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Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible
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PSALM 97

Ps 97:1-12. The writer celebrates the Lord's dominion over nations and nature, describes its effect on foes and friends, and exhorts and encourages the latter.

1, 2. This dominion is a cause of joy, because, even though our minds are oppressed with terror before the throne of the King of kings (Ex 19:16; De 5:22), we know it is based on righteous principles and judgments which are according to truth.

3-5. The attending illustrations of God's awful justice on enemies (Ps 83:14) are seen in the disclosures of His almighty power on the elements of nature (compare Ps 46:2; 77:17; Hab 3:6, &c.).

6. heavens—or, their inhabitants (Ps 50:6), as opposed to "nations" in the latter clause (compare Isa 40:5; 66:18).

7. Idolaters are utterly put to shame, for if angels must worship Him, how much more those who worshipped them.

all ye gods—literally, "all ye angels" (Ps 8:5; 138:1; Heb 1:6; 2:7). Paul quotes, not as a prophecy, but as language used in regard to the Lord Jehovah, who in the Old Testament theophania is the second person of the Godhead.

8, 9. The exaltation of Zion's king is joy to the righteous and sorrow to the wicked.

daughters of Judah—(Compare Ps 48:11).

9. above all gods—(Ps 95:3).

10-12. Let gratitude for the blessings of providence and grace incite saints (Ps 4:3) to holy living. Spiritual blessings are in store, represented by light (Ps 27:1) and gladness.

11. sown—to spring forth abundantly for such, who alone can and well may rejoice in the holy government of their sovereign Lord (compare Ps 30:4; 32:11).

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