13. Ver. Sihon occupied the whole district between the Arnon and Jabbok, through which the approach to the Jordan lay. i. We may dwell in man's thoughts and not be the better for it, but we cannot be in God's remembering thoughts but we shall be the better for it. This is unfortunate, since his works contain priceless gems of information that are found nowhere except in the ancient writings of the Jews. 3. Psalms 136:18-23. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/spe/psalms-136.html. "God of gods" is an Hebrew superlative, because he is far above all gods, whether they be so reputed or deputed. —Abraham Wright. Stars to rule by night. (Spurgeon, C. H. Lectures to my Students: Commenting and Commentaries)Rosscup adds: This is one of the more thorough older exegetical … Then, I infer, that if the mercy which visits earth is from the same Jehovah who built that heaven and filled it with glory, there must be in his mercy something of the same "understanding" or "wisdom." Ver. The sorrow and the terror which it caused throughout the nation it is hardly possible to exaggerate. Egypt was glad when they departed. —Augustine, in Neale and Littledale. God worked with great display of force, and with exceeding majesty; he stretched out his arm like a workman intent on his labour, he lifted up his hand as one who is not ashamed to be seen. The memory of this battle was cherished in triumphant strains, in which, after reciting, in bitter irony, the song just quoted of the Amorites' triumph, they broke out into an exulting contrast of the past greatness of the defeated chief and his present fall: —. 13. Ver. 4. Ver. Ver. 5. page 233) doth Marcion wrong, though otherwise an heretic, in blaming him for holding that Christ saved those also that believed in him before his incarnation. It does not use the words hallelu jah, but it is called the Great Hallel for the way it rehearses God’s goodness in regard to his people and encourages them to praise him for his merciful and … Ver. He is as truly the Lord of lords as he is Lord over the meanest of the land, and he rules with a strict impartiality, for which every just man should give heartiest thanks. Israel rested in its heritage, but we were still in bondage, groaning in captivity: the Lord seemed to have forgotten us, and left us in our sorrow; but it was not so for long: he turned again in his compassion, bethinking himself of his afflicted children. The Psalmist is making a song for common people, not for your critical savans, —and so he sings of the sun and moon as they appear to us, —the greatest of lights. To him who alone doeth great wonders. When Antichrist raises up his hosts in the latter days, one after another—when the great, the famous, the mighty, the noble, the gigantic men, in succession assail the Church, they shall perish: "For his mercy endureth for ever." Psalms 137 Commentary, One of over 110 Bible commentaries freely available, this commentary is from the most widely read and often quoted preacher in history, Charles Haddon Spurgeon —John Trapp. The Lord who smote Pharaoh at the beginning of the wilderness march, smote Sihon and Og at the close of it. heaven (Psalms 136:26). There was mercy even then to Israel —drops of that mercy that for ever endureth—at the very time when judgment fell on others. He hath given his sons that escaped, and his daughters, (Numbers 21:27-29, repeated, as is well known, in, The decisive battle between Sihon and his new foes took place at Jahaz, probably on the confines of the rich pastures of Moab and the desert whence the Israelites emerged. No hour is left without rule. Sometimes of late years there has been manifested a disposition to recede from the defence of the supernatural in religion. He who had subdued the really mighty ruler of Egypt made short work of these petty sovereigns, great though they were in the esteem of neighbouring princes. The threefold adjuration, "O give thanks.". Psalm 136, a song of thanksgiving, is known in some traditions as the Great Hallel (or "Praise") on its own, while others reckon the psalm as the last of the Great Hallel collection. —Robert Harris, 1578-1658. The figure of an outstretched arm is appropriate, for we stretch out the arm when any great effort is required; so that this implies that God put forth an extraordinary and not a common or slight display of his power in redeeming his people. The same architect, the same skill, the same love! Like a nightingale which, when she is in a pleasant vein, quavers and capers, and trebles upon it, so did David upon his mercy: "For his mercy endureth for ever." 1. 2. What a mass of wisdom lies hidden in this one creating act! He who delivers us out of one trouble will rescue us out of another, and fulfil all the good pleasure of his grace in us. Willingly, without reluctance; with great spirit and courage, fearless of danger, and with the utmost safety, so that not one was lost in the passage; see Psalms 78:53; and thus the Lord makes his people willing to pass through afflictions, he being with them; and able to bear them, he putting underneath the everlasting arms, even when in the valley of the shadow of death. Thus fell Sethos the Second. It extends its sway even over the human frame, and our health and disorders are sometimes partially dependent on its influence. The land did not become the property of the Israelites by their own sword and bow, but by a grant from the throne. In another Psalm it is said, "He leadeth them beside the still waters, he maketh them to lie down in green pastures"; but the barren wilderness has no green pastures, the parched and arid desert has no still waters. But the moon, like a kindly visitant, returns at short intervals, in the absence of the sun, and cheers them with her beams for days and weeks together. And brought out Israel from among them. The queenly grace that hath the keeping of the keys: "for his mercy", etc. The moon and stars to rule by night. Mark, the Psalmist doth not only ascribe those mighty victories, those glorious instances of his love and power, to his unchangeable mercy, but he traces our daily bread to the same cause. ", Without the light of the moon, the inhabitants of the polar regions would be for weeks and months immersed in darkness. And the mercy that thus dealt with enemies so great, enemies so strong, one after another, endureth for ever. His mercy is no respecter of persons, and neither the greatness nor the fame of Sihon could protect him after he had dared to attack Israel. The irrepressible attribute and argument "for his mercy", etc. Og the king of Bashan. Ver. For his mercy endureth for ever. 10. 1. Whole Psalm. O'er Heaven's clear azure spreads her sacred light. c) For his works in general (Psalms 136:4). Ver. 1-26. What is the reason his people smote Sihon king of the Amorites, and Og the king of Bashan, and that they were rescued so often out of danger? God's people must enter the wilderness for trial, for self knowledge, for development of graces, for preparation for Canaan. For his mercy endureth for ever. A … God leads his people while in the wilderness. Our object in endeavouring to compress in one picture the influences of solar action, in as far as they are independent of the orbit and the position of the axis of our globe, has been clearly to demonstrate, by an exposition of the connection existing between great, and at first sight heterogeneous, phenomena, how physical nature may be depicted in the History of the Cosmos as a whole, moved and animated by internal and frequently self adjusting forces. 23. Whole Psalm. —Thomas Dick (1774-1857), in "Celestial Scenery. 4. Persevering goodness: "Through the wilderness.". 1. To remember (as the second degree of the mercy) signifies to take notice of a thing, in opposition to neglect; so it is used in Exodus 20:8 : "Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy": take notice, that is, neglect it not, "remember" to keep holy the Sabbath day. "But God - let us speak with reverence - when he gives a promise, binds himself with cords of his own making. To the most superficial observer it must be evident, that no man, or number of men, having nothing but human resources, could have ventured to undertake this journey. 15. His greatness, which is beyond that of all potentates on earth or principalities in heaven, — this also is to be our joyous theme of song. —Franz Delitzsch. In both he describes the dealings of God both with the righteous and the wicked, and it is most fit that at the very outset he should take his place with the servants of the Lord. To the Israelites as they sung this song their one thought would be of the rescue of their fathers from fierce oppressor. For his mercy endureth for ever. All lordship is vested in the Eternal. He led forth his people in no mean or clandestine manner. Ver. So Psalm 136 says, remember the victories God has given to you, and give Him thanks for them. Like the preceding Psalm, this Psalm allies itself to the Book of Deuteronomy. It needed no little generalship to conduct so vast and motley a company along a way so novel and apparently so dangerous. A. 10. What equal mercy in all the influences of the moon upon the tides, those life floods of the earth! His mercy endureth for ever. And gave their land for an heritage. We see how it is even as to patriotism—a man's most intense patriotic feelings do not necessarily make him indifferent to the good of other countries, but rather make him wish all countries to be like his own; so it is, much more certainly and truly, with the Lord's people in their enjoyment of blessing. 3. Their heart expands towards others; they would fain have all men share in what they enjoy. ), —Arthur Penrhyn Stanley, in "The History of the Jewish Church.". 4. His is the only one in the whole range of the kings of Egypt which has suffered this mark of public infamy. To him that stretched out the earth above the waters: for his mercy endureth for ever. 23-24. Glorious redemption! There are mirabilia parva, some lesser wonders, that the devil and his instruments, Pharaoh's sorcerers can do; but when it comes to mirabilias magna, great wonders, so great that they amount to the nature of a miracle, facit solus, God and God only does them. Sihon smote Moab, but he could not smite Israel, for the Lord smote him. Ver. 2. Is the magnitude of this movement usually apprehended? The profane of our times may hence learn to take heed how they wrong the faithful. 21. 17-22. For his mercy endureth for ever. Nothing is too high for its reach, as nothing is beneath its stoop. 6. Psalm 136 1 Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good. Title. —John Calvin. See "Spurgeon's Sermons", No. The Lord's firstborn had been oppressed by Egypt, and at last the Lord fulfilled his threatening, "I will slay thy son, even thy firstborn." He shook them off as if he would no longer protect them. Ver. —William De Burgh. 3. Moreover, for the moment assuming that the deities of the heathen were gods, yet none of them could be compared with our Elohim, who is infinitely beyond what they are fabled to be. It is a clear and judicious explanation of the text, and cannot be dispensed with. For Christ, by whom it is, was slain from the beginning, —Saint John saith so. What more can be imagined? To him that by wisdom made the heavens. Remembering the poor is not barely a thought, but a relieving thought; therefore saith the Psalmist in the following verse, "who hath redeemed us from our enemies": this was the remembrance of God, redemption from enemies. He is immutably good. The sinner goes downward of his own choice, and if he finds out too late that he return, is not his blood upon his own head? Praise him for what he is (Psalms 136:1-3). 10. —John Morison. For his mercy endureth for ever. The Jews called it the Great Hallel (= Praise), and it … Sihon king of the Amorites. 16. —Pulpit Commentary. Ver. For his mercy endureth for ever. But overthrew Pharaoh and his host in the Red sea. 23. Who remembered us in our low estate. The finally impenitent, terrible their doom, will not be witnesses against mercy; but rather this shall aggravate their misery, that they went on in defiance of mercy, and would yield themselves to him whose mercy endureth for ever. on StudyLight.org It is a sublime and appropriate designation of the true God, expressive of his glorious elevation above the passions and perturbations of earth. John Jebb, A.M., in "A Literal Translation of the Book of Psalms," 1846. Og was soon ousted from his stronghold when the captain of the Lord's host led the war against him. And yet because Og did look more formidable than Sihon, God gave his people special encouragement in meeting him: Numbers 21:34. —David Clarkson, 1622-1686. Copyright StatementThese files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website. But shook off Pharaoh. Who but the Lord could have wrought this marvel? He had wrested it from the predecessor of Balak, and had established himself, not in the ancient capital of Moab Ar, but in the city still conspicuous to the modern traveller from its wide prospect and its cluster of stone pines—Heshbon. His love endures forever. The triplet of names: "Jehovah", "the God of gods", "the Lord of lords. As they opposed God they became infamous rather than famous. In considering the expression of solar force, in its widest generality, we find that it gives rise to alterations on the surface of the earth, —partly by gravitative attraction, —as in the ebb and flow of the ocean (if we except the share taken in the phenomenon by lunar attraction), partly by light and heat generating transverse vibrations of ether, as in the fructifying admixture of the aerial and aqueous envelopes of our planet, from the contact of the atmosphere with the vaporizing fluid element in seas, lakes, and rivers. 9. Ring that silver bell again. Ver. 11. For his mercy endureth for ever. For his mercy endureth for ever. That means, he does so by himself, unaided, needing nothing from others, asking no help from his creatures. God's gracious purpose the Flood drowned not, the smoke of Sinai smothered not, the Captivity ended not, the ends of the world (Saint Paul calls them so) determined not. The exhortation is intensely earnest: the Psalmist pleads with the Lord's people with an "O", three times repeated. 4. 3. —Andrew A. Bonar. The Egyptians are well said to have been smitten in their firstborn; because they continued in their outrageous obstinacy under the other plagues, though occasionally terrified by them, but were broken and subdued by this last plague, and submitted. For the Lord even to think of us is a wealth of mercy. 5, 2.) The fastnesses of Bashan were no defence against Jehovah. Ver. Milton puts it well: Ver. When Og king of Bashan took the field—a giant, a new and more terrific foe—he, too, fell. —James G. Murphy. For his mercy endureth for ever. Once the Israelites did not care to go out, but preferred to bear the ills they had rather than risk they knew not what; but the Lord's mercy endured that test also, and ceased not to stir up the nest till the birds were glad to take to their wings. He that goes into the midst of the sea asks to be drowned. He made them to pass, by the untrodden road; he led them down into the deep and up again on the further shore in perfect order, keeping their enemies back by the thick darkness of the cloudy pillar. Stars. 17. And made Israel to pass through the midst of it. He led them into it, and therefore he was pledged to lead them through it. And hath redeemed us from our enemies. They therefore cannot close their song without having this other clause—Praise him who is the giver of bread to all flesh. Give up all that is miraculous in true religion and there is nothing left of power sufficient to move any heart to worship or adore; and without worship there is no piety. Psalm 136:1 Last Sunday -- in preparation for this week's celebration of Thanksgiving -- I was privileged to teach on Psalm 136, one of the Psalms of Thanksgiving in Scripture. The Lord's people were called upon to fight against him, but it was God who won the victory. Ver. By faith we also give up all reliance upon works and trust ourselves to pass by a way which we have not known, even by the way of reliance upon the atoning blood: thus are we effectually sundered from the Egypt of our former estate, and our sins themselves are drowned. And hath redeemed us. Canaan had thirty and more of them. Only God shakes the whole frame of nature in pieces, and in a miracle proceeds so, as if there were no creation yet accomplished, no course of nature yet established. He was valiant and powerful, so as to be both great and famous; but as he wilfully refused to give a peaceful passage to the Israelites, and fought against them in malice, there was no choice for it but to let him run into that destruction which he courted. We thought ourselves too small and too worthless for his memory to burden itself about us, yet he remembered us. Bonaparte, who hated all idealogists, abstract reasoners, and logical demonstrators, no matter what they were demonstrating, would not fence with these subtle dialecticians, but had them immediately on deck, and, pointing to the stars in the clear sky, replied, by way of counter argument, "Very good, messieurs! The former blows had missed their aim compared with the last; but that "smote Egypt." The memory and name of Sethos the Second were infamous in Egypt. He is perfectly good, because infinitely good. And the lords of the high places of Arnon: Woe to thee, Moab; thou art undone, thou people of. What a wonderful mixture is the Psalm of soft melancholy and fiery patriotism! —John Calvin. Their use absence of the sea ordinarily to remain as one mass can with equal readiness divide them our and. George Smith, in `` Eccentric Preachers '', 1850 wilderness for trial, for goodness... 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