Psalm 116:7
Return to your rest, O my soul; for the LORD has dealt bountifully with you.
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(7) Return . . .—In a very different spirit from the fool’s address to his soul in the parable. The psalmist’s repose is not the worldling’s serenity nor the sensualist’s security, but the repose of the quiet conscience and the trusting heart.

Psalm 116:7-8. Return unto thy rest, O my soul — Unto that tranquillity of mind, and cheerful confidence in God’s providence and promises, which thou didst once enjoy. Repose thyself in God; seek not for that rest in the creature which is to be found only in the Creator. God is thy rest; in him only canst thou dwell at ease; to him therefore thou must retire. For the Lord hath dealt bountifully, &c. — Hath many ways expressed his bounty most liberally to thee, and provided sufficiently for thy comfort and refreshment. Thou hast delivered my soul — Myself; from death — From threatening and approaching death; or from spiritual death, the death of sin, and from eternal death, the death of hell. Thou hast caused me to pass from death unto life. Mine eyes from tears — That is, my heart, from inordinate grief. When God comforts those that are cast down, when he looses the mourners’ sackcloth, and girds them with gladness, then he delivers their eyes from tears; which yet will not be perfectly done till we come to that world where God shall wipe away all tears from our eyes, And my feet from failing — Namely, from falling into sin, and so into misery.116:1-9 We have many reasons for loving the Lord, but are most affected by his loving-kindness when relieved out of deep distress. When a poor sinner is awakened to a sense of his state, and fears that he must soon sink under the just wrath of God, then he finds trouble and sorrow. But let all such call upon the Lord to deliver their souls, and they will find him gracious and true to his promise. Neither ignorance nor guilt will hinder their salvation, when they put their trust in the Lord. Let us all speak of God as we have found him; and have we ever found him otherwise than just and good? It is of his mercies that we are not consumed. Let those who labour and are heavy laden come to him, that they may find rest to their souls; and if at all drawn from their rest, let them haste to return, remembering how bountifully the Lord has dealt with them. We should deem ourselves bound to walk as in his presence. It is a great mercy to be kept from being swallowed up with over-much sorrow. It is a great mercy for God to hold us by the right hand, so that we are not overcome and overthrown by a temptation. But when we enter the heavenly rest, deliverance from sin and sorrow will be complete; we shall behold the glory of the Lord, and walk in his presence with delight we cannot now conceive.Return unto thy rest, O my soul - Luther, "Be thou again joyful, O my soul." The meaning seems to be, "Return to thy former tranquility and calmness; thy former freedom from fear and anxiety." He had passed through a season of great danger. His soul had been agitated and terrified. That danger was now over, and he calls upon his soul to resume its former tranquility, calmness, peace, and freedom from alarm. The word does not refer to God considered as the "rest" of the soul, but to what the mind of the psalmist had been, and might now be again.

For the Lord hath dealt bountifully with thee - See the notes at Psalm 13:6.

5-8. The relief which he asked is the result not of his merit, but of God's known pity and tenderness, which is acknowledged in assuring himself (his "soul," Ps 11:1; 16:10) of rest and peace. All calamities [Ps 116:8] are represented by death, tears, and falling of the feet (Ps 56:13). Unto thy rest; unto that tranquillity of mind and cheerful confidence in God’s promises and providence which thou didst once enjoy. Return unto thy rest, O my soul,.... To a quiet and tranquil state after much distress (k); a soliloquy, an address to his own soul to return to God his resting place, as Kimchi; or to Christ, whose rest is glorious, and which lies in a cessation from a man's own works; not from doing them, but from depending on them, or from labouring for life by them; in a deliverance from the bondage of the law, its curse and condemnation, and from the dominion and tyranny of sin, and from the distressing guilt of it on the conscience; in spiritual peace and joy, arising from the application of the blood of Christ, and from a view of his righteousness and justification by it, and of his sacrifice, and of the expiation of sin by that; which is enjoyed in the ways and ordinances of Christ, and oftentimes amidst afflictions and tribulations: this is sometimes broke in upon and interrupted, through the prevalence of sin, the temptations of Satan, and divine desertions; but may be returned to again, as Noah's dove returned to the ark when it could find rest nowhere else; as the believer can find none but in Christ, and therefore after he has wandered from him he returns to him again, encouraged by the following reason.

For the Lord hath dealt bountifully with thee; in times past, even in an eternity past, having loved him with an everlasting love, chosen him in Christ, made a covenant with him in him, blessed him with all spiritual blessings in him, and made unto him exceeding great and precious promises; provided a Redeemer and Saviour for him, whom he had made known unto him, having enlightened, quickened, and converted him; and had laid up good things for him to come, and had done many great things for him already; all which might serve to encourage his faith and hope in him. The Targum is,

"because the Word of the Lord hath rendered good unto me.''

(k) "Remigrat animus nunc denuo mihi", Plauti Epidicus, Acts 4. Sc. 1. v. 42.

Return unto thy rest, O {d} my soul; for the LORD hath dealt bountifully with thee.

(d) Which was disturbed before, now rest on the Lord, for he has been beneficial towards you.

7. Return unto thy rest, O my soul] Abandon anxiety and resume the perfect tranquility that springs from trust in God. The plural form of the word for rest denotes full and complete rest. For the address to the soul cp. Psalm 42:5, and Psalm 103:1 ff., a Psalm further connected with this Psalm by its use of Aramaic forms of pronominal suffix.

dealt bountifully] Cp. Psalm 13:6.

7–9. The Psalmist encourages himself with the recollection of God’s mercy.Verse 7. - Return unto thy rest, O my soul. "Return," i.e., "to thy state of tranquility, the condition in which thou wast before the imminent danger showed itself." For the Lord hath dealt bountifully with thee. If Hezekiah is the writer, the "bountiful dealing" will be the addition of fifteen years to his life (Isaiah 38:5). If a poet just re turned from the Captivity, the return and the reoccupation of the Holy Land will be especially in his thoughts (comp. Psalm 85:1). Not only is כּי אהבתּי "I love (like, am well pleased) that," like ἀγαπῶ ὅτι, Thucydides vi. 36, contrary to the usage of the language, but the thought, "I love that Jahve answereth me," is also tame and flat, and inappropriate to the continuation in Psalm 116:2. Since Psalm 116:3-4 have come from Psalm 18:5-17, אהבתּי is to be understood according to ארחמך in Psalm 18:2, so that it has the following יהוה as its object, not it is true grammatically, but logically. The poet is fond of this pregnant use of the verb without an expressed object, cf. אקרא in Psalm 116:2, and האמנתּי in Psalm 116:10. The Pasek after ישׁמע is intended to guard against the blending of the final a‛ with the initial 'a of אדני (cf. Psalm 56:1-13 :18; Psalm 5:2, in Baer). In Psalm 116:1 the accentuation prevents the rendering vocem orationis meae (Vulgate, lxx) by means of Mugrash. The ı̂ of קולי will therefore no more be the archaic connecting vowel (Ew. 211, b) than in Leviticus 26:42; the poet has varied the genitival construction of Psalm 28:6 to the permutative. The second כי, following close upon the first, makes the continuation of the confirmation retrospective. "In my days" is, as in Isaiah 39:8, Bar. 4:20, cf. בחיּי in Psalm 63:5, and frequently, equivalent to "so long as I live." We even here hear the tone of Psalm 18 (Psalm 18:2), which is continued in Psalm 18:3-4 as a freely borrowed passage. Instead of the "bands" (of Hades) there, the expression here is מצרי, angustiae, plural of meetsar, after the form מסב in Psalm 118:5; Lamentations 1:3 (Bttcher, De inferis, 423); the straitnesses of Hades are deadly perils which can scarcely be escaped. The futures אמצא and אקרא, by virtue of the connection, refer to the contemporaneous past. אנּה (viz., בלישׁן בקשׁה, i.e., in a suppliant sense) is written with He instead of Aleph here and in five other instances, as the Masora observes. It has its fixed Metheg in the first syllable, in accordance with which it is to be pronounced ānna (like בּתּים, bāttim), and has an accented ultima not merely on account of the following יהוה equals אדני (vid., on Psalm 3:8), but in every instance; for even where (the Metheg having been changed into a conjunctive) it is supplied with two different accents, as in Genesis 50:17; Exodus 32:31, the second indicates the tone-syllable.

(Note: Kimchi, mistaking the vocation of the Metheg, regards אנּה (אנּא) as Milel. But the Palestinian and the Babylonian systems of pointing coincide in this, that the beseeching אנא (אנה) is Milra, and the interrogatory אנה Milel (with only two exceptions in our text, which is fixed according to the Palestinian Masora, viz., Psalm 139:7; Deuteronomy 1:28, where the following word begins with Aleph), and these modes of accenting accord with the origin of the two particles. Pinsker (Einleitung, S. xiii.) insinuates against the Palestinian system, that in the cases where אנא has two accents the pointing was not certain of the correct accentuation, only from a deficient knowledge of the bearings of the case.)

Instead now of repeating "and Jahve answered me," the poet indulges in a laudatory confession of general truths which have been brought vividly to his mind by the answering of his prayer that he has experienced.

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