Psalm 111:7
The works of his hands are verity and judgment; all his commandments are sure.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
Psalm 111:7-9. The works of his hands — All that he doth, either on the behalf of his people, or against his or their enemies; are verity and judgment — Are exactly agreeable to his word or promises, and to the rules of eternal justice. All his commandments — His laws given to the Israelites, especially the moral law, considered with its sanctions, the promises made to the observers of it, and the threatenings denounced against transgressors; are sure — Constant and unchangeable, as being grounded upon the immutable rules of justice and equity. They stand fast, Hebrew, סמוכים, semuchim, they are established upon a sure foundation; and are done — Constituted or ordered; in truth and uprightness — With a sincere regard to the good and happiness of mankind, and without the least shadow of partiality or iniquity, and they will then appear in perfect glory and beauty, when all the arts and labours of man shall cease to exist. He sent redemption unto his people — That deliverance out of Egypt, which was a type and pledge of that greater and higher redemption, which is by the Messiah. He hath commanded — Appointed, or firmly established, by his power and authority; his covenant for ever — Through all successive generations of his people, to the end of the world; for the covenant is the same for substance in all ages, and differed only in circumstances. Holy and reverend is his name — Terrible to his enemies, venerable in his people’s eyes, and holy in all his dealings with all men.111:1-10 The Lord is to be praised for his works. - The psalmist resolves to praise God himself. Our exhortations and our examples should agree together. He recommends the works of the Lord, as the proper subject, when we are praising him; and the dealings of his providence toward the world, the church, and particular persons. All the works of the Lord are spoken of as one, it is his work; so admirably do all the dispensations of his providence centre in one design. The works of God, humbly and diligently sought into, shall all be found just and holy. God's pardoning sin is the most wonderful of all his works, and ought to be remembered to his glory. He will ever be mindful of his covenant; he has ever been so, and he ever will be so. His works of providence were done according to the truth of the Divine promises and prophecies, and so were verity, or truth; and by him who has a right to dispose of the earth as he pleases, and so are judgment, or righteous: and this holds good of the work of grace upon the heart of man, ver. 7,8. All God's commandments are sure; all have been fulfilled by Christ, and remain with him for a rule of walk and conversation to us. He sent redemption unto his people, out of Egypt at first, and often afterwards; and these were typical of the great redemption, which in the fulness of time was to be wrought out by the Lord Jesus. Here his everlasting righteousness shines forth in union with his boundless mercy. No man is wise who does not fear the Lord; no man acts wisely except as influenced by that fear. This fear will lead to repentance, to faith in Christ, to watchfulness and obedience. Such persons are of a good understanding, however poor, unlearned, or despised.The works of his hands - All that he does in the works of creation and providence; all in his acts toward the children of men.

Are verity - Truth. That is, They tend to establish and confirm the truth; they are done in the cause or the defense of truth. Truth in any case may be ascertained by what God "does," for all that he defends and protects is "truth," and his acts, therefore, may be regarded as an expression of what is true and right.

And judgment - In the cause of justice; or, in maintaining the principles of right. God never does anything to vindicate wrong. None of his acts can be fairly interpreted as having been done to sustain injustice, fraud, deceit, ambition, oppression, murder, or licentiousness. That he suffers free agents to do these things without interference is no evidence that he approves of them. That he "disapproves" of them is shown

(a) by his declarations;

(b) by his threatenings;

(c) by all that he does to punish the wicked here.

All his commandments are sure - His statutes; his ordinances. They are sure; that is, they are to be relied on; or, are worthy of confidence.

6-8. His power was shown especially in giving them the promised land, and His faithfulness and justice thus displayed are, like His precepts, reliable and of permanent obligation. The works of his hands; all that he doth, either on the behalf of his people, or against his or their enemies; of both which sorts of works he spoke in the foregoing verse.

Are verity and judgment; are exactly agreeable to his word or promises, and to the rules of justice. All his commandments; either,

1. His laws given to the Israelites, especially the moral law considered with its sanction, the promises made to the observers of it, and the threatenings denounced against transgressors. Or,

2. His works, as it is in the first clause, called his commands, because they were done by virtue of his decree, and by his power and authority; as in like manner God is said to command those blessings which he purposeth to give, and doth effectually procure, as Deu 28:8 Psalm 42:8 68:28 133:3, and to command those creatures which he moveth and acteth as he pleaseth, as 1 Kings 17:4 Matthew 8:27.

Are sure, or faithful, or certain; constant and unchangeable, as his laws are, being grounded upon the immutable rules of justice or equity; infallible and irresistible, as his counsels and ways are. The works of his hands are verity and judgment,.... His works of providence are just and true, particularly these which respected the driving the Canaanites out of their land, and settling the Israelites in it; these were done according to the truth of the divine promises and prophecies, and so were "verity" or "truth"; and for the sins of the Heathen, and by him who has a right to dispose of the earth and the fulness of it to whom he pleases, and so are "judgment" or righteous; and this holds good of his work of grace upon the heart, which is the work of his hands, and is "truth in the inward parts": and is created in righteousness and true holiness; and of all his acts of grace in election, redemption, &c. which are according to the truth of the divine nature and its perfections, and in which there is no unrighteousness. Some interpret this of the two tables of stone, which were the work, writing, and engraving of God, and on which were inscribed the judgments of the Lord; and are "true and righteous altogether". Aben Ezra understands it of the law implanted in the hearts of men.

All his commandments are sure: firm, and to be believed and complied with, either to destroy the nations, or to possess their land; or rather the commands of the moral law, which are firm and sure, one jot or tittle of which shall never pass away; all have been fulfilled by Christ, and remain with him a rule of walk and conversation; or the word which the Lord has commanded to a thousand generations, Psalm 105:8 the covenant which is ordered in all things and sure; the promises of which are yea and amen in Christ; and the blessings of it, the sure mercies of David; and even the doctrines of the Gospel are the commandments and testimony of the Lord, which are sure, Psalm 19:8 and to be believed, being the word of truth, the Gospel of our salvation, and coming from God, who cannot lie.

The {d} works of his hands are verity and judgment; all his commandments are sure.

(d) As God proposed to take care of his Church so in effect does he declare himself just and true in the government of the same.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
7. verity and judgment] Truth and right. Jehovah’s actions are manifestations of His eternal attributes of truth and justice (Deuteronomy 32:4). He is constantly true to His promises, unfailingly just in His moral government of the world. The gift of Canaan to Israel was the fulfilment of His promise to the patriarchs, while the expulsion of its former inhabitants was a just retribution for their sins (Deuteronomy 9:4-5).

his commandments] R.V. his precepts, the various special injunctions in which man’s duties are set forth. These are sure, trustworthy, not mutable or arbitrary. By a natural transition the Psalmist passes from the mighty works which Jehovah has done for His people to the commandments which He has given them. The memories of Sinai naturally follow those of the Exodus. This verse is a reminiscence of Psalm 19:7-9 : cp. also Psalm 111:3 b with Psalm 19:9 a. The word for precepts is peculiar to the Psalter: Psalm 19:8; Psalm 103:18; Psalms 119 (21 times).Verse 7. - The works of his hands are verity and judgment. All that God does is right and just - "done in truth and uprightness" (ver. 8). All his commandments are sure; i.e. firm, unchangeable - being based on truth and right. That which the poet purposes doing in Psalm 111:1, he puts into execution from Psalm 111:2 onwards. ועדה, according to Psalm 64:7; Psalm 118:14, is equivalent to ועדתם. According to Psalm 111:10, הפציהם in Psalm 111:2 apparently signifies those who find pleasure in them (the works of God); but חפצי equals חפצי (like שׂמחי, Isaiah 24:7 equals שׂמחי) is less natural than that it should be the construct form of the plural of חפץ, that occurs in three instances, and there was no need for saying that those who make the works of God the object of their research are such as interest themselves in them. We are led to the right meaning by לכל־חפצו in 1 Kings 9:11 in comparison with Isaiah 44:28; Isaiah 46:10, cf. Isaiah 53:10, where חפץ signifies God's purpose in accordance with His counsel: constantly searched into, and therefore a worthy object of research (דרשׁ, root דר, to seek to know by rubbing, and in general experimentally, cf. Arab. drâ of knowledge empirically acquired) according to all their aims, i.e., in all phases of that which they have in view. In Psalm 111:4 זכר points to the festival which propagates the remembrance of the deeds of God in the Mosaic age; טרף, Psalm 111:5, therefore points to the food provided for the Exodus, and to the Passover meal, together with the feast of unleavened bread, this memorial (זכּרון, Exodus 12:14) of the exemption in faithfulness to the covenant which was experienced in Egypt. This Psalm, says Luther, looks to me as though it had been composed for the festival of Easter. Even from the time of Theodoret and Augustine the thought of the Eucharist has been connected with Psalm 111:5 in the New Testament mind; and it is not without good reason that Psalm 111:1-10 has become the Psalm of the church at the celebration of the Lord's Supper. In connection with הגּיד one is reminded of the Pesach-Haggada. The deed of redemption which it relates has a power that continues in operation; for to the church of Jahve is assigned the victory not only over the peoples of Canaan, but over the whole world. The power of Jahve's deeds, which He has made known to His people, and which they tell over again among themselves, aims at giving them the inheritance of the peoples. The works of His hands are truth and right, for they are the realization of that which is true and which lasts and verifies itself, and of that which is right, that triumphantly maintains its ground. His ordinances are נאמנים (occasionally pointed נאמנים), established, attested, in themselves and in their results authorizing a firm confidence in their salutariness (cf. Psalm 19:8). סמוּכים, supported, stayed, viz., not outwardly, but in themselves, therefore imperturbable (cf. סמוּך used of the state of mind, Psalm 112:8; Isaiah 26:3). עשׂוּים, moulded, arranged, viz., on the part of God, "in truth, and upright;" ישׂר is accusative of the predicate (cf. Psalm 119:37), but without its being clear why it is not pointed וישׁר. If we have understood Psalm 111:4-6 correctly, then פּדוּת glances back at the deliverance out of Egypt. Upon this followed the ratification of the covenant on Sinai, which still remains inviolable down to the present time of the poet, and has the holiness and terribleness of the divine Name for a guarantee of its inviolability. The fear of Jahve, this holy and terrible God, is the beginning of wisdom - the motto of the Chokma in Job (Job 28:28) and Proverbs (Proverbs 1:7; Proverbs 9:10), the Books of the Chokma. Psalm 111:10 goes on in this Proverbs-like strain: the fear of God, which manifests itself in obedience, is to those who practise them (the divine precepts, פקודים) שׂכל טּוב (Proverbs 13:15; Proverbs 3:4, cf. 2 Chronicles 30:22), a fine sagacity, praiseworthy discernment - such a (dutiful) one partakes of everlasting praise. It is true, in glancing back to Psalm 111:3, תּהלּתו seems to refer to God, but a glance forward to Psalm 112:3 shows that the praise of him who fears God is meant. The old observation therefore holds good: ubi haec ode desinit, sequens incipit (Bakius).
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