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50. Psalm 50

The mighty God, even the Lord, hath spoken, and called the earth from the rising of the sun unto the going down thereof.

2Out of Zion, the perfection of beauty, God hath shined.

3Our God shall come, and shall not keep silence: a fire shall devour before him, and it shall be very tempestuous round about him.

4He shall call to the heavens from above, and to the earth, that he may judge his people.

5Gather my saints together unto me; those that have made a covenant with me by sacrifice.

6And the heavens shall declare his righteousness: for God is judge himself. Selah.

7Hear, O my people, and I will speak; O Israel, and I will testify against thee: I am God, even thy God.

8I will not reprove thee for thy sacrifices or thy burnt offerings, to have been continually before me.

9I will take no bullock out of thy house, nor he goats out of thy folds.

10For every beast of the forest is mine, and the cattle upon a thousand hills.

11I know all the fowls of the mountains: and the wild beasts of the field are mine.

12If I were hungry, I would not tell thee: for the world is mine, and the fulness thereof.

13Will I eat the flesh of bulls, or drink the blood of goats?

14Offer unto God thanksgiving; and pay thy vows unto the most High:

15And call upon me in the day of trouble: I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify me.

16But unto the wicked God saith, What hast thou to do to declare my statutes, or that thou shouldest take my covenant in thy mouth?

17Seeing thou hatest instruction, and castest my words behind thee.

18When thou sawest a thief, then thou consentedst with him, and hast been partaker with adulterers.

19Thou givest thy mouth to evil, and thy tongue frameth deceit.

20Thou sittest and speakest against thy brother; thou slanderest thine own mother’s son.

21These things hast thou done, and I kept silence; thou thoughtest that I was altogether such an one as thyself: but I will reprove thee, and set them in order before thine eyes.

22Now consider this, ye that forget God, lest I tear you in pieces, and there be none to deliver.

23Whoso offereth praise glorifieth me: and to him that ordereth his conversation aright will I shew the salvation of God.

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17. Also thou hatest correction Here hypocrites are challenged with treacherous duplicity in denying, by their life and their works, that godliness which they have professed with the lip. Their contempt of God he proves from their want of reverential deference to his Word; subjection to the Word of God, and cordial submission to his precepts and instructions, being the surest test of religious principle. One way in which hypocrisy usually displays itself is, by the ingenious excuses it invents for evading the duty of obedience. The Psalmist points to this as the mainspring of their ungodliness, that they had cast the Word of God behind their back, while he insinuates that the principle from which all true worship flows is the obedience of faith. He adverts also to the cause of their perversity, which lies in the unwillingness of their corrupt heart to suffer the yoke of God. They have no hesitation in granting that whatever proceeds from the mouth of God is both true and right; this honor they are willing to concede to his Word; but in so far as it proposes to regulate their conduct, and restrain their sinful affections, they dislike and detest it. Our corruption, indisposing us to receive correction, exasperates us against the Word of God; nor is it possible that we can ever listen to it with true docility and meekness of mind, till we have been brought to give ourselves up to be ruled and disciplined by its precepts. The Psalmist next proceeds to specify some of those works of ungodliness, informing us that hypocrites, who were addicted to theft and adultery, mixed up and polluted the holy name of God with their wickedness. By adverting only to some species of vices, he would intimate, in general, that those who have despised correction, and hardened themselves against instruction, are prepared to launch into every excess which corrupt desire or evil example may suggests. He makes mention, first, of thefts; then of adulteries; and, thirdly, of calumnies or false reproaches. Most interpreters render תרף, tirets, to run, although others derive it from רצה, ratsah, rendering it to consent. Either translation agrees sufficiently with the scope of the Psalmist, and the preference may be left to the reader’s own choice. The charge here brought against hypocrites, that they put forth their mouth to evil, may include not merely slander, but all the different kinds of speaking which injure their neighbors, for it immediately follows, my tongue frameth deceit It is well known in what a variety of ways the lying and deceitful tongue may inflict injury and pain. When it is added, Thou sittest, etc., the allusion may be to one who sits for the passing of a formal judgment; as if it had been said, Thou defamest thy brethren under pretext of issuing a just sentence. 253253     תשכ. Gejerus and others suppose that this word alludes to the mode of sitting in judgment. See Psalm 119:23.” — Dimocks Notes on the Book of Psalms Or there may be a reference to petty calumny; such as men maliciously indulge in, and in which they pass their time as they sit at ease in their houses. 254254     When you are sitting still, and have nothing else to do, you are ever injuring your neighbor with your slanderous speech. Your table-talk is abuse of your nearest friends.” — Horsley. The meaning, according to others, is, Thou sittest in the most public places of resort, which were usually the gates of the city, and spendest thy time in calumniating thy brother. See Psalm 69:12; and 119:23. It seems more probable, however, that he refers to the higher crime of accusing the innocent and righteous in open court, and bringing false charges against them. Brethren, and the children of their mother, 255255     Thine own mothers son. To understand the force of this expression, it is necessary to bear in mind that polygamy was allowed amongst the Israelites. Those who were born to the same father were all brethren, but a yet more intimate relationship subsisted between those who had the same mother as well as the same father.” — French and Skinner. Compare Genesis 20:12. It was a high aggravation of the wickedness and malignity of the persons here spoken or; that they indulged in abusing with their tongues those to whom they were most nearly related, their brother, yea, the son of their mother. are mentioned, the more emphatically to express the cruelty of their calumnies, when they are represented as violating the ties of nature, and not even sparing the nearest relations.