Psalm 5:12
For thou, LORD, wilt bless the righteous; with favour wilt thou compass him as with a shield.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
5:7-12 David prayed often alone, yet was very constant in attendance on public worship. The mercy of God should ever be the foundation both of our hope and of our joy, in every thing wherein we have to do with him. Let us learn to pray, not for ourselves only, but for others; grace be with all that love Christ in sincerity. The Divine blessing comes down upon us through Jesus Christ, the righteous or just One, as of old it did upon Israel through David, whom God protected, and placed upon the throne. Thou, O Christ, art the righteous Saviour, thou art the King of Israel, thou art the Fountain of blessing to all believers; thy favour is the defence and protection of thy church.For thou, Lord, wilt bless the righteous - It is one of the characteristics of God that, while he will punish the wicked, he will show favor to the righteous; while he brings deserved punishment upon the one, he will show his favor to the other.

With favor wilt thou compass him as with a shield - That is, as a shield is thrown round or before one in the day of battle to protect him, so wilt thou throw thy protection around the righteous. For a description of a "shield," see the notes at Ephesians 6:16. Compare the notes at Psalm 3:3. On these accounts, David felt that he might trust in God in the day of trouble and danger; and, on the same account, all who are righteous may put their trust in him now.

12. with favour—or, "acceptance," alluding to the favor shown to an acceptable offering and worshipper (Le 7:18; 19:7).

shield—(compare Ps 3:3).

12 For thou, Lord, wilt bless the righteous; with favour wilt thou compass him as with a shield.

Jehovah has ordained his people the heirs of blessedness, and nothing shall rob them of their inheritance. With all the fulness of his power he will bless them, and all his attributes shall unite to satiate them with divine contentment. Nor is this merely for the present, but the blessing reaches into the long and unknown future. "Thou Lord, wilt bless the righteous." This is a promise of infinite length, of unbounded breadth, and of unutterable preciousness.

As for the defence which the believer needs in this land of battles, it is here promised to him in the fullest measure. There were vast shields used by the ancients as extensive as a man's whole person, which would surround him entirely. So says David, "With favour wilt thou compass him as with a shield." According to Ainsworth there is here also the idea of being crowned, so that we wear a royal helmet, which is at once our glory and defence. O Lord, ever give to us this gracious coronation!

i.e. Thou art resolved, and hast engaged thyself by promise and covenant, to bless them; and therefore my prayer for them is agreeable to thy will.

With favour; with thy love and gracious providence.

Wilt thou compass him as with a shield, i.e. keep him safe on every side.

For thou, Lord, wilt bless the righteous. As he has blessed him with a righteousness, even the righteousness of God imputed to him, by which he is denominated righteous, and with the forgiveness of his sins; so he will bless him with peace and prosperity, with all spiritual blessings, with the blessings of grace here, and glory hereafter. Hence he has just reason to rejoice and be glad;

with favour wilt thou compass him as with a shield: by which is meant the free favour, love, and grace of God in Christ, which springs from his sovereign will and pleasure; is his good will to men, and the exceeding riches of his grace, shown in his kindness towards them in Christ Jesus: and the compassing or crowning of the righteous with it, as the word (x) signifies, is expressive of the abundance of it, in the application of it to them in conversion, and in every instance and blessing of grace; for such are crowned with lovingkindness and tender mercies; the grace of the Lord is exceeding abundant towards them, it flows and overflows; it surrounds them on all sides, and covers them all over: it is as a shield unto them from all their enemies, Psalm 40:11; and which being held in the hand of faith, quenches the fiery darts of Satan; and is the saints security from every enemy, and from all hurt and danger, here or hereafter; see Zephaniah 3:17; and is a crown of glory upon them, which makes them glorious, lovely, and amiable. Some interpret this of Christ the righteous One; so Nebiensis.

(x) , Sept. "coronasti nos", V. L. Arab. Ethiop. "coronabis cum", Pagninus, Montanus, Cocceius.

For thou, LORD, wilt bless the righteous; with favour {i} wilt thou compass him as with a shield.

(i) So that he will be safe from all dangers.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
12. The R.V. follows the Massoretic punctuation in transferring lord to the second half of the verse:

O lord, thou wilt compass him with favour as with a shield.

a shield] A buckler, or large shield to protect the whole body. Cp. Psalm 35:2, Psalm 91:4; 1 Samuel 17:7. From 1 Kings 10:16-17 it would seem that the ‘buckler’ (A.V. ‘target’) was about double the size of the ‘shield.’

Verse 12. - For thou, Lord, wilt bless the righteous. All the joy of the righteous springs from the fact that God's blessing is upon them. The sense of his favour fills their hearts with rejoicing. With favour wilt thou compass him as with a shield. Tsinnah (צִנָּה)is the large, long shield that protected the whole body (see 'Ancient Monarchies,' vol. 1. p. 445). God's favour, thus encompassing a man, effectually secured him against all dangers.



Psalm 5:12(Heb.: 5:11-13) The verb אשׁם or אשׁם unites in itself the three closely allied meanings of becoming guilty (e.g., Leviticus 5:19), of a feeling of guilt (Leviticus 5:4.), and of expiation (Psalm 34:22.); just as the verbal adj. אשׁם also signifies both liable to punishment and expiating, and the substantive אשׁם both the guilt to be expiated and the expiation. The Hiph. האשׁים signifies to cause any one to render the expiation due to his fault, to make him do penance. As an exception God is here, in the midst of the Jehovic Psalms, called אלהים, perhaps not altogether unintentionally as being God the Judge. The מן of ממּעצותיהם (with Gaja by the מן and a transition of the counter-tone Metheg into Galgal, as in Hosea 11:6 into Meajla, vid., Psalter ii. 526) is certainly that of the cause in Hosea 11:6, but here it is to be explained with Olsh. and Hitz. according to Sir. 14:2, Judith 11:6 (cf. Hosea 10:6): may they fall from their own counsels, i.e., founder in the execution of them. Therefore מן in the sense of "down from, away," a sense which the parallel הדּיחמו thrust them away (cf. דּחוּ from דּחה Psalm 36:13), presupposes. The ב of בּרב is to be understood according to John 8:21, John 8:24 "ye shall die ἐν ταῖς ἁμαρτίαις ὑμῶν." The multitude of their transgressions shall remain unforgiven and in this state God is to cast them into hades. The ground of this terrible prayer is set forth by כּי מרוּ בך. The tone of מרוּ, for a well-known reason (cf. e.g., Psalm 37:40; Psalm 64:11; Psalm 72:17) has retreated to the penult. מרה, root מר, prop. to be or hold one's self stiff towards any one, compare Arab. mârr, tmârr, to press and stiffen against one another in wrestling, Arab. mârâ, tmârâ, to struggle against anything, whether with outward or mental and moral opposition. Their obstinacy is not obstinacy against a man, but against God Himself; their sin is, therefore, Satanic and on that account unpardonable. All the prayers of this character are based upon the assumption expressed in Psalm 7:13, that those against whom they are directed do not wish for mercy. Accordingly their removal is prayed for. Their removal will make the ecclesia pressa free and therefore joyous. From this point of view the prayer in Psalm 5:12 is inspired by the prospect of the result of their removal. The futt. do not express a wish, but a consequence. The division of the verse is, however, incorrect. The rise of the first half of the verse closes with בך (the pausal form by Pazer), its fall is לעולם ירנּנוּ; then the rise begins anew in the second half, extending to בך which ought likewise to be pointed בך, and אהבי שׁמך is its fall. ותסך עלימו (from הסך Hiph. of סכך Psalm 91:4) is awkward in this sequence of thoughts. Hupfeld and Hitzig render it: "they shall rejoice for ever whom Thou defendest;" but then it ought not only to be pointed ירנּנוּ, but the ו must also be removed, and yet there is nothing to characterise תסך עלימו as being virtually a subject. On the other hand it does not harmonise with the other consecutive futures. It must therefore, like יפּלוּ, be the optative: "And do Thou defend them, then shall those who love Thy name rejoice in Thee." And then upon this this joy of those who love the name of Jahve (i.e., God in His revelation of Himself in redemption) Psalm 69:37; Psalm 119:132, is based by כּי־אתּה from a fact of universal experience which is the sum of all His historical self-attestations. עלימו is used instead of עליהם as a graver form of expression, just like הדּיחמו for הדּיחם as an indignant one. The form ויעלצוּ (Ges. 63, 3) is chosen instead of the יעלצוּ found in Psalm 25:2; Psalm 68:4, in order to assist the rhythm. The futt. are continuative. תּעטרנּוּ, cinges eum, is not a contracted Hiph. according to 1 Samuel 17:25, but Kal as in 1 Samuel 23:26; here it is used like the Piel in Psalm 8:6 with a double accusative. The צנּה (from צנן Arab. tsân, med. Waw, Aethiop. צון to hedge round, guard) is a shield of a largest dimensions; larger than מגן 1 Kings 10:16. (cf. 1 Samuel 17:7, where Goliath has his צנּה borne by a shield-bearer). כּצּנּה "like a shield" is equivalent to: as with a shield (Ges. 118, 3, rem.). The name of God, יהוה, is correctly drawn to the second member of the verse by the accentuation, in order to balance it with the first; and for this reason the first clause does not begin with כי־אתה יהוה here as it does elsewhere (Psalm 4:9; Psalm 12:8). רצון delight, goodwill, is also a synonym for the divine blessing in Deuteronomy 33:23.
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