|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
31:19-24 Instead of yielding to impatience or despondency under our troubles, we should turn our thoughts to the goodness of the Lord towards those who fear and trust in Him. All comes to sinners through the wondrous gift of the only-begotten Son of God, to be the atonement for their sins. Let not any yield to unbelief, or think, under discouraging circumstances, that they are cut off from before the eyes of the Lord, and left to the pride of men. Lord, pardon our complaints and fears; increase our faith, patience, love, and gratitude; teach us to rejoice in tribulation and in hope. The deliverance of Christ, with the destruction of his enemies, ought to strengthen and comfort the hearts of believers under all their afflictions here below, that having suffered courageously with their Master, they may triumphantly enter into his joy and glory.
Verse 20. - Thou shalt hide (or, thou hidest) them in the secret of thy presence from the pride (rather, conspiracies) of man. Intense light forms as good a hiding-place as intense darkness. No vision can penetrate it. It is "too dazzling bright for mortal eye." Thus those whom God brings close to himself, and on whom he pours the light of his countenance, need no other protection. Their life is hid in God. Thou shalt keep them (or, thou keepest them) secretly in a pavilion from the strife of tongues. God keeps his own in a "pavilion," or leafy arbour, a place of coolness and refreshment, far away from the "lying lips" (ver. 18) and slanderous tongues (ver. 13) of the ungodly.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
Thou shall hide them in the secret of thy presence,.... That is, those that fear the Lord and trust in him; and therefore they are called his "hidden ones", Psalm 83:3; these the Lord preserves in times of trouble and danger, and when his indignation is out against others; and so the Targum is, "in the time of thine anger"; see Isaiah 26:20; the presence of God is their protection, he himself is a wall of fire round about them, his favour compasses them as a shield, and they are kept as in a garrison by his power; see Psalm 91:1; and that "from the pride of man", which otherwise would at once oppress, bear them down, and destroy them, Psalm 124:1;
thou shall keep them secretly in a pavilion from the strife of tongues; which areas a sharp sword, and from whence proceed devouring words, such contradiction of sinners as Christ endured; not that the saints are kept free from the reproaches of men, from the lash of their tongues, but from being harmed by them; and sometimes, through the strivings and contentions of men with one another, they privately escape and are preserved, as the Apostle Paul was, Acts 23:9.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
20. the secret of thy presence—or, covering of Thy countenance; the protection He thus affords; compare Ps 27:5 for a similar figure; "dwelling" used there for "presence" here. The idea of security further presented by the figure of a tent and a fortified city [Ps 31:21].
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