|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 20. - The Lord was ready to save me; rather, came to my rescue; came and saved me. Therefore we will sing my songs to the stringed instruments; rather, therefore will we play my stringed instruments. Hezekiah calls the stringed instruments his, because he had recalled their use, and re-established them as a part of the temple service after the suspension of that service by Ahaz (2 Chronicles 29:30). His intention now is to take continual part with the Levites in (he choral praises of God, which were a part of the daily worship of the temple. This is to him the natural mode of expressing his thankfulness to God for the mercy vouchsafed him.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
The Lord was ready to save me,.... Or, "the Lord to save me (y)"; he was at hand to save him; he was both able and willing to save him; he was a present help in time of need; he arose for his help, and that right early; he very quickly delivered him out of his distress; he, who one day expected death every moment, was the next day in the temple praising God:
therefore will we sing my songs; which were made by him, or concerning him, or which he ordered to be sung, as he did the Psalms of David, 2 Chronicles 29:30,
to the stringed instruments: which were touched with the fingers, or struck with a quill or bow; which distinguishes them from wind instruments, which were blown with the mouth; each of these were used in the temple service:
all the days of our life; he had before said "we will sing", meaning his family and his friends with him, his courtiers, princes, and nobles, or he and the singers of Israel; and this he determined to do as long as he and they lived; signifying, that the mercy granted would never be forgotten by him, as well as there would be new mercies every day, which would call for praise and thankfulness: and this he proposed to do
in the house of the Lord; in the temple; not only privately, but publicly; not in his closet and family only, but in the congregation of the people; that the goodness of God to him might be more known, and the praise and glory given him be the greater.
(y) "Dominus ad servandum me", Montanus; "Jehova est ad salvandum me", Cocceius, Vitringa.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
20. was ready—not in the Hebrew; "Jehovah was for my salvation," that is, saved me (compare Isa 12:2).
we—I and my people.
in the house of the Lord—This song was designed, as many of the other Psalms, as a form to be used in public worship at stated times, perhaps on every anniversary of his recovery; hence "all the days of our life."
lump of figs—a round cake of figs pressed into a mass (1Sa 25:18). God works by means; the meanest of which He can make effectual.
boil—inflamed ulcer, produced by the plague.
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