|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
97:8-12 The faithful servants of God may well rejoice and be glad, because he is glorified; and whatever tends to his honour, is his people's pleasure. Care is taken for their safety. But something more is meant than their lives. The Lord will preserve the souls of his saints from sin, from apostacy, and despair, under their greatest trials. He will deliver them out of the hands of the wicked one, and preserve them safe to his heavenly kingdom. And those that rejoice in Christ Jesus, and in his exaltation, have fountains of joy prepared for them. Those that sow in tears, shall reap in joy. Gladness is sure to the upright in heart; the joy of the hypocrite is but for a moment. Sinners tremble, but saints rejoice at God's holiness. As he hates sin, yet freely loves the person of the repentant sinner who believes in Christ, he will make a final separation between the person he loves and the sin he hates, and sanctify his people wholly, body, soul, and spirit.
Verse 11. - Light is sown for the righteous (comp. Psalm 112:4, "Unto the upright there ariseth light in the darkness"). God sheds the rays of his grace on the path of the righteous man, enlightens his understanding, and illumines his spirit perpetually. And gladness for the upright in heart. Together with "light," he sheds abroad "gladness," the irrepressible joy which comes from a sense of his favour and protection.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
Light is sown for the righteous,.... Who are made righteous by the obedience of Christ, and live soberly and righteously; the light of joy and gladness, as it is explained in the next clause; see Esther 8:16 so, "light", is frequently used by Homer (x) for joy and gladness: these sometimes are without it, through the hidings of God's face, the prevalence of corruptions, the force of Satan's temptations, and the many afflictions they meet with; but joy and gladness, peace and comfort, are sown for them in the counsels and purposes of God, in his covenant, in the Scriptures, in the Gospel, and in the promises of it; and, though at present hidden, will spring up in God's due time, Psalm 112:4, and which also may be interpreted of the light of glory, which at present does not appear; but it is prepared in the purpose of God, and in his promise, and shall be enjoyed by the heirs of it. The Septuagint, Vulgate Latin, and all the Oriental versions, render it, "light is risen for the righteous"; and so the Targum,
"light is risen and prepared for the righteous;''
Christ, the light of the world, the sun of righteousness, is risen for them, and upon them, with healing in his wings, which bring joy and comfort to them:
and gladness for the upright in heart; such as have new hearts and right spirits formed in them, and are Israelites indeed, that have the truth of grace and the root of the matter in them: gladness is prepared, provided, and promised to them, and sooner or later they shall have it; the seed of it is sown, and it will spring up, and a large crop shall be enjoyed. Kimchi's note is,
"light is sown for the righteous in this world, and they shall reap light and joy in time to come, in the days of the Messiah.''
(x) Iliad 6. v. 6. & 8. v. 282. & 16. v. 39.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
11. sown—to spring forth abundantly for such, who alone can and well may rejoice in the holy government of their sovereign Lord (compare Ps 30:4; 32:11).
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