Psalm 65:7
Which stilleth the noise of the seas, the noise of their waves, and the tumult of the people.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(7) Tumult.—Here we see the literal passing into the figurative. From the raging seas the poet’s thought goes to the anarchies arising from the wild passions of men, for which in all literature the ocean has furnished metaphors. (Comp. Isaiah 17:12.) In a well-known passage, the Latin poet Virgil reverses the simile, likening the sudden calm which succeeds the storm that wrecked Æneas to the effect produced by a leader of men in a seditious city. (Virgil, Æn. i. 148.)

65:6-13 That Almighty strength which sets fast the mountains, upholds the believer. That word which stills the stormy ocean, and speaks it into a calm, can silence our enemies. How contrary soever light and darkness are to each other, it is hard to say which is most welcome. Does the watchman wait for the morning? so does the labourer earnestly desire the shades of evening. Some understand it of the morning and evening sacrifices. We are to look upon daily worship, both alone and with our families, to be the most needful of our daily occupations, the most delightful of our daily comforts. How much the fruitfulness of this lower part of the creation depends upon the influence of the upper, is easy to observe; every good and perfect gift is from above. He who enriches the earth, which is filled with man's sins, by his abundant and varied bounty, can neither want power nor will to feed the souls of his people. Temporal mercies to us unworthy creatures, shadow forth more important blessings. The rising of the Sun of righteousness, and the pouring forth of the influences of the Holy Spirit, that river of God, full of the waters of life and salvation, render the hard, barren, worthless hearts of sinners fruitful in every good work, and change the face of nations more than the sun and rain change the face of nature. Wherever the Lord passes, by his preached gospel, attended by his Holy Spirit, his paths drop fatness, and numbers are taught to rejoice in and praise him. They will descend upon the pastures of the wilderness, all the earth shall hear and embrace the gospel, and bring forth abundantly the fruits of righteousness which are, through Jesus Christ, to the glory of the Father. Manifold and marvellous, O Lord, are thy works, whether of nature or of grace; surely in loving-kindness hast thou made them all.Which stilleth the noise of the seas - He calms the seas when they have been agitated by the storm. He causes the mighty waves to settle down, and the whole surface of the ocean becomes calm and smooth. The storm subsides at his command, and the sea is still. It was the manifestation of this power which demonstrated so clearly the divinity of the Lord Jesus, when he said to the troubled waves, "Peace, be still, and the wind ceased, and there was a great calm." Mark 4:39. Compare Psalm 107:29.

The noise of their waves - The loud roar of the waters, so that they are still.

And the tumult of the people - The raging; the fury; the excitement of assembled multitudes, resembling the raging waves of the ocean. This comparison is very common. See Isaiah 17:12-13. Compare the notes at Revelation 19:6. This is perhaps a more striking and wonderful exhibition of the power of God than that of calming down the waves of the ocean. In the one case, it is the exertion of mere power on nature, acting through its established laws, and where there is no resistance of will; in the other, it is power exerted over the will; power over agents conscious that they are free, and where the worst passions meet and mingle and rage.

Psalm 65:7And create evil - The parallelism here shows that this is not to be understood in the sense of all evil, but of that which is the opposite of peace and prosperity. That is, God directs judgments, disappointments, trials, and calamities; he has power to suffer the mad passions of people to rage, and to afflict nations with war; he presides over adverse as well as prosperous events. The passage does not prove that God is the author of moral evil, or sin, and such a sentiment is abhorrent to the general strain of the Bible, and to all just views of the character of a holy God.

6-13. God's great power and goodness are the grounds of this confidence. These are illustrated in His control of the mightiest agencies of nature and nations affecting men with awe and dread (Ps 26:7; 98:1, &c.), and in His fertilizing showers, causing the earth to produce abundantly for man and beast. The noise of their waves, when the sea is tempestuous, and threatens to swallow up ships and men that are in it, or to overflow the earth. And the tumult of the people; and as he stills the natural, so also he quiets the metaphorical seas, tumultuous and unruly people; for multitudes of people are oft called seas in prophetical writings, as Isaiah 17:12,13 Jer 51:42 Revelation 17:15.

Which stilleth the noise of the seas, the noise of their waves,.... By a word speaking; as our Lord did when here on earth, and which was a proof and evidence of his eternal power and Godhead. These figurative expressions are interpreted by the next clause;

and the tumult of the people: of wicked men, who foam and rage against the people of God, and are like a troubled sea that cannot rest; but God can say to these proud waters, which threaten to go over their souls, Peace, be still; he can stop their opposition, quell their insurrections, restrain their wrath, and make them peaceable and quiet; wherefore the saints have no reason to be afraid of them, Psalm 46:2.

Which stilleth the {f} noise of the seas, the noise of their waves, and the tumult of the people.

(f) He shows that there is no part or creature in the world which is not governed by God's power and providence.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
7. Who stilleth the roaring of the seas,

The roaring of their waves, and the tumult of the peoples.

He controls alike the turbulent elements of nature (Jeremiah 5:22), and the tumultuous hosts of the nations which they symbolise. Cp. Psalm 46:2 f, 6; Isaiah 17:12-14.

Verse 7. - Which stllleth the noise of the seas. The power of God, as set forth in his control of the sea, is a favourite topic with the sacred writers (see Job 38:8; Proverbs 8:29; Isaiah 50:2; Isaiah 51:10; Jeremiah 5:22, etc.). Being so entirely beyond his own control, it seems to man one of the greatest of marvels that there should be any force capable of subduing and taming it, Hence the admiration excited by our Lord's miracle (Matthew 8:26, 27). The noise of their waves (comp. Isaiah 17:12). And the tumult of the people. This clause may seem a little out of place in a passage which treats of God's power over nature. But, after all, humanity is a constituent part of nature. Psalm 65:7The praise of God on account of the lovingkindness which Israel as a people among the peoples has experienced. The future תּעננוּ confesses, as a present, a fact of experience that still holds good in all times to come. נוראות might, according to Psalm 20:7, as in Psalm 139:14, be an accusative of the more exact definition; but why not, according to 1 Samuel 20:10; Job 9:3, a second accusative under the government of the verb? God answers the prayer of His people superabundantly. He replies to it גוראות, terrible deeds, viz., בּצדק, by a rule which stringently executes the will of His righteousness (vid., on Jeremiah 42:6); in this instance against the oppressors of His people, so that henceforth everywhere upon earth He is a ground of confidence to all those who are oppressed. "The sea (ים construct state, as is frequently the case, with the retention of the ) of the distant ones" is that of the regions lying afar off (cf. Psalm 56:1). Venema observes, Significatur, Deum esse certissimum praesidium, sive agnoscatur ab hominibus et ei fidatur, sive non (therefore similar to γνόντες, Romans 1:21; Psychol. S. 347; tr. p. 408). But according tot he connection and the subjective colouring the idea seems to have, מבטח וגו is to be understood of the believing acknowledgment which the God of Israel attains among all mankind by reason of His judicial and redemptive self-attestation (cf. Isaiah 33:13; 2 Chronicles 32:22.). In the natural world and among men He proves Himself to be the Being girded with power to whom everything must yield. He it is who setteth fast the mountains (cf. Jeremiah 10:12) and stilleth the raging of the ocean. In connection with the giant mountains the poet may have had even the worldly powers (vid., Isaiah 41:15) in his mind; in connection with the seas he gives expression to this allegorical conjunction of thoughts. The roaring of the billows and the wild tumult of the nations as a mass in the empire of the world, both are stilled by the threatening of the God of Israel (Isaiah 17:12-14). When He shall overthrow the proud empire of the world, whose tyranny the earth has been made to feel far and wide, then will reverential fear of Him and exultant joy at the end of the thraldom (vid., Isaiah 13:4-8) become universal. אותת (from the originally feminine אות equals ăwăjat, from אוה, to mark, Numbers 34:10), σημεῖα, is the name given here to His marvellous interpositions in the history of our earth. קצוי, Psalm 65:6 (also in Isaiah 26:15), out of construction is קצות. "The exit places of the morning and of the evening" are the East and West with reference to those who dwell there. Luther erroneously understands מוצאי as directly referring to the creatures which at morning and evening "sport about (webern), i.e., go safely and joyfully out and in." The meaning is, the regions whence the morning breaks forth and where the evening sets. The construction is zeugmatic so far as בּוא, not יצא, is said of the evening sun, but only to a certain extent, for neither does one say נבוא ערב (Ewald). Perret-Gentil renders it correctly: les lieux d'o surgissent l'aube et le crepuscule. God makes both these to shout for joy, inasmuch as He commands a calm to the din of war.
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