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The Steadfast Love of the Lord

1Shout for joy in the Lord, O you righteous!
Praise befits the upright.
2Give thanks to the Lord with the lyre;
make melody to him with the harp of ten strings!
3Sing to him a new song;
play skillfully on the strings, with loud shouts.

4For the word of the Lord is upright,
and all his work is done in faithfulness.
5He loves righteousness and justice;
the earth is full of the steadfast love of the Lord.

6By the word of the Lord the heavens were made,
and by the breath of his mouth all their host.
7He gathers the waters of the sea as a heap;
he puts the deeps in storehouses.

8Let all the earth fear the Lord;
let all the inhabitants of the world stand in awe of him!
9For he spoke, and it came to be;
he commanded, and it stood firm.

10The Lord brings the counsel of the nations to nothing;
he frustrates the plans of the peoples.
11The counsel of the Lord stands forever,
the plans of his heart to all generations.
12Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord,
the people whom he has chosen as his heritage!

13The Lord looks down from heaven;
he sees all the children of man;
14from where he sits enthroned he looks out
on all the inhabitants of the earth,
15he who fashions the hearts of them all
and observes all their deeds.
16The king is not saved by his great army;
a warrior is not delivered by his great strength.
17The war horse is a false hope for salvation,
and by its great might it cannot rescue.

18Behold, the eye of the Lord is on those who fear him,
on those who hope in his steadfast love,
19that he may deliver their soul from death
and keep them alive in famine.

20Our soul waits for the Lord;
he is our help and our shield.
21For our heart is glad in him,
because we trust in his holy name.
22Let your steadfast love, O Lord, be upon us,
even as we hope in you.


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7. He gathered together the waters of the sea as into a heap. 676676     In Genesis 1:9 we read, “God said, Let the waters under the heavens be gathered together into one place, and let the dry land appear: and it was so.” The Psalmist here probably has a reference to that passage, as in the 9th verse there is evidently an imitation of the style in which God is described in the first chapter of Genesis as performing the work of creation. Here the Psalmist does not speak of all that might have been said of every part of the world, but under one department he comprehends all the rest. He celebrates, however, a signal and remarkable miracle which we see in looking on the surface of the earth; namely, that God gathers together the element of water, fluid and unstable as it is, into a solid heap, and holds it so at his pleasure. Natural philosophers confess, and experience openly proclaims, that the waters occupy a higher place than the earth. How is it then that, as they are fluid and naturally disposed to flow, they do not spread abroad and cover the earth, and how is it that the earth, which is lower in position, remains dry? In this we certainly perceive that God, who is ever attentive to the welfare of the human race, has inclosed the waters within certain invisible barriers, and keeps them shut up to this day; and the prophet elegantly declares that they stand still at God’s commandment, as if they were a heap of firm and solid matter. Nor is it without design that the Holy Spirit, in various passages, adduces this proof of divine power, as in Jeremiah 5:22, and Job 38:8

In the second part of the verse, he seems to repeat the same idea, but with amplification. God not only confines the immense mass of waters in the seas, but also hides them, by a mysterious and incomprehensible power, in the very bowels of the earth. Whoever will compare the elements among themselves, will reckon it contrary to nature that the bottomless depths, or the immeasurable gulfs of waters, whose native tendency is rather to overwhelm the earth, should lie hid under it. That so many hollow channels and gulfs, accordingly, should not swallow up the earth every moment, affords another magnificent display of divine power; for although now and then some cities and fields are engulfed, yet the body of the earth is preserved in its place.




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