Psalm 18:1
For the choirmaster. Of David the servant of the LORD, who sang this song to the LORD on the day the LORD delivered him from the hand of all his enemies and from the hand of Saul. He said: I love You, O LORD, my strength.
Sermons
A Song of Thanksgiving in Review of a Troublous LifeHomilistPsalm 18:1-3
A Text that Looks Two WaysJ. Dolben, D. D.Psalm 18:1-3
David's Thanksgiving for His DeliveranceG. Lawson.Psalm 18:1-3
Have We Permission to Love GodN. Adams, D. D.Psalm 18:1-3
Jesus is My LovePsalm 18:1-3
Love to God PossiblePsalm 18:1-3
Shutting the Gates of DerryM. B. Hogg, B. A.Psalm 18:1-3
The Horn of My SalvationJohn Brown.Psalm 18:1-3
The Tale of a LifeJ. J. Stewart Perowne, B. D.Psalm 18:1-3
A Retrospect of LifeW. Forsyth Psalm 18:1-50
The Conqueror's Song of Praise and HopeC. Clemance Psalm 18:1-50
The Retrospect of a Life: a Sermon for the Close of the YearC. Short Psalm 18:1-50
It is not our purpose, nor is it our province, in this section of the 'Pulpit Commentary,' to write homilies on specific texts; but rather to deal with this psalm (as we have done with others) as a whole - for it is a unity - and to show how grand a basis it presents for the pulpit exposition of the provisions of "the everlasting covenant" to which allusion is made in the last verse of the psalm. The student and expositor might with advantage refer at the outset to Isaiah 4:3, "I will give you the sure mercies of David," with the view of showing that the promises made to David do immeasurably transcend any merely personal reference; that they include all the blessings which come to us through him who, though David's Son, was yet David's Lord. There is no reason to doubt the Davidic authorship of the psalm. There are, moreover, more data than most psalms present, to aid us in deciding the approximate date of its composition. We have it recorded in 2 Samuel 22:4-51. This gives us one historic clue to its date. Besides, the tone of triumph which is heard throughout it was scarcely heard in the later days of David, after his great crime had darkened the remainder of his earthly life. Vers. 19-24 could scarcely have been written after that catastrophe, even though it be urged that David writes rather of his administration as king than of his behaviour as a man. Regarding, then, the inscription at the head as showing us the occasion on which the psalm was first penned, and taking into account the prophetic far-reaching-ness of its closing words, we are called on to view it in a double aspect - one historical, the other typical.

I. LET US SKETCH ITS CONTENTS AS HISTORICALLY REFERRING TO KING DAVID AND HIS CONQUESTS.

1. Here is a distinct reference to David as king. And while we should miss very much of the significance of the psalm, were we to omit the larger view to which we shall presently refer, yet, on the other hand, if we omit the strictly historical application, our use of the psalm will be strangely incomplete. As, without the historic setting, there would be no basis on which to set anything further, so, without the larger view, there would be no adequate superstructure set up upon that basis. Combine both, and the glory of the psalm stands forth as combining inspiration and revelation in the contents of this triumphant song (see ver. 50, where the remarkable, phrase occurs, "his king;" i.e. God's king). David was God's appointed king for Israel, and as such he tunes his harp for Jehovah's praise.

2. With David as king, God had made a covenant. This is implied in ver. 50, where the mercies already granted are referred to as pledged "for evermore."

3. David had been plunged into fierce conflict. (See vers. 4, 5.) The study of David's life will furnish us with a host of facts in this direction.

4. Conflict had driven him to earnest prayer. (Ver. 6.) Again and again had he passed through this experience (see Psalm 34:6; Psalm 138:3). The believer's most piercing cries are sent upward to God, when he is being pierced by the sharpest arrows of affliction. How is it that we so often need the pressure of sorrow to quicken us from languor in prayer. Sad, - that prayer should be forced out rather than drawn out]

5. Prayer had been followed by timely deliverance. This is set forth in poetry which is truly sublime (see vers. 7-16). 'The Divine deliverance was seen:

(1) In girding the assailed one with strength (ver. 39).

(2) In rescuing him from his pursuers (ver. 16).

(3) In causing the foe to be prostrate under the conqueror's feet (ver. 40).

(4) In bringing forth the conqueror to liberty and gladness (ver. 19).

6. Such deliverance led him to triumph in God. It may be asked, however, "Is not such joy in God rather of an inferior order, when it arises because God has done for us just what we wished? Perhaps so. But that is not a correct setting of the case before us. It is this: God had promised deliverance. David pleaded with God on the ground of the promise; and he found the great Promiser true. Hence the jubilation. When prayers that are presented on the basis of God's promise are abundantly answered, gratitude may well burst forth in holy song (see vers. 1, 2). What joy to a believer to read in the trials and reliefs of life a perpetual revelation of the loving-kindness of God!

7. The mercies of the past assure him of help in the future. (Ver. 50.) For evermore." Even so. So often has prayer been turned to praise, so often have we cast our burden at God's feet, and borne a song away, that we cannot doubt him now. Rather will we sing, "Because thou hast been my help, therefore in the shadow of thy wings will I rejoice." God has helped us, and will "for evermore."

II. LET US NOTE ITS CONTENTS TYPICALLY, AS FULFILLED AND FULFILLING IN ONE WHO IS OF DAVID'S SEED, YET IS DAVID'S LORD. Although it is easy to explain the greater part of the phrases of this psalm by incidents in David's personal career, there are some which seem to tower above his or any man's experience, and which can be adequately interpreted only as the psalm is regarded as having not only historical meaning, but also typical and predictive significance. How this manifests itself will appear, we trust, from the present outlines.

1. The kingship of David was not only personal, but also typical and prophetic. That such was the case may be gathered from the last verse of this psalm, and also from a study of the following passages: 2 Samuel 7:12-16; 2 Samuel 23:2-5; Psalm 16:8-10; Psalm 89:20-37; Psalm 132:11-18; Psalm 110.; Matthew 22:41-45; Acts 2:25-36; Acts 13:32-37. That gracious redemptive work, which began with the calling out of Abraham (Isaiah 51:2, Hebrew), was being carried forward through David with a view to its fulfilment in the Lord Jesus Christ, who is seated on David's throne. And the glory of King David is infinitely surpassed in David's Lord; while the promises made to David and his seed are made over to all who are in blessed covenant relation to God through the Lord Jesus Christ (Isaiah 4:3).

2. The Lord Jesus and his saints are gone forth to war. (Ver. 34.) In a high and holy sense, as the kingship of David was typical, so also were his wars. One of the early visions of the seer of Patmos indicated this. He sees One who speaks of himself as the Root and Offspring of David (Revelation 22:16) going forth conquering and to conquer (Revelation 6:2); and, indeed, the entire Book of the Apocalypse might be called the 'Book of the Wars of the Lord.'

3. The issue of the great conflict is already foreseen. The "for evermore" with which the psalm closes spans the whole of the present dispensation, and reaches forward to the time when Jesus shall have "all enemies beneath his feet." This is beyond doubt. The everlasting covenant is "ordered in all things and sure."

4. Ere this final victory, there will intervene many a struggle and many a rescue. While David's Lord is on high, controlling the conflict, and administering all, the saints are in the midst of the struggle. As individuals they are called to "wrestle against the world-rulers of darkness." Ministers of the gospel are to "endure hardness, as good soldiers of Jesus Christ." And the Church, as a whole, will have to undergo many a severe struggle. At times it may seem as if the cause were all but lost. But the great Commander will ensure his army all timely rescue as well as final triumph.

5. All the enemies of Christ will be put to shame. (Isaiah 60:12; Romans 16:20; Psalm 18:40-42; also vers. 13, 14, 45.)

6. The great King will receive the homage of the peoples, and be exalted above all. (Vers. 43, 44.) The expression in ver. 43, "the Head of the nations," can be fully accomplished only in Christ as our victorious Lord. "All nations shall serve him."

7. All who are now fighting on the King's side will share his victory. That which is the result for David is ensured also to "his seed" (ver. 50). As our Lord is not alone in the war, so he will not be alone when the war is over. His triumph will be that also of those who are his.

8. The result of all will be a new disclosure of God. (Vers. 1, 2, 30, 31, 46, 47.) Just as David's career was ever unfolding to him the faithfulness and love of God, so will the result of the Church's conflict reveal to believers how great, how vast, was the scheme of mercy for men's deliverance, and for the discomfiture of the powers of ill. The glory of God will stand out revealed in the day of final triumph, putting doubts and fears to fiight, as his love stands forth vindicated in the glorious result of all. And the oft-repeated Scripture phrase, "They shall know that I am the Lord," will be fulfilled with a glory and grandeur beyond our utmost stretch of thought.

9. All this is now God's noblest prophecy, and will be hereafter the theme of the saints noblest song. Psalm 18, may well be regarded as finding its exposition, its supplement, in Revelation 5. In the psalm we have God's providences forecast; in the Apocalypse we have God's providences reviewed. In the former David's conquests are recited; in the latter the conquests of the Root of David. In the former we have the song of the victorious David; in the latter the new song of the victorious Seed of David. And by as much as David's Lord is greater than David, by so much will the new song of the redeemed transcend the noblest flights of Hebrew praise. - C.







I will love Thee, O Lord, my strength.
In this magnificent hymn the royal poet sketches, in a few grand outlines, the tale of his life — the record of his marvellous deliverances, and of the victories which Jehovah had given him — the record, too, of his own heart, the truth of its affection towards God, and the integrity of purpose by which it had ever been influenced. Throughout that singularly chequered life, hunted as he had been by Saul before he came to the throne, and harassed perpetually after he became king by rivals, who disputed his authority and endeavoured to steal away the hearts of his people — compelled to fly for his life before his own son, and engaged afterwards in long and fierce wars with foreign nations — one thing had never forsaken him, the love and presence of Jehovah. By His help he had subdued every enemy, and now, in his old age, looking back with devout thankfulness on the past, he sings this great song of praise to the God of his life. With a heart full of love he will tell how Jehovah delivered him, and then there rises before the eyes of his mind the whole force and magnitude of the peril from which he had escaped. So much the more wonderful appears the deliverance which accordingly he represents in a bold poetical figure, as a stooping of the Most High from heaven to save him — who comes, as He came of old to Sinai, with all the terror and gloom of earthquake, and tempest, and thick darkness. But God delivers those only who trust in Him and who are like Him. There must be an inner life of communion with God, if man will know His mercy. Hence David passes on to that covenant relationship in which he had stood to God. He had ever been a true Israelite, and therefore God, the true God of Israel, had dealt with him accordingly. And thus it is at the last that the servant of Jehovah finds his reward.

(J. J. Stewart Perowne, B. D.)

? — It will awaken surprise in you to hear this question, yet it cannot exceed mine on hearing it, as I once did, from a distinguished man whom I had long regarded as truly devout. Being together at the house of his relative, this man, of worldwide reputation as a man of genius, astonished me with this question, "What do you understand by love to God?" I looked at him with surprise; but before I could speak he added, "I know what fear of God means; but I do not understand what is meant when I am called upon to love God." Had I uttered the .thought which arose in my mind I should have said, "I always supposed you to be a Christian; can it be possible that you have need that one should teach you the alphabet of religious experience? But I put questions to him, encouraged by his frank nature, and I now discovered that his difficult was this, that loving God implied a degree of familiarity which seemed to him unsuitable in a finite creature when approaching his Creator. He acknowledged that the language of the Bible encouraged the idea of familiarity in our intercourse with God; still, he preferred to explain all such permission by what he called Orientalism. In vain was it urged in reply that Orientalism rather forbade than encouraged liberty in approaching Majesty; prostration, even to abjectness, was enjoined on ministers of state, as well as menial servants. Hence there are two extremes against which we have need to be on our guard. One is familiarity; the other is stoicism. The apostles maintain a just medium between these extremes. The question which I have already mentioned as put to me by a man of distinguished genius was also expressed by a plain man, a mechanic, he was in the last stages of a decline, but in full possession of his faculties. Once as I was leaving his bedside he said, "One thing more I wish to ask: I lie here and talk with God in a way which startles me. I use expressions of endearment, address Him by affectionate names, make requests as a child to a parent, indulge in words of adoration; all of which, on second thought, seem to me too free for a mortal to use in his intercourse with his Master. Yet my feelings are so strong that I cannot restrain myself." I said to him, "You ask, May you love God thus? The Saviour says, quoting the Old Testament, 'Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind.' Do you ever exceed this. An expression of satisfaction came over his face. The next day he had gone to see Him "whom not having seen" he "loved." The words of the text leave no room to question that the, predominant feeling of David was this, "I will love Thee, O Lord, my strength." Then he proceeds to heap up epithets of love to God. He draws them from his experience in wildernesses and caves. Had he been a seafaring man we doubtless should have had him saying, "Thou art my lighthouse, my pilot, my harbour; to Thee I am homeward bound; with Thee I am safe home." How enthusiastic in passionate expression of love to God is all true religious poetry. And when a man is converted, how his heart goes out in love to God. See this in Paul. And here is one instance from the preaching of the Gospel, and there are scores of such. A man was riding home on horseback after evening service, meditating on what he had heard. He was secretly persuaded to yield himself up to God, when all at once light from heaven broke upon his mind, revealing to him the way of salvation by Christ with a sense of peace with God and the joy of pardoned sin; so that he found himself in a new world. Unable to contain his joy at the discovery, having no one at home who could enter into his feelings, turning his horse's head, he rode back three miles to the minister's house, and called him to the door. Taking both of the minister's hands in his, he cried out, "Oh, sir! what a God we have!" which was the substance of all that he said, for it was impossible for words to express his emotions, and he mounted and rode home, singing and praying. No one would have found it more impossible than he to answer the question, "What do you understand by loving God?" — he whose whole being was at that hour flooded with it could have found no words to define his emotions. Does anyone say, "Of what value can such emotions be to God?" We might answer him, Of what value is anything to God? He will one day give up this globe to fire. There is nothing of any value to God except love. The whole object of God in the Bible seems everywhere to have been to make men love Him.

I. THE EXPERIENCE OF MEN IN THE BIBLE SHOWS US THAT THE SUM OF HUMAN DUTY IS TO LOVE GOD. See the Book of Deuteronomy, to which our Lord so often referred. It is full of expostulations to urge Israel to love God. Joshua, too, does not hid them tremble, as he well might, in view of their stupendous history, but "love the Lord." Some will say this seems very strange. Let such consider that there is no way in which, on account of the hardness of our hearts, God brings us to love Him more effectually than by His terrible dispensations. When night comes down in the Azores the lavender beds yield perfumes which all day long the hot sun had consumed. After a storm we look for sea mosses and pebbles which the working of the sea has ,brought on shore. "The Lord hath said that He will dwell in the thick darkness" — so spoke Solomon, and it is true. If God. desires to draw a Christian very near to Himself, He will almost always send a heavy trial upon him. David said, "When He hath tried me I shall come forth as gold." We see Christians who have been grievously afflicted, cleaving to God the more that He smites them. If God has set His love on a man He may honour him by great trials. He cannot trust all to bear great trials. He said of Saul of Tarsus, "I will show him how great things he must suffer, for My sake." Probably there is nothing which excites the admiration of angels more than to see us loving God the more that He afflicts us. Then they see the power of faith; how it makes a man endure as seeing Him who is invisible.

II. THE CROSS OF CHRIST IS THE DIVINE TESTIMONY TO MAN, NOT ONLY THAT HE MAY BUT THAT HE MUST LOVE GOD. See how John in his epistles insists on this, that God is Love. The governing principle in God is love. Other attributes belong to Him, but He is none of them. "God is Love." Therefore He must desire the love of His people. They are born of the Spirit. Shall man, His new creation, be a cold, phlegmatic, intellectual being? May we be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth and length and depth and height; and to know the love of Christ which passeth knowledge, that we may be filled with all the fulness of God.

(N. Adams, D. D.)

I. BACKWARD, UPON THE MERCIES AND DELIVERANCES OF GOD. These are expressed in the titles used — strength, rock, fortress, etc. These are synonymous phrases, signifying one and the same thing. There is not here merely the exuberance of a poetical style. The apparent exaggeration in David's hymn flows from the abundance of a devout and grateful heart labouring to empty and discharge its fulness. How well such a full acknowledgment would become us!

II. FORWARD, IN THE RETURNS OF DUTY, to which he engageth himself.

1. Of love (ver. 1).

2. Of trust (ver. 1).

3. Of praise and prayer (ver. 3).We are to love God for His own excellencies, because He requires it, and in response to His love. Trust is an act of friendship, and the greatest fruit it yields, mutual confidence, springing naturally from mutual affection.

(J. Dolben, D. D.)

Homilist.
This Psalm is a fervent outpouring of gratitude, not for any single deliverance, but for all the deliverances of his tried and stormy life.

I. A LIFE GREATLY TROUBLED. Four facts concerning "ungodly men." They were worthless, numerous, violent, and indefatigable. And our sufferings, as David's, grow out of our physical constitution, our social relationships, our moral delinquencies and remorses.

II. A GOD EQUAL TO ALL EMERGENCIES. God appears to David in his trials in a two-fold aspect — passive and active: resting as a rock, and moving as a thunderstorm.

1. God appeared to him as his all-sufficient protector. A refuge impregnable, ever accessible, and everlasting.

2. God appeared as his triumphant deliverer. The description of God moving for his deliverance is grandly poetic. This poetic description is both natural and religious. Three observations are suggested —

(1)It is a movement in answer to prayer.

(2)It is a movement sublimely grand.

(3)It is a movement completely effective.

III. A SOUL ALIVE WITH TRUE SENTIMENTS.

1. Love. Love to God is the essence of goodness, and the sum total of man's obligation.

2. Trust. This is connected with love. True love has respect to excellence, and will ever lead to trusting.

3. Praise. "I will call upon the Lord, who is worthy to be praised." Worship is heaven.

(Homilist.)

"I cannot love God," said a thoughtless man, "for I have never seen Him." "Canst thou not?" replied his companion. "Then thou canst do less than the little blind girl who sits under the shade of the chestnut tree on the village green. She can love her father and mother, though she has never seen them, and will never see them till the latest hour of her life."

The Lollards' Tower in London, constructed by Chicheley, Archbishop of Canterbury, in his palace at Lambeth, at the cost of six hundred pounds, was often filled with persons accused of heresy. The walls of this dungeon still bear witness to the sorrows and hopes of those who suffered in this place. The words "Jesus amor meus (Jesus is in Love), written by some poor martyr, may still be seen upon the wall in the Lollards' Tower.

Many songs of thanksgiving were composed by David. Perhaps it would be too bold for us to say that this Psalm excels them all; but we may say without hesitation, that none of them excels this.

I. OF DAVID'S DELIVERANCE FROM THE HANDS OF HIS ENEMIES. In the early part of David's life he obtained signal instances of God's preserving mercy. A lion and a bear came to destroy a lamb of his fold; David had the courage to attack both these fierce animals in defence of the young of his flock, and the Lord delivered him. A great deliverance was granted to himself, and through him to his people, when the Lord delivered into his hand the terrible giant of Gath. Many and wonderful were the deliverances which he obtained from Saul. David sometimes thought it necessary for himself to leave the Lord's land and to seek refuge among strangers, who were not such heathens as many of his own people. Among them, too, he found protection and obtained great deliverances. The king of Moab behaved to him with kindness, so far as we know. Among the Philistines he was more than once in extreme danger. But the Lord was still his stay and his helper. When the Philistines were brought low by many terrible engagements, David was still exposed to great perils, but the Lord preserved him whithersoever he went. Neither Moabites, nor Ammonites, nor Syrians of different kingdoms could stand before him, either singly or in conjunction, for the Lord taught his hands to war and his fingers to fight. But when the Lord had given him rest from his enemies round about, evil rose up against him out of his own kingdom and out of his own house. Sheba rose up after Absalom to seek his life, but he soon lost his own, as his predecessor in wickedness had done. These were some of David's deliverances from his many visible enemies; and they were attended and sweetened by other deliverances, not less, but still more important. He was sometimes almost overwhelmed by fear and dejection of spirit. He was often in great bodily distress; but he cried unto the Lord and was healed (Psalm 30). But the most dangerous of his troubles were those which he suffered from the law in his members warring against the law in his mind, and bringing him into captivity to the law of sin which was in his members.

II. OF GOD AS THE DELIVERER OF DAVID. "Salvation is of the Lord" (Psalm 3:8). Everywhere we find him giving to the Lord the glory of the salvation wrought for him. "The Lord is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer. The God of my rock, in Him will I trust: He is my shield and. the horn of my salvation; my high tower and my refuge, my Saviour, Thou savest me from violence" (2 Samuel 22:2, 3). "For who is God save the Lord? Who is a rock save our God?" (2 Samuel 22:32). We know that there were many heroes who obtained a just and glorious name for the valiant exploits which they performed in the defence of their king and country. One of them had the honour of preserving the life of David when the hand of a terrible giant was lifted up against him. And there were many besides his mighty men to whom he was greatly indebted for signal service. His life was at one time saved by the kindness and wit of his wife Michal, at another time by the good offices of Jonathan, and even the Philistines were at one time made the instruments of preserving the life of that champion of Israel who was to be the destroyer of their power. But we never find David employing his fine genius in celebrating the exploits of these heroes to whom he was so greatly indebted. God is pleased for the most part to employ means and instruments in His works of mercy or of vengeance. But they do neither less nor more than God has intended to accomplish by them. It was God who made use of the Philistines for the salvation of David at Selah-hammah-lekoth. They were far from meaning so, neither did their heart think so. God employed not only men on earth, but the angels of heaven, for the deliverance of David from his enemies, and therefore, in his commendations of the goodness of God to himself, he assures us that the angel of the Lord encamps round about them that fear the Lord, and delivers them. "Let their way be dark and slippery, and let the angel of the Lord persecute them" (Psalm 35). Whatever were the means employed for the deliverances of David, no doubt was left in the mind of any reasonable man concerning the great Author of his salvation. The Lord gave us sensible proofs of His presence with David and of His indignation against his enemies, as if He had in the literal sense bowed the heavens and come down. Had we hearts like David we would often be rejoicing in God, and singing His praises, when our corrupt dispositions prompt us to utter complaints as if God had forgotten to be gracious, because He will not resign the management of all our affairs into our own hands.

III. OF THIS PSALM OF THANKSGIVING TO GOD FELT ALL HIS DELIVERANCES. In this Psalm we find David expressing —

1. The ardour of his love to that God who had blessed him with so many and such wonderful deliverances. Dearly he loved the God of his salvation, before he needed any of the deliverances which gave occasion to this Psalm. But every new deliverance increased the ardour of his love.

2. We find him expressing his firm reliance on God as the God of his salvation. His faith was powerfully invigorated by every new deliverance. And would we not greatly dishonour Him if we withheld from Him our confidence after a thousand proofs of His special favour? (Psalm 18:2, 3).

3. He expatiates on the greatness, on the grace, on the glory of these salvations which had been wrought for him. He illustrates the greatness of the salvations by representing the dreadful danger from which he was delivered. The terrors of death had fallen upon him. He was like a brand plucked out of the burning, or like a man raised out of the grave. His deliverance was the answer of fervent cries addressed to God from the depths into which he was cast. We are too much disposed to look with a careless eye on the great works of God.

4. He celebrates the excellency of those Divine perfections which were manifested in his deliverance. He shews forth the glory of that righteousness which appeared in the gracious rewards bestowed on himself, and the vengeance inflicted on his wicked enemies. He shows forth the glory of the Lord as the God of salvation, who bad given striking and incontestable proofs of His saving power and grace in the salvations wrought for him. None of the gods of the nations had ever given any proofs of their power to save their worshippers that trusted in them. Great things God had done for David. David had himself performed wonderful things, and achieved victories that were to make him famous through all generations. But not to himself, but to his God was the praise due.

5. He praises God, and expresses his unshaken confidence in Him for the great things that were yet to be done for him, and for his seed after him. On the whole, we are taught by this Psalm what improvement we ought to make of the great works of God, recorded in His Word. If David saw and admired and celebrated in such strains of rapture his deliverance from the hand of his enemies, can we sufficiently admire the glory that shines forth in the whole train of providential administration recorded in the volume of inspiration? Manifold were the salvations wrought by God for Abraham and Jacob, for Moses and the people of Israel. Nor ought we to forget any of God's deliverances wrought for ourselves. Nor ought we to forget the obligations that lie upon us to praise God for our friends and brethren.

(G. Lawson.)

The Lord is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer.
In token of his gratitude to Jehovah for deliverance from Saul's malevolence, David wrote this Psalm, a glowing composition, in which martial similes abound. Thanksgiving is not only a national, but an individual duty. There are few today who seem to apprehend this obligation. With simple truthfulness it might be affirmed of most of us — "Prayers are many, thanks are rare. How many of us who, in critical moments and in sad emergencies, resorted to our God for deliverance and protection, sought His presence again when He heard our prayer and saw our tears?" Not without deep meaning and subtle experience of human perversity did David write, "I will pay Thee my vows which I spake with my mouth when I was in trouble."

(M. B. Hogg, B. A.)

The horn of my salvation.
The allusion here is doubtful. Some have supposed the reference to be to the horns of animals, by which they defend themselves and attack their enemies. "God is to me, does for me, what their horns do for them." Others consider it as referring to the well-established fact, that warriors were accustomed to place horns, or ornaments like horns, on their helmets. The horn stands for the helmet; and "the helmet of salvation" is an expression equivalent to "a saving, a protecting helmet." Others consider the reference as to the corners or handles of the altar in the court of the tabernacle or temple, which are called its horns. Others suppose the reference to be to the highest point of a lofty and precipitous mountain, which we are accustomed to call its peak. No doubt, in the Hebrew language, horn is used for mountain, as in Isaiah 5:1. A very fertile mountain is called a horn of oil. The sense is substantially the same whichever of these views we take; though, from the connection with "shield" or "buckler," I am induced to consider the second of these views as the most probable. It seems the same idea as that expressed (Psalm 140:7), "Thou hast covered," and Thou wilt cover "my head in the day of battle."

(John Brown.)

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