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147. Psalm 147

1Praise ye Jehovah;

For it is good to sing praises unto our God;

For it is pleasant, and praise is comely.

2Jehovah doth build up Jerusalem;

He gathereth together the outcasts of Israel.

3He healeth the broken in heart,

And bindeth up their wounds.

4He counteth the number of the stars;

He calleth them all by their names.

5Great is our Lord, and mighty in power;

His understanding is infinite.

6Jehovah upholdeth the meek:

He bringeth the wicked down to the ground.

7Sing unto Jehovah with thanksgiving;

Sing praises upon the harp unto our God,

8Who covereth the heavens with clouds,

Who prepareth rain for the earth,

Who maketh grass to grow upon the mountains.

9He giveth to the beast his food,

And to the young ravens which cry.

10He delighteth not in the strength of the horse:

He taketh no pleasure in the legs of a man.

11Jehovah taketh pleasure in them that fear him,

In those that hope in his lovingkindness.

12Praise Jehovah, O Jerusalem;

Praise thy God, O Zion.

13For he hath strengthened the bars of thy gates;

He hath blessed thy children within thee.

14He maketh peace in thy borders;

He filleth thee with the finest of the wheat.

15He sendeth out his commandment upon earth;

His word runneth very swiftly.

16He giveth snow like wool;

He scattereth the hoar-frost like ashes.

17He casteth forth his ice like morsels:

Who can stand before his cold?

18He sendeth out his word, and melteth them:

He causeth his wind to blow, and the waters flow.

19He showeth his word unto Jacob,

His statutes and his ordinances unto Israel.

20He hath not dealt so with any nation;

And as for his ordinances, they have not known them.

Praise ye Jehovah.

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10. Not in the strength of the horse, etc. After the Psalmist has shown that there is proof of the divine goodness in every part of the world, he takes particular notice that men have no strength but what is given them from above, and this he adds with the express purpose of checking the pride by which almost all men are inflamed, and which leads them to trust in their own strength. The meaning of the passage is, that let man come in the preparation of his own strength, and with all the assistance’s that seem to him most prevalent, this will only issue in smoke and vanity; nay, that in arrogating the very least to himself, this will only be a hindrance in the way of the mercy of God, by which alone we stand. The strength of the horse is mentioned by synecdoche to denote any kind of protection. Not that God is displeased with those things in themselves considered which he has given us as helps, but it is necessary that we be withdrawn from a false confidence in them, for very commonly when any resource is at hand, we are foolishly intoxicated and lifted up with pride. He opposes the fear of God therefore to the strength both of men and of horses, and places his hope in his mercy, intimating that it is highly incumbent upon us to show our moderation in worshipping God with reverence and holiness, and depending upon his grace. Hence we learn that he only condemns that strength which would take from God the honor due to him.