|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
136:1-9 Forgetful as we are, things must be often repeated to us. By mercy we understand the Lord's disposition to save those whom sin has rendered miserable and vile, and all the provision he has made for the redemption of sinners by Jesus Christ. The counsels of this mercy have been from everlasting, and the effects of it will endure for ever, to all who are interested in it. The Lord continues equally ready to show mercy to all who seek for it, and this is the source of all our hope and comfort.
Verse 2. - Oh give thanks unto the God of gods: for his mercy, etc. The phrase, "God of gods," occurs first in Deuteronomy 10:17. It was one very familiar to the Assyrians and Babylonians ('Religions of the Ancient World,' pp. 56, 60, 68, etc.). In the Bible it is used by Joshua (Joshua 22:22), Nebuchadnezzar (Daniel 2:47), Daniel (Daniel 11:36), and this psalmist. It sanctions a secondary use of the word "God," such as is found also in Psalm 82:6; Psalm 96:4; Psalm 97:7, 9; Psalm 138:1.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
O give thanks unto the God of gods,.... Not only of the gods of the Gentiles, who are by name and not by nature gods; or of civil magistrates, who are so called, and seem to be designed in the next verse; but the angels, as Aben Ezra and Kimchi. Christ, our Immanuel, is the God of them, the object of their worship and adoration, being their Creator and Preserver, Psalm 97:7. So the Heathens say (r) of the Maker of all things, him you may properly call the God of gods, the Supreme and Best; this title Janus has with them (s);
for his mercy endureth for ever; in the preservation of those excellent creatures from apostasy, when many of their species fell; and in the continuance and confirmation of them in the state in which they were created; and in making use of them as ministering spirits to the heirs of salvation; and as a guard about them while they live, and at death to convey their souls to heaven.
(r) Hierocles in Carm. Pythagor. p. 10. (s) Macrob. Saturnal. l. 1. c. 9.
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