|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
106:34-48 The conduct of the Israelites in Canaan, and God's dealings with them, show that the way of sin is down-hill; omissions make way for commissions: when they neglected to destroy the heathen, they learned their works. One sin led to many more, and brought the judgments of God on them. Their sin was, in part, their own punishment. Sinners often see themselves ruined by those who led them into evil. Satan, who is a tempter, will be a tormentor. At length, God showed pity to his people for his covenant's sake. The unchangeableness of God's merciful nature and love to his people, makes him change the course of justice into mercy; and no other change is meant by God's repentance. Our case is awful when the outward church is considered. When nations professing Christianity, are so guilty as we are, no wonder if the Lord brings them low for their sins. Unless there is general and deep repentance, there can be no prospect but of increasing calamities. The psalm concludes with prayer for completing the deliverance of God's people, and praise for the beginning and progress of it. May all the people of the earth, ere long, add their Amen.
Verse 45. - And he remembered for them his covenant. According to the promise in Leviticus 26:42. And repented according to the multitude of his mercies (comp. Exodus 32:14; 2 Samuel 24:16; 1 Chronicles 21:15; Jeremiah 26:19, etc.). The expression is anthropomorphic, and must be understood so as not to clash with the declaration, "God is not a man, that he should repent" (1 Samuel 15:29).
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
And he remembered for them his covenant,.... At Sinai, according to Aben Ezra; rather that made with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob; see Psalm 105:8, not their covenant who promised to hear and do all that the Lord commanded, and did it not; but his covenant, his promise of giving them the good land, and settling them in it: the Lord is ever mindful of the covenant of his grace for his people, for their good; he remembers the promises he has made, where they are in Christ; and so as to fulfil and apply them; he remembers the blessings of it, the sure mercies of David, and gives them; he remembers for whom it is made, and never forgets them; he remembers with whom it is made, with his Son, the surety, messenger, and Mediator of it; he remembers that he is their covenant God and Father, and will be so for evermore; he remembers his lovingkindness, which has been ever of old, which is the source and foundation of it.
And repented according to the multitude of his mercies; his mercies temporal and spiritual are many; and there is an abundance of mercy displayed especially in spiritual ones, in redemption, in regeneration, and in the forgiveness of sin. Or "according to the abundance of his grace", or "gracious benefits" (e); there is an abundance of grace in his heart, in his Son, in his covenant, in salvation by Christ, and in every part of it; and which appears at conversion, as superabundant; and by this multitude of mercy, and abundance of grace, he is moved to "repent". This is sometimes denied of him; and indeed he never repents so as to change his mind, to alter his purposes, to revoke his promises or his gifts, these are all without repentance; but he sometimes changes his ways and his works, his conduct in Providence, and the course of it; and then he may be said to repent of the evil he threatened to do, or was doing, when he puts a stop to it; and instead of that bestows favours and blessings.
(e) "secundum amplitudinem, seu multitudinem gratiarum suarum", Cocceius, Gejerus.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
45. repented—(compare Ps 90:13).
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