|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
3:37-41 While there is life there is hope; and instead of complaining that things are bad, we should encourage ourselves with the hope they will be better. We are sinful men, and what we complain of, is far less than our sins deserve. We should complain to God, and not of him. We are apt, in times of calamity, to reflect on other people's ways, and blame them; but our duty is to search and try our own ways, that we may turn from evil to God. Our hearts must go with our prayers. If inward impressions do not answer to outward expressions, we mock God, and deceive ourselves.
Verses 37-54. - EXHORTATION TO REPENTANCE; RENDERED, LAMENTATION. Verses 37, 38. - True, God does not desire our misfortunes. But equally true is it that they do not happen without his express permission (comp. Isaiah 45:7; Amos 3:6). Verse 37. - That saith, and it cometh to pass (comp. Psalm 33:9; Genesis 1:3, etc.).
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
Who is he that saith, and it cometh to pass?.... Or, "who that says this shall be, and it cometh to pass?" or, "who is he that saith this shall come to pass?" (i) this, or that, or the other thing, he wills and desires, and his heart is set upon:
when the Lord commandeth it not? has not willed and decreed it, but determined the contrary; for nothing escapes his knowledge and foreknowledge; or can resist his will; or control his power; or frustrate his councils, and counterwork his designs; whatever schemes men form to get riches, obtain honour, do mischief to others, prolong life to themselves, and perpetuate their names to posterity, being contrary to the purpose of God, never succeed; whenever they do succeed in any of the above instances, it is because God has commanded, or he has determined, it should be so; as in the instances of Joseph's brethren, in their usage of him; and of the Jews, in the crucifixion of Christ, Proverbs 16:9. The Targum is,
"who is the man that saith, and evil is done in the world; but because they have done what was not commanded from the mouth of the Lord?''
(i) So some in Gataker.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
37-39. Who is it that can (as God, Ps 33:9) effect by a word anything, without the will of God?
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