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In wisdom hast thou made them all: The earth is full of thy riches: * So is this great and wide sea, Wherein are things creeping innumerable, Both small and great beasts. * There go the ships: There is that *leviathan, whom thou hast 'made to play therein. * These wait all upon thee; That thou mayest give them their meat in due season. * That thou givest them they gather: Thou openest thy hand—they are filled with good. * Thou hidest thy face—they are troubled: Thou 3 takest away their breath—they die, and return to their dust * Thou ‘sendest forth thy spirit—they are created: And thou renewest the face of the earth. * The glory of the LoRD “shall endure forever: The LoRD “shall rejoice in his works. * He looketh on the earth, and it "trembleth: He toucheth the hills, and they smoke. * I will sing unto the LoRD as long as I live: I will sing praises unto my God while I have my being. *My meditation of him shall be sweet: I will be glad in the Lord. * Let ‘the sinners be consumed out of the earth, And let the wicked be no more. Bless thou the LoRD, O my soul! Praise ye the LoRD !
* Job 41.1. * Isa. 82. 15. a Gen. 1.81. * Heb. formed. Ezek. 87. 9. b Hab. 3. 10. *Job 34. 14, 15. Eccl. 12.7. 10 Hob. shall be. • Prov. 2. 22.
INTRODUCTION TO PSALMS XXI ANI) XXXIII.
PSALMS OF DAVID.
Not long after David's recovery from his sickness and his restoration to Divine favour, an embassy arrives from the faithful Joab, bringing intelligence from Rabbah, the seat of the war. The city of Rabbah, or Rabbath-ammon, lay on either side of a beautiful stream of perennial water, too deep to be forded in winter, limpid, and abounding in small fish. It rises a little south of Rabbah, passes through the city, and after flowing northward about six miles, during which it several times loses itself under ground, reappearing at each successive emergence under a new name, it at length empties into the brook Jabbok. This stream is still called by the Arabs Moiet Amman. Its perpetual waters are now of incalculable value to the pastoral tribes in that vicinity, as they were anciently indispensable to the citizens of Rabbah. It appears to be the same as the “river of Gad,” mentioned 2 Samuel xxiv, 5; and was the occasion of Rabbah being called “the city of waters.” 2 Samuel xii, 27.
The Hebrew army must have now lain around the city of Rabbah, in close siege, for above a year; till, at the time of which we now speak, they had succeeded in forcing the outer fortifications, and probably in commanding the sources of the principal water which supplied the town. It now became certain that the besieged could not long hold out; but as they refused to capitulate, the Hebrew army prepared to storm the town. Rabbah was a great city, and of still greater renown; and its capture would complete the subjugation of the Ammonites, and conclude the war—one of the most memorable in the history of David. By the taking of the city, too, immense wealth would fall into the hands of the conquerors, and the king and nobility would be taken captives. These circumstances made it too important an event for a general to take Rabbah in the absence of David, especially as the city lay within eighty miles of Jerusalem.
Joab, therefore, ever faithful to the interest of his sovereign, and jealous of his honour, despatched messengers to David, to inform him of the state of the siege, and advise him to hasten with a reinforcement of troops to Rabbah, and take the city in his own name. The king, always prompt in military movements, was soon upon the field, prepared to give the decisive blow. Rabbah is taken, and its captives and immense spoils fall into the hands of the Hebrew monarch. The crown of Hanun, the Ammonitish king, “the weight whereof was a talent of gold [about $25,309], with the precious stones,” was taken and placed on David's head. The captives were treated with rigour, as prisoners of war, according to the laws of war prevalent in those times. They were put to severe service for the Israelites, such as sawing, cutting and cleaving wood, harrowing the ground, and working in the brick-kilns. The city of Rabbath-ammon was thenceforward reckoned to the tribe of Gad, and incorporated into the Hebrew territory. Thus terminated the memorable Syrian and Ammonitish rebellion, which threatened at one time to wrest from David his foreign dominions, and even shook the stability of his throne. His enemies are now again subdued, and his kingdom is at peace. He himself is restored to health, from a sickness which threatened to cut short his days; and, above all, his great “transgression is forgiven and his sin is covered,” so that he once more walks in the favour and protection of Jehovah. It is fit that he should give thanks, and publicly acknowledge that Providence by which he lives, by which he conquers his enemies, and by which he governs; and, above all, that matchless grace by which his soul is renewed and sanctified. See 2 Samuel xii, 26–31; 1 Chronicles xx, 1–3.
PS ALM XXI.
ON TERMINATING THE SYRIAN AND AMMONITISH REBELLION.
A thanksgiving for the preservation of life and for the blessings of goodness, 1–6; confidence of future success against enemies, 7-13.
T To the chief Musician. A Psalm of David.
1 The king shall joy in thy strength, O Lord; And in thy salvation how greatly shall he rejoice! * Thou hast given him his heart's desire, And hast not withholden the request of his lips. Selah! * For thou"preventest him with the blessings of goodness: Thou "settest a crown of pure gold on his head. * He “asked life of thee, and thou gavest it him, Even "length of days forever and ever. * His glory is great in thy salvation: Honour and majesty hast thou laid upon him. 6 For thou hast made him most blessed forever: Thou “hast 'made him exceeding glad with thy countenance. 7 For the king trusteth in the LoRD, And through the mercy of the Most High he ‘shall not be moved. * Thy hand shall 5 find out all thine enemies: Thy right hand shall find out those that hate thee. ° Thou "shalt make them as a fiery oven in the time of thine anger: The LoRD shall swallow them up in his wrath, And k the fire shall devour them.
- or provident—Ea. 1 Heb. set him to be bless- f Psa. 16.8.
b 2 Sam. 12. 30. ings. Gen. 12. 2. Psalm g 1 Sam. 81.8. 1 Chron. 20. 2. 72. 17. h Mal. 4.1.
c Psa. 61.5, 6. e Psa. 16. 11; 45.7. Acts 2.2S. i Psa. 56. 1, 2.
d 2 Sam. 7. 19. Psa. 91. 16. * Heb. gladded him with joy. k Psa. 18. 8. Isa. 26.11.
10 Their 'fruit shalt thou destroy from the earth, And their seed from among the children of men. 11 For they intended evil against thee: They "imagined a mischievous device, Which they are not able to perform. * Therefore 'shalt thou make them turn their “back, When thou shalt make ready thine arrows upon thy strings Against the face of them. * Be thou exalted, LoRD, in thine own strength: So will we sing and praise thy power.
11 Kings 13, 84. Job 18, 16, * Or, thou shalt set them m Psa. 2. 1.
PS ALM XXXIII.
ON TERMINATING THE SYRIAN AND AMMONITISH REBELLION.
God is to be praised for his goodness and righteousness, 1–5; for his creative power, 6–9; for his providence over nations and individuals, 10–22.
* Rejoice “in the LoRD, O ye righteous! For "praise is comely for the upright. * Praise the LoRD with harp: Sing unto him with the psaltery “and an instrument of ten strings. * Sing "unto him a new song; * Play skilfully with a loud noise. * For the word of the LoRD is right; And all his works are done in truth. * He “loveth righteousness and judgment: The ‘earth is full of the 'goodness of the LoRD.
a Psa. 97. 12. d Psa. 96.1. Isa. 42.10. f Psa. 119. 64. b Psa. 147.1. Rev. 5, 9. 1 Or, mercy. c Psa. 92.8. e Psa. 11. 7.