|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
2:1-6 We are here told who would appear as adversaries to Christ. As this world is the kingdom of Satan, unconverted men, of every rank, party, and character, are stirred up by him to oppose the cause of God. But the rulers of the earth generally have been most active. The truths and precepts of Christianity are against ambitious projects and worldly lusts. We are told what they aim at in this opposition. They would break asunder the bands of conscience, and the cords of God's commandments; they will not receive, but cast them away as far as they can. These enemies can show no good cause for opposing so just and holy a government, which, if received by all, would bring a heaven upon earth. They can hope for no success in so opposing so powerful a kingdom. The Lord Jesus has all power both in heaven and in earth, and is Head over all things to the church, notwithstanding the restless endeavours of his enemies. Christ's throne is set up in his church, that is, in the hearts of all believers.
Verse 4. - He that sitteth in the heavens shall laugh. God "laughs" at the vain and futile efforts of man to escape from the control of his laws and throw off his dominion (comp. Psalm 37:13; Psalm 59:8). It is impossible that these efforts should succeed. Men must obey God willingly, or else unwillingly. The Lord (Adonay in the ordinary Hebrew text, but a large number of manuscripts have Jehovah) shall have them in derision. "Laughter" and "derision" are, of course, anthropo-morphisms. It is meant that God views with contempt and scorn man's weak attempts at rebellion.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
He that sitteth in the heavens shall laugh,.... At the rage and tumult of the Heathen; at the vain imaginations of the people; at the opposition of the kings of the earth; at the mad counsel of the rulers, against him and his Messiah; and at their proposal to one another to throw off the yoke and government of them both. This is a periphrasis of God, "who dwells in the heavens", and sits there enthroned; though he is not included and comprehended in them, but is everywhere; and his being there is mentioned in opposition to the kings of the earth, and the people in it; and to show the vast distance there is between them, and how they are as nothing to him, Isaiah 40:1, Job 4:18; and how vain and fruitless their attempts must be against him and his Messiah: and his sitting there still and quiet, serene and undisturbed, is opposed to the running to and fro, and the tumultuous and riotous assembling of the Heathen. Laughing is ascribed unto him, according to the language of men, as the Jewish writers speak (d), by an anthropopathy; in the same sense as he is said to repent and grieve, Genesis 6:6; and expresses his security from all their attempts, Job 5:22; and the contempt he has them in, and the certain punishment of them, and the aggravation of it; who will not only then laugh at them himself, but expose them to the laughter and scorn of others, Proverbs 1:26;
the Lord shall have them in derision; which is a repetition of the same thing in other words; and is made partly to show the certainty of their disappointment and ruin, and partly to explain who is meant by him that sits in the heavens. The Targum calls him, "the Word of the Lord"; and Alshech interprets it of the Shechinah.
(d) Kimchi, Aben Ezra, & R. Sol. Ben Melech in loc.
The Treasury of David
4 He that sitteth in the heavens shall laugh: the Lord shall have them in derision.
Let us now turn our eyes from the wicked council-chamber and raging tumult of man; to the secret place of the majesty of the Most High. What doth God say? What will the King do unto the men who reject his only-begotten Son, the Heir of all things?
Mark the quiet dignity of the Omnipotent One, and the contempt which he pours upon the princes and their raging people, He has not taken the trouble to rise up and do battle with them - he despises them, he knows how absurd, how irrational, how futile are their attempts against him - he therefore laughs at them.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
4. By a figure whose boldness is only allowable to an inspired writer, God's conduct and language in view of this opposition are now related.
He that sitteth in the heavens—enthroned in quiet dignities (compare Ps 29:10; Isa 40:22).
shall laugh—in supreme contempt; their vain rage excites His derision. He is still the Lord, literally, "Sovereign," though they rebel.
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