You shall guide me with your counsel, and afterward receive me to glory.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)To glory.—Better, With honour, as LXX. and Vulg.; or achar may be taken as a preposition: Lead me after honour, i.e., in the way to get it.
The thought is not of a reward after death, but of that true honour which would have been lost by adopting the views of the worldly, and is only to be gained by loyalty to God.Psalm 73:24. Thou shall guide me, &c. — As thou hast kept me hitherto, in all my trials, so I am persuaded thou wilt lead me still into, and in, the right way, and keep me from straying from thee, or falling into evil or mischief; with thy counsel — By thy gracious providence, executing thy purpose of mercy to me, as being one of thy believing and obedient people, and watching over me, by thy word, which thou wilt open my eyes to understand; and principally by thy Holy Spirit, sanctifying and directing me in the whole course of my life. And afterward receive me to glory — Translate me to everlasting glory in heaven. As all those who commit themselves to God’s conduct shall be guided by his counsel, so all those who are so guided in this world shall be received to his glory in another world. If God direct us in the way of our duty, and prevent our turning aside out of it; enabling us to make his will the rule, and his glory the end of all our actions, he will afterward, when our state of trial and preparation is over, receive us to his kingdom and glory; the believing hopes and prospects of which will reconcile us to all the dark providences that now puzzle and perplex us, and ease us of the pain into which we may have been put by some distressing temptations. Here we see, that “he, who but a little while ago seemed to question the providence of God over the affairs of men, now exults in happy confidence of the divine mercy and favour toward himself; nothing doubting but that grace would ever continue to guide him upon earth, till glory should crown him in heaven. Such are the blessed effects of going into the sanctuary of God, and consulting the lively oracles, in all our doubts, difficulties, and temptations.” — Horne.
(a) his belief that God "would" do this, notwithstanding his folly; and
(b) his purpose that God "should" be his guide now.
He would no longer murmur or complain, but would entrust all to God, and allow himself to be led as God should be pleased to direct him.
And afterward receive me to glory - After thou hast led me along the path of the present life in the way in which thou wouldst have me to go, thou wilt then receive me to thyself in heaven - to a world where all shall be clear; where I shall never have any doubts in regard to thy being, to the justice of thy dispensations, or to the principles of thy government.
receive me to glory—literally, "take for (me) glory" (compare Ps 68:18; Eph 4:8).Thou shalt guide me: as thou hast kept me hitherto in all my trials, so I am assured thou wilt lead me still into right paths, and keep me from wandering or straying from thee, or falling into mischief.
With thy counsel; partly, by thy gracious providence, executing thy purpose of mercy to me, and watching over me; partly, by thy word, which thou wilt open mine eyes to understand, as Psalm 119:18; and principally, by thy Holy Spirit, sanctifying and directing me in the whole course of my life.
Receive me to glory; either,
1. Advance me to honour here. Or rather,
2. Translate me to everlasting glory in heaven. For,
1. Thus God doth for his people most constantly and certainly, whilst all the occurrences of the present life do happen indifferently to good and bad; which was the common observation of Job, and David, and Solomon, and other holy men of God in Scripture.
2. This is far more considerable than the former, and the more satisfactory relief against the present prosperity of the wicked, and the afflictions of good men.
3. This future glory is that mystery which was to be learned only in God’s sanctuary, Psalm 73:17.
4. As the destruction of the wicked, mentioned Psalm 73:18-20, looks beyond this life, so doth the glory of God’s people. Acts 20:27, and by his Holy Spirit, which is a spirit of counsel as well as of might; and by which the Lord guides his people in the ways of peace, truth, righteousness, and holiness, through this world, to the heavenly glory, as follows:
and afterward receive me to glory; into a glorious place, an house not made with hands, a city whose builder and maker is God, into a kingdom and glory, or a glorious kingdom; and into glorious company, the company of Father, Son, and Spirit, angels and glorified saints, where glorious things will be seen, and a glory enjoyed both in soul and body to all eternity; for this glory is eternal glory, a glory that passes not away: or "in glory" (c); in a glorious manner: some render it, "after glory thou wilt receive me" (d); that is, after all the glory and honour thou hast bestowed upon me here, thou wilt take me to thyself in heaven; so the Targum,
"after the glory is completed, which thou saidst thou wouldst bring upon me, thou wilt receive me:''
but rather the sense is, "after" thou hast led and guided me by thy counsel through the wilderness of this world; "after" all the afflictions and temptations of this present life are over; "after" I have passed through the valley of the shadow of death, or "after" death itself, thou wilt receive me into everlasting joy and happiness; see 1 Peter 5:10.Thou shalt guide me with thy counsel, and afterward receive me to glory.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)24. with thy counsel] Tacitly he contrasts the course of his life with that of the wicked, for counsel is an attribute of the Divine Wisdom (Proverbs 8:14), which the wicked despise (Proverbs 1:25; Proverbs 1:30).
to glory] Or, with glory (R.V. marg.); or, as the word is often translated, with honour.
The meaning of this verse is much disputed. Can we suppose that the words bore for the Psalmist the sense which they naturally bear for the Christian in the fuller light of the Gospel? Do they express his faith that God’s guidance of him through this life will be followed by reception into the glory of His Presence after death? Or do they simply express his confidence that God will guide him safely through his present troubles, so that in the end honour, not shame, will be his lot, and his acceptableness to God will be demonstrated to the world? Dclitzsch finds in them the larger hope, and thinks that here, as in Psalm 49:15, there is a reference to the assumption of Enoch (Genesis 5:24); but he admits that there was as yet no divine promise holding out the prospect of a heavenly triumph to the struggling church on earth upon which such a hope could rest. If the Psalmist possessed this definite hope, we might have expected that he would lay more stress upon it as affording a solution of his perplexities. Such a hope moreover would rise far above the general level of the O.T. view of a future life, at any rate till the latest period. And no parallel can be quoted for the absolute use of ‘glory’ in the sense of ‘heavenly’ or ‘eternal glory.’ Elsewhere in the Psalter kâbôd is used in the sense of ‘honour’ (Psalm 42:7; Psalm 84:11; Psalm 112:9; Psalm 149:5); and in Job and Proverbs, to which it is natural to turn for the elucidation of the language of a Psalm so closely connected with the reflections of the ‘Wise,’ it bears the same sense. It is often coupled with riches and life, and contrasted with shame. See Job 19:9; Job 29:20; Proverbs 3:16; Proverbs 3:35; Proverbs 8:18; Proverbs 15:33; Proverbs 21:21; Proverbs 22:4.
It seems therefore that as the Psalmist anticipates that judgement will overtake the wicked in this world, so he looks for such a deliverance and advancement in this world as will visibly demonstrate that he is the object of God’s loving favour, and prove that “there is a reward for the righteous.” Cp. Psalm 71:20-21. This life is for him the scene of God’s dealings with men, and a full vindication of God’s moral government is looked for within the limits of individual experience. See further in Introd. pp. xciii ff.: and consult Oehler’s O.T. Theology, § 246, and Schultz’s O.T. Theology, ch. xlii.
It may be noted that the LXX, followed of course by the Vulg., sees no reference here to a future life, but renders, “In thy counsel didst thou guide me, and with glory didst thou receive me.”
If this view is correct, the Psalmist’s faith is even grander than if he looked forward to glorification in a future life. He rises victorious over the world of sense and appearance in the inward certainty of the reality of his communion with God, and the absolute conviction that this is the highest good and the truest happiness of which man is capable. Such a knowledge is eternal life; and the possibility of it is in itself a pledge that the communion thus begun cannot suddenly be interrupted by death, but must be carried on to an ever fuller perfection.Verse 24. - Thou shalt guide me with thy counsel. The psalmist expresses full confidence in God's continual guidance through all life's dangers and difficulties, notwithstanding his own shortcomings and" foolishness." He then looks beyond this life, and exclaims, And afterward (thou wilt) receive me to glory. Even Professor Cheyne sees m this the story of Enoch spiritualized." "Walking with God," he says, "is followed by a reception with glory, or into glory; and he compares the passage with Psalm 49:16, which he has previously explained as showing that "the poet has that religious intuition which forms the kernel of the hope of immortality." Psalm 73:15, to read כּמוהם (Bצttcher), or better, by taking up the following הנה, which even Saadia allows himself to do, contrary to the accents (Arab. mṯl hḏâ), כּמו הנּה (Ewald), is unnecessary, since prepositions are sometimes used elliptically (כּעל, Isaiah 59:18), or even without anything further (Hosea 7:16; Hosea 11:7) as adverbs, which must therefore be regarded as possible also in the case of כּמו (Aramaic, Arabic כּמא, Aethiopic kem). The poet means to say, If I had made up my mind to the same course of reasoning, I should have faithlessly forsaken the fellowship of the children of God, and should consequently also have forfeited their blessings. The subjunctive signification of the perfects in the hypothetical protasis and apodosis, Psalm 73:15 (cf. Jeremiah 23:22), follows solely from the context; futures instead of perfects would signify si dicerem...perfide agerem. דּור בּניך is the totality of those, in whom the filial relationship in which God has placed Isreal in relation to Himself is become an inward or spiritual reality, the true Israel, Psalm 73:1, the "righteous generation," Psalm 14:5. It is an appellative, as in Deuteronomy 14:1; Hosea 2:1. For on the point of the uhiothesi'a the New Testament differs from the Old Testament in this way, viz., that in the Old Testament it is always only as a people that Israel is called בן, or as a whole בנים, but that the individual, and that in his direct relationship to God, dared not as yet call himself "child of God." The individual character is not as yet freed from its absorption in the species, it is not as yet independent; it is the time of the minor's νηπιότης, and the adoption is as yet only effected nationally, salvation is as yet within the limits of the nationality, its common human form has not as yet appeared. The verb בּגד with בּ signifies to deal faithlessly with any one, and more especially (whether God, a friend, or a spouse) faithlessly to forsake him; here, in this sense of malicious desertion, it contents itself with the simple accusative.
On the one side, by joining in the speech of the free-thinkers he would have placed himself outside the circle of the children of God, of the truly pious; on the other side, however, when by meditation he sought to penetrate it (לדעת), the doubt-provoking phenomenon (זאת) still continued to be to him עמל, trouble, i.e., something that troubled him without any result, an unsolvable riddle (cf. Ecclesiastes 8:17). Whether we read הוּא or היא, the sense remains the same; the Ker הוּא prefers, as in Job 31:11, the attractional gender. Neither here nor in Job 30:26 and elsewhere is it to be supposed that ואחשׁבה is equivalent to ואחשׁבה (Ewald, Hupfeld). The cohortative from of the future here, as frequently (Ges. 128, 1), with or without a conditional particle (Psalm 139:8; 2 Samuel 22:38; Job 16:6; Job 11:17; Job 19:18; Job 30:26), forms a hypothetical protasis: and (yet) when I meditated; Symmachus (according to Montfaucon), ει ̓ ἐλογιζόμην. As Vaihinger aptly observes, "thinking alone will give neither the right light nor true happiness." Both are found only in faith. The poet at last struck upon the way of faith, and there he found light and peace. The future after עד frequently has the signification of the imperfect subjunctive, Job 32:11; Ecclesiastes 2:3, cf. Proverbs 12:19 (donec nutem equals only a moment); also in an historical connection like Joshua 10:13; 2 Chronicles 29:34, it is conceived of as subjunctive (donec ulciseretur, se sanctificarent), sometimes, however, as indicative, as in Exodus 15:16 (donec transibat) and in our passage, where אד introduces the objective goal at which the riddle found its solution: until I went into the sanctuary of God, (purposely) attended to (ל as in the primary passage Deuteronomy 32:29, cf. Job 14:21) their life's end. The cohortative is used here exactly as in ואבינה, but with the collateral notion of that which is intentional, which here fully accords with the connection. He went into God's dread sanctuary (plural as in Psalm 68:36, cf. מקדּשׁ in the Psalms of Asaph, Psalm 67:7; Psalm 78:69); here he prayed for light in the darkness of his conflict, here were his eyes opened to the holy plans and ways of God (Psalm 77:14), here the sight of the sad end of the evil-doers was presented to him. By "God's sanctuaries" Ewald and Hitzig understand His secrets; but this meaning is without support in the usage of the language. And is it not a thought perfectly in harmony with the context and with experience, that a light arose upon him when he withdrew from the bustle of the world into the quiet of God's dwelling - place, and there devoutly gave his mind to the matter?
The strophe closes with a summary confession of the explanation received there. שׁית is construed with Lamed inasmuch as collocare is equivalent to locum assignare (vid., Psalm 73:6). God makes the evil-doers to stand on smooth, slippery places, where one may easily lose one's footing (cf. Psalm 35:6; Jeremiah 23:12). There, then, they also inevitably fall; God casts them down למשּׁוּאות, into ruins, fragores equals ruinae, from שׁוא equals שׁאה, to be confused, desolate, to rumble. The word only has the appearance of being from נשׁא: ensnarings, sudden attacks (Hitzig), which is still more ill suited to Psalm 74:3 than to this passage; desolation and ruin can be said even of persons, as הרס, Psalm 28:5, ונשׁבּרוּ, Isaiah 8:15, נפּץ, Jeremiah 51:21-23. The poet knows no other theodicy but this, nor was any other known generally in the pre-exilic literature of Israel (vid., Psalm 37; Psalm 39:1-13, Jeremiah 12, and the Job 1:1). The later prophecy and the Chokma were much in advance of this, inasmuch as they point to a last universal judgment (vid., more particularly Malachi 3:13.), but not one that breaks off this present state; the present state and the future state, time and eternity, are even there not as yet thoroughly separated.
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