|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
89:38-52 Sometimes it is not easy to reconcile God's providences with his promises, yet we are sure that God's works fulfil his word. When the great Anointed One, Christ himself, was upon the cross, God seemed to have cast him off, yet did not make void his covenant, for that was established for ever. The honour of the house of David was lost. Thrones and crowns are often laid in the dust; but there is a crown of glory reserved for Christ's spiritual seed, which fadeth not away. From all this complaint learn what work sin makes with families, noble families, with families in which religion has appeared. They plead with God for mercy. God's unchangeableness and faithfulness assure us that He will not cast off those whom he has chosen and covenanted with. They were reproached for serving him. The scoffers of the latter days, in like manner, reproach the footsteps of the Messiah when they ask, Where is the promise of his coming? 2Pe 3:3,4. The records of the Lord's dealings with the family of David, show us his dealings with his church, and with believers. Their afflictions and distresses may be grievous, but he will not finally cast them off. Self-deceivers abuse this doctrine, and others by a careless walk bring themselves into darkness and distress; yet let the true believer rely on it for encouragement in the path of duty, and in bearing the cross. The psalm ends with praise, even after this sad complaint. Those who give God thanks for what he has done, may give him thanks for what he will do. God will follow those with his mercies, who follow him with praises.
Verse 42. - Thou hast set up the right hand of his adversaries; i.e." thou hast increased their power and strength, exalted them, and depressed him." Thou hast made all his enemies to rejoice (comp. Psalm 35:15, "In mine adversity they rejoiced;" and see also Micah 7:8; Obadiah 1:10-12). Every depression of Israel caused the neighbouring nations, who alike feared them and detested them, to rejoice.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
Thou hast set up the right hand of his adversaries,.... Suffered them to become powerful, and to prevail against him; as the wicked Jews, and Satan, and his principalities and powers, at the time of Christ's apprehension, crucifixion, and death; for then were their hour, and the power of darkness, Luke 22:53, death also had dominion over him, and held him under the power of it for awhile: the enemies of his interest, Rome Pagan, and Rome Papal, have, in their turns, had their right hands set up, and have had power, and prevailed over it; and the latter will again, at the slaying of the witnesses: all which, though it seems contrary to Psalm 89:21, yet is not; for Satan, though he bruised Christ's heel, yet Christ bruised his head, destroyed his works, and him himself, and that by dying; and spoiled his principalities and powers; and death could not hold him long, nor has it now any dominion over him, and is abolished by him; and antichrist, and all the antichristian powers, will be destroyed by him ere long:
thou hast made all his enemies to rejoice; as they did when they had got him on the cross; and especially when he was laid in the grave, Psalm 22:7, and as the antichristian party will when his witnesses are slain, Revelation 11:10, but as the joy of the former was short lived, and was soon turned into sorrow, so will be that of the latter.
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