The following psalm contains a prayer for a blessing upon the Church, that besides being preserved in a state of safety in Judea, it might be enlarged to a new and unprecedented extent. It touches shortly upon the kingdom of God, which was to be erected in the world upon the coming of Christ.1
To the chief musician on Neginoth. A psalm or song.
1 With this agrees the opinion of the ancient Jews, who apply this psalm to future times, to the world to come, the times of the Messiah. The particular time and occasion of its composition can only be conjectured. Bishop Patrick thinks that it was probably composed by David, when, having brought the ark to Jerusalem and offered sacrifices, as promised in the psalm foregoing, verse 15, he blessed the people in the name of the Lord of Hosts, (2 Samuel 6:17, 18.) Horsley views it as "a hymn for the feast of tabernacles, prophetic of a general conversion of the world to the worship of God." Calmet is of opinion that the composition of this, as well as of the two preceding psalms, was posterior to the return of the Jews from Babylon; and that the particular occasion was the restoration of fertility to the soil after the protracted drought and scarcity recorded by the prophet Haggai, (Haggai 1:10,11; 2:17-19.) But though the particular time and occasion on which it was written cannot with certainty be determined, it is evidently a prayer of the ancient Church for the appearance of the Messiah, and the universal diffusion of his gospel.