Psalm 132:7
We will go into his tabernacles: we will worship at his footstool.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(7) We will.Let us go, &c

Tabernacles.—Better, habitation, as in Psalm 132:5, where the same word is used. The plural occurs also in Psalm 84:1. These words do not, as the last verse, recall an incident of the past, but express the determination of the present. The result of David’s project is that the present generation have a place of worship. It does not detract from this explanation to refer the psalm to post-exile times, and to the second Temple, since the fact of the existence of a temple at any time could be poetically ascribed to David.

His footstool.—See on Psalm 99:5.

Psalm 132:7. We will go into his tabernacles — Seeing the ark is now fixed in a certain place, we will go to it more generally and constantly than formerly we did. We will worship at his footstool — As subjects and supplicants, prostrating ourselves, with humble reverence, before the Divine Majesty, which we too much neglected to do for want of such a place of solemn, public worship, in the days of Saul.

132:1-10 David bound himself to find a place for the Lord, for the ark, the token of God's presence. When work is to be done for the Lord, it is good to tie ourselves to a time. It is good in the morning to fix upon work for the day, with submission to Providence, for we know not what a day may bring forth. And we should first, and without delay, seek to have our own hearts made a habitation of God through the Spirit. He prays that God would take up his dwelling in the habitation he had built; that he would give grace to the ministers of the sanctuary to do their duty. David pleads that he was the anointed of the Lord, and this he pleads as a type of Christ, the great Anointed. We have no merit of our own to plead; but, for His sake, in whom there is a fulness of merit, let us find favour. And every true believer in Christ, is an anointed one, and has received from the Holy One the oil of true grace. The request is, that God would not turn away, but hear and answer their petitions for his Son's sake.We will go into his tabernacles - His tents, or the fixed resting place prepared for the ark. This is evidently language supposed to have been used on bringing up the ark into its place in Jerusalem: language such as they may be supposed to have sung or recited on that occasion.

We will worship at his footstool - See the notes at Psalm 99:5. The meaning is, the footstool of God: let us bow humbly at his feet. The language denotes profound adoration. It expresses the feelings of those who bare the ark to its assigned place.

7. The purpose of engaging in God's worship is avowed. We will go; seeing the ark is now fixed in a certain place, we will go to it more generally and constantly than formerly we did.

Into his tabernacles; into his tabernacle or temple, the plural number put for the singular, as Psalm 43:3 46:4, &c.

At his footstool; either the temple; or rather the ark, so called 1 Chronicles 28:2 Lamentations 2:1, because God is oft said to sit between the cherubims, which were above the ark.

We will go into his tabernacles,.... The tabernacles of him that was heard of at Ephratah; born in Bethlehem, and found in the ministry of the word among the Gentiles: enter into his churches, raised and formed there, which are the tabernacles or dwelling places of Christ; where he has his residence, takes his walks, and dwells; and which are very lovely, amiable, and pleasant, and so desirable by believers to go into; because of the presence of God in them, the provisions there made for them, the company there enjoyed; the work there done, prayer, praise, preaching, and hearing the word, and administration of all ordinances. Some render it as a mutual exhortation, "let us go into his tabernacles" (w); see Isaiah 2:2;

we will worship at his footstool; any place of worship on earth may be called the footstool of God, with respect to heaven his throne, Isaiah 66:1; particularly the ark is so called, 1 Chronicles 28:2; in which the law was; over which was the mercy seat, and over that the cherubim of glory, and between them the Majesty of God dwelt; so that the ark was properly his footstool: and all this being typical of Christ may direct us to observe, that all religious, spiritual, and evangelic worship, is to be performed in his name, and in the faith of him, and by the assistance of his grace and Spirit; see Psalm 99:5.

(w) So Tigurine version, Vatablus, Musculus, Gejerus, Cocceius, Michaelis.

We will go into his tabernacles: we will worship at his footstool.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
7. Let us go into his dwelling place,

Let us worship at the footstool of his feet.

This is the mutual exhortation of the Israelites to come and worship in the ‘dwelling place’ (Psalm 132:5) which David had resolved to prepare, before the Ark. Jehovah’s footstool may mean His sanctuary, as in Psalm 99:5; but here more probably, as in 1 Chronicles 28:2, the Ark is meant. As He is enthroned upon the Cherubim, the Ark beneath them is His footstool. This verse anticipates, for the next verse implies that the translation of the Ark has not yet been effected.

Verse 7. - We will go into his tabernacles: we will worship at his footstool. The transfer is regarded as accomplished, and the worship as re-established, which had been intermitted while the ark was at Kirjath-jearim. Psalm 132:7In Psalm 132:6 begins the language of the church, which in this Psalm reminds Jahve of His promises and comforts itself with them. Olshausen regards this Psalm 132:6 as altogether inexplicable. The interpretation nevertheless has some safe starting-points. (1) Since the subject spoken of is the founding of a fixed sanctuary, and one worthy of Jahve, the suffix of שׁמענוּה (with Chateph as in Hosea 8:2, Ew. ֗60, a) and מצאנוּה refers to the Ark of the covenant, which is fem. also in other instances (1 Samuel 4:17; 2 Chronicles 8:11). (2) The Ark of the covenant, fetched up out of Shiloh by the Israelites to the battle at Ebenezer, fell into the hands of the victors, and remained, having been again given up by them, for twenty years in Kirjath-Jearim (1 Samuel 7:1.), until David removed it out of this Judaean district to Zion (2 Samuel 6:2-4; cf. 2 Chronicles 1:4). What is then more natural than that שׂדי־יער is a poetical appellation of Kirjath-Jearim (cf. "the field of Zoan" in Psalm 78:12)? Kirjath-Jearim has, as a general thing, very varying names. It is also called Kirjath-ha-jearim in Jeremiah 26:20 (Kirjath-'arim in Ezra 2:25, cf. Joshua 18:28), Kirjath-ba'al in Joshua 16:1-10 :50, Ba'alah in Joshua 15:9; 1 Chronicles 13:6 (cf. Har-ha-ba'alah, Joshua 15:11, with Har-Jearim in Joshua 15:10), and, as it seems, even Ba'al Jehudah in 2 Samuel 6:2. Why should it not also have been called Ja'ar side by side with Kirjath-Jearim, and more especially if the mountainous district, to which the mention of a hill and mountain of Jearim points, was, as the name "city of the wood" implies, at the same time a wooded district? We therefore fall in with Khnl's (1799) rendering: we found it in the meadows of Jaar, and with his remark: "Jaar is a shortened name of the city of Kirjath-Jearim."

The question now further arises as to what Ephrathah is intended to mean. This is an ancient name of Bethlehem; but the Ark of the covenant never was in Bethlehem. Accordingly Hengstenberg interprets, "We knew of it in Bethlehem (where David had spent his youth) only by hearsay, no one had seen it; we found it in Kirjath-Jearim, yonder in the wooded environs of the city, where it was as it were buried in darkness and solitude." So even Anton Hulsius (1650): Ipse David loquitur, qui dicit illam ipsam arcam, de qua quum adhuc Bethlehemi versaretur inaudivisset, postea a se (vel majroibus suis ipso adhuc minorenni) inventam fuisse in campis Jaar. But (1) the supposition that David's words are continued here does not harmonize with the way in which they are introduced in Psalm 132:2, according to which they cannot possibly extend beyond the vow that follows. (2) If the church is speaking, one does not see why Bethlehem is mentioned in particular as the place of the hearsay. (3) We heard it in Ephrathah cannot well mean anything else than, per antiptosin (as in Genesis 1:4, but without כּי), we heard that it was in Ephrathah. But the Ark was before Kirjath-Jearim in Shiloh. The former lay in the tribe of Judah close to the western borders of Benjamin, the latter in the midst of the tribe of Ephraim. Now since אפרתי quite as often means an Ephraimite as it does a Bethlehemite, it may be asked whether Ephrathah is not intended of the Ephraimitish territory (Khnl, Gesenius, Maurer, Tholuck, and others). The meaning would then be: we had heard that the sacred Ark was in Shiloh, but we found it not there, but in Kirjath-Jearim. And we can easily understand why the poet has mentioned the two places just in this way. Ephrāth, according to its etymon, is fruitful fields, with which are contrasted the fields of the wood - the sacred Ark had fallen from its original, more worthy abode, as it were, into the wilderness. But is it probable, more especially in view of Micah 5:1, that in a connection in which the memory of David is the ruling idea, Ephrathah signifies the land of Ephraim? No, Ephrathah is the name of the district in which Kirjath-Jearim lay. Caleb had, for instance, by Ephrath, his third wife, a son named Hr (Chr), 1 Chronicles 2:19, This Hr, the first-born of Ephrathah, is the father of the population of Bethlehem (1 Chronicles 4:4), and Shobal, a son of this Hr, is father of the population of Kirjath-Jearim (1 Chronicles 2:50). Kirjath-Jearim is therefore, so to speak, the daughter of Bethlehem. This was called Ephrathah in ancient times, and this name of Bethlehem became the name of its district (Micah 5:1). Kirjath-Jearim belonged to Caleb-Ephrathah (1 Chronicles 2:24), as the northern part of this district seems to have been called in distinction from Negeb-Caleb (1 Samuel 30:14).

But משׁכּנותיו in Psalm 132:7 is now neither a designation of the house of Abinadab in Kirjath-Jearim, for the expression would be too grand, and in relation to Psalm 132:5 even confusing, nor a designation of the Salomonic Temple-building, for the expression standing thus by itself is not enough alone to designate it. What is meant will therefore be the tent-temple erected by David for the Ark when removed to Zion (2 Samuel 7:2, יריעה). The church arouses itself to enter this, and to prostrate itself in adoration towards (vid., Psalm 99:5) the footstool of Jahve, i.e., the Ark; and to what purpose? The ark of the covenant is now to have a place more worthy of it; the מנוּחה, i.e., the בּית מנוּחה, 1 Chronicles 28:2, in which David's endeavours have through Solomon reached their goal, is erected: let Jahve and the Ark of His sovereign power, that may not be touched (see the examples of its inviolable character in 1 Samuel 5:1-12, 1 Samuel 6, 2 Samuel 6:6.), now enter this fixed abode! Let His priests who are to serve Him there clothe themselves in "righteousness," i.e., in conduct that is according to His will and pleasure; let His saints, who shall there seek and find mercy, shout for joy! More especially, however, let Jahve for David's sake, His servant, to whose restless longing this place of rest owes its origin, not turn back the face of His anointed one, i.e., not reject his face which there turns towards Him in the attitude of prayer (cf. Psalm 84:10). The chronicler has understood Psalm 132:10 as an intercession on behalf of Solomon, and the situation into which we are introduced by Psalm 132:6-8 seems to require this. It is, however, possible that a more recent poet here, in Psalm 132:7-8, reproduces words taken from the heart of the church in Solomon's time, and blends petitions of the church of the present with them. The subject all through is the church, which is ever identical although changing in the persons of its members. The Israel that brought the sacred Ark out of Kirjath-Jearim to Zion and accompanied it thence to the Temple-hill, and now worships in the sanctuary raised by David's zeal for the glory of Jahve, is one and the same. The prayer for the priests, for all the saints, and more especially for the reigning king, that then resounded at the dedication of the Temple, is continued so long as the history of Israel lasts, even in a time when Israel has no king, but has all the stronger longing for the fulfilment of the Messianic promise.

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