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Bible Commentaries

Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible
Psalms 132



Verse 1

Psalms 132.

David in his prayer commendeth unto God the religious care he had for the ark: his prayer at the removing of the ark, with a repetition of God's promise.

A Song of Degrees.

Title. המעלות שׁיר Shiir hammangaloth.] It is thought by the best commentators, that this psalm was written by Solomon when he built the temple, and fulfilled what was designed by his father David. See 2 Samuel 7:10.

Psalms 132:1. Lord, remember David O Lord, remember to David all his solicitude. This, and the following verses, express the great solicitude and uneasiness which David gave himself: Remember to David, &c. i.e. "Put it to his account, and reward him for it." Mudge.

Verse 6

Psalms 132:6. We found, &c.— We find it in the territory, or fields of Fear.—Ver. 7. Let us came into his abodes, let us prostrate ourselves at his footstool. These, and the following verses, represent in so many different scenes the Psalmist and his company set out in quest of the ark; first hearing news of it at Ephratah, i.e. Bethlehem; then finding it at Kirjath-jearim; then exhorting the people to pay their adoration to Jehovah; then using the common form of addressing the ark when it was moved, as it was now going to its rest upon mount Sion, Psalms 132:8. See 1 Chronicles 13:6. Mudge.

Verse 11

Psalms 132:11. The Lord hath sworn, &c.— St. Peter has shewn us, that these words have their full accomplishment only in Christ, Acts 2:30.

Verse 17

Psalms 132:17. The horn of David, &c.— These are metaphors in frequent use. David should ever have in Jerusalem a horn flourishing, and a light or lamp burning: a horn is an emblem of sovereignty. As one horn dropped off, another should spring up: and his lamp should never be extinguished; in allusion to the ever-burning lamp of the temple. See Mudge. That this mystically refers to Christ, who in a peculiar manner is God's anointed, the Jews themselves confess.

REFLECTIONS.—1st, The psalm opens with a prayer to God. Lord, remember David, and all his afflictions; which may be the words of David himself, pleading God's faithfulness, and looking for support under all his troubles; or of Solomon pleading the covenant established with his father, and his afflictions, his sufferings, or the toil and trouble he underwent in making preparations for the building of the temple; or his humility, which he so strongly expressed, 2 Samuel 2:18. It may refer also to the Messiah, as the church's prayer, that God would remember the covenant of grace established with him, and accept his sufferings and humiliation, in behalf of all true believers.

1. The Psalmist recites David's solemn vow; so earnestly bent was he on erecting a temple for the Lord, the mighty God of Jacob, whose protection he had so greatly experienced, that by an oath he bound his soul, either literally not to enter his house, or sleep on his bed, till he had fixed on the place where the temple of God should be erected; or figuratively, as others interpret it, that he should enjoy no peace and satisfaction in any of his worldly comforts, till this grand affair was determined. At Ephratah or Shiloh the tabernacle had been heard of, for there formerly it had been placed; but now it was found in the fields of the wood at Kirjath-jearim: or this may be applied to the Messiah, the true tabernacle of God with men, who should be born at Bethlehem Ephratah, and be found in the fields of the wood, in a low and abject condition, Ezekiel 16:5.; and wherever he is found, all true believers will take up their word and say, We will go into his tabernacles, the places of public worship, where this incarnate Lord manifests his presence, grace, and love, towards his people: we will worship at his footstool, as humble supplicants and dutiful subjects.

2. The Psalmist prays, [1.] That God would condescend to take up his residence in the place erected for his honour. Arise, O Lord, into thy rest, where he might fix his settled abode, and no more remove from place to place, as when in the tabernacle in the wilderness; thou, and the ark of thy strength; the figure of him who is mighty to save his faithful people, and their everlasting help and hope. [2.] That God's priests might be clothed with righteousness; in their preaching and practice adorning their high vocation and calling; and without this, their sacred function serves but to aggravate the guilt of their unfaithfulness. [3.] That all God's saints may shout for joy, as they did, 2 Samuel 6:15 and as all true believers continue to do, while they behold the glory of the Lord Jesus, and hear his gospel dispensed by a faithful, zealous, and exemplary ministry. [4.] For himself he prays, For thy servant David's sake, in consequence of the covenant established with him, turn not away the face of thine anointed; be gracious to Solomon, anointed to sit on his throne. This may be regarded also as the believer's prayer in general, who is anointed with an unction from the Holy One; and for Jesus's sake, the spiritual David, expects and prays for the light of God's countenance and regard.

2nd, The great and precious promises, here delivered, were not designed for the men of that generation only, but are equally applicable to us under our higher dispensation. We have,

1. The unchangeable oath of God, confirming to David the kingdom of Israel, and to his successors. Of the fruit of thy body will I set upon thy throne; not only Solomon, but that glorious successor the Lord Jesus, Acts 2:30 whose kingdom should be an everlasting kingdom.

2. The condition on which David's posterity shall possess the throne of Israel, is, their fidelity: while they continue true to God's law, he will shew them the faithfulness of his promise. This they soon violated, and consequently lost the earthly throne. Let us take warning, lest we fall short of the celestial throne.

3. God's choice of Zion for his abode. There he fixed his residence in the temple, the figure of the gospel church, where he continues to dwell; and in every faithful soul, in the most blessed sense, is this verified, This is my rest for ever: here will I dwell, for I have desired it. Lord, in my heart thus take up thy blest abode!

4. The rich promises that he makes to his Zion, [1.] Plenty shall bless the land: so abundant the provision, that even the poor shall eat and he satisfied: but richer far the provision of his grace in his church, where all who hunger and thirst after righteousness, may come and be filled, and the poorest and most miserable sinner shall not go empty away, but find pardon, grace, and salvation, liberally provided for and bestowed upon him in Jesus Christ. [2.] He engages fully to answer the prayer which was made, Psalms 132:9 to clothe the priests with salvation, and to give joy to all his saints; and this he does still, when he sends forth into the ministry men full of faith and of the Holy Ghost, by whose labours the knowledge of salvation is diffused, and the children of God, enlightened by their preaching, rejoice in Christ Jesus, and the glorious gospel of his grace. [3.] He promises to strengthen the house of David. There will I make the horn of David to bud; a successor shall be given him, whose throne shall be greater than his father's: I have ordained a lamp for mine anointed, that his light may never be extinguished, but his posterity continue. His enemies will I clothe with shame, their devices disappointed, and themselves vanquished: but upon himself shall his crown flourish! all which, in the most eminent sense, is true, and applicable to that Son of David, who should be the horn of salvation to all believers, Luke 1:69 saving them with a mighty salvation: a lamp ever burning, the light of the world, the sun of righteousness shining for ever and ever in the firmament of grace, according to God's most gracious purpose. All his enemies must sooner or later be clothed with shame; either the shame of penitents, returning to him in deep humiliation; or the shame of criminals, led forth to execution, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire: his crown must for ever flourish, he shall reign not only till all his enemies are fallen, but to the days of eternity; and, what is the joy of the faithful, he will make them kings with himself, and they shall reign with him in eternal glory.


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Bibliography Information
Coke, Thomas. "Commentary on Psalms 132:4". Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible. 1801-1803.

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