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made our bodies, as well as our souls, it is meet and right that they should bear their part in his service, and that internal worship should be accompanied and signified by that which is external.
7. For he is our God, and we are the people of his pasture, and the sheep of his hand.
An additional reason why we should both praise Jehovah and pray to him, is the peculiar relation into which he hath been pleased to put himself by the covenant of grace;' he is our God;' we are the objects of his tender care and unspeakable love: we are his ' people, and his • sheep ;' his chosen flock, which he hath purchased with his blood, which he feeds with his word, and refreshes with his Spirit, in fair and pleasant pastures. From those pastures, O thou good Shepherd ! suffer us not to stray; or, if we do stray, bring us speedily back again, by any means which thou, in thine infinite wisdom, shalt think fit. Wholesome is the discipline which drives us into the fold, and keeps us there.
8. To-day if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts, as in the provocation, and as in the day of temptation in the wilderness. 9. When your fathers tempted me, proved me, and saw my work.
The first clause of these two verses may be joined to the preceding verse, thus: · He is our God, we are the people of his pasture and the sheep of his hand, if ye will hear his voice to-day;' that is, if ye will be his obedient people, he will continue to be your God. Or else the word Ox, translated
if,' may be rendered in the optative form, O that you would hear his voice to-day, saying unto you, • Harden not,' &c. However this be, what follows to the end of the Psalm is undoubtedly spoken in the person of God himself, who may be considered as addressing us, in these latter days, by the gospel of his Son; for so the apostle teaches us to apply the whole passage, Heb. iii. iv. The Israelites, when they came out of Egypt, had a day of probation, and a promised rest to succeed it; but, by unbelief and disobedience, they to whom it was promised, that is, the generation of those who came out of Egypt, fell short of it, and died in the wilderness. The gospel, in like manner, offers both to Jew and Gentile another day of probation in this world, and another promised rest to succeed it, which remaineth for the people of God in heaven. All whom it concerns are, therefore, exhorted to beware lest they forfeit the second rest, as murmuring and rebellious Israel came short of the first. The verses now before us allude to what passed at the place called · Massah,' and · Meribah, from the people there ' tempting' and striving with their God, notwithstanding all the mighty works which he had wrought for them, before their eyes. Exod. xvii. 7.
10. Forty years long was I grieved, or, disgusted, with this generation, and said, It is a people that do err in their hearts, and they have not known my ways.
O the desperate presumption of man, that he should offend his Maker · forty years !' 0 the patience and long suffering of his Maker, that he should allow him forty years to offend in! Sin begins in the heart by its desires 'wandering' and
going astray after forbidden objects; whence follows inattention to the 'ways' of God; to his dispensations, and our own duty. Lust in the heart, like vapour in the stomach, soon affects the head, and clouds the understanding.
11. Unto whom I sware in my wrath, that they should not enter into my rest. · Exclusion from Canaan was the punishment of Israelitish contumacy; exclusion from heaven is to be the punishment of disobedience among Christians. To take vengeance on those who reject the gospel terms, is no less a part of the covenant and oath of God, than it is to save and glorify those who accept them. Yet men continue deliberately to commit those sins, which the Almighty standeth thus engaged to punish with destruction !1 • Take heed, therefore, ' brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God. But exhort one another daily, while it is called to-day; lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin. For we are made partakers of Christ, if we hold the beginning of our confidence steadfast unto the end; while it is said, To-day, if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts as in the provocation. For some, when they had heard, did provoke; how beit,
i Sensus hujus loci ex Paulo sic concinnandus; nempe requiem a Deo Israëlitis esse promissam in terrâ Chananæâ : omnes tamen interim in deserto cecidisse hâc requie frustratos: quare Spiritum Sanctum per Davidem ad novam requiem invi. tâsse ; ad novum illud sabbatum ab ipso mundi exordio diei septimæ requie figuratum, novumque indixisse diem quo sub Christo, in Ecclesiâ, ac cælesti patriâ quiesceremus, nisi essemus increduli : unde sic concludit Paulus. Festinemus inrgedi in illam requiem.'--Bossuet.
not all that came out of Egypt by Moses. But with whom was he grieved forty years? Was it not with them that had sinned, whose carcasses fell in the wilderness? And to whom sware he, that they should not enter into his rest, but to them that believed not? So we see that they could not enter in because of unbelief. Let us therefore fear, lest a promise being made us of entering into his rest, any of you should seem to come short of it. For unto us was the gospel preached, as well as unto them; but the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard it.' Heb. iii. 12, &c.
ARGUMENT.-By common consent of Jews and Christians,
we apply this Psalm to the times of Messiah. 1-4. Men are exhorted to sing his praises ; to declare his salvation ; 4, 5. to acknowledge his supremacy over the gods of the nations, with, 6. the glory and beauty of his sanctuary ; 7-9. to give him the honour, the worship, and the obedience due unto him, and, 10. to publish the glad tidings of his kingdom being established : 11-13. the whole creation is called upon to rejoice at this great event. We find, by 1 Chron. xvi. that David delivered out this Psalm, to be sung on occasion of temporal blessings prefigurative of future spiritual ones.
1. O sing unto the Lord a new song ; sing unto the Lord, all the earth.
Jehovah, our Redeemer is the person whose praises are to be sung. They are to be sung in a 'new' song; a song calculated to celebrate new mercies, prefigured by old ones wrought for Israel
in former times; a song fit for the voices of renewed and regenerate men to sing in the new Jerusalem, in those new heavens and that new earth which constitute the new creation, or kingdom of Jesus Christ. And as the mercies of God are universal, extending themselves not only to the Jews, but to all the nations of the earth, all the nations of the earth are therefore exhorted to bear a part in this new song : Sing unto the Lord a new song ; sing unto the Lord all the earth.' Thus St. John, after reckoning up the 144,000, or full number of those who were sealed to salvation from among the tribes of Israel, proceeds to tell us, that he · bebeld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands.' All these sung a new song, which none could learn but the redeemed; they cried with a loud voice, saying, Salvation to our God which sitteth upon the throne, and to the Lamb.' See Rev. v. vii. xiv.
2. Sing unto the Lord, bless his name; show forth his salvation from day to day.
Again are we excited to sing unto the Lord Jesus, and in psalms, and hymns, and spiritual songs, to bless his saving name. The latter clause of the verse is very expressive in the original, 1702 ' preach,' or, 'evangelize his salvation from day to day ;' let it be the constant theme of all your discourses; publish it to the world in every possible way, by your words, and by your actions; and while God allows you breath and life, let one day