Lord.

(Notes, Psalms 25:21. Psalms 40:15. Proverbs 10:9. 1 Peter 1:3-5.)


According to that covenant which Jesus mediated, the man who " walketh in his integrity," yet wholly trusts in mercy and grace, is evidenced to be in a state of acceptance : the Lord may be appealed to, to plead his cause : and he shall not slide, but " be kept by a divine power, " through faith unto salvation." This man desires to have his inmost soul searched and proved to the uttermost. He is aware of the deceitfulness of his own heart, and desires to detect and mortify every sin ; and he longs to be fully satisfied that he is a true believer. He examines himself; and is willing to be examined by the penetrating and distinguishing word of truth : but, lest after all he should be deceived, he appeals to the great Searcher of hearts ; and in his better judgment, welcomes even those fiery trials, by which his graces may be manifested and improved, as gold and silver in the furnace. While lie hopes in the loving-kindness and faithfulness of God, he sets them before him as his example, and seeks to be conformed to the holy truths which he believes. He is conscious that the society of profane, licentious, deceitful, or dissipated persons is become irksome to him. He does not frequent the haunts of evil-doers ; and will stay no longer in worldly company than he can help. But he rejoices in the opportunity of attending on the ordinances of God, and meeting with his people. With serious preparation of heart, and in the exercise of repentance, faith, and a good conscience, he approaches the table of the Lord, to enjoy fellowship with him and his disciples ; and to publish with the voice of thanksgiving, and to tell of all the wonders of redeeming love. Having loved the courts of the Lord, and every Place and company, where his praises were displayed, and his glorious truths discoursed on ; he would dread above all things the final doom of wicked men. A few hours with the covetous, malicious, and deceitful are very painful : eternity in such company would form a hell to him. This antipathy gives just confidence that his soul shall never be gathered with them, and animates him still to walk in his integrity, and to cry for mercy and complete redemption. Thus he feels his ground firm under him : and, as he delights in blessing God with his congregations on earth, he trusts that shortly he shall join the great praises to God and to assembly in heaven, in " singing " the Lamb for evermore."

Bibliographical Information
Scott, Thomas. "Commentary on Psalms 26". Scott's Explanatory Notes, Practical Observations on the book Psalms. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/tsp/psalms-26.html. 1804.
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