Psalm 109:8
Let his days be few; and let another take his office.
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(8) Office.—See Note, Psalm 109:6. Evidently some post of power and influence.

Psalm 109:8. Let his days be few — The days of his life. Let him die an untimely death. So did Ahithophel, and so did Judas; both hanging themselves. And let another take his office — Made void by his death. This is the clause which St. Peter has cited and applied to Judas, in his discourse to the disciples, at the election of Matthias into Judas’s place. He cites, at the same time, a clause from Psalm 69:25; Let their habitation be desolate, and let no man dwell therein. This latter sentence, though in the plural number in the Hebrew, yet is applied by St. Peter in the singular number to Judas. The passage in this Psalm is singular, “yet applicable,” says Dr. Horne, “not to Judas only, but to the whole nation of the Jews; whose days, after they had crucified the Lord of glory, were few; who were dispossessed of the place and office which they held as the church of God, and to which, with all its honours and privileges, the Gentile Christian Church succeeded in their stead, when the Aaronical priesthood was abolished, and that of the true Melchisedek established for ever.”109:6-20 The Lord Jesus may speak here as a Judge, denouncing sentence on some of his enemies, to warn others. When men reject the salvation of Christ, even their prayers are numbered among their sins. See what hurries some to shameful deaths, and brings the families and estates of others to ruin; makes them and theirs despicable and hateful, and brings poverty, shame, and misery upon their posterity: it is sin, that mischievous, destructive thing. And what will be the effect of the sentence, Go, ye cursed, upon the bodies and souls of the wicked! How it will affect the senses of the body, and the powers of the soul, with pain, anguish, horror, and despair! Think on these things, sinners, tremble and repent.Let his days be few - Let him be soon cut off; let his life be shortened. It cannot be wrong for an officer of justice to aim at this; to desire it; to pray for it. How strange it would be for a magistrate to pray "that a murderer or a traitor should be long lived!"

And let another take his office - So every man acts, and practically prays, who seeks to remove a bad and corrupt man from office. As such an office must be filled by someone, all the efforts which he puts forth to remove a wicked man tend to bring it about that "another should take his office;" and for this it is "right" to labor and pray. The act does not of itself imply malignity or bad feeling, but is consistent with the purest benevolence, the kindest feelings, the strictest integrity, the sternest patriotism, and the highest form of piety. The word rendered office here is in the margin "charge." It properly denotes a "mustering, an enumeration;" then, care, watch, oversight, charge, as in an army, or in a civil office. In Acts 1:20, this passage is applied to Judas, and the word - the same word as in the Septuagint here - is rendered in the text "bishopric," in the margin, "office." See the notes at that passage. It had no original reference to Judas, but the language was exactly adapted to him, and to the circumstances of the case, as it is used by the apostle in that passage.

8. The opposite blessing is long life (Ps 91:16; Pr 3:2). The last clause is quoted as to Judas by Peter (Ac 1:20).

office—literally, "charge," Septuagint, and Peter, "oversight" [1Pe 5:2].

Let his days be few; the days of his life. Let him die an untimely death.

His office, made void by his death. He also implies that his enemy was a man of power and reputation. Let his days be few,.... The days of men in common are but few at most: length of days, either beyond or according to the usual term of life, is reckoned a blessing; and to be cut off in the midst of a man's days a curse; when this is by the immediate hand of God, as a visible token of his displeasure; or by the hand of the civil magistrate, for some capital offence; or by a man's own hands, which was the case of Judas; whose days were but few, in comparison of the other apostles, who outlived him many years; especially the Apostle John, who lived sixty years after, at least. The Syriac version renders it, "let their days be few"; and so it reads the whole context in the plural number, both in the verses preceding and following; and the whole may be interpreted of the Jews, as it is by Theodoret, as well as of Judas; since they were concerned in the same sin, and are equally charged as the betrayers and murderers of Christ, Acts 7:52, and their days as a nation and church after the death of Christ were very few; within forty years, or thereabout, their city and temple were destroyed.

And let another take his office; or bishopric, as the Septuagint version and the Apostle Peter call it; who cites this passage, and applies it to Judas, in Acts 1:20. His office was the office of an apostle, an high and honourable one, the chief office in the church: it was a charge, as the word signifies; a charge of souls, an oversight of the flock; which is to be taken not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre's sake, but of a ready mind. Judas took it for filthy lucre's sake, and it was taken away from him, and given to another; to Matthias, on whom the lot fell, and who was numbered with the apostles in his room, Acts 1:21. This is true also of the priests, Scribes, and Pharisees, who were divested of their offices in a very little time; three shepherds were cut off in one month, Zechariah 11:8. There being a change of the priesthood, law, and ordinances, there was a change of offices and officers; new ordinances were appointed by Christ, and new officers created, on whom gifts were bestowed suitable to their work.

Let his days be few; and let another take his {e} office.

(e) This was chiefly accomplished in Judas, Ac 1:20.

8. Let his life come prematurely to an end (Psalm 37:35-36; Psalm 55:23), and let another man succeed him in his post of authority: or perhaps, let his life be short and withal dishonoured by degradation from his office. Cp. Isaiah 22:19 ff. The rendering let another take his store is less probable.

The second clause is quoted together with Psalm 69:25 in Acts 1:20. Judas was the antitype of the man who requited love with treachery, and the words of Scripture are appealed to as a solemn sanction for filling up his office by the election of another Apostle.Verse 8. - Let his days be few. There were Divine promises that "bloodthirsty and deceitful men" should not "live out half their days," which might naturally be regarded as justifying this wish (see Psalm 55:23; Proverbs 10:27; Ecclesiastes 7:17). And let another take his office. Τὴν ἐπισκοπὴν αὐτοῦ, LXX. Applied by St. Peter to Judas (Acts 1:20). A sign for help and complaints of ungrateful persecutors form the beginning of the Psalm. "God of my praise" is equivalent to God, who art my praise, Jeremiah 17:14, cf. Deuteronomy 10:21. The God whom the Psalmist has hitherto had reason to praise will also now show Himself to him as worthy to be praised. Upon this faith he bases the prayer: be not silent (Psalm 28:1; Psalm 35:22)! A mouth such as belongs to the "wicked," a mouth out of which comes "deceit," have they opened against him; they have spoken with him a tongue (accusative, vid., on Psalm 64:6), i.e., a language, of falsehood. דּברי of things and utterances as in Psalm 35:20. It would be capricious to take the suffix of אהבתי in Psalm 109:4 as genit. object. (love which they owe me), and in Psalm 109:5 as genit. subject.; from Psalm 38:21 it may be seen that the love which he has shown to them is also meant in Psalm 109:4. The assertion that he is "prayer" is intended to say that he, repudiating all revenges of himself, takes refuge in God in prayer and commits his cause into His hands. They have loaded him with evil for good, and hatred for the love he has shown to them. Twice he lays emphasis on the fact that it is love which they have requited to him with its opposite. Perfects alternate with aorists: it is no enmity of yesterday; the imprecations that follow presuppose an inflexible obduracy on the side of the enemies.
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