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27. For thou wilt save the afflicted people. This verse contains the correction of a mistake into which we are very ready to fall. As experience shows that the merciful are often severely afflicted, and the sincere involved in troubles of a very distressing description, to prevent any from regarding the statement as false that God deals mercifully with the merciful, David admonishes us that we must wait for the end; for although God does not immediately run to succor the good, yet, after having exercised their patience for a time, he lifts them up from the dust on which they lay prostrate, and brings effectual relief to them, even when they were in despair. Whence it follows, that we ought only to judge by the issue how God shows himself merciful towards the merciful and pure towards the pure. If he did not keep his people in suspense and waiting long for deliverance from affliction, it could not be said that it is his prerogative to save the afflicted. And it is no small consolation, in the midst of our adversities, to know that God purposely delays to communicate his assistance, which otherwise is quite prepared, that we may experience his goodness in saving us after we have been afflicted and brought low. 422422     “Afin de nous faire esprouver comment il sauve les affligez.” — Fr. Nor ought we to reckon the wrongs which are inflicted upon us too bitter, since they excite God to show towards us his favor which bringeth salvation. As to the second clause of this verse, the reading is a little different in the song in the 2nd Book of Samuel, where the words are, Thine eyes are against the proud to cast them down. But this difference makes no alteration as to the meaning, except that the Holy Spirit there more plainly threatens the proud, that, as God is on the watch to overthrow them, it is impossible for them to escape destruction. The substance of both places is this: The more the ungodly indulge in gratifying their own inclinations, without any fear of danger, and the more proudly they despise the afflicted poor who are under their feet, they are so much the nearer to destruction. Whenever, therefore, they cruelly break forth against us with mockery and contempt, let us know that there is nothing which prevents God from repelling their headstrong pertinacity, but that their pride is not yet come to its height.




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