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Psalms 1; 2; 15; 22; 23; 24; 47; 68 Listen
The righteous before God compared to the unrighteous (Psalm 1)
1 Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful.
2 But his delight is in the law of the LORD; and in his law doth he meditate day and night.
3 And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.
4 The ungodly are not so: but are like the chaff which the wind driveth away.
5 Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous.
6 For the LORD knoweth the way of the righteous: but the way of the ungodly shall perish.
In this Psalm we have a comparison between the plight of the righteous and the unrighteous. While it does not say so, many accept that David wrote this Psalm. Verses 1-3 capture the essence of a life committed to God, while verses 4-6 do the same for those who reject God. It's the difference between blessings or cursings.
1 Why do the heathen rage, and the people imagine a vain thing?
2 The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together, against the LORD, and against his anointed, saying,
3 Let us break their bands asunder, and cast away their cords from us.
4 He that sitteth in the heavens shall laugh: the Lord shall have them in derision.
5 Then shall he speak unto them in his wrath, and vex them in his sore displeasure.
6 Yet have I set my king upon my holy hill of Zion.
7 I will declare the decree: the LORD hath said unto me, Thou art my Son; this day have I begotten thee.
8 Ask of me, and I shall give thee the heathen for thine inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth for thy possession.
9 Thou shalt break them with a rod of iron; thou shalt dash them in pieces like a potter’s vessel.
10 Be wise now therefore, O ye kings: be instructed, ye judges of the earth.
11 Serve the LORD with fear, and rejoice with trembling.
12 Kiss the Son, lest he be angry, and ye perish from the way, when his wrath is kindled but a little. Blessed are all they that put their trust in him.
This Psalm gets considerable mention in the New Testament with regard to Christ. As recorded by all three synoptic Gospels (Matthew 3:17; Mark 1:11; Luke 3:22 - see notes), verse 7 of this familiar Psalm seems likely to be the purpose of God's voice from Heaven at the baptism of Jesus by John the Baptist saying, "Thou art my beloved Son; in thee I am well pleased."
Who by the mouth of thy servant David hast said, Why did the heathen rage, and the people imagine vain things? The kings of the earth stood up, and the rulers were gathered together against the Lord, and against his Christ. For of a truth against thy holy child Jesus, whom thou hast anointed, both Herod, and Pontius Pilate, with the Gentiles, and the people of Israel, were gathered together, For to do whatsoever thy hand and thy counsel determined before to be done.
And we declare unto you glad tidings, how that the promise which was made unto the fathers, God hath fulfilled the same unto us their children, in that he hath raised up Jesus again; as it is also written in the second psalm, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee. [Quoted from Psalm 2:7]
Furthermore, Psalm 2:7 is quoted as a reference to Jesus in Hebrews 1:5 (see notes) as well as Hebrews 5:5 (see notes). Therefore, while not specifically stated in the Psalm itself, this Psalm is most definitely Messianic and refers to Jesus himself as the future Messiah.
A Psalm of David.
1 LORD, who shall abide in thy tabernacle? who shall dwell in thy holy hill?
2 He that walketh uprightly, and worketh righteousness, and speaketh the truth in his heart.
3 He that backbiteth not with his tongue, nor doeth evil to his neighbour, nor taketh up a reproach against his neighbour.
4 In whose eyes a vile person is contemned; but he honoureth them that fear the LORD. He that sweareth to his own hurt, and changeth not.
5 He that putteth not out his money to usury, nor taketh reward against the innocent. He that doeth these things shall never be moved.
From Expositor's Bible Commentary regarding verse 1:
The complementary usage of sanctuary and your holy hill suggests the background of a pilgrimage to Mount Zion, Gods holy hill. There David had first placed a tent for the ark of the covenant (cf. 2 Sam 6:1-19). On that site the tent was later replaced by the magnificent temple of Solomon. The word sanctuary (ohel tent) is a technical term for the tabernacle of God among Israel.
In this Psalm, David outlines the outward traits of those who have an abiding relationship with God as follows:
To the chief Musician upon Aijeleth Shahar, A Psalm of David.
1 My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me? why art thou so far from helping me, and from the words of my roaring?
2 O my God, I cry in the daytime, but thou hearest not; and in the night season, and am not silent.
3 But thou art holy, O thou that inhabitest the praises of Israel.
4 Our fathers trusted in thee: they trusted, and thou didst deliver them.
5 They cried unto thee, and were delivered: they trusted in thee, and were not confounded.
6 But I am a worm, and no man; a reproach of men, and despised of the people.
7 All they that see me laugh me to scorn: they shoot out the lip, they shake the head, saying,
8 He trusted on the LORD that he would deliver him: let him deliver him, seeing he delighted in him.
9 But thou ART HE THAT TOOK ME OUT OF THE WOMB: THOU DIDST MAKE ME HOPE WHEN I WAS upon my mother’s breasts.
10 I was cast upon thee from the womb: thou ART my God from my mother’s belly.
11 Be not far from me; for trouble IS NEAR; FOR THERE IS none to help.
12 Many bulls have compassed me: strong BULLS of Bashan have beset me round.
13 They gaped upon me WITH THEIR MOUTHS, AS a ravening and a roaring lion.
14 I am poured out like water, and all my bones are out of joint: my heart is like wax; it is melted in the midst of my bowels.
15 My strength is dried up like a potsherd; and my tongue cleaveth to my jaws; and thou hast brought me into the dust of death.
16 For dogs have compassed me: the assembly of the wicked have inclosed me: they pierced my hands and my feet.
17 I may tell all my bones: they look AND stare upon me.
18 They part my garments among them, and cast lots upon my vesture.
19 But be not thou far from me, O LORD: O my strength, haste thee to help me.
20 Deliver my soul from the sword; my darling from the power of the dog.
21 Save me from the lion’s mouth: for thou hast heard me from the horns of the unicorns.
22 I will declare thy name unto my brethren: in the midst of the congregation will I praise thee.
23 Ye that fear the LORD, praise him; all ye the seed of Jacob, glorify him; and fear him, all ye the seed of Israel.
24 For he hath not despised nor abhorred the affliction of the afflicted; neither hath he hid his face from him; but when he cried unto him, he heard.
25 My praise shall be of thee in the great congregation: I will pay my vows before them that fear him.
26 The meek shall eat and be satisfied: they shall praise the LORD that seek him: your heart shall live for ever.
27 All the ends of the world shall remember and turn unto the LORD: and all the kindreds of the nations shall worship before thee.
28 For the kingdom is the LORD’S: and he is the governor among the nations.
29 All they that be fat upon earth shall eat and worship: all they that go down to the dust shall bow before him: and none can keep alive his own soul.
30 A seed shall serve him; it shall be accounted to the Lord for a generation.
31 They shall come, and shall declare his righteousness unto a people that shall be born, that he hath done this.
David is mentioned in the introductory title as the author of this one.
Regarding the introduction found at the beginning of this Psalm, Easton writes:
Aijeleth Shahar: hind of the dawn, a name found in the title of Psalm 22. It is probably the name of some song or tune to the measure of which the psalm was to be chanted. Some, however, understand by the name some instrument of music, or an allegorical allusion to the subject of the psalm.
We see the transition from suffering to praise taking place in verse 25. And notice that Christ draws from this Psalm when he is on the cross in Matthew 27:46 (see notes). At first glance, it would seem that David is talking of his own relationship with God here, and that this passage is not meant to be messianic. However, Jesus' words from the cross were, "My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?" That's an exact quotation of David. This statement identified his suffering with that of David and sealed into the minds of those familiar with the Psalms that this was the Messiah identifying with the suffering of David.
Add to that the messianic implications of verse 18, "They part my garments among them, and cast lots upon my vesture." This is exactly what the Roman soldiers did after the crucifixion of Jesus in John 19:23-24 (see notes) where John points out to his readers that this is a fulfillment of prophecy i.e. Psalm 22:18. It is for that reason that, whether David was speaking of his own adversities or not, the work of the Messiah was in clear view and recognized as such by the Gospel writers.
The Lord is my shepherd (Psalm 23)
A Psalm of David.
1 The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want.
2 He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.
3 He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.
4 Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou ART with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.
5 Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.
6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the LORD for ever.
In this familiar Psalm, David personalizes his relationship with God. He expresses the confidence he has in God by the analogy of the good shepherd and his sheep. Christ was certainly depending on the familiarity of the Pharisees with this Psalm when he used this same analogy in John 10:1-21 (see notes). In that passage, the Jewish leadership had forsaken their flock, something a good shepherd would never do.
What you need to know about God (Psalm 24)
A Psalm of David.
1 The earth is the LORD’S, and the fulness thereof; the world, and they that dwell therein.
2 For he hath founded it upon the seas, and established it upon the floods.
3 Who shall ascend into the hill of the LORD? or who shall stand in his holy place?
4 He that hath clean hands, and a pure heart; who hath not lifted up his soul unto vanity, nor sworn deceitfully.
5 He shall receive the blessing from the LORD, and righteousness from the God of his salvation.
6 This is the generation of them that seek him, that seek thy face, O Jacob. Selah.
7 Lift up your heads, O ye gates; and be ye lift up, ye everlasting doors; and the King of glory shall come in.
8 Who is this King of glory? The LORD strong and mighty, the LORD mighty in battle.
9 Lift up your heads, O ye gates; even lift them up, ye everlasting doors; and the King of glory shall come in.
10 Who is this King of glory? The LORD of hosts, he is the King of glory. Selah.
This Psalm of David simply praises the Lord God Jehovah.
Here, we see God is shown in three capacities:
We got a praise song here! (Psalm 47)
To the chief Musician, A Psalm for the sons of Korah.
1 O clap your hands, all ye people; shout unto God with the voice of triumph.
2 For the LORD most high is terrible; he is a great King over all the earth.
3 He shall subdue the people under us, and the nations under our feet.
4 He shall choose our inheritance for us, the excellency of Jacob whom he loved. Selah.
5 God is gone up with a shout, the LORD with the sound of a trumpet.
6 Sing praises to God, sing praises: sing praises unto our King, sing praises.
7 For God is the King of all the earth: sing ye praises with understanding.
8 God reigneth over the heathen: God sitteth upon the throne of his holiness.
9 The princes of the people are gathered together, even the people of the God of Abraham: for the shields of the earth belong unto God: he is greatly exalted.
The authorship of this Psalm is not given. Note the introduction to this Psalm. The Korahites are first listed in Numbers 26:58 (see notes) among the chief Levitical families. In the description of the temple assignments in I Chronicles 26 (see notes) the Korahites are listed as gatekeepers. Notice what is said about the Korahites in the genealogical record found in I Chronicles 6:31 (see notes), "And these are they whom David set over the service of song in the house of the LORD, after that the ark had rest." The Korahites were David's designated musicians. The Psalm itself is just all about victory!
To the chief Musician, A Psalm or Song of David.
1 Let God arise, let his enemies be scattered: let them also that hate him flee before him.
2 As smoke is driven away, so drive them away: as wax melteth before the fire, so let the wicked perish at the presence of God.
3 But let the righteous be glad; let them rejoice before God: yea, let them exceedingly rejoice.
4 Sing unto God, sing praises to his name: extol him that rideth upon the heavens by his name JAH, and rejoice before him.
5 A father of the fatherless, and a judge of the widows, is God in his holy habitation.
6 God setteth the solitary in families: he bringeth out those which are bound with chains: but the rebellious dwell in a dry land.
7 O God, when thou wentest forth before thy people, when thou didst march through the wilderness; Selah:
8 The earth shook, the heavens also dropped at the presence of God: even Sinai itself was moved at the presence of God, the God of Israel.
9 Thou, O God, didst send a plentiful rain, whereby thou didst confirm thine inheritance, when it was weary.
10 Thy congregation hath dwelt therein: thou, O God, hast prepared of thy goodness for the poor.
11 The Lord gave the word: great was the company of those that published it.
12 Kings of armies did flee apace: and she that tarried at home divided the spoil.
13 Though ye have lien among the pots, yet shall ye be as the wings of a dove covered with silver, and her feathers with yellow gold.
14 When the Almighty scattered kings in it, it was white as snow in Salmon.
15 The hill of God is as the hill of Bashan; an high hill as the hill of Bashan.
16 Why leap ye, ye high hills? this is the hill which God desireth to dwell in; yea, the LORD will dwell in it for ever.
17 The chariots of God are twenty thousand, even thousands of angels: the Lord is among them, as in Sinai, in the holy place.
18 Thou hast ascended on high, thou hast led captivity captive: thou hast received gifts for men; yea, for the rebellious also, that the LORD God might dwell among them.
19 Blessed be the Lord, who daily loadeth us with benefits, even the God of our salvation. Selah.
20 He that is our God is the God of salvation; and unto GOD the Lord belong the issues from death.
21 But God shall wound the head of his enemies, and the hairy scalp of such an one as goeth on still in his trespasses.
22 The Lord said, I will bring again from Bashan, I will bring my people again from the depths of the sea:
23 That thy foot may be dipped in the blood of thine enemies, and the tongue of thy dogs in the same.
24 They have seen thy goings, O God; even the goings of my God, my King, in the sanctuary.
25 The singers went before, the players on instruments followed after; among them were the damsels playing with timbrels.
26 Bless ye God in the congregations, even the Lord, from the fountain of Israel.
27 There is little Benjamin with their ruler, the princes of Judah and their council, the princes of Zebulun, and the princes of Naphtali.
28 Thy God hath commanded thy strength: strengthen, O God, that which thou hast wrought for us.
29 Because of thy temple at Jerusalem shall kings bring presents unto thee.
30 Rebuke the company of spearmen, the multitude of the bulls, with the calves of the people, till every one submit himself with pieces of silver: scatter thou the people that delight in war.
31 Princes shall come out of Egypt; Ethiopia shall soon stretch out her hands unto God.
32 Sing unto God, ye kingdoms of the earth; O sing praises unto the Lord; Selah:
33 To him that rideth upon the heavens of heavens, which were of old; lo, he doth send out his voice, and that a mighty voice.
34 Ascribe ye strength unto God: his excellency is over Israel, and his strength is in the clouds.
35 O God, thou art terrible out of thy holy places: the God of Israel is he that giveth strength and power unto his people. Blessed be God.
Attributed to David in the introduction, this is one of the longer Psalms. It seems to center around Yahweh, the Divine Warrior, who comes to deliver his people in Mount Zion. This Psalm also has prophetic implications because of its usage (verse 18) by the Apostle Paul in Ephesians 4:8 (see notes), which speaks of the delivery of the Old Testament saints to Heaven by Jesus Christ after his resurrection.
Since this Psalm focuses on the power of God, it is most interesting to note the different Hebrew designations found here for God himself. Most of these are familiar Hebrew-to-English translations with which we are familiar. They are as follows:
This Psalm is rich with allusions to Israel's history of God's provisions for them. Verse 35 nicely summarizes when it says, "O God, thou art terrible out of thy holy places: the God of Israel is he that giveth strength and power unto his people. Blessed be God."