Psalm 27:3
Though an host should encamp against me, my heart shall not fear: though war should rise against me, in this will I be confident.
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(3) Though an host.—Literally, Though a camp should encamp.

In this.—Either in this circumstance or in spite of this. (Comp. Psalm 78:32.) The LXX. ἐν ταύτῃ, followed by μίαν in the next clause, seems to refer it to the hope about to be expressed. The Rabbinical commentators (e.g., Aben Ezra and Rashi) refer back to the beginning of the psalm. “In this”—viz., that Jehovah is my light—“do I trust.” Rosenmiiller refers it to “the battle” just mentioned, in ipsa pugna.

27:1-6 The Lord, who is the believer's light, is the strength of his life; not only by whom, but in whom he lives and moves. In God let us strengthen ourselves. The gracious presence of God, his power, his promise, his readiness to hear prayer, the witness of his Spirit in the hearts of his people; these are the secret of his tabernacle, and in these the saints find cause for that holy security and peace of mind in which they dwell at ease. The psalmist prays for constant communion with God in holy ordinances. All God's children desire to dwell in their Father's house. Not to sojourn there as a wayfaring man, to tarry but for a night; or to dwell there for a time only, as the servant that abides not in the house for ever; but to dwell there all the days of their life, as children with a father. Do we hope that the praising of God will be the blessedness of our eternity? Surely then we ought to make it the business of our time. This he had at heart more than any thing. Whatever the Christian is as to this life, he considers the favour and service of God as the one thing needful. This he desires, prays for and seeks after, and in it he rejoices.Though an host - Though an "army;" that is, any army, or any number of men in battle array. The past interposition of God in similar times of trouble and danger was to him a sufficient security that he had nothing to fear.

Should encamp against me - In battle array, or prepared for battle.

My heart shall not fear - He would not tremble; he would not feel that there was anything of which to be afraid. God had shown Himself superior to the power of hostile armies, and the psalmist felt assured that he might confide in Him.

Though war should rise against me - Though it should be proclaimed, and though all preparation should be made for it, I will not be afraid.

In this will I be confident - In such a case, in such an extremity or emergency, I would calmly trust in God. He would apprehend no danger, for he had seen that the Lord could deliver him.

3. In the greatest dangers.

in this—that is, then, in such extremity.

In that which I have now said, that God is my light, &c., Psalm 27:1, and in the experience of his favour and protection, Psalm 27:2. Though an host should encamp against me,.... An host of the ungodly, as the Targum; though ever so many of them, even ten thousands of them, as in Psalm 3:6; should beset him on every side;

my heart shall not fear; for not only the angels of the Lord encamped about him, as they do about all that fear the Lord; but salvation was appointed for walls and bulwarks about him; yea, the Lord himself was a wall of fire around him, and he was kept as in a garrison by the power of God;

though war should rise against me: in all its terrible shapes:

in this will I be confident; either in this war, in the midst of it; or in this that he had expressed, Psalm 27:1; that the Lord was his light, his salvation, and the strength of his life; so the Jewish writers (e): or as others (f), in this one thing, desired in Psalm 27:4; but either of the former senses is best, especially the latter of them. Saints need not be afraid, though there is a war within them between the flesh and spirit; and though without are fightings with Satan and his principalities and powers; since they may be confident of victory, and that they are more than conquerors, through Christ that has loved them.

(e) Jarchi, Kimchi, & Aben Ezra in loc. (f) Some in Aben Ezra in loc.

Though an host should encamp against me, my heart shall not fear: though war should rise against me, in {b} this will I be confident.

(b) That God will deliver me and give my faith the victory.

3. The language may be figurative, but is more natural, if the writer was, like David, actually exposed to war’s alarms. Cp. Psalm 3:6.

in this] In the truth of Psalm 27:1. But it is better to render with R.V., even then, in spite of opposing armies.Verse 3. - Though an host should encamp against me, my heart shall not fear. In the first burst of joy at his recent victory, the 'host" which remains unconquered seems of light account - let them advance - let them "encamp against him" - his heart will not be afraid; but when the joy has had full vent, there is a reaction; the enemies then appear more formidable, and God's aid is besought against them (see vers. 9-12). Though war should rise against me, in this will I be confident. "In this" may be either "in the fact that the Lord is my Light and my Salvation" (ver. 1), or "in case of such an event as war and attack on the part of the enemy." It is now, for the first time, that the petition compressed into the one word שׁפטני (Psalm 26:1) is divided out. He prays (as in Psalm 28:3), that God may not connect him in one common lot with those whose fellowship of sentiment and conduct he has always shunned. אנשׁי דּמים, as in Psalm 5:7, cf. ἄνθρωποι αἱμάτων, Sir. 31:25. Elsewhere זמּה signifies purpose, and more particularly in a bad sense; but in this passage it means infamy, and not unnatural unchastity, to which בּידיהם is inappropriate, but scum of whatever is vicious in general: they are full of cunning and roguery, and their right hand, which ought to uphold the right - David has the lords of his people in his eye - is filled (מלאה, not מלאה) with accursed (Deuteronomy 27:25) bribery to the condemnation of the innocent. He, on the contrary, now, as he always has done, walks in his uprightness, so that now he can with all the more joyful conscience intreat God to interpose judicially in his behalf.
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