|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
38:9-22 We have here Hezekiah's thanksgiving. It is well for us to remember the mercies we receive in sickness. Hezekiah records the condition he was in. He dwells upon this; I shall no more see the Lord. A good man wishes not to live for any other end than that he may serve God, and have communion with him. Our present residence is like that of a shepherd in his hut, a poor, mean, and cold lodging, and with a trust committed to our charge, as the shepherd has. Our days are compared to the weaver's shuttle, Job 7:6, passing and repassing very swiftly, every throw leaving a thread behind it; and when finished, the piece is cut off, taken out of the loom, and showed to our Master to be judged of. A good man, when his life is cut off, his cares and fatigues are cut off with it, and he rests from his labours. But our times are in God's hand; he has appointed what shall be the length of the piece. When sick, we are very apt to calculate our time, but are still at uncertainty. It should be more our care how we shall get safe to another world. And the more we taste of the loving-kindness of God, the more will our hearts love him, and live to him. It was in love to our poor perishing souls that Christ delivered them. The pardon does not make the sin not to have been sin, but not to be punished as it deserves. It is pleasant to think of our recoveries from sickness, when we see them flowing from the pardon of sin. Hezekiah's opportunity to glorify God in this world, he made the business, and pleasure, and end of life. Being recovered, he resolves to abound in praising and serving God. God's promises are not to do away, but to quicken and encourage the use of means. Life and health are given that we may glorify God and do good.
Verse 16. - By these things; i.e. "the things which thou speakest and doest" (ver. 15). Man does not "live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of the Lord" (Deuteronomy 8:3). And in all these things. This rendering is against the laws of grammar. Translate, and wholly in them.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
O Lord, by these things men live,.... Not by bread only, but by the word of God: by the promise of God, and by his power performing it; and by his favour and goodness continually bestowed; it is in him, and by his power and providence, that they live and move, and have their being, and the continuance of it; and it is his lovingkindness manifested to them that makes them live comfortably and go on cheerfully:
and in all these things is the life of my spirit; what kept his soul in life were the same things, the promise, power, and providence of God; what revived his spirit, and made him comfortable and cheerful, was the wonderful love and great goodness of God unto him, in appearing to him, and for him, and delivering him out of his sore troubles. Ben Melech renders and gives the sense of the words thus; "to all will I declare and say, that in these", in the years of addition (the fifteen years added to his days) "are the life of my spirit"; so Kimchi. The Targum interprets it of the resurrection of the dead,
"O Lord, concerning all the dead, thou hast said, that thou wilt quicken them; and before them all thou hast quickened my spirit:''
so wilt thou recover me, and make me to live; or rather, "and" or "for thou hast recovered (t) me, and made me to live"; for the Lord had not only promised it, but he had done it, Isaiah 38:15, and so the Targum,
"and hast quickened me, and sustained me.''
(t) So Gataker.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
16. by these—namely, by God's benefits, which are implied in the context (Isa 38:15, "He hath Himself done it" "unto me"). All "men live by these" benefits (Ps 104:27-30), "and in all these is the life of my spirit," that is, I also live by them (De 8:3).
and (wilt) make me to live—The Hebrew is imperative, "make me to live." In this view he adds a prayer to the confident hope founded on his comparative convalescence, which he expressed, "Thou wilt recover me" [Maurer].
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