Commentary Critical and Explanatory
on the Whole Bible
This is a spirited Psalm and song (compare
having probably been suggested by the same occasion as the foregoing.
It sets forth the privileges and blessings of God's spiritual dominion
as the terror of the wicked and joy of the righteous.
1. to be praised--always: it is an epithet, as in
mountain of his holiness--His Church (compare
Isa 2:2, 3; 25:6, 7, 10);
the sanctuary was erected first on Mount Zion, then (as the temple) on
Moriah; hence the figure.
2, 3. situation--literally, "elevation."
joy of, &c.--source of joy.
sides of the north--poetically for eminent, lofty, distinguished, as
the ancients believed the north to be the highest part of the earth
3. palaces--literally, "citadels."
(Ps 9:10; 18:3).
He was so known in them because they enjoyed His presence.
4-6. For--The reason is given. Though the kings (perhaps of Moab and
combined, a conviction of God's presence with His people, evinced by
the unusual courage with which the prophets (compare
had inspired them, seized on their minds, and smitten with sudden and
intense alarm, they fled astonished.
7. ships of Tarshish--as engaged in a distant and lucrative trade,
the most valuable. The phrase may illustrate God's control over all
material agencies, whether their literal destruction be meant or not.
8. This present experience assures of that perpetual care which God
extends to His Church.
9. thought of--literally, "compared," or considered, in respect of
in the . . . temple--in acts of solemn worship (compare
10. According . . . praise--that is, As Thy perfections manifested
Ps 8:1; 20:1-7),
demand praise, it shall be given, everywhere.
thy right hand, &c.--Thy righteous government is displayed by Thy
11. the daughters, &c.--the small towns, or the people, with the
chief city, or rulers of the Church.
judgments--decisions and acts of right government.
12-14. The call to survey Zion, or the Church, as a fortified city,
is designed to suggest "how well our God secures His fold." This
security is perpetual, and its pledge is His guidance through this life.