Psalm 68:29
Because of thy temple at Jerusalem shall kings bring presents unto thee.
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(29) Kings.—This verse is a strong argument for referring the psalm either to the time of the rebuilding of the Temple, or its re-dedication after the pollution by Antiochus Epiphanes.

Psalm 68:29. Because of thy temple at Jerusalem — The tabernacle erected there by David, in which the ark was now placed; or rather, the temple which he foresaw would be built, and which he knew would be very magnificent, and of fame and glory throughout all countries, as he says, 1 Chronicles 22:5; and such as would command esteem and reverence, even from the heathen princes and people, and that, not only for its most splendid and glorious structure, but especially for the wonderful works which the God of that temple would work in behalf of his people, and in answer to the prayers that should be made in that temple; of which see 1 Kings 8:41-43. Shall kings bring presents unto thee — Which was done in part in the times of Solomon and Hezekiah, and afterward by others; but more fully when the Lord Christ was come into his temple, according to Malachi 3:1, and had built a better temple instead of it, even the Christian Church, to which it was foretold, in many prophecies of the Old Testament, that the kings and nations of the earth would flow in great abundance.

68:29-31 A powerful invitation is given to those that are without, to join the church. Some shall submit from fear; overcome by their consciences, and the checks of Providence, they are brought to make peace with the church. Others will submit willingly, ver. 29,31. There is that beauty and benefit in the service of God, and in the gospel of Christ which went forth from Jerusalem, which is enough to invite sinners out of all nations.Because of thy temple at Jerusalem - The word rendered "temple" here properly means a palace; then, the abode of God considered as a king, or his residence as a king. It might, therefore, be applied either to the tabernacle or to the temple, erected as the special dwelling-place of God. As the word has so general a meaning, the passage here does not prove that the psalm was composed after Solomon's temple was reared, for it may refer to the tabernacle that David set up for the ark on Mount Zion. See Psalm 5:7, note; Psalm 65:4, note.

At Jerusalem - literally, "upon," or "above" Jerusalem. Perhaps the idea is, that as the place of worship was built on Mount Zion, it was "above," or seemed to "overhang" the city. The city was built mostly in the valleys that lay between the different hills or eminences - Mount Zion, Mount Moriah, Mount Ophel.

Shall kings bring presents unto thee - In honor of God and his religion. Compare Psalm 72:10. See also the notes at Isaiah 49:7, notes at Isaiah 49:23; notes at Isaiah 60:5, notes at Isaiah 60:16.

29. thy temple—literally, "over"

Jerusalem—His palace or residence (Ps 5:7) symbolized His protecting presence among His people, and hence is the object of homage on the part of others.

Thy temple; either,

1. The old tabernacle which then was; which is oft called by this name. But that was now at Gibeon, not at Jerusalem. Or rather,

2. The temple which Solomon should build, which David knew should be very magnifical, of fame and of glory throughout all countries, as he saith, 1 Chronicles 22:5; and such as would command esteem and reverence even from heathenish princes and people, and that not only for its most splendid and glorious structure, but especially for the wonderful works of the God of that temple wrought by him on the behalf of his people, and in answer to the prayers made in the temple; of which see 1 Kings 8:41-43.

Kings; kings of the Gentiles; which was done in part in the times of Solomon and Hezekiah, 1 Kings 10:11,24,25 2 Chronicles 32:23, and afterwards by others; but more fully when the Lord Christ was come into his temple, according to that prophecy, Malachi 3:1, and had built a better temple instead of it, even the Christian church, to which the kings and nations of the earth were to flow in great abundance, according to the tenor of many prophecies in the Old Testament.

Because of thy temple at Jerusalem,.... Not the material temple there, which was not in being in David's time, but was built by his son, and destroyed by Nebuchadnezzar; and though it was rebuilt by Zerubbabel, repaired by Herod, and was the Messiah's temple, into which he entered as the Lord and proprietor of it, Malachi 3:1; yet was quickly after his time demolished, and will never be rebuilt more; but the Messiah's spiritual temple, of which he is the builder, foundation, and cornerstone; the materials of which are believers in him, and it is for his service, worship, and glory: and "because of Jerusalem" (b), as it may be translated: by which also the church of Christ is meant, which is the heavenly Jerusalem, the Jerusalem which is above, and free, the mother of us all, the city of the great King, the place of divine worship, and well fortified by the power and grace of God. The words may be rendered "above Jerusalem" (c), and connected either with Psalm 68:28, and so point at the place, heaven, the temple and palace of the Messiah; from whence spiritual health and strength are desired, and may be expected; or with the following words, and the sense be, "from", or "out of thy temple in Jerusalem": even out of the material temple, the Gospel should be preached, as it was by the apostles on the day of Pentecost; and so the word of the Lord went out from thence, and from Jerusalem into Judea, and so into the Gentile world, where it is continued, and will be until the kings of the earth shall be converted, as follows;

shall kings bring presents unto thee: that is, such as should become Christians, as Constantine, and others, in the earlier ages of Christianity; who brought their riches and wealth to Christ, and into his church, with a design for the good and welfare of it, though it proved otherwise; and as many will in the latter day, who, being converted, will bring presents to the King Messiah, join his churches, and be their nursing fathers; see Psalm 72:10; and who will bring their glory and honour, and that of the nations, into the New Jerusalem church state, Revelation 21:24; and it will be because of his church and people, and for their good and welfare, as well as for the glory and honour of Christ, that those presents will be brought; and which will not only be theirs, their good things, but themselves, whom they will present to the Lord, as living and acceptable sacrifices, Romans 12:1; the Targum is,

"out of thy temple thou shalt receive offerings; upon Jerusalem thy Shechinah dwells; out of their palaces kings shall bring unto thee sacrifices.''

(b) "propter Jeruschalaima", Junius & Tremellius. (c) "Super Jerusalaim", Pagninus, Montanus, Vatablus.

{z} Because of thy temple at Jerusalem shall kings bring presents unto thee.

(z) Declare out of your holy palace your power for the defence of your Church Jerusalem.

29. Because of thy temple at Jerusalem] To the age of the Return the restored Temple was the visible symbol and proof that Jehovah had come back to His ancient dwelling-place (Psalm 122:9). It was to be the occasion and the centre of fresh homage. Cp. Isaiah 60:7 ff; Isaiah 66:20; Haggai 2:7; Zechariah 2:11 ff; Zechariah 6:15; Zechariah 8:21 ff.

From thy temple however is a more natural rendering than because of thy temple; and it is possible that the words should be joined with the preceding verse—either thus, thou that hast wrought for us out of thy temple; or better still, shew thyself strong, thou who hast wrought for us, out of My temple[32]; cp. Psalm 110:2. The next line will then begin: Up to Jerusalem shall kings &c.

[32] The pausal form of the word מֵהֵיכָלֶךָ out of thy temple, looks like the trace of a tradition that the verses were once so divided.

bring presents] A phrase used only in Psalm 76:11; Isaiah 18:7, of bringing solemn tribute to God.

Verse 29. - Because of thy temple at Jerusalem shall kings bring presents unto thee. So Ewald, Kay, and the Revised Version, though critics generally doubt whether min can have this meaning. If min has its usual sense of "from," we must regard the kings as having entered the temple courts, and from thence stretching out their hands, and offering their gifts, to God, who is in the holy of holies. (On the offering of gifts by heathen kings, see Isaiah 49:23; Isaiah 60:16; and comp. Psalm 72:10.) Psalm 68:29The poet now looks forth beyond the domain of Israel, and describes the effects of Jahve's deed of judgment and deliverance in the Gentile world. The language of Psalm 68:29 is addressed to Israel, or rather to its king (Psalm 86:16; Psalm 110:2): God, to whom everything is subject, has given Israel עז, victory and power over the world. Out of the consciousness that He alone can preserve Israel upon this height of power upon which it is placed, who has placed it thereon, grows the prayer: establish (עוּזּה with וּ for ŭ, as is frequently the case, and with the accent on the ultima on account of the following Aleph, vid., on Psalm 6:5), Elohim, that which Thou hast wrought for us; עזז, roborare, as in Proverbs 8:28; Ecclesiastes 7:19, lxx δυνάμωσον, Symmachus ἐνίσχυσον. It might also be interpreted: show Thyself powerful (cf. רוּמה, 21:14), Thou who (Isaiah 42:24) hast wrought for us (פּעל as in Isaiah 43:13, with ל, like עשׂה ל, Isaiah 64:3); but in the other way of taking it the prayer attaches itself more sequentially to what precedes, and Psalm 62:12 shows that זוּ can also represent the neuter. Hitzig has a still different rendering: the powerful divine help, which Thou hast given us; but although - instead of -ת in the stat. construct. is Ephraimitish style (vid., on Psalm 45:5), yet עוּזּה for עז is an unknown word, and the expression "from Thy temple," which is manifestly addressed to Elohim, shows that פּעלתּ is not the language of address to the king (according to Hitzig, to Jehoshaphat). The language of prayerful address is retained in Psalm 68:30. From the words מהיכלך על ירושׁלם there is nothing to be transported to Psalm 68:29 (Hupfeld); for Psalm 68:30 would thereby become stunted. The words together are the statement of the starting-point of the oblations belonging to יובילוּ: starting from Thy temple, which soars aloft over Jerusalem, may kings bring Thee, who sittest enthroned there in the Holy of holies, tributary gifts (שׁי as in Psalm 76:12; Psalm 18:7). In this connection (of prayer) it is the expression of the desire that the Temple may become the zenith or cynosure, and Jerusalem the metropolis, of the world. In this passage, where it introduces the seat of religious worship, the taking of מן as expressing the primary cause, "because or on account of Thy Temple" (Ewald), is not to be entertained.

In Psalm 68:31 follows a summons, which in this instance is only the form in which the prediction clothes itself. The "beast of the reed" is not the lion, of which sojourn among the reeds is not a characteristic (although it makes its home inter arundineta Mesopotamiae, Ammianus, Psalm 18:7, and in the thickets of the Jordan, Jeremiah 49:19; Jeremiah 50:44; Zechariah 11:3). The reed is in itself an emblem of Egypt (Isaiah 36:6, cf. Psalm 19:6), and it is therefore either the crocodile, the usual emblem of Pharaoh and of the power of Egypt (Ezekiel 29:3, cf. Psalm 74:13.) that is meant, or even the hippopotamus (Egyptian p-ehe-môut), which also symbolizes Egypt in Isaiah 30:6 (which see), and according to Job 40:21 is more appropriately than the crocodile (התנין אשׁר בּיּם, Isaiah 27:1) called היּת קנה. Egypt appears here as the greatest and most dreaded worldly power. Elohim is to check the haughty ones who exalt themselves over Israel and Israel's God. אבּירים, strong ones, are bulls (Psalm 22:13) as an emblem of the kings; and עגלי explains itself by the genit. epexeg. עמּים .gexep: together with (Beth of the accompaniment as in Psalm 68:31, Psalm 66:13, and beside the plur. humanus, Jeremiah 41:15) the calves, viz., the peoples, over whom those bulls rule. With the one emblem of Egypt is combined the idea of defiant self-confidence, and with the other the idea of comfortable security (vid., Jeremiah 46:20.). That which is brought prominently forward as the consequence of the menace is moulded in keeping with these emblems. מתרפּס, which has been explained by Flaminius substantially correctly: ut supplex veniat, is intended to be taken as a part. fut. (according to the Arabic grammar, ḥâl muqaddar, lit., a predisposed condition). It thus comprehensively in the singular (like עבר in Psalm 8:9) with one stroke depicts thoroughly humbled pride; for רפס (cf. רמס) signifies to stamp, pound, or trample, to knock down, and the Hithpa. either to behave as a trampling one, Proverbs 6:3, or to trample upon one's self, i.e., to cast one's self violently upon the ground. Others explain it as conculcandum se praebere; but such a meaning cannot be shown to exist in the sphere of the Hebrew Hithpael; moreover this "suffering one's self to be trampled upon" does not so well suit the words, which require a more active sense, viz., בּרצּי־כסףcep, in which is expressed the idea that the riches which the Gentiles have hitherto employed in the service of God-opposed worldliness, are no offered to the God of Israel by those who both in outward circumstances and in heart are vanquished (cf. Isaiah 60; 9). רץ־כּסף (from רצץ, confringere) is a piece of uncoined silver, a bar, wedge, or ingot of silver. In בּזּר there is a wide leap from the call גּער to the language of description. This rapid change is also to be found in other instances, and more especially in this dithyrambic Psalm we may readily give up any idea of a change in the pointing, as בּזּר or בּזּר (lxx διασκόρπισον); בּזּר, as it stands, cannot be imperative (Hitzig), for the final vowel essential to the imperat. Piel is wanting. God hath scattered the peoples delighting in war; war is therefore at an end, and the peace of the world is realized.

In Psalm 68:32, the contemplation of the future again takes a different turn: futures follow as the most natural expression of that which is future. The form יאתיוּ, more usually found in pause, here stands pathetically at the beginning, as in Job 12:6. השׁמנּים, compared with the Arabic chšm (whence Arab. chaššm, a nose, a word erroneously denied by Gesenius), would signify the supercilious, contemptuous (cf. Arab. âšammun, nasutus, as an appellation of a proud person who will put up with nothing). On the other hand, compared with Arab. ḥšm, it would mean the fat ones, inasmuch as this verbal stem (root Arab. ḥšš, cf. השׁרת, 2 Samuel 22:12), starting from the primary signification "to be pressed together," also signifies "to be compressed, become compact," i.e., to regain one's plumpness, to make flesh and fat, applied, according to the usage of the language, to wasted men and animals. The commonly compared Arab. ḥšı̂m, vir magni famulitii, is not at all natural, - a usage which is brought about by the intransitive signification proper to the verb starting from its radical signification, "to become or be angry, to be zealous about any one or anything," inasmuch as the nomen verbale Arab. hạšamun signifies in the concrete sense a person, or collectively persons, for whose maintenance, safety, and honour one is keenly solicitous, such as the members of the family, household attendants, servants, neighbours, clients or protgs, guest-friends; also a thing which one ardently seeks, and over the preservation of which one keeps zealous watch (Fleischer). Here there does not appear to be any connecting link whatever in the Arabic which might furnish some hold for the Hebrew; hence it will be more advisable, by comparison of השׁמל and חשׁן, to understand by חשׁמנים, the resplendent, most distinguished ones, perillustres. The dignitaries of Egypt come to give glory to the God of Israel, and Aethiopia, disheartened by fear before Jahve (cf. Habakkuk 3:7), causes his hands to run to Elohim, i.e., hastens to stretch them out. Thus it is interpreted by most expositors. But if it is ידיו, why is it not also יריץ? We reply, the Hebrew style, even in connection with words that stand close beside one another, does not seek to avoid either the enallage generis (e.g., Job 39:3, Job 39:16), or the enall. numeri (e.g., Psalm 62:5). But "to cause the hands to run" is a far-fetched and easily misunderstood figure. We may avoid it, if, with Bttcher and Olshausen, we disregard the accentuation and interpret thus, "Cush - his hands cause to hasten, i.e., bring on in haste (1 Samuel 17:17; 2 Chronicles 35:13), to Elohim," viz., propitiating gifts; תּריץ being the predicate to ידיו, according to Ges. 146, 3.

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