|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
68:22-28 The victories with which God blessed David over the enemies of Israel, are types of Christ's victory, for himself and for all believers. Those who take him for theirs, may see him acting as their God, as their King, for their good, and in answer to their prayers; especially in and by his word and ordinances. The kingdom of the Messiah shall be submitted to by all the rulers and learned in the world. The people seem to address the king, ver. 28. But the words are applicable to the Redeemer, to his church, and every true believer. We pray, that thou, O God the Son, wilt complete thine undertaking for us, by finishing thy good work in us.
Verses 24-27. - Again we find a transition. The conquest of Canaan is complete - God is gone up into his sanctuary. The nations are led captive or put to tribute Rebels are crushed; the last remnants of them sought out, brought back, and delivered into the hands of Israel. Now we have a description of God's "goings in the sanctuary" (ver. 24). Some critics suppose a particular occasion to be pointed at; but the expression "goings" rather indicates something habitual, or, at any rate, recurring. God is from time to time glorified in his sanctuary by ceremonies which the poet describes. Verse 24. - They have seen thy goings, O God; i.e. men have seen - friends and foes alike - even the goings of my God, my King, in the sanctuary. God is at once both Israel's God and Israel's King. The monarchy has not wholly destroyed the theocracy.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
They have seen thy goings, O God,.... In saving his people, and destroying his enemies;
even the goings of my God, my King, in the sanctuary; the walk and conversation of Christ, when he was made flesh, and dwelt among men; his manner of life and deportment; his works and miracles, his sufferings, death, and resurrection from the dead; all which his apostles were eyewitnesses of; as also his going up to heaven, which was visible to angels and men; likewise his progress and victorious expeditions in Judea, and in the Gentile world, by the ministry of the word, in which he went forth conquering, and to conquer; which sense is confirmed by the following words: for Christ, who is God over all, the Lord and God of his people, and King of saints, is here, as throughout the psalm, intended. The Targum interprets it of the path or goings of the divine Majesty upon the sea, which the house of Israel saw.
The Treasury of David
24 They have seen thy goings, O God, even the goings of my God, my King, in the sanctuary.
25 The singers went before, the players on instruments followed after; among them were the damsels playing with timbrels.
26 Bless ye God in the congregations, even the Lord, from the fountain of Israel.
27 There is little Benjamin with their ruler, the princes of Judah and their council, the princes of Zebulun, and the princes of Naphtali.
"They have seen thy goings, O God." In the song the marchings of the Lord had been described; friends and foes had seen his goings forth with the ark and his people. We suppose that the procession was now climbing the hill, and entering the enclosure where the tabernacle of the ark was pitched; it was suitable at this moment to declare with song that 'the tribes had Seen the glorious progress of the Lord as he led forth his people. "Even the goings of my God, rail King, in the sanctuary." The splendid procession of the ark, which symbolised the throne of the great King, was before the eyes of men and angels as it ascended to the holy place; and the Psalmist points to it with exultation before he proceeds to describe it. All nature and providence are, as it were, a procession attending the great Lord, in his visitations of this lower globe. Winter and summer, sun and moon, storm and calm, and all the varied glories of nature swell the pomp of the King of kings, of whose dominion there is no end.
"The singers went before, the players on instruments followed after." This was the order of the march, and God is to be worshipped evermore with due decorum. First the singers, and lastly the musicians, for the song must lead the music, and not the music drown the singing. In the midst of the vocal and instrumental band, or all around them, were the maidens: "among them were the damsels playing with timbrels." Some have imagined that this order indicates the superiority of vocal to instrumental music; but we need not go so far for arguments, when the simplicity and spirituality of the gospel already teach us that truth. The procession depicted in this sublime song was one of joy, and every means was taken to express the delight of the nation in the Lord their God.
"Bless ye God in the congregations." Let the assembled company magnify the God whose ark they followed. United praise is like the mingled perfume which Aaron made, it Should all be presented unto God. He blesses us; let him be blessed. "Even the Lord, from the fountain of Israel." A parallel passage to that in Deborah's song: "They that are delivered from the noise of archers in the places of drawing water, there shall they rehearse the righteous acts of the Lord." The seat of the ark Would be the fountain of refreshing for all the tribes, and there they were to celebrate his praises. "Drink," says the old inscription, "drink, weary traveller; drink and pray." We may alter one word, and read it, drink and praise. If the Lord overflows with grace, we should overflow with gratitude. Ezekiel saw an ever-growing stream flow from under the altar, and issue out from under the threshold of the sanctuary, and wherever it flowed it gave life: let as many as have quaffed this life-giving stream glorify "the fountain of Israel."
"There is little Benjamin with their ruler." The tribe was small, having been greatly reduced in numbers, but it had the honour of including Zion within its territory. "And of Benjamin he said, The beloved of the Lord shall dwell in safety by him; and the Lord shall cover him all the day long, and he shall dwell between his shoulders.'" Little Benjamin had been Jacob's darling, and now the tribe is made to march first in the procession, and to dwell nearest to the holy place. "The princes of Judah and their council." Judah was a large and powerful tribe, not with one governor, like Benjamin, but with many princes "and their company," for so the margin has it. "From thence is the shepherd, the stone of Israel," and the tribe was a quarry of stones Wherewith to build up the nations' some such truth is hinted at in the Hebrew, "The princes of Zebulun, and the princes of Naphtali." Israel was there, as well as Judah; there was no schism among the people. The north sent a representative contingent as well as the south, and so the long procession set forth the hearty loyalty of all the tribes to their Lord and King. O happy day, when all believers shall be one around the ark of the Lord; striving for nothing but the glory of the God of grace.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
24-27. The triumphal procession, after the deliverance, is depicted.
They have seen—impersonally, "There have been seen."
the goings of my God—as leading the procession; the ark, the symbol of His presence, being in front. The various bands of music (Ps 68:25) follow, and all who are—
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