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25. Psalm 25

Unto thee, O Lord, do I lift up my soul.

2O my God, I trust in thee: let me not be ashamed, let not mine enemies triumph over me.

3Yea, let none that wait on thee be ashamed: let them be ashamed which transgress without cause.

4Shew me thy ways, O Lord; teach me thy paths.

5Lead me in thy truth, and teach me: for thou art the God of my salvation; on thee do I wait all the day.

6Remember, O Lord, thy tender mercies and thy lovingkindnesses; for they have been ever of old.

7Remember not the sins of my youth, nor my transgressions: according to thy mercy remember thou me for thy goodness’ sake, O Lord.

8Good and upright is the Lord: therefore will he teach sinners in the way.

9The meek will he guide in judgment: and the meek will he teach his way.

10All the paths of the Lord are mercy and truth unto such as keep his covenant and his testimonies.

11For thy name’s sake, O Lord, pardon mine iniquity; for it is great.

12What man is he that feareth the Lord? him shall he teach in the way that he shall choose.

13His soul shall dwell at ease; and his seed shall inherit the earth.

14The secret of the Lord is with them that fear him; and he will shew them his covenant.

15Mine eyes are ever toward the Lord; for he shall pluck my feet out of the net.

16Turn thee unto me, and have mercy upon me; for I am desolate and afflicted.

17The troubles of my heart are enlarged: O bring thou me out of my distresses.

18Look upon mine affliction and my pain; and forgive all my sins.

19Consider mine enemies; for they are many; and they hate me with cruel hatred.

20O keep my soul, and deliver me: let me not be ashamed; for I put my trust in thee.

21Let integrity and uprightness preserve me; for I wait on thee.

22Redeem Israel, O God, out of all his troubles.

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8. Good and upright is Jehovah. Pausing for a little as it were in the prosecution of his prayer, he exercises his thoughts in meditation upon the goodness of God, that he may return with renewed ardor to prayer. The faithful feel that their hearts soon languish in prayer, unless they are constantly stirring themselves up to it by new incitements; so rare and difficult a thing is it to persevere steadfastly and unweariedly in this duty. And, indeed, as one must frequently lay on fuel in order to preserve a fire, so the exercise of prayer requires the aid of such helps, that it may not languish, and at length be entirely extinguished. David, therefore, desirous to encourage himself to perseverance, speaks to himself, and affirms that God is good and upright, that, gathering new strength by meditating on this truth, he may return with the more alacrity to prayer. But we must observe this consequence — that as God is good and upright, he stretches forth his hand to sinners to bring them back again into the way. To attribute to God an uprightness which he may exercise only towards the worthy and the meritorious, is a cold view of his character, and of little advantage to sinners, and yet the world commonly apprehends that God is good in no other sense. How comes it to pass that scarcely one in a hundred applies to himself the mercy of God, if it is not because men limit it to those who are worthy of it? No on the contrary, it is here said, that God gives a proof of his uprightness when he shows to transgressors the way; and this is of the same import as to call them to repentance, and to teach them to live uprightly. And, indeed, if the goodness of God did not penetrate even to hell, no man would ever become a partaker of it. Let the Papists then boast as they please of their imaginary preparations, but let us regard this as a sure and certain doctrine, that if God do not prevent men by his grace, they shall all utterly perish. David, therefore, here commends this preventing grace, as it is called, which is manifested either when God in calling us at first renews, by the Spirit of regeneration, our corrupt nature, or when he brings us back again into the right way, after we have gone astray from him by our sins. For since even those whom God receives for his disciples are here called sinners, it follows that he renews them by his Holy Spirit that they may become docile and obedient.




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