|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
28:1 Sin makes men cowards. Whatever difficulties the righteous meet in the way of duty, they are not daunted. 2. National sins disturb the public repose. 3. If needy persons get opportunities of oppressing, their extortion will be more severe than that of the more wealthy. 4. Wicked people strengthen one another in wicked ways. 5. If a man seeks the Lord, it is a good sign that he understands much, and it is a good means of understanding more. 6. An honest, godly, poor man, is better than a wicked, ungodly, rich man; has more comfort in himself, and is a greater blessing to the world. 7. Companions of riotous men not only grieve their parents, but shame them. 8. That which is ill got, though it may increase much, will not last long. Thus the poor are repaid, and God is glorified. 9. The sinner at whose prayers God is angry, is one who obstinately refuses to obey God's commands. 10. The success of ungodly men is their own misery. 11. Rich men are so flattered, that they think themselves superior to others. 12. There is glory in the land when the righteous have liberty. 13. It is folly to indulge sin, and excuse it. He who covers his sins, shall not have any true peace. He who humbly confesses his sins, with true repentance and faith, shall find mercy from God. The Son of God is our great atonement. Under a deep sense of our guilt and danger, we may claim salvation from that mercy which reigns through righteousness unto eternal life, by Jesus Christ our Lord. 14. There is a fear which causes happiness. Faith and love will deliver from the fear of eternal misery; but we should always fear offending God, and fear sinning against him. 15. A wicked ruler, whatever we may call him, this scripture calls a roaring lion, and a ranging bear. 16. Oppressors want understanding; they do not consult their own honour, ease, and safety. 17. The murderer shall be haunted with terrors. None shall desire to save him from deserved punishment, nor pity him.
Verse 9. - He that turneth away his ear from hearing the Law. He who refuses to hearken to and to practise the dictates of the Divine law (comp Proverbs 1:20. Even his prayer shall be abomination (comp. Proverbs 15:8, and note there). "God heareth not sinners" (John 9:31). Such a man's prayer, if he does pray, is not hearty and sincere, and therefore, lacks the element which alone can make it acceptable. He will not resolve to forsake his favourite sin, even while paying outward worship to the God whoso Law he breaks: what wonder that the prophet so sternly denounces such offenders (Isaiah 1:11. etc.), and the psalmist cries with terrible rigour, "When he shall be judged, let him be condemned; and let his prayer become sin" (Psalm 109:7)? St. Gregory ('Moral.,' 10:27), "Our heart blames us in offering up our prayers, when it calls to mind that it is set in opposition to the precepts of him whom it implores, and the prayer becomes abomination, when there is a 'turning away' from the control of the Law; in that wrily it is meet that a man should be a stranger to the favours of him to whose bidding he will not be subject." And again (ibid., 18:9, 10), "If that which he bids we do, that which we ask we shall obtain. For with God both these two do of necessity match with one another exactly, that practice should be sustained by prayer, and prayer by practice" (Oxford transl.).
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
He that turneth away his ear from hearing the law,.... Not merely the moral law, but the word of God in general, and any and every doctrine of it; though the law is to be heard and attended to, what it commands and forbids, its precepts, menaces, and curses: indeed the Spirit of God is not received by the hearing of the law, nor does faith come by that; but by hearing the word of God, particularly the Gospel; which yet then turn away their ears from, and are turned to fables, and choose to hearken to anything rather than that; and, like the deaf adder, stop their ears to the voice of the charmer, charming ever so wisely; the folly and sad effects of which will be seen when too late;
even his prayer shall be abomination; that is, to God; not only his ungodly actions, but even his outward exercises of religion, which carry in them some show of goodness and holiness; and particularly his prayer to God, which in upright persons is the delight of the Lord; yet in such an one it will be abhorred by him; when he is in distress, and shall pray to the Lord, he will not only turn a deaf ear to him, as he has to his law or word, but he will despise and abhor him and his prayer; because he has set at nought his counsel, and despised his reproof, Proverbs 1:24.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
9. (Compare Pr 15:8; 21:27).
hearing—that is, obeying. God requires sincere worshippers (Ps 66:18; Joh 4:24).
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