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CHAP. XXII.

This was probably at first only a form of private devotion, which David used after his victory and success; it was afterwards published (see the eighteenth psalm throughout) to disperse more lively gratitude and true religion through his dominions.

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ND David spake unto the LORD the words of this song in the day [that] the LORD had delivered him out of the hand 2 of all his enemies, and out of the hand of Saul: And he said, The LORD [is] my rock, and my fortress and my deliverer; 3 The God of my rock; in him will I trust: [he is] my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my high tower, and my refuge, my saviour; thou savest me from violence. By all these beautiful metaphors David expresses his firm dependence upon God, 4 and his entire confidence in him. I will call on the LORD, [who is] worthy to be praised: so shall I be saved from mine ene5 mies. When the waves of death compassed me, the floods of 6 ungodly men made me afraid; The sorrows of hell compassed me about; the snares of death prevented me; I was like a man sinking, and ready to be overwhelmed; deadly snares and dangers surrounded me; nevertheless I did not despair, but hoped in God, 7 and prayed to him; In my distress I called upon the LORD, and cried to my God; and he did hear my voice out of his temple, 8 and my cry [did enter] into his ears. Then the earth shook and trembled; the foundations of heaven moved and shook, because 9 he was wroth. There went up a smoke out of his nostrils, and fire out of his mouth devoured: coals were kindled by it; his hand was as remarkably apparent, as if he had actually destroyed 10 his enemies by tempests, thunder and lightning. He bowed the heavens also, and came down; and darkness [was] under his 11 feet. And he rode upon a cherub, and did fly and he was seen upon the wings of the wind, coming with speed and swiftness to 12 my relief. And he made darkness pavilions round about him, 13 dark waters, [and] thick clouds of the skies. Through the 14 brightness before him were coals of fire kindled. The LORD

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thundered from heaven, and the most High uttered his voice. 15 And he sent out arrows, and scattered them; lightning, and

discomfited them; all my enemies were immediately confounded, 16 and turned their backs. And the channels of the sea appeared,

the foundations of the world were discovered, at the rebuking of 17 the LORD, at the blast of the breath of his nostrils. He sent 18 from above, he took me; he drew me out of many waters; He

delivered me from my strong enemy [and] from them that hated me; from Goliath and the Philistines: for they were too strong 19 for me. They prevented me in the day of my calamity; Ahi20 thophel did so by surprise: but the LORD was my stay. He brought me forth also into a large place, a state of security and liberty he delivered me, because he delighted in me; God delighted to make him king, and therefore carried him through all

21 dangers to the crown. The LORD rewarded me according to my righteousness: according to the cleanness of my hands hath 22 he recompensed me. For I have kept the ways of the LORD, and have not wickedly departed from my God. He here describes his own integrity; that he intended no injury to Saul, no wrong to those who rebelled against him, and took no unlawful 23 course to preserve himself. For all his judgments [were] before me and [as for] his statutes, I did not depart from them; I 34 studied God's law as my rule. I was also upright before him, and have kept myself from mine iniquity; especially from destroying Saul, to which I was often tempted, and with which I have 25 been charged. Therefore the LORD hath recompensed me according to my righteousness, hath favoured my righteous cause ; 26 according to my cleanness in his eye sight. With the merciful

thou wilt show thyself merciful, [and] with the upright man 27 thou wilt show thyself upright. With the pure, thou wilt show thyself pure, thou wilt be faithful to faithful souls; and with the 28 froward thou wilt show thyself unsavoury. And the afflicted people thou wilt save but thine eyes [are] upon the haughty, [that] thou mayest bring [them] down; cross their designs, and 29 testify thine abhorrence of their practices. For thou [art] my lamp, O LORD: and the LORD will lighten my darkness, restore me to prosperity, and advance me to royal dignity, though now poor 30 and mean. For by thee I have run through a troop of armed men: by my God have I leaped over a wall, scaled the cities and 31 destroyed the fortifications of my enemies. [As for] God, his way [is] perfect; his ways and methods of providence, though seemingly perplexed and dark, are perfectly just, and will appear so at last; the word of the LORD [is] tried: he [is] a buckler to all them that trust in him, good men have always found him faithful. Then, to illustrate this in his own case, he breaks out into the most 32 thankful adoration: For who [is] God, save the LORD? none of the idols of the heathen are gods: and who [is] a rock, save our God? none can defend his enemies, none can injure his friends. 33 God [is] my strength [and] power: and he maketh my way 34 perfect, that is, plain, and removes all my difficulties. He maketh my feet like hinds' [feet,] to pursue my enemies savifily and successfully and setteth me upon my high places, defends me 35 against their attacks. He teacheth my hands to war; so that a bow of steel is broken by mine arms; my strength and dexterity 36 are from God. Thou hast also given me the shield of thy salvation and thy gentleness hath made me great; pardoned my sin, 37 advanced me to this high station, and secured me in it. Thou hast 38 enlarged my steps under me; so that my feet did not slip. I have pursued mine enemies, and destroyed them; and turned not again until I had consumed them; particularly referring to Absalom's and Sheba's rebellion, which were so speedily and effectu89 ally crushed. And I have consumed them, and wounded them, that they could not arise: yea, they are fallen under my feet. 40 For thou hast girded me with strength to battle them that rose

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41 up against me hast thou subdued under me. Thou hast also given me the necks of mine enemies, that I might destroy them 42 that hate me. They looked, but [there was] none to save; 43 [even] unto the LORD, but he answered them not. Then did I

beat them as small as the dust of the earth, I did stamp them 44 as the mire of the street, [and] did spread them abroad. Thou also hast delivered me from the strivings of my people, united Israel and Judah under me, thou hast kept me [to be] head of the heathen: : a people [which] I knew not shall serve me; he had subdued neighbouring nations, and extended his conquests to king45 doms remote and before unknown. Strangers shall submit themselves unto me: as soon as they hear the fame of my victorious 46 arms they shall be obedient unto me. Strangers shall fade away, and they shall be afraid out of their close places; they shall be struck with panic, and, distrusting their forces and strong holds, shall willingly become tributary to him. Thus he encourages him47 self to hope for future favours. The LORD liveth; and blessed [be] my rock; and exalted be the God of the rock of my salvation: ascribing all to the power and goodness of God; and then 48 sums up the whole by saying, It [is] God that avengeth me of all my enemies, and that bringeth down the people under me, 49 maketh all Israel to submit to me. And that bringeth me forth from mine enemies: thou also hast lifted me up on high above them that rose up against me: thou hast delivered me from the violent man, from the Philistines, and my own subjects, and Saul. 50 Therefore I will give thanks unto thee, O LORD, among the heathen, and I will sing praises unto thy name; I will publish this song for the benefit of all my subjects, and to lead them to the 51 knowledge of God. [He is] the tower of salvation for his king: and showeth mercy to his anointed, unto David, and to his seed for evermore; I hope and believe that God will extend his favour to my posterity. Here seems to be a remote reference to the Messiah, to whom the fiftieth verse is applied, Rom. xv. 9.

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REFLECTIONS.

HE general use of this chapter is to excite us to gratitude and praise for divine mercies, especially extraordinary interpositions of Providence in our favour. New mercies are every day rising, and call for new songs. Let us praise God in our secret devotions, and show forth his praises before others. We should not be ashamed to own our obligations to him, and to express our gratitude for his mercy. We should take notice of the greatness and seasonableness of our deliverances, and trace the hand of Providence in them, to make our gratitude lively and acceptable.

2. If we desire the continued favour and interposition of heaven, let us follow after righteousness. David was rewarded according to it. This is a general maxim in divine proceedings. The righte ous Lord loveth righteousness. With the merciful thou will show thyself merciful, and with the upright man thou wilt show thyself upright, VOL. III. Bb

v. 26. Thus we shall pray with humble hope and confidence. The more we are like God, the more fully we may be assured of his favourable regards.

3. Let us learn to trust God in future difficulties, and rejoice in him as an everlasting and unchangeable God. The Lord liveth; and blessed be my rock; and exalted be the God of the rock of my salvation. This is language well becoming christians; and should be their joy in every succeeding age. Whatever dangers or troubles are before us, he is still the same; therefore let him be trusted in, and exalted.

4. Let us especially rejoice to think that our deliverance is perfected in Christ. He hath raised us from the greatest trouble, the sorrows of death, the snares of hell; as the Captain of our salvation, he is gone before us, and will give us the victory over our spiritual enemies. If we fight under his banner, and depend on his grace, he will deliver us now; and at length bestow complete and everlasting salvation upon us.

CHAP. XXIII.

An account of the last words of David, which were delivered by the spirit of prophecy; a catalogue of David's worthies, and the exploits of some of the most eminent of them.

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OW these [be] the last words of David. David the son of Jesse said, and the man [who was] raised up on high, exalted to be king of Israel, and the anointed of the God of Jacob, i2 and the sweet psalmist of Israel,† said, The Spirit of the LORD spake by me, and his word [was] in my tongue. He here celebrates the author of his inspiration, Jehovah, the God of Israel ; and takes notice of his powerful impulse. In the following verse we have the prophecy itself, which refers to the Messiah, his spiritual kingdom, and his final triumph over the enemies of it. After this magnificent introduction, he breaks out into a kind of transport 3 of joy and expectation at the firospect before him. The God of Israel said, the Rock of Israel spake to me, He that ruleth over men [must be] just, ruling in the fear of God; or, as it should be rendered, The just one ruling over men, he ruleth in the fear of 14 God. And [he shall be] as the light of the morning, [when] the sun riseth, [even] a morning without clouds; [as] the tender grass [springing] out of the earth by clear shining after rain. Here he describes the glorious effects of this dominion; light and

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The last words of eminent saints and heroes deserve particular notice. But these are peculiarly worthy of attention, as they are introduced in so magnificent and awful a manner, immediately before his death, when the prophetic spirit was strong upon him, as it was apon Moses and facob in like circumstances.

This title peculiarly belonged to David, as he was the author of most of the psalms, z composer of the music, and prescribed to the performers their several parts. He invented the instruments that accompanied them, and bore himself a part in the performance.

knowledge shall spread abroad over the earth, and that consolation and peace, which deliverance from the dominion of sin and death 5 shall produce.*. Although my house [be] not so with God; yet he hath made with me an everlasting covenant; although the present situation of myself and family, and the people of God, falls so much short of this glorious character, yet such a time will come according to God's covenant, which is ordered in all [things,] and sure; which is laid in order, as the word signifies, and well ex. presses the gradual display of that promise in successive revelations of it, and the orderly disposition of the several events preceding and preparotory to the final completion of it; and this he rejoiced in, saying, for [this is] all my salvation, and all [my] 6 desire; although he make [it] not grow. But [the sons] of Belial [shall be] all of them as thorns thrust away, because they cannot be taken with hands; they shall be like thorns or briers, too rough, too strong to be touched with a common hand, that is, they shall not be overtaken with a light and ordinary vengeance; 7 But the man that shall touch them must be fenced with iron and the staff of a spear; Christ, the Messiah and prince, who shall come to execute vengeance upon them, shall be armed with the instruments of destruction, and they shall be utterly burned with fire in the [same] place; he shall entirely consume them.‡

These [be]'the names of the mighty men whom David had; the Tachmonite that sat in the seat at the council of war, chief among the captains, the lieutenant general; the same [was] Adino the Eznite; [he lifted up his spear] against eight hun9 dred, whom he slew at one time.]] And after him [was] Eleazar the son of Dodo the Ahohite, [one] of the three mighty men with David, when they defied the Philistines [that] were there gathered together to battle, and the men of Israel were gone 10 away: He arose, and smote the Philistines until his hand was weary, and his hand clave unto the sword, by reason of blood which clotted his hand and the LORD wrought a great victory that day; and the people returned after him only to spoil: they that were fled (v. 9.) returned, after he had done slaying the Phi11 listines, not to fight, but only to take the spoil. And after him [was] Shammah the son of Agee the Hararite. And the Philistines were gathered together into a troop, or, for foraging, where was a piece of ground full of lentiles: and the people fled from 12 the Philistines. But he stood in the midst of the ground, and

These are not two images, but one, viz. the springing up of grass and flowers before the bright sunshine of the morning, after refreshing rains in the night; than which there is not in all nature a more cheering and delightful scene.

This should be part of v. 6. where he gives a short but dreadful representation of the condition of the wicked, and the vengeance that awaits them.

This is parallel to the second psalm, he shall rule them or break them with a rod of iron; he shall prove as a consuming fire to them, they shall be utterly burnt up. It expresses the certainty of the action, and that there is no possibility of escaping. This seems to be the meaning and spirit of this beautiful and instructive prophecy, and thus it is parallel to Mal. iv. 1, 2, and is illustrated by it.

He slew three hundred of them with his own hands, ( 1 Chron. xi. 11.) and so routed the rest, that they were slain by others of the army.

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