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Great Is the Lord

11This psalm is an acrostic poem, each verse beginning with the successive letters of the Hebrew alphabet A Song of Praise. Of David.

1I will extol you, my God and King,
and bless your name forever and ever.
2Every day I will bless you
and praise your name forever and ever.
3Great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised,
and his greatness is unsearchable.

4One generation shall commend your works to another,
and shall declare your mighty acts.
5On the glorious splendor of your majesty,
and on your wondrous works, I will meditate.
6They shall speak of the might of your awesome deeds,
and I will declare your greatness.
7They shall pour forth the fame of your abundant goodness
and shall sing aloud of your righteousness.

8The Lord is gracious and merciful,
slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.
9The Lord is good to all,
and his mercy is over all that he has made.

10All your works shall give thanks to you, O Lord,
and all your saints shall bless you!
11They shall speak of the glory of your kingdom
and tell of your power,
12to make known to the children of man your22Hebrew his; also next line mighty deeds,
and the glorious splendor of your kingdom.
13Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom,
and your dominion endures throughout all generations.

[The Lord is faithful in all his words
and kind in all his works.]33These two lines are supplied by one Hebrew manuscript, Septuagint, Syriac (compare Dead Sea Scroll)
14The Lord upholds all who are falling
and raises up all who are bowed down.
15The eyes of all look to you,
and you give them their food in due season.
16You open your hand;
you satisfy the desire of every living thing.
17The Lord is righteous in all his ways
and kind in all his works.
18The Lord is near to all who call on him,
to all who call on him in truth.
19He fulfills the desire of those who fear him;
he also hears their cry and saves them.
20The Lord preserves all who love him,
but all the wicked he will destroy.

21My mouth will speak the praise of the Lord,
and let all flesh bless his holy name forever and ever.


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20. Jehovah preserves, etc. He insists upon the same truth, — that God is near to his people to help them in the time of need; this being a sure proof of his presence, that by his mercy they come safe and unhurt out of every danger which befalls them. It is worthy of our notice, that, instead of fear, he now speaks of love; for, in distinguishing believers by this title, that they love God, he intimates it to be the root of true godliness, that they submit themselves to him voluntarily, which again is the effect of faith. Till God draw us by the attractions of his grace, this placid submission will never follow. The love spoken of by David, however, is perhaps more extensive, as God’s people not only attach themselves to him in the way of obedience to his authority, but knowing that union to him is of all other things most desirable, aspire with their whole soul after this happiness. Still there can be no doubt, that the reference is to it here as the chief part of holiness and righteousness, as was said by Moses,

“And now, O Israel, what does the Lord thy God require of thee,” etc. (Deuteronomy 10:12.)

This effect of godliness in securing our safety and preservation under the divine guardianship, David exemplifies by an opposition clause, declaring, that all the wicked shall, in the just judgment of God, miserably perish. That he might close as he had begun, he again affirms, that he will publish the praises of God, and urges all to the same duty by his example. Some would read, every living thing shall bless, but this does not seem to me a proper reading. When Moses, speaking of the flood, says, that “all flesh in which was the breath of life perished,” I grant that the term comprehends the brute creation, but wherever “flesh” is mentioned without any addition, the reference is only to men. Nor is David here stating what they would, but what they should do, declaring all men bound by the great and inexhaustible goodness of God constantly and for ever to praise him.




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