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Bible Commentaries

Thomas Scott: Explanatory Notes, Practical Observations on the book Psalms
Psalms 132

 

 

Verses 1-18

Psalm 132:1-18 :

V:1. "There are those that think " Solomon penned this psalm : because, (in the 2 Chronicles 6:1-42 : " the two last verses,) he concludes his prayer at the con" secration of the temple, with some part of it, viz. rer. " 8 , 9 , 10: and truly, since he speaks as if the priests were " just taking up the ark to carry it into this resting place, " and there begs that God would not, for David"s sake, " " turn away the face of his anointed," (that Isaiah , refuse to " hear his prayer,) it is not an improbable conjecture." Bp. Patrick. David had endured many afflictions, before he came to the throne : but he would use no unhallowed means of obtaining that dignity, which, he knew, was intended for him. In this he was the type of Christ, who willingly endured the cross before he entered into his glory. Afterwards, in the midst of many trials and sorrows, David laid himself out with earnest zeal for the glory of God, and especially in preparing for the temple, which Solomon his son was chosen to build; who thus besought God, in concert with the people, to remember his pious father"s labours and sorrows, and to prosper the design, about which his heart had been so much engaged.

V:2- 5. Nothing is recorded concerning this vow in the history of David : but perhaps, when his own house was nearly finished, he vowed that he would not inhabit it, till he had pitched upon a place in which to station the ark, as it had been placed at Shiloh. Or perhaps, having procrastinated too long, amidst his difficulties upon his first accession to the throne, he made one morning a solemn vow, that he would come to a decision in this matter, before he went to rest. Some think, that the very spot on which the temple should be built, was intended : and that David made this vow on the morning, when the pestilence came upon Israel, because he had numbered the people; and that the threshing floor of Oman was pointed out to him, in consequence of this resolution. (Notes, 2 Samuel 6:15; 2 Samuel 7:13; 2 Samuel 24:11-25.)

V:6. Some learned men conjecture, that Jerusalem lay within the district called Ephratah : but the opinion has no ground at all in scripture; and Ephrath, or Epliratah, is always joined with Bethlehem, never with Jerusalem. (Marg. Ref) Christ was indeed, as it had been foretold, born at Bethlehem Ephratah. (Notes, Micah 5:2. Matthew 2:3-6.) He was, doubtless, the true temple, in whom " all " the fulness of the Godhead dwells bodily : " but there is no need to suppose, that the place of his birth must, in any sense, be coincident what that on which the temple was to be built : and there is full proof of the contrary. In fact, the enquiry is not, either where Christ should be born, or where the temple should be erected; but where the ark, the symbol of JEHOVAH'S gracious presence, might be found. The Psalmist determined to " find out a place " for the LORD, an habitation for the mighty God of " Jacob : " that Isaiah , a place, in which the ark, the symbol of his presence, might be stationed, as it had been at Shiloh. But, having determined, probably by Revelation , to remove the ark to mount Zion; the next enquiry Isaiah , where the ark might be found, having long been left in obscurity ? David, while resident at Bethlehem Ephratah, had often heard of the ark as greatly neglected; and, in prospect of being king, had determined to place it in a more conspicuous situation. Accordingly, when made king over all Israel, he had summoned the principal persons of the nation, and had gone in quest of it : and it was found at Kirjath-jearim, as " in the fields of the wood." Thence he and his people at length conveyed it to the station selected for it, on mount Zion; and near to that first station, a magnificent temple was prepared for it. 2 Samuel 6:1-23 : ( 2 Chronicles 3:1.)

V:7-9. (Note, 2 Chronicles 6:41-42.) The ark was never removed from the holy of holies in the temple, till the captivity, when it was lost or destroyed. This was therefore " the Rest " of the symbol of the lord"s gracious presence with his people. The ninth verse may be rendered in the future : " Thy priests will be clothed, &c." " It may be expected, that thou, O Lord, wilt over-rule this happy event, for a very great blessing to thy priests, and by their means to thy people." If the priests, the ministers of religion, were " clothed with righteousness," and made accepted and holy in their persons and ministrations; " the " saints," all the true people of God, would exceedingly rejoice and praise God, both on their own account, and on that of the people in general, and of the ministers themselves : for nothing so much tends to promote, or to injure, the cause of true and vital piety, as the character of the ministers of religion (16). How properly then are we taught in our Liturgy to pray, " Endue thy ministers with righteousness, and make thy chosen people joyful." And, not only on ember days, (when few attend at the places of worship,) but at all times; that " God would so guide and govern the minds of his servants, the bishops and pastors of " his flock, that they may lay hands suddenly on no Prayer of Manasseh , " but faithfully and wisely make choice of fit persons to " serve in the sacred ministry of his church." And that " to " those ...ordained to any holy function" he would "give " his grace and heavenly benediction; that both by their " life and doctrine they may set forth his glory, and set " forward the salvation of all men." Col. Ember Weeks.

V:10. "I beseech thee, have a respect to the sincere " piety of my father David, and thy gracious promise to " him;. ..and upon that account deny me not, but grant " the petitions of thy servant, who, by thy special appoint" ment, succeeds him in the government of thy people." Bp. Patrick. (Notes, 17. Ps ixxviii70- 72. 1 Kings 11:9-13; 1 Kings 11:34-36.)

V:11 , 12. Notes, Psalm 89:1-4; Psalm 89:19-37; 2 Samuel 7:8-16. 1 Kings 9:4-6. Jeremiah 33:17-18; Jeremiah 33:23-26. Luke 1:26-33. Acts 2:25-32.

V:13 , 14. Marg. Ref Notes, 7- 9. Psalm 48:13; Psalm 68:15-16; Psalm 76:2; Psalm 87:2. Isaiah 661, 2.

V:15 , 16. Marg. Ref. Notes, 7- 9. Psalm 22:26. 2 Chronicles 6:41-42.

V:17. After the decease of David, his kingdom was made to bud forth in his successive descendants, until at length it was established in the person of the Messiah : and the kings, who as lamps were situated in Jerusalem, arising from David the first anointed of the family, at length introduced the Light of the world, and the glory of Israel. (Notes, Psalm 148:14. Ezekiel 17:22-24.)

V:18. Marg. Ref. Notes, Psalm 21:8-12. Psalm 35:25-28; Psalm 72:8-19. Psalm 109:28-30. Isaiah 9: 6 , 7. Matthew 28:18-20.

PRACTICAL OBSERVATIONS

The Lord will recompense the labours and afflictions of his faithful servants, in blessings upon their children; especially if they carry on the same pious designs, and pray to be remembered for their sake. Those, who have in them the mind of Christ, will prefer the honour of God, and the welfare of his church, to their own indulgence, ease, or emolument; and will counteract their propensity to procrastination, by engaging themselves as soon as possible to execute useful purposes, to whatever self-denial or weariness they may be exposed. But we should first, without delay, seek to have our own hearts made " an habitation " of God through the Spirit." Though external splendour or exactness are by no means essential to godliness; yet those, who have it in their power, should be vigilant and diligent, in bringing the ordinances of God into publick view, and in establishing them in decency and regularity; that the people in general may be encouraged to " go into " his tabernacles, and worship at his footstool." When we have used the proper means, we may confidently expect the Lord"s presence and blessing : and when his ministers are clothed with righteousness and salvation, his saints will shout for joy. But if the Lord answered the prayers, grounded on his covenant with David; he will never turn away his face from us, when we plead the covenant made with his anointed Prophet, Priest, and King. In him the promises, which were ratified to David, have their full completion : his church is that Zion, which he has chosen and desired for his habitation, in which he will rest and be glorified for ever. While he blesses the spiritual provisions of his house, to the nourishment of the souls of his people; he will not withhold from his poor the food convenient for their bodies : and blessed are they, who are employed to dispense either the bread of life, or bodily sustenance to his needy servants, out of love to him, and to them for his sake; receiving his salvation themselves, and contributing to the comfort of his saints. But while the crown shall flourish in the person of the Son of David, and his people rejoice in his honour and felicity; all his enemies will be clothed with everlasting shame and misery.

 


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Bibliography Information
Scott, Thomas. "Commentary on Psalms 132:4". Thomas Scott: Explanatory Notes, Practical Observations on the book Psalms. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsp/psalms-132.html. 1804.

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