Psalm 102:13
You shall arise, and have mercy on Zion: for the time to favor her, yes, the set time, is come.
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(13-16) The prospect (Isaiah 40:1-5) that the restoration of Jerusalem will take place simultaneously with the coming of Jehovah in glory, is here re-echoed from the prophet in a lyric form. “The set time” must not be rigidly explained by the “seventy years” of Jeremiah 25:11. The expression is general: “The hour is come.” (Comp. Isaiah 40:2.)

Psalm 102:13-14. Thou shalt have mercy upon Zion — Upon Jerusalem, or thy church and people; for the set time is come — The end of those seventy years which was the time fixed for the continuing of the Babylonish captivity: see Jeremiah 25:12; Jeremiah 29:10; Daniel 9:2. For thy servants take pleasure in her stones, &c. — Thy people value the dust and rubbish of the holy city more than all the palaces of the earth, and passionately desire that it may be rebuilt. “From this passage, and what follows.” says Dr. Horne, “it appears that the suppliant, in this Psalm, bewails not only his own miseries, but those of the church. Israel was in captivity, and Zion a desolation. A time, notwithstanding, a set time there was at hand, when God had promised to arise, and to have mercy upon her. The bowels of her children yearned over her ruins; they longed to see her rebuilt, and were ready, whenever the word of command should be given, to set heart and hand to the blessed work.” 102:12-22 We are dying creatures, but God is an everlasting God, the protector of his church; we may be confident that it will not be neglected. When we consider our own vileness, our darkness and deadness, and the manifold defects in our prayers, we have cause to fear that they will not be received in heaven; but we are here assured of the contrary, for we have an Advocate with the Father, and are under grace, not under the law. Redemption is the subject of praise in the Christian church; and that great work is described by the temporal deliverance and restoration of Israel. Look down upon us, Lord Jesus; and bring us into the glorious liberty of thy children, that we may bless and praise thy name.Thou shalt arise - Thou wilt come forth - as if God had been inattentive or inactive.

And have mercy upon Zion - That is, Upon Jerusalem - represented as in a state of desolation. God would at length pity her, and interpose in her behalf.

For the time to favor her - Implying that there was an appointed time to favor her, or to bring her troubles to an end.

Yea, the set time is come - The word used here - מועד mô‛êd - means properly an appointed season - a designated moment. It refers to some purpose or appointment in regard to anything that is to be done, as in 1 Samuel 13:8, 1 Samuel 13:11; 2 Samuel 20:5; Genesis 17:21; or to a fixed period, as when certain things are to be done, certain festivals to be held regularly at a certain season of the year, Lamentations 1:4; Lamentations 2:6; Hosea 9:5; Hosea 12:9; Leviticus 23:2, Leviticus 23:4,Leviticus 23:37, Leviticus 23:44. Here it means that there was some period fixed in the Divine Mind when this was to occur, or a definite time when it had been predicted or promised that it would occur. The language is such as would be applicable to the captivity in Babylon, concerning which there was a promise that it should continue but seventy years. If the psalm refers to that, then the meaning is that there were indications in the course of events that that period was about to arrive. Compare the notes at Daniel 9:2. What those indications were in this case, the psalmist immediately states, Psalm 102:14. It may be remarked here, that there are usually some previous intimations or indications of what God is about to do. "Coming events cast their shadows before." Even the divine purposes are accomplished usually in connection with human agency, and in the regular course of events; and it is frequently possible to anticipate that God is about to appear for the fulfillment of his promises. So it was in the coming of the Saviour. So it was in the destruction of Jerusalem by the Romans. So it is when God is about to revive religion in a church. So it is, and will be, in regard to the conversion of the world.

13, 14. Hence it is here adduced.

for—or, "when."

the set time, &c.—the time promised, the indication of which is the interest felt for Zion by the people of God.

Upon Zion; upon Jerusalem, or thy church and people.

The set time; the end of those seventy years which thou hast fixed; of which see Jeremiah 25:12 29:10 Daniel 9:2. Thou shalt arise, and have mercy on Zion,.... Exert his power, and display the riches of his grace and mercy; not by delivering the Jews from the Babylonish captivity, to which some restrain it; but by redeeming his church and people by power and price; or rather by raising up and restoring them to great glory and prosperity in the latter day:

for the time to favour her, yea, the set time, is come; not the seventy years of the captivity made known to the prophet Jeremiah; rather the seventy weeks of Daniel fixed for the Messiah's coming; or the fulness of time agreed upon, between Christ and his Father, for him to come and redeem his people; but it may best of all design the end of the forty two months, or the 1260 days, or years, fixed for the treading under foot the holy city, for the witnesses prophesying in sackcloth, and for the reign of antichrist; which when come will usher in glorious times in favour of Zion, the church of God, Revelation 11:2.

Thou shalt arise, and have mercy upon Zion: for the time to favour her, yea, the {k} set time, is come.

(k) That is, the seventy years which by the prophet Jeremiah you appointed, Jer 29:12.

13. Since He thus rules, He must have compassion on Zion in accordance with His promise, for it is time to have pity on her, yea the set time is come. Cp. Isaiah 30:18; Isaiah 49:13; Jeremiah 30:18; Jeremiah 31:20; Zechariah 1:12. The appointed time for the end of the exile was now at hand. Cp. Jeremiah 29:10; Isaiah 40:2; Habakkuk 2:3.Verse 13. - Thou shalt arise, and have mercy upon Zion (comp. Psalm 3:7; Psalm 12:5; Psalm 68:1). God is said to "arise," when he bestirs himself to take vengeance on his enemies, and deliver his saints out of their hands. The "Zion," on which he would "have mercy," was not the city only, but the people belonging to it. For the time to favour her (or, pity her), yea, the set time, is come. By "the set time" is probably meant the time fixed by Jeremiah for the termination of the Captivity and the restoration of Jerusalem (Jeremiah 25:11, 12; Jeremiah 29:10), and alluded to by Daniel in Daniel 9:2. This time, the psalmist says, approaches. קאת (construct of קאת or קאת from קאה, vid., Isaiah, at Isaiah 34:11-12), according to the lxx, is the pelican, and כּוס is the night-raven or the little horned-owl.

(Note: The lxx renders it: I am like a pelican of the desert, I am become as a night-raven upon a ruined place (οἰκοπέδῳ). In harmony with the lxx, Saadia (as also the Arabic version edited by Erpenius, the Samaritan Arabic, and Abulwald) renders קאת by Arab. qûq (here and in Leviticus 11:18; Deuteronomy 14:17; Isaiah 34:17), and כוס by Arab. bûm; the latter (bum) is an onomatopoetic name of the owl, and the former (k[uk[) does not even signify the owl or horned-owl (although the small horned-owl is called um kuéik in Egypt, and in Africa abu kuéik; vid., the dictionaries of Bocthor and Marcel s.v. chouette), but the pelican, the "long-necked water-bird" (Damiri after the lexicon el-‛Obâb of Hasan ben-Mohammed el-Saghani). The Graeco-Veneta also renders קאת with πελεκάν, - the Peshito, however, with Syr. qāqā'. What Ephrem on Deuteronomy 14:17 and the Physiologus Syrus (ed. Tychsen, p. 13, cf. pp. 110 f). say of Syr. qāqā', viz., that it is a marsh-bird, is very fond of its young ones, dwells in desolate places, and is incessantly noisy, likewise points to the pelican, although the Syrian lexicographers vary. Cf. also Oedmann, Vermischte Sammlungen, Heft 3, Cap. 6. (Fleischer after a communication from Rodiger.))

דּמה obtains the signification to be like, equal (aequalem esse), from the radical signification to be flat, even, and to spread out flat (as the Dutch have already recognised). They are both unclean creatures, which are fond of the loneliness of the desert and ruined places. To such a wilderness, that of the exile, is the poet unwillingly transported. He passes the nights without sleep (שׁקד, to watch during the time for sleep), and is therefore like a bird sitting lonesome (בּודד, Syriac erroneously נודד) upon the roof whilst all in the house beneath are sleeping. The Athnach in Psalm 102:8 separates that which is come to be from the ground of the "becoming" and the "becoming" itself. His grief is that his enemies reproach him as one forsaken of God. מהולל, part. Poal, is one made or become mad, Ecclesiastes 2:2 : my mad ones equals those who are mad against me. These swear by him, inasmuch as they say when they want to curse: "God do unto thee as unto this man," which is to be explained according to Isaiah 65:15; Jeremiah 29:22.

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