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PSALM IV.

To the chief musician on Neginoth, to the master of the band of music in the tabernacle; Neginoth signifies stringed instruments. A Psalm of David ; probably composed by him during his persecution by Saul.

1 TT E A R me when I call, O God of my righteousness JL JL thou hast enlarged me [when I was] in distress; have mercy upon me, and hear my prayer ; he appeals to God as a righteous judge, and pleads former instances of his delivering

2 goodness. Then addressing his enemies, he says, O ye sons of men, how long [will ye turn] my glory into shame? [how long] will ye love vanity, [and] seek after leasing? How long will ye revile my destination to the kingdom, object to my claim as a fraud and imposture, and spread false reports that have nofoun

3 dation. Selah. But know that the Lord hath set apart him that is godly for himself: the Lord will hear when I call unto him; God hath made a. remarkable and wonderful choice of the godly in all ages; his divine authority ha'h set me a/iart to the

4 throne, and there/ore he. will hear and support me. Stand in awe, and sin not; dread the "divine displeasure: commune with your own heart upon your bed, hear what conscience will say in your retired and silent hours, and it will convince you of my innocence, and of your own guilt; and be still; cease to persecute and revile me. Selah. Thty boasttd oftheir sacrifces, but he exhorts them,

5 Offer the sacrifices of righteousness, and put your tiust in the Lord ; offer your sacrifices with an ufiright and charitable heart, or they will not be acceptable. He then addresses himself to God.

6 [There be] many that say, Who will show Us [any] good? Lor D, lift tliou up the light of thy countenance upon us ; the generality are chiefly anxious about worldly good, and seek it by indirect methods, but I esteem thy favour, the smiles of thy approving mercy, as the best good; and the possession of it has given me greater joy than the joy of harvest and vintage, or any prosperity

7 which my enemies possess. Thou hast put gladness in my heart, more than in the time [that] their corn and their wine increased.

8 I will both lay me down in peace, and sleep; for thou, Lord, only makest me dwell in safety; I am so satisfied with thy favour, and so secure wider rhu protection, that I wilt lie down and sleep at once, not terrified by my enemies, since thou makest me to dwell in safety; thou alone, and I need no other defence.

, REFLECTIONS.

1. T E T us rejoice in God's peculiar favour to his people. I J He hath set apart him that is godly for himself, wonderfully selected them to be the objects of his special care and love. He knows and approves them, when their enemies are persecuting and reproaching them. Who would not rejoice and be glad, to enjoy the protection and favour of the most High!

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3. Let us attend to these precepts, which are of universal obligation and importance. Let us stand in awe of God's authority and power, and not dare to sin against him. We should commune with our own hearts; in secret silence of the mind, examine our state and temper toward God, that we may rot be deceived And if we desire that our spiritual sacrifices, our prayers and praises, should be accepted of God, let them proceed from pure hearts, and be offered without wrath and doubting. Then may we confidently put our trust in the Lord ; and he will accept our sacrifice, and be our refuge.

3. We are taught to prefer the favour of God before all the enjoyments of earth. Many say, who trill show us good? It is temporal, earthly good, which they seek and pursue; though this cannct satisfy the soul at present, nor make it happy hereafter. But the favour of God, a sense of his approbation and love, should be the objects of our warmest pursuit. This will abundantly make up the want of earthly blessings, and make us happy without them ; it will add a peculiar relish to the comforts of life; tend to the happiness of our days, and the repose of our nights ; and be an earnest and foretaste of everlasting joy.

PSALM V.

To the chief musician upon Nchiloth, which signifies a wind instrument, A Psalm of David, during Saul's persecution.

1 f** IVE ear to my words, Olobo, consider my media

2 V.T tion. Hearken unto the voice of my cry, my King, and

3 my God: for unto thee will I pray. My voice shnlt thou hear in the morning, O Lord ; in the morning will I direct [my prayer] unto thee, and will look up; he would direct hh prayer in a proper manr.er, and r.irh sui'able affections; he would fakufi with humble hofie and patient expectation of a gracious anmer;

4 and this he could do because hit heart was sincere. For thou [art? not a God that hath pleasure in wickedness: neither shall evil dwell with thee; not meet wi'h the least acceptance from thee.

5 The foolish shall not stand in tin* sight : thou hatest all workers of iniquity 'hey shall nt have any countenance from the*.

6 Thou shalt destroy them that speak leasing; those who accuied him to Saul: the Lord will abhor the bloody and deceitful man;

7 a just character of Saul himself. But as for me, I will come [into] thy house in the multitude of thy mercy; though I am at present banished from it,yet I hope to be soon restored to it ; [and,] till then in thy fear will t worship toward thy holy temple ; *""

t my prayers 1 will look that way* Lead me, O Lord, in thy righteousness, because of mine enemies ; lead me in thy commands, which are the rule of righteousness; make thy way straight before my face, that I may not take any rash, sinful, or imprudent tttft>

• The Uiaclitci were re^'iircU to do thii nlicn they were absent from the tctfll*

He entreats this because his enemies were very crafty and mati

9 cious: For [there is] no faithfulness in their mouth ; their

afieech is offensive and destructive; and whatever pretences of

piety and friendship they may make, their inward pari [is] very

■wickedness ; their throat [is] an open sepulchre; they flatter

lO with their tongue. Destroy thou them, O God; let them fall

by their own counsels; cast them out in the multitude of their

transgressions; for they have rebelled against thee; defeat their

counsels, and cast them out of thy protection : for by their oppo

1 1 sitzon to me they have opposed thy appointment. But let all

those that put their trust in thee, all righteous and honest men, be

protected and favoured, and on that account rejoice: let them

ever shout for joy, because thou defendest them I let them also

12 that love thy name be joyful in thee. For thou, Lord, wilt

bless the righteous ; it is suitable to thy nature and promise to do

«o ,- with favour wilt thou compass, or crown, him as [with] a

shield; thou wilt surround him with it on every side, and add *

dignity to him.

REFLECTIONS.

1. "V7T7" E here see in what manner we should pray. That V V is » very instructive phrase, in v. 3. Prayer should be directed or set in order before God, with great thought and seriousness. We should look with great intenseness, with earnest desires, and cheerful hope. This is necessary to the end of prayer, as a means to promote our piety, strengthen our faith, and encourage our dependence on God.

2. We are here shown what is necessary to the acceptance of prayer ; that our hearts be sincere, and that we obey the law of God. He does and must hate the wicked ; all bloody, deceitful and lying men; and their sacrifices must be an abomination to him. Let us therefore cleanse our hands from wickedness, and so encompass his altar.

3. We learn to wait on God for direction, that our ways may be upright and prudent, v. 8. It is desirable that God's way, that is, the way of duty, should be made straight before us, that we may easily find it out, and walk uprightly in it; that prudence and caution should attend all our steps; for there are scarce any who have not some unfriendly observers, who would reproach them, and religion too, if they should take any false step. In all thy ways acknowltdge God, and he shall direct thy paths.

4. We should rejoice in God's favourable regard to the righteous. Let their enemies speak lies of them, hate and persecute them, yet, delightful thought, God will bless them. Though their enemies should compass them about on every side, he will spread around them his almighty shield, which will be at once their defence and their glory. While we join prudent caution to sincere prayer, God will guide and project us. For the Lord God is a sun and shield, a light and a defence; he will give grace and glory; and nt goad thing will he withhold from them that walk uprightly.

Vol. IV. Ee

PSALM VI.

To the chief musician on Neginoth upon Sheminith; A'eginotA Sheminith signifies an instrument of eight strings; A Psalm of David, com/iosed un occutiioii of some sickness.

LORD, rebuke me not in thine anger, neither chasten me in thy hot displeasure; as if he had said, IVhen thou teest it necessary to afflict me, do it out oj lave, and according to

2 fatherly compassion. Have mercy upon me, О Lord ; for I

[am] weak: О Lord, heal me; for my bones are vexed ; pity

3 me, for I am full of grievous pains. My soul is also sore vexed; an apprehension of God's displeasure, and a fear of his further 4Vralh, had distressed his mind, and beclouded his sense of the divine

favour: But thou, О Lord, how long? Лото long valí thou suf

4 fer me to lie languishing in this condition ? Return, О Lord, deliver my soul: Oh save me for thy mercies' sake; deliver me

5 from thin sickness,and restore me to healthand inmardfleacc. For in death [there is] no remembrance of tnee: in the grave, who shall give thee thanks ? he pleads for this, lest he should soon die, and all ofifiurluniiies of service should be over; whereas if he recover

6 ed, he would celebrate God's praises, and instruct his people, I am weary with my groaning; all the night, or, every night^ make I my bed to swim; I water my couch with my tears; my pain and distress is so great that I groan and чиеер incessantly.

7 Mine eye is consumed because of grief; it waxeth old because of all mine enemies; he had an unpleasant and deadly aspect, and, to add to Üús uj/liction, his enemies insulted over him, and rejoiced in the /iros/iect uf hi» death, ffe then turns as it wtre to them, and

3 »ays, Depart from me, all ye workers of iniquity ; insult me no more; stay no longer expecting my death, if my disorder ivat sent as a punishment for my sins, and a token of divine displeasure; for the Loud hath heard the voice of my weeping.

9 The Lord liath heard my supplication ; the Lord will receive my prayer; lie wilt restore my health and comfort, accordùig to my prayer ¡ therefor? I am fully assured that I shall live to be victorious over my enemies, and see them disapfiointed in all their cruel 10 schemes against me. Let all mine enemies be ashamed and sore vexed: let them return [and] be ashamed suddenly.

REFLECTIONS.

1. ЛДТ"''' ^ave Sreat reason f°r thankfulness that the case of V V David is not ours. It was indee'd a melancholy one. It is bad to have the tone» vexed, and tears and groans extorted by violent pain ; but worse to have the »oui sore vexed, the peace of the mind lost; and especially to have all this aggravated by insults, reproaches and unkintlness. Let us bless God if, when we are sick, ve have no additional son ou s ; if we have kind friends, suitable IS э >

•eeoRünodations. and above all, peace of conscience, and a comfort__ __ _" »b!e sense of the divine favour. It may be inferred from hence, £ _§ — .; 2. That we may justly and reasonably pray for the removal of any

affliction which we labour under. One end for which afflictions are Km, is to quicken our prayers, to convince us of our dependence on God, and show us the vanity and insufficiency of all earthly things. It anij man afflicted? let him /¡ray; let him pray for deliverance out his afflictions; but especially that they may not be embittered by .1 sense of the divine displeasure ; that they may see his hand and read his love in every afflictive stroke. Let us pray that he would appear our friend ; then it matters little what we suffer, or who are our enemies.

3. In the most afflictive circumstances of life we should labour to have faith in God ; and commit our cause to him by humble, earnest prayer. Then, like David, we may rest in cheerful hope that he •will interpose in our favour, extricate us out of our difficulties, or cause them to work together for our good. Our faith will be peculiarly bright and honourable, when thus exercised, in the darkest seasons of life; and the trial of it will be found to our comfort in this world, and to firaise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ.

PSALM VII,

Shiggaion of David, which he sang unto the Lord, concerning the words of Cush the Benjamite.

SMggaiin is the name of some unknown song or instrument. Cuih was probably one of Saul's courtiers who had slandered JJav'd.

LOK D my Got!, in thee do I put my trust: save me from all them that persecute me, and deliver me ; / eti

2 treat lay favourable afifiearancefor me. Lest he tear my soul like a lion, rending [it] in pieces, dmtroying me with a great deal of rage and rrue/iy, while [liiere is] none to deliver; n on r that

3 mill or dare stand myfri-nl. О Lord my God, if I have done this which in laid to wij charité ; if there be iniquity in my hands,

4 particularly in conspiring against Saii/'в life; If I have rewarded evil unto him that was at peace with me ; if 1 have had ami treacherous dénions against him, or broken mi/ formant; (yea I have delivered him that without cause is mine tnemy ; / have lei him encape t when I had him in my fiower, which was the case twice; once when 1 took away /lia «//far, and again when I cut off'

5 the skirt of his garment ;). then Let the слету pevgeculc my soul, and take [it ;] yea, let him tread down вау life upon the earth, and lay mine honour in the dust ; let him succeed in hit designs against me, let me hone mij life and reputation too. Se»

6 Iah. But as thou knowcst it is olherwixe. Arise, О Lord, щ thine anger, lift up thyself because of the гацс of mine epc

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