C.H. Spurgeons's The Treasury of David
Verse 12. Egypt, here called the field of Zoan, was the scene of marvellous things which were done in open day in the sight of Israel. These were extraordinary, upon a vast scale, astounding, indisputable, and such as ought to have rendered it impossible for an Israelite to be disloyal to Jehovah, Israel's God.
EXPLANATORY NOTES AND QUAINT SAYINGS
Verse 12. Zoan. The name of a city in Egypt (Numbers 13:22), though it be not set down in the story in Exodus, is twice specified by the writer of this psalm, here, and Psalms 78:43, as the scene wherein the wondrous works were wrought on Pharaoh by Moses; either because really the first and principal of the miracles were shewed Pharaoh there, this city being the seat of the king, and a most ancient city, as appears by the expression used of Hebron, in Numbers 13:22, where to set out the antiquity of that city, where Abraham, the tenth from Noah dwelt, it is said, that "it was built seven years before Zoan in Egypt;" or perhaps only in poetical style, as "the field" or country of Zoan, is all one with the "land of Egypt" foregoing. Thus, in other prophetic writings, when judgments are threatened, instead of "Egypt" sometimes we find "Zoan" alone, Isaiah 19:11, where the "princes of Zoan" are all one with the counsellors of Pharaoh; sometimes "the princes of Zoan," with the addition of some other city, as Isaiah 19:13, "the princes of Zoan, the princes of Noph," i.e., again, the counsellors of that kingdom, which as it follows, "have seduced Egypt," -- brought the whole nation to ruin. So Isaiah 30:4, where they sent to Egypt for relief, it is said, their "princes were at Zoan, their ambassadors at Hanes." Henry Hammond.
Verse 12. In the field of Zoan. We see in this passage that it was not without reason that God most powerfully displayed his wondrous works, his virtue and his glory in the more famous cities: not that he despised the humbler and obscure, but that he might more conveniently in this way scatter abroad the knowledge and renown of his name. For this cause he desired Moses to perform his miracles in the royal city, and in its field; for the same reason he afterwards fixed his dwelling place in the most famous city of Canaan, in which he decreed also that Christ his Son should be crucified and the foundation of his heavenly kingdom laid. Musculus.
HINTS FOR PASTORS AND LAYPERSONS
Verse 12-16. God revealed in his deeds. The wonder working God -- Psalms 78:12-16. The avenging God -- Psalms 78:12. The interposing God -- Psalms 78:13. The guiding God -- Ps 78:14. The Father God -- Psalms 78:14-16. C. D.
Verse 12-17. Obstinacy of unbelief. It makes head against God's majesty -- Psalms 78:17; his gracious providence -- Psalms 78:14-16; his interposing care -- Psalms 78:13; his avenging justice -- Psalms 78:12; his distinguishing grace -- Psalms 78:12-16. C. D.
Verse 12-17. Prodigies cannot convert the soul. Luke 16:31. C. D.