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Psalm 75

Thanksgiving for God’s Wondrous Deeds

To the leader: Do Not Destroy. A Psalm of Asaph. A Song.


We give thanks to you, O God;

we give thanks; your name is near.

People tell of your wondrous deeds.



At the set time that I appoint

I will judge with equity.


When the earth totters, with all its inhabitants,

it is I who keep its pillars steady. Selah


I say to the boastful, “Do not boast,”

and to the wicked, “Do not lift up your horn;


do not lift up your horn on high,

or speak with insolent neck.”



For not from the east or from the west

and not from the wilderness comes lifting up;


but it is God who executes judgment,

putting down one and lifting up another.


For in the hand of the L ord there is a cup

with foaming wine, well mixed;

he will pour a draught from it,

and all the wicked of the earth

shall drain it down to the dregs.


But I will rejoice forever;

I will sing praises to the God of Jacob.



All the horns of the wicked I will cut off,

but the horns of the righteous shall be exalted.

4. I said to the fools, Act not foolishly. 255255     “Or, Be not mad.” The verb is תהולו, tahollu, from הלל, halal, he was mad, boasting Bythner After he has set the office of God full in his own view and in the view of the faithful, he now triumphs over all the ungodly, whom he impeaches of madness and blind rage, the effect of their despising God, which leads them to indulge to excess in pride and self-gloriation. This holy boasting to which he gives utterance depends upon the judgment, which in the name of God he denounced to be at hand; for when the people of God expect that he is coming to execute judgment, and are persuaded that he will not long delay his coming, they glory even in the midst of their oppressions. The madness of the wicked may boil over and swell with rage, and pour forth floods to overwhelm them; but it is enough for them to know that their life is protected by the power of God, who can with the most perfect ease humble all pride, and restrain the most daring and presumptuous attempts. The faithful here deride and despise whatever the wicked plot and conspire to execute, and bid them desist from their madness; and in calling upon them to do this, they intimate that they are making all this stir and commotion in vain, resembling madmen, who are drawn hither and thither by their own distempered imaginations. It is to be observed, that the Psalmist represents pride as the cause or mother of all rash and audacious enterprises. The reason why men rush with such recklessness upon unlawful projects most certainly is, that blinded by pride, they form an undue and exaggerated estimate of their own power. This being a malady which is not easily eradicated from the hearts of men, the admonition, Lift not up your horn on high 256256     Lift not up your horn on high, that is, bear not yourselves insolently, from a false notion of your power, (comp. Amos 6:13.) It has been supposed that the metaphor is taken from the manner in which horned animals carry themselves when they are in an excited state. A practice among the Abyssinians, described by Mr Bruce, has been also adduced as throwing light upon this verse. He observes, that the governors of the provinces in Abyssinia wear a broad fillet round their heads, which is tied behind the head. In the middle of this fillet is a horn, or a conical piece of silver, gilded with gold; and shaped like our candle-extinguishers. This is called kirn or horn; and is only used in reviews or processions after victory. The way in which they throw back the head when wearing this ornament (lest it should fall forward) gives a stiffness to the position of the head; and this seems to explain the language of the Psalmist, when he mentions speaking with a stiff neck. Instead of with a stiff neck, Parkhurst translates with a retorted neck; observing, that “this is a well-known gesture of pride, contempt, or disdain.” is repeated once and again. They are next enjoined not to speak with a fat or a stiff neck; by which is meant that they should not speak harshly and injuriously; 257257     “Praefracte.” — Lat. “Rigoureusement et outrageusement.” — Fr. for it is usual with proud persons to erect the neck and raise the head when they pour forth their menaces. Others translate the words, Speak not stiffly with your neck; but the other translation is the more correct.

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