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6

With a freewill offering I will sacrifice to you;

I will give thanks to your name, O Lord, for it is good.


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6. I will freely sacrifice unto thee. According to his usual custom, he engages, provided deliverance should be granted, to feel a grateful sense of it; and there can be no doubt that he here promises also to return thanks to God, in a formal manner, when he should enjoy an opportunity of doing so. Though God principally looks to the inward sentiment of the heart, that would not excuse the neglect of such rites as the Law had prescribed. He would testify his sense of the favor which he received, in the manner common to all the people of God, by sacrifices, and be thus the means of exciting others to their duty by his example. And he would sacrifice freely: by which he does not allude to the circumstance, that sacrifices of thanksgiving were at the option of worshippers, but to the alacrity and cheerfulness with which he would pay his vow when he had escaped his present dangers. The generality of men promise largely to God so long as they are under the present pressure of affliction, but are no sooner relieved than they relapse into that carelessness which is natural to them, and forget the goodness of the Lord. But David engages to sacrifice freely, and in another manner than the hypocrite, whose religion is the offspring of servility and constraint. We are taught by the passage that, in coming into the presence of God, we cannot look for acceptance unless we bring to his service a willing mind. The last clause of this verse, and the verse which follows, evidently refer to the time when the Psalmist had obtained the deliverance which he sought. The whole psalm, it is true, must have been written after his deliverance; but up to this point, it is to be considered as recording the form of prayer which he used when yet exposed to the danger. We are now to suppose him relieved from his anxieties, and subjoining a fresh expression of his gratitude: nor is it improbable that, he refers to mercies which he had experienced at other periods of his history, and which were recalled to his memory by the one more immediately brought under our notice in the preceding verses; so that he is to be understood as declaring, in a more general sense, that the name of God was good, and that he had been delivered out of all trouble I have already adverted, in a former psalm, (Psalm 52:6,) to the sense in which the righteous are said to see the destruction of their enemies. It is such a sight of the event as is accompanied with joy and comfort; and should any inquire, whether it is allowable for the children of God to feel pleasure in witnessing the execution of Divine judgments upon the wicked, the answer is obvious, that all must depend upon the motive by which they are influenced. If their satisfaction proceed in any measure from the gratification of a depraved feeling, it must be condemned; but there is certainly a pure and unblameable delight which we may feel in looking upon such illustrations of the divine justice.




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