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5

God has gone up with a shout,

the Lord with the sound of a trumpet.

6

Sing praises to God, sing praises;

sing praises to our King, sing praises.

7

For God is the king of all the earth;

sing praises with a psalm.

 


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5. God is gone up with triumph There is here an allusion to the ancient ceremony which was observed under the Law. As the sound of trumpets was wont to be used in solemnising the holy assemblies, the prophet says that God goes up, when the trumpets encourage and stir up the people to magnify and extol his power. When this ceremony was performed in old time, it was just as if a king, making his entrance among his subjects, presented himself to them in magnificent attire and great splendor, by which he gained their admiration and reverence. At the same time, the sacred writer, under that shadowy ceremony, doubtless intended to lead us to consider another kind of going up more triumphant — that of Christ when he “ascended up far above all heavens,” (Ephesians 4:10) and obtained the empire of the whole world, and armed with his celestial power, subdued all pride and loftiness. You must remember what I have adverted to before, that the name Jehovah is here applied to the ark; for although the essence or majesty of God was not shut up in it, nor his power and operation fixed to it, yet it was not a vain and idle symbol of his presence. God had promised that he would dwell in the midst of the people so long as the Jews worshipped him according to the rule which he had prescribed in the Law; and he actually showed that he was truly present with them, and that it was not in vain that he was called upon among them. What is here stated, however, applies more properly to the manifestation of the glory which at length shone forth in the person of Christ. In short, the import of the Psalmist’s language is, When the trumpets sounded among the Jews, according to the appointment of the Law, that was not a mere empty sound which vanished away in the air; for God, who intended the ark of the covenant to be a pledge and token of his presence, truly presided in that assembly. From this the prophet draws an argument for enforcing on the faithful the duty of singing praises to God He argues, that by engaging in this exercise they will not be acting blindly or at random, as the superstitious, who, having no certainty in their false systems of religion, lament and howl in vain before their idols. He shows that the faithful have just ground for celebrating with their mouths and with a cheerful heart the praises of God; 186186     “De faire retentir en leurs bouches et d’un coeur alaigre les louanges de Dieu.” — Fr. since they certainly know that he is as present with them, as if he had visibly established his royal throne among them.

7. For God is King of all the earth The Psalmist, having called God in the close of the preceding verse King of the chosen people, now calls him King of all the earth; and thus, while he claims to the Jews the right and honor of primogeniture, he at the same time joins to them the Gentiles as associates and partakers with them of the same blessing. By these words he intimates that the kingdom of God would be much more magnificent and glorious at the coming of the Messiah, than it was under the shadowy dispensation of the Law, inasmuch as it would be extended to the utmost boundaries of the earth. To show the greater earnestness in his exhortation, he repeats the words, Sing praises to God, five times. The word מםכיל, maskil, 187187     Calvin renders this word in the Latin version by “intelligens;” and in the French by “entendu;” and in the margin of the French version there is the note, “C’est, O vous chacun entundu!” — “That is, O every one of you who understandeth!” Dr Adam Clarke reads, “Sing an instructive song;” and observes, “Let sense and sound go together. Let your hearts and heads go with your voices.” is put in the singular number instead of the plural; for he invites to this exercise all who are skillful in singing. He, no doubt, speaks of knowledge in the art of music; but he requires, at the same time, the worshippers of God to sing the praises of God intelligently, that there may not be the mere sound of tongues, as we know to be the case among the Papists. Knowledge of what is sung is required in order to engage in a proper manner in the singing of psalms, that the name of God may not be profaned, as it would certainly be, were there nothing more but the voice which melts away or is dissolved in the air. 188188     “Comme de faict il seroit s’il n’y avoit seulement que la voix qui s’escoule en l’air.” — Fr.




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