|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
47:1-4 The God with whom we have to do, is a God of awful majesty. The universal and absolute sovereignty of a holy God would be too terrible for us even to think of, were it not exercised by his Son from a mercy-seat; but now it is only terrible to the workers of iniquity. While his people express confidence and joy, and animate each other in serving him, let sinners submit to his authority, and accept his salvation. Jesus Christ shall subdue the Gentiles; he shall bring them as sheep into the fold, not for slaughter, but for preservation. He shall subdue their affections, and make them a willing people in the day of his power. Also it speaks of his giving them rest and settlement. Apply this spiritually; the Lord himself has undertaken to be the inheritance of his people. It shows the faith and submission of the saints. This is the language of every gracious soul, The Lord shall choose my inheritance for me; he knows what is good for me better than I do.
Verse 2. - For the Lord Most High is terrible (comp. Deuteronomy 7:21; and see also Psalm 65:5; Psalm 68:35; Psalm 76:7-9). God is "terrible" - i.e. awful to contemplate-on account of his vast power and his absolute holiness. He is a great King over all the earth. Not only over Israel, or over the nations which David has conquered, but ever every nation on the face of the earth (comp. Psalm 95:3, 4; Psalm 96:10; Psalm 97:1, etc.).
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
For the Lord most high is terrible,.... Christ is not only the Son of the Highest, but he himself is the most high God, God over all, blessed for ever. He is higher than the highest, than the angels in heaven, or any of the sons of men on earth. He is the high and lofty One, that dwells in the high and lofty place. And even this character agrees with him as the ascended Lord and King in his human nature; he is ascended on high, is set down on the right hand of the Majesty on high. He is highly exalted to be a Prince and a Saviour; he is made higher than the heavens, and than the kings of the earth are; angels, authorities, and powers, are subject to him. And this is a reason exciting all the people to joy and gladness. And he is "terrible" to his enemies, being the Lion of the tribe of Judah; who will rule the nations with a rod of iron, and break them in pieces as a potter's vessel: and so he will be when he shall come in the clouds of heaven, land descend from thence, in flaming fire, to take vengeance on those who have despised and rejected him; and at the same time will be glorious to and admired by them that believe in him. His appearance, which will be terrible to others, will be matter of joy to them. Though the word used may be rendered as it is in Psalm 111:9; "reverend" or "to be feared" (b), as he is; see Isaiah 8:13; both on account of his goodness, as the Redeemer and Saviour of his people, Hosea 3:5; and of his greatness, being equal with God, and King of saints. As it follows;
he is a great King over all the earth; as he must needs be, since he is the great God and our Saviour; and is King of kings, and Lord of lords. He is now King of Zion, and head over all things to the church; and before long the kingdoms of this world will become his, and he will take to himself his great power and reign, and shall be King over all the earth openly and visibly; he shall be one, and his name One, Zechariah 14:9; which is another reason for joy and gladness among the people.
(b) "reverendus", Junius & Tremellius; "timendus est", Coccius; "venerandus", Michaelis.
The Treasury of David
2 For the Lord most high is terrible; he is a great King over all the earth.
"For the Lord," or Jehovah, the self-existent and only God; "Most high," most great in power, lofty in dominion, eminent in wisdom, elevated in glory. "Is terrible," none can resist his power or stand before his vengeance; yet as these terrors are wielded on the behalf of his subjects, they are fit reasons for rejoicing. Omnipotence, which is terrible to crush, is almighty to protect. At a grand review of the troops of a great prince, all his loyal subjects are filled with triumph, because their liege lord is so able to defend his own, and so much dreaded by his foes. "He is a great King over all the earth." Not over Judea only, but even to the utmost isles his reign extends. Our God is no local deity, no petty ruler of a tribe; in infinite majesty he rules the mightiest realms as absolute arbiter of destiny, sole monarch of all lands, King of kings and Lord of lords. Not a hamlet or an islet is excluded from his dominion. How glorious will that era be when this is seen and known of all; when in the person of Jesus all flesh shall behold the glory of the Lord!
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
2, 3. His universal sovereignty now exists, and will be made known.
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