Psalm 22:9
But you are he that took me out of the womb: you did make me hope when I was on my mother's breasts.
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(9) But.—Better, For. Faith that turns to God in spite of derision is the best answer to derision.

Thou didst make me hope.—Better, thou didst make me repose on my mother’s breast.

Psalm 22:9-10. Thou art he, &c. — This seems to refer to the miraculous conception of Christ, who was the Son of God, in a sense in which no other man ever was, being formed, as to his human nature, by the power of God, in the womb of a pure virgin. Therefore he said, at his entrance into the world, Sacrifice and offering thou wouldest not, but a body hast thou prepared me. Thou didst make me hope — Or, trust, that is, Thou didst give me sufficient ground for hope and trust, if I had been capable of it, because of thy wonderful and watchful care over me in that weak and helpless state; when I was upon my mother’s breasts — When I was a sucking child. This was eminently true of Christ, whom God so miraculously preserved and provided for in his infancy, giving, in a supernatural way, an order to Joseph and Mary to carry him into Egypt, as we read Matthew 2:20-21. I was cast upon thee from the womb — Thou didst take me at my birth, and in a particular manner didst charge thyself with the care of me.22:1-10 The Spirit of Christ, which was in the prophets, testifies in this psalm, clearly and fully, the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow. We have a sorrowful complaint of God's withdrawings. This may be applied to any child of God, pressed down, overwhelmed with grief and terror. Spiritual desertions are the saints' sorest afflictions; but even their complaint of these burdens is a sign of spiritual life, and spiritual senses exercised. To cry our, My God, why am I sick? why am I poor? savours of discontent and worldliness. But, Why hast thou forsaken me? is the language of a heart binding up its happiness in God's favour. This must be applied to Christ. In the first words of this complaint, he poured out his soul before God when he was upon the cross, Mt 27:46. Being truly man, Christ felt a natural unwillingness to pass through such great sorrows, yet his zeal and love prevailed. Christ declared the holiness of God, his heavenly Father, in his sharpest sufferings; nay, declared them to be a proof of it, for which he would be continually praised by his Israel, more than for all other deliverances they received. Never any that hoped in thee, were made ashamed of their hope; never any that sought thee, sought thee in vain. Here is a complaint of the contempt and reproach of men. The Saviour here spoke of the abject state to which he was reduced. The history of Christ's sufferings, and of his birth, explains this prophecy.But thou art he that took me out of the womb - I owe my life to thee. This is urged by the sufferer as a reason why God should now interpose and protect him. God had brought him into the world, guarding him in the perils of the earliest moments of his being, and he now pleads that in the day of trouble God will interpose and save him. There is nothing improper in applying this to the Messiah. He was a man, with all the innocent propensities and feelings of a man; and no one can say but that when on the cross - and perhaps with special fitness we may say when he saw his mother standing near him John 19:25 - these thoughts may have passed through his mind. In the remembrance of the care bestowed on his early years, he may now have looked with an eye of earnest pleading to God, that, if it were possible, he might deliver him.

Thou didst make me hope - Margin, "Keptest me in safety." The phrase in the Hebrew means, Thou didst cause me to trust or to hope. It may mean here either that he was made to cherish a hope of the divine favor "in very early life," as it were when an infant at the breast; or it may mean that he had cause then to hope, or to trust in God. The former, it seems to me, is probably the meaning; and the idea is, that frown his earliest years he had been lea to trust in God; and he now pleads this fact as a reason why he should interpose to save him. Applied to the Redeemer as a man, it means that in his earliest childhood he had trusted in God. His first breathings were those of piety. His first aspirations were for the divine favor. His first love was the love of God. This he now calls to remembrance; this he now urges as a reason why God should not with. draw the light of his countenance, and leave him to suffer alone. No one can prove that these thoughts did not pass through the mind of the Redeemer when he was enduring the agonies of desertion on the cross; no one can show that they would have been improper.

Upon my mother's breast - In my earliest infancy. This does not mean that he literally cherished hope then, but that he had done it in the earliest period of his life, as the first act of his conscious being.

9, 10. Though ironically spoken, the exhortation to trust was well founded on his previous experience of divine aid, the special illustration of which is drawn from the period of helpless infancy.

didst make me hope—literally, "made me secure."

This is noted as an effect of God’s wonderful and gracious providence. And although this be a mercy which God grants to all mankind, yet it may well be alleged here, partly in way of gratitude for this great, though common, mercy; nething being more reasonable and usual than for David and other holy men to praise God for such blessings; and partly as an argument to encourage himself to expect and to prevail with God, to grant him the deliverance which now he desires, because he had formerly delivered him; this being a very common argument: see 1 Samuel 17:37 2 Corinthians 1:10. But this is applicable to Christ in a singular manner, not as a late learned writer takes it, that God separated him from the womb, but that God did bring him out (as the word properly signifies)

of the womb, to wit, immediately and by himself, and without the help of any man, by the miraculous operation of the Holy Ghost, which made him there, or else he could never have been brought thence.

Thou didst make me hope, or trust, i.e. thou didst give me sufficient ground for hope and trust, if I had then been capable of acting that grace, because of thy wonderful and watchful care over me in that weak and helpless state; which was eminently true of Christ, whom God so miraculously preserved and provided for in his infancy; the history whereof we read Mt 2. It is not strange that hope is figuratively ascribed to infants, seeing even the brute creatures are said to hope, Romans 8:20, and to wait and cry to God, Psalm 145:15 147:9.

When I was upon my mother’s breasts, i.e. when I was a sucking child; which may be properly understood. But thou art he that took me out of the womb,.... The Papists affirm, that there was something miraculous in the manner of Christ's coming into the world, as well as in his conception; that his conception of a virgin was miraculous is certain, being entirely owing to the wonderful and mysterious overshadowing of the Holy Ghost, and which was necessary to preserve his human nature from the contagion of sin, common to all that descend from Adam by ordinary generation; that so that individual of human nature might be proper to be united to the Son of God, and that it might be a fit sacrifice for the sins of men; but otherwise in all other things, sin only excepted, he was made like unto us; and it is a clear case, that his mother bore him the usual time, and went with him her full time of nine months, as women commonly do; see Luke 1:56; and it is as evident that he was born and brought forth in the same manner other infants are, seeing he was presented, to the Lord in the temple, and the offering was brought for him according to the law respecting the male that opens the womb, Luke 2:22; and the phrase that is here used is expressive of the common providence of God which attends such an event, every man being as it were midwifed into the world by God himself; see Job 10:18; though there was, no doubt, a peculiar providence which attended the birth of our Lord, and makes this expression more peculiarly applicable to him; since his mother Mary, when her full time was come, was at a distance from the place of her residence, was in an inn, and in a stable there, there being no room for her in the inn, and so very probably had no women about her to assist her, nor any midwife with her; and there was the more visible appearance of the hand of God in this affair, who might truly be said to take him out of the womb:

thou didst make me hope when I was upon my mother's breasts; which may be understood of the expectation and hope, common to infants, which have not the use of reason, with all creatures, whose eyes wait upon the Lord, and he gives them their meat in due season; and here may regard the sudden and suitable provision of milk in the mother's breast, to which there is in the infant a natural desire, and an hope and expectation of. The words may be rendered, as they are by some, "thou didst keep me in safety", or make me safe and secure (z), when I was "upon my mother's breast": this was verified in Christ at the time Herod sought to take away his life; he was then in his mother's arms, and sucked at her breast; when the Lord in a dream acquainted Joseph with Herod's design, and directed him to flee with the young child and his mother into Egypt, where they were kept in safety till the death of Herod. This sense of the words frees them from a difficulty, how the grace of hope, or of faith and confidence, can, in a proper sense, be exercised in the infant state; for though the principle of grace may be implanted so early, yet how it should be exercised when there is not the due use of reason is not easy to conceive; if, therefore, the words are taken in this sense, the meaning must be, that he was caused to hope as soon as he was capable of it, which is sometimes the design of such a phrase; see Job 31:18; unless we suppose something extraordinary in Christ's human nature, which some interpreters are not willing to allow, because he was in all things like unto us excepting sin; but I see not, that seeing the human nature was an extraordinary one, was perfectly holy from the first of it, the grace of God was upon it as soon as born, and it was anointed with the Holy Ghost above its fellows, why it may not be thought to exercise grace in an extraordinary manner, so early as is here expressed, literally understood.

(z) "tu me tutum fecisti", Cocceius; so Michaelis.

But thou art he that took me out of the {e} womb: thou didst make me hope when I was upon my mother's breasts.

(e) Even from my birth you have given me opportunity to trust in you.

9. But thou art he] Rather, Yea, thou art he. The mocking words of his enemies are true, and he turns them into a plea. All his past life has proved Jehovah’s love. Cp. Psalm 71:5-6.

thou didst make me hope] Rather, that didst make me trust, (cp. Psalm 22:4-5). The marg., keptest me in safety, lit. didst make me lie securely upon my mother’s breasts, is a less probable rendering. The P.B.V. my hope follows LXX, Vulg., Jer., which represent a slightly different reading.Verse 9. - But thou art he that took me out of the womb (comp. Job 10:8-11). God's creatures have always a claim upon him from the very fact that they are his creatures. Every sufferer may appeal to God as his Maker, and therefore bound to be his Helper and Preserver. Thou didst make me hope when I was upon my mother's breasts. Thou gavest me the serene joy and trust of infancy - that happy time to which man looks back with such deep satisfaction. Every joy, every satisfaction, came from thee. (Heb.: 22:4-6) The sufferer reminds Jahve of the contradiction between the long season of helplessness and His readiness to help so frequently and so promptly attested. ואתּה opens an adverbial clause of the counterargument: although Thou art...Jahve is קדושׁ, absolutely pure, lit., separated (root קד, Arab. qd, to cut, part, just as ṭahur, the synonym of ḳadusa, as the intransitive of ṭahara equals ab‛ada, to remove to a distance, and בּר pure, clean, radically distinct from p-rus, goes back to בּרר to sever), viz., from that which is worldly and common, in one word: holy. Jahve is holy, and has shown Himself such as the תּהלּות of Israel solemnly affirm, upon which or among which He sits enthroned. תהלות are the songs of praise offered to God on account of His attributes and deeds, which are worthy of praise (these are even called תהלות in Psalm 78:4; Exodus 15:11; Isaiah 63:7), and in fact presented in His sanctuary (Isaiah 64:10). The combination יושׁב תּהלּות (with the accusative of the verbs of dwelling and tarrying) is like יושׁב כּרבים, Psalm 99:1; Psalm 80:2. The songs of praise, which resounded in Israel as the memorials of His deeds of deliverance, are like the wings of the cherubim, upon which His presence hovered in Israel. In Psalm 22:5, the praying one brings to remembrance this graciously glorious self-attestation of God, who as the Holy One always, from the earliest times, acknowledged those who fear Him in opposition to their persecutors and justified their confidence in Himself. In Psalm 22:5 trust and rescue are put in the connection of cause and effect; in Psalm 22:6 in reciprocal relation. פּלּט and מלּט are only distinguished by the harder and softer sibilants, cf. Psalm 17:13 with Psalm 116:4. It need not seem strange that such thoughts were at work in the soul of the Crucified One, since His divine-human consciousness was, on its human side, thoroughly Israelitish; and the God of Israel is also the God of salvation; redemption is that which He himself determined, why, then, should He not speedily deliver the Redeemer?
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