Psalm 104:27
These wait all upon thee; that thou mayest give them their meat in due season.
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Psalm 104:27-30. These all — Both beasts and fishes, wait upon thee — Expect supplies from thy providence: which is spoken of them figuratively, and with an allusion to the manner of tame beasts and fowls, which commonly look after and wait upon those persons who bring their food to them. That thou mayest give them their meat, &c. — When it is necessary or convenient for them. That thou givest them they gather — Whatsoever they receive is from the bounty of thy gift, and they do their part for the obtaining of it: what thou placest within their reach they gather, and expect not that thy providence should put it into their mouths; and with what they gather they are satisfied. For when thou openest thy hand — To supply their wants, they are filled with good — And desire no more than what thou seest fit to give them. Thou hidest thy face — Withdrawest, or suspendest the favour and care of thy providence; they are troubled — Dejected and distressed through want and misery. Thou takest away their breath — Which is in thy hand, and then, and not till then, they die and return to their dust — To the earth, from whence they had their original. Thou sendest forth thy spirit — That spirit by which they live, which may be called God’s spirit, because given and preserved by him. Or rather, that quickening power of God, by which he produces and preserves life in the creatures from time to time. For he speaks not here of the first creation, but of the continued production and preservation of living creatures. They are created — That is, either, 1st, The same living creatures, which were languishing and dying, are strangely revived and restored. Or, 2d, Other living creatures are produced or generated; the word created being taken in its largest sense, for the production of things by second causes. And thou renewest the face of the earth — And thus, by thy wise and powerful providence, thou preservest the succession of living creatures upon the earth, which otherwise would be desolate and without inhabitants. It is justly observed here, by Dr. Dodd, that “the ideas in these verses can be excelled by nothing, but by the concise elegance of the expressions;” which convey to the human mind the most sublime and awful conceptions of that Almighty Being who does but open his hand, and the creatures are filled with good; does but hide his face, and they are troubled and die; does but send forth his Spirit, and they are created.

104:19-30 We are to praise and magnify God for the constant succession of day and night. And see how those are like to the wild beasts, who wait for the twilight, and have fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness. Does God listen to the language of mere nature, even in ravenous creatures, and shall he not much more interpret favourably the language of grace in his own people, though weak and broken groanings which cannot be uttered? There is the work of every day, which is to be done in its day, which man must apply to every morning, and which he must continue in till evening; it will be time enough to rest when the night comes, in which no man can work. The psalmist wonders at the works of God. The works of art, the more closely they are looked upon, the more rough they appear; the works of nature appear more fine and exact. They are all made in wisdom, for they all answer the end they were designed to serve. Every spring is an emblem of the resurrection, when a new world rises, as it were, out of the ruins of the old one. But man alone lives beyond death. When the Lord takes away his breath, his soul enters on another state, and his body will be raised, either to glory or to misery. May the Lord send forth his Spirit, and new-create our souls to holiness.These wait all upon thee - That is, These are all dependent on thee. It does not, of course, mean that they "wait" in the sense that they are conscious of their dependence on God, but that they are "actually" dependent. The original word implies the idea of "expecting" or "hoping," and is so rendered in the Septuagint and Vulgate. They have no other ground of expectation or hope but in thee.

That thou mayest give them their meat in due season - Their food at the proper time. That is, They are constantly dependent on thee, that thou mayest give them food from day to day. Perhaps there is also the idea that they do not lay up or hoard anything; or that they cannot anticipate their own needs, but must receive from one day to another all that they want directly from God.

27-30. The entire dependence of this immense family on God is set forth. With Him, to kill or make alive is equally easy. To hide His face is to withdraw favor (Ps 13:1). By His spirit, or breath, or mere word, He gives life. It is His constant providence which repairs the wastes of time and disease. These all, both beasts and fishes,

wait upon thee, expect supplies only from thy providence; which is said of them figuratively, and with an allusion to the manner of tame beasts and fowls, which commonly look after and wait upon those persons who bring their food to them.

In due season; when it is necessary or convenient for them; by which expression he intimates the moderation of the beasts in their desires of food, and tacitly reproves the intemperance of men who feed themselves in season and out of season.

These wait all upon thee,.... Or "hope in thee" (s); not only the fishes of the sea, but the beasts of the field; for to them the psalmist returns, as Aben Ezra observes; to whom hope and expectation of their food and waiting for it at the hands of God, are ascribed; the allusion seems to be to tame creatures, who come at their certain times and wait on them that have been used to give them their food; and it may instruct us to wait on the Lord, as for our daily bread, so for our spiritual food, in prayer, and in public ordinances, where and from whom we may hope and expect to have it.

That thou mayest give them their meat in due season; or "in his time" (t); everyone in its own time, which is natural to them, and they have been used to; at which time the Lord gives it to them and they take it; it would be well if men would do so likewise, eat and drink in proper and due time, Ecclesiastes 10:17. Christ speaks a word in season to weary souls; his ministers give to everyone their portion of meat in due season; and a word spoken in due season, how good and sweet is it? Isaiah 1:4.

(s) "sperant", Pagninus, Cocceius, Michaelis; "sperabunt", Montanus. (t) "in tempore suo", Pagninus, Montanus, Tigurine version, Junius & Tremellius, Piscator, &c.

{o} These wait all upon thee; that thou mayest give them their meat in due season.

(o) God is a nourishing father, who provides for all creatures their daily foods.

27. These wait all &c.] All of them wait upon thee. Not marine animals only, but all living creatures are meant, as in Genesis 1:29-30. God is the great householder, dispensing to all His family their portions. Cp. Psalm 145:15-16; Psalm 147:9.

Verse 27. - These wait all upon thee; that thou mayest give them their meat in due season (see vers. 14, 23). As cattle have "grass," and lions "meat," from God, so every kind of animal receives from the same source its proper food. Psalm 104:27Fixing his eye upon the sea with its small and great creatures, and the care of God for all self-living beings, the poet passes over to the fifth and sixth days of creation. The rich contents of this sixth group flow over and exceed the decastich. With מה־רבּוּ (not מה־גּדלוּ, Psalm 92:6) the poet expresses his wonder at the great number of God's works, each one at the same time having its adjustment in accordance with its design, and all, mutually serving one another, co-operating one with another. קנין, which signifies both bringing forth and acquiring, has the former meaning here according to the predicate: full of creatures, which bear in themselves the traces of the Name of their Creator (קנה). Beside קיניך, however, we also find the reading קנינך, which is adopted by Norzi, Heidenheim, and Baer, represented by the versions (lxx, Vulgate, and Jerome), by expositors (Rashi: קנין שׁלּך), by the majority of the MSS (according to Norzi) and old printed copies, which would signify τῆς κτίσεώς σου, or according to the Latin versions κτήσεώς σου (possessione tua, Luther "they possessions"), but is inferior to the plural ktisma'toon σου, as an accusative of the object to מלאה. The sea more particularly is a world of moving creatures innumerable (Psalm 69:35). זה היּם does not properly signify this sea, but that sea, yonder sea (cf. Psalm 68:9, Isaiah 23:13; Joshua 9:13). The attributes follow in an appositional relation, the looseness of which admits of the non-determination (cf. Psalm 68:28; Jeremiah 2:21; Genesis 43:14, and the reverse case above in Psalm 104:18). אניּה .) in relation to אני is a nomen unitatis (the single ship). It is an old word, which is also Egyptian in the form hani and ana.

(Note: Vide Chabas, Le papyrus magique Harris, p. 246, No. 826: HANI (אני), vaisseau, navire, and the Book of the Dead 1. 10, where hani occurs with the determinative picture of a ship. As to the form ana, vid., Chabas loc. cit. p. 33.)

Leviathan, in the Book of Job, the crocodile, is in this passage the name of the whale (vid., Lewysohn, Zoologie des Talmuds, 178-180, 505). Ewald and Hitzig, with the Jewish tradition, understand בּו in Psalm 104:26 according to Job 41:5 : in order to play with him, which, however, gives no idea that is worthy of God. It may be taken as an alternative word for שׁם (cf. בּו in Psalm 104:20, Job 40:20): to play therein, viz., in the sea (Saadia). In כּלּם, Psalm 104:27, the range of vision is widened from the creatures of the sea to all the living things of the earth; cf. the borrowed passages Psalm 145:15., Psalm 147:9. כּלּם, by an obliteration of the suffix, signifies directly "altogether," and בּעתּו (cf. Job 38:32): when it is time for it. With reference to the change of the subject in the principal and in the infinitival clause, vid., Ew. 338, a. The existence, passing away, and origin of all beings is conditioned by God. His hand provides everything; the turning of His countenance towards them upholds everything; and His breath, the creative breath, animates and renews all things. The spirit of life of every creature is the disposing of the divine Spirit, which hovered over the primordial waters and transformed the chaos into the cosmos. תּסף in Psalm 104:29 is equivalent to תּאסף, as in 1 Samuel 15:6, and frequently. The full future forms accented on the ultima, from Psalm 104:27 onwards, give emphasis to the statements. Job 34:14. may be compared with Psalm 104:29.

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