An exhortation to praise God, both for his goodness specially shown to his chosen people, and for his power and glory apparent in the world at large. A contrast is drawn between idols, which had but a vain show of divinity, and the God of Israel, who had established his claim to be considered the only true God by clear and indubitable proofs, and this with the view of leading his people the more cheerfully to praise him, and submit to his government.
1. Praise ye the name of Jehovah,1 praise him, O ye servants of Jehovah! 2. Ye who stand in the house of Jehovah, and ye who stand in the courts of the house of our God.23. Praise God, for good is Jehovah: sing unto his name, for it is pleasant. 4. For God hath chosen Jacob 3 unto himself, and Israel for his peculiar treasure.
"Sacrifice unto the Lord thanksgiving,
and pay your vows to the Most High;"
and, (Psalm 116:12, 13,)
"What shal1 I render unto the Lord for all his benefits? I will take the cup of salvation, and call upon the name of the Lord."
Particular attention is to be paid to those passages of Scripture which speak in such high terms of that worship of God which is spiritual; otherwise we may be led, in the exercise of a misguided zeal, to spend our labor upon trifles, and in this respect imitate the example of too many who have wearied themselves with ridiculous attempts to invent additions to the service of God, while they have neglected what is of all other things most important. This is the reason why the Holy Spirit so repeatedly inculcates the duty of praise. It is that we may not undervalue, or grow careless in this devotional exercise. It implies, too, an indirect censure of our tardiness in proceeding to the duty, for he would not reiterate the admonition were we ready and active in the discharge of it. The expression in the end of the verse -- because it is sweet, admits of two meanings -- that the name of God is sweet, as in the previous clause it was said that God is good -- or, that it is a sweet and pleasant thing to sing' God's praises. The Hebrew word
"he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good."
But he bound the posterity of Abraham to him by a closer tie, such as that by which he now adopts men generally into his Church, and unites them with the body of his only-begotten Son.6
1 "Perhaps the original,
2 The words
3 The name "Jacob" is here put by metonymy for the posterity of Jacob, as is evident from the parallelism of the two members.
4 "Et quand on advisera de bien pres aux mots, on y trouvera que le peuple est adjoint, etc."--Fr.
5 "Signifie proprement chose bien seante ou belle: et ce sens general convient mieux." -- Fr.
6 "Comme c'est aujourd'huy de tous ceux qu'il adopte en sa bergerie, et ente au corps de son fils unique." -- Fr.
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