Psalm 129:8
Neither do they which go by say, The blessing of the LORD be on you: we bless you in the name of the LORD.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(8) This harvest scene is exactly like that painted in Ruth 2:4, and the last line should be printed as a return greeting from the reapers.

129:5-8 While God's people shall flourish as the loaded palm-tree, or the green and fruitful olive, their enemies shall wither as the grass upon the house-tops, which in eastern countries are flat, and what grows there never ripens; so it is with the designs of God's enemies. No wise man will pray the Lord to bless these mowers or reapers. And when we remember how Jesus arose and reigns; how his people have been supported, like the burning but unconsumed bush, we shall not fear.Neither do they which go by say, The blessing of the Lord,... - As in a harvest-field, where persons passing by express their joy and gratitude that their neighbors are reaping an abundant harvest. The phrase "The blessing of the Lord be upon you," was expressive of good wishes; of pious congratulation; of a hope of success and prosperity; as when we say, "God be with you;" or, "God bless you." The meaning here is, that such language would never be used in reference to the grass or grain growing on the house-top, since it would never justify a wish of that kind: it would be ridiculous and absurd to apply such language to anyone who should be found gathering up that dry; and withered, and worthless grass. So the psalmist prays that it may be in regard to all who hate Zion Psalm 129:5, that they may have no such prosperity as would be represented by a growth of luxuriant and abundant grain; no such prosperity as would be denoted by the reaper and the binder of sheaves gathering in such a harvest; no such prosperity as would be indicated by the cheerful greeting and congratulation of neighors who express their gratification and their joy at the rich and abundant harvest which has crowned the labors of their friend, by the prayer that God would bless him.

We bless you in the name of the Lord - Still the language of pious joy and gratification addressed by his neighbors to him who was reaping his harvest. All this is simply language drawn from common life, uttering a prayer that the enemies of Zion might be "confounded and turned back" Psalm 129:5; a prayer that they might not be successful in their endeavors to destroy the Church. Such a prayer cannot but be regarded as proper and right.

5, 6. The ill-rooted roof grass, which withers before it grows up and procures for those gathering it no harvest blessing (Ru 2:4), sets forth the utter uselessness and the rejection of the wicked. Which was a usual salutation given by passengers to reapers, as Ruth 2:4. So the meaning is, It never continues till the harvest comes. Neither do they which go by say, the blessing of the Lord be upon you,.... As was usual with passengers, when they went by where mowers, and reapers, and binders, were at work in the field in harvest time; who used to wish the presence and blessing of God with them, and upon their labours; and who returned the salutation, as may be seen in Boaz and his reapers, Ruth 2:4;

we bless you in the name of the Lord; which is either a continuation of the blessing of the passengers, or the answer of the reapers to them; so the Targum,

"nor do they answer them, "we bless you",'' &c.

The sense is, that those wicked men would have no blessing on them, from God nor men; that no God speed would be wished them; but that they were like the earth, that is covered with briers and thorns; which is nigh unto cursing, and its end to be burned.

{d} Neither do they which go by say, The blessing of the LORD be upon you: we bless you in the name of the LORD.

(d) That is, the wicked will perish, and none will pass for them.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
8. The blessing of Jehovah be upon you is the friendly greeting of the passers-by to the reapers at their work: we bless you in the name of Jehovah may be simply an emphatic repetition of the greeting (cp. Psalm 118:26): or it may be, as the Targ. takes it, inserting and they do not answer them, the reapers’ reply. For this kindly custom cp. Ruth 2:4, “Boaz came from Bethlehem, and said unto the reapers, The Lord be with you. And they answered him, The Lord bless thee.”

The fate of Zion’s enemies will be the opposite of her lot as foretold by the prophet, “Yet again shall they use this speech in the land of Judah and in the cities thereof, when I turn their fortunes, Jehovah bless thee, O habitation of righteousness, O mountain of holiness” (Jeremiah 31:23).Verse 8. - Neither do they which go by say, The blessing of the Lord be upon you; we bless you in the name of the Lord. Harvesters were thus greeted (Ruth 2:4), and still are to this day. "These expressions," says Dr. Thomson, "are most refreshingly Arabic. Nothing is more natural than for Arabs, when passing by a fruit-tree or cornfield loaded with a rich crop, to exclaim, Barak Allah! 'God bless you!'" ('The Land and the Book,' p. 682).



Israel is gratefully to confess that, however much and sorely it was oppressed, it still has not succumbed. רבּת, together with רבּה, has occurred already in Psalm 65:10; Psalm 62:3, and it becomes usual in the post-exilic language, Psalm 120:6; Psalm 123:4, 2 Chronicles 30:18; Syriac rebath. The expression "from my youth" glances back to the time of the Egyptian bondage; for the time of the sojourn in Egypt was the time of Israel's youth (Hosea 2:17, Hosea 11:1, Jeremiah 2:2; Ezekiel 23:3). The protasis Psalm 129:1 is repeated in an interlinked, chain-like conjunction in order to complete the thought; for Psalm 129:2 is the turning-point, where גּם, having reference to the whole negative clause, signifies "also" in the sense of "nevertheless," ὅμως (synon. בּכל־בּכל), as in Ezekiel 16:28; Ecclesiastes 6:7, cf. above, Psalm 119:24 : although they oppressed me much and sore, yet have they not overpowered me (the construction is like Numbers 13:30, and frequently).
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