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Psalm 75 by Alexander Maclaren

Psalm 75 by Alexander Maclaren

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Published by GLENN DALE PEASE
PSALM LXXV.

I We give thanks to Thee, O God, we give thanks ;
And [that] Thy name is near, Thy wondrous works declare
PSALM LXXV.

I We give thanks to Thee, O God, we give thanks ;
And [that] Thy name is near, Thy wondrous works declare

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Published by: GLENN DALE PEASE on Sep 20, 2013
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PSALM 75 BY ALEXADER MACLAREPSALM LXXV.I We give thanks to Thee, O God, we give thanks ;And [that] Thy name is near, Thy wondrous works declare3 " When I seize the set time,I, I judge [in] equity.3 Dissolved [in fear] are earth and its inhabitants JI, I set firm its pillars. Selah.4 I say to the fools, Be not foolish :And to the wicked, Lift not up the horn t5 Lift not up your horn on high ;Speak not with stiff neck."6 For not from east, nor from west,And not from the wilderness is lifting up7 For God is judge :This one He abases, and that one He lifts up,S For a cup is in the hands of Jehovah,And it foams with wine ; it is full of mixture,And He pours out from it :Yea, its dregs shall all the wicked of the earth gulp down anddrink.9 And as for me, I will declare [it] for ever,I will harp to the God of Jacob.10 And all the horns of the wicked will I cut off:Exalted shall be the horns of the righteous.
 
THIS psalm deals with the general thought of God's judgment in history, especially on heathennations. It has no clear marks of connection with anyparticular instance of that judgment. The prevalentopinion has been that it refers, like the next psalm,to the destruction of Sennacherib's army. There arein it slight resemblances to Psalm xlvi., and to Isaiah's3593 6o THE PSALMSprophecies regarding that event, which support theconjecture. Cheyne seems to waver, as on page 148of " Orig. of Psalt." he speaks of " the two Maccabeanpsalms, lxxiv. and lxxv.," and on page 166 concludesthat they " may be Maccabean, . . but we cannot claimfor this view the highest degree of probability, especiallyas neither psalm refers to any warlike deeds of Israelites.It is safer, I think, to . . . assign them at the earliestto one of the happier parts of the Persian age." It isapparently still safer to refrain from assigning themto any precise period.The kernel of the psalm is a majestic Divine utterance,proclaiming God's judgment as at hand. The limitsof that Divine word are doubtful, but it is best takenas occupying two pairs of verses (2-5). It is precededby one verse of praise, and followed by three (6-8)of warning spoken by the psalmist, and by two (9, 10)in which he again praises God the Judge, and standsforth as an instrument of His judicial acts.In ver. I, which is as a prelude to the great Voice fromheaven, we hear the nation giving thanks beforehand
 
for the judgment which is about to fall. The secondpart of the verse is doubtful. It may be taken thus :" And Thy name is near ; they (i.e., men) declare Thywondrous works." So Delitzsch, who comments : TheChurch " welcomes the future acts of God with ferventthanks, and all they that belong to it declare beforehandGod's wondrous works." Several modern scholars,among whom are Gratz, Baethgen, and Cheyne, adopta textual alteration which gives the reading, " They whocall upon Thy name declare," etc. But the renderingof the A. V., which is also that of Hupfeld and Perowne,gives a good meaning. All God's deeds in historyproclaim that He is ever a* hand to help. His namelxxv.] THE PSALMS j6iis His character as revealed by His self-manifestation ;and this is the glad thanks-evoking lesson, taught byall the past and by the judicial act of which the psalmis the precursor — that He is near to deliver His people.As Deut. iv. 7 has it, " What nation is there that hathGod so near unto them ? "The Divine voice breaks in with majestic abruptness,as in Psalm xlvi. 10. It proclaims impending judg-ment, which will restore society, dissolving in dread ormoral corruption, and will abase insolent wickedness,which is therefore exhorted to submission. In ver. 2two great principles are declared — one in regard to thetime and the other in regard to the animating spiritof God's judgment. Literally, the first words of theverse run, " When I lay hold of the appointed time."The thought is that He has His own appointed timeat which His power will flash forth into act, and thattill that moment arrives evil is permitted to run itscourse, and insolent men to play their " fantastic tricks "before an apparently indifferent or unobserving God.His servants are tempted to think that He delays too

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