Psalm 80:9
You prepared room before it, and did cause it to take deep root, and it filled the land.
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(9) Thou preparedst room.—The reference is, of course, to the casting out of the heathen in Psalm 80:8.

Didst cause . . .—Rather, it struck its roots deep; literally, rooted its roots.

80:8-16 The church is represented as a vine and a vineyard. The root of this vine is Christ, the branches are believers. The church is like a vine, needing support, but spreading and fruitful. If a vine do not bring forth fruit, no tree is so worthless. And are not we planted as in a well-cultivated garden, with every means of being fruitful in works of righteousness? But the useless leaves of profession, and the empty boughs of notions and forms, abound far more than real piety. It was wasted and ruined. There was a good reason for this change in God's way toward them. And it is well or ill with us, according as we are under God's smiles or frowns. When we consider the state of the purest part of the visible church, we cannot wonder that it is visited with sharp corrections. They request that God would help the vine. Lord, it is formed by thyself, and for thyself, therefore it may, with humble confidence, be committed to thyself.Thou preparedst room before it - The Hebrew word used here means properly to turn; to turn the back; then, to turn in order to look at anything; to look upon; to see; then, in Piel, to cause to turn away; to remove. Then it comes to mean to remove, or to clear from impediments so as to prepare a way Isaiah 40:3; Isaiah 57:14; Isaiah 62:10; Malachi 3:1, and hence, to remove the impediments to planting a vine, etc.; to wit, by clearing away the trees, brush, stones, etc. Compare Isaiah 5:2. Here it means that the hindrances in planting the vine were taken out of the way; that is, God removed the pagan so that there was room then to establish his own people.

And didst cause it to take deep root - Hebrew, "And didst cause it to root roots;" that is, Its roots struck deep into the soil, and the plant became firm.

And it filled the land - Its branches ran everywhere, so as to fill the whole land. See the notes at Isaiah 16:8.

8-11. brought—or, "plucked up," as by roots, to be replanted.

a vine—(Ps 78:47). The figure (Isa 16:8) represents the flourishing state of Israel, as predicted (Ge 28:14), and verified (1Ki 4:20-25).

Thou preparedst room; or, didst purge or cleanse the soil; taking out stones or sticks, or other roots or plants, which might hinder its growth or fruitfulness. Thou didst root out those idolatrous and wicked nations which might either corrupt or destroy them.

Didst cause it to take deep root; thou gavest them a firm settlement in that land. Thou preparedst room before it,.... By sending the hornet before the Israelites, and driving the Canaanites out of the land, Exodus 23:28 and so the Targum,

"thou didst remove from before thee the Canaanites;''

which made way and room for them: and thus the Lord prepared room for his interest, church, and people, in the Gentile world, in the first times of Christianity, by sending the Gospel into all parts of it, and making it successful, and still there is room, Luke 14:22.

and didst cause it to take deep root; which denotes the settlement of the people of Israel in Canaan, in church and state, as a body ecclesiastic and politic; so believers, being rooted in Christ, are grounded, settled, and established in him, and in a Gospel church state, and so become fruitful; see Colossians 2:7.

and it filled the land; with people, who, in the days of Solomon, were as the sand of the sea, 1 Kings 4:20 and so the Gentile world was filled with Christian converts in the first times of the Gospel; and the interest and church of Christ will fill the whole world another day, Isaiah 11:9.

Thou preparedst room before it, and didst cause it to take deep root, and it filled the land.
9. Thou preparedst room before it] As the vinedresser prepares the ground for his vine by clearing away the stones and thorns and all that would hinder its free growth (Isaiah 5:2), so God prepared Canaan for Israel by the expulsion of its old inhabitants.

and didst cause it &c.] Rather, and it struck deep its roots, and filled the land.Verse 9. - Thou preparest room before it. The "room" was made by the removal of the heathen inhabitants, who were first greatly weakened by Rameses III., and then driven out by Joshua. And didst cause it to take deep root; rather, and it took deep root, as in the Revised Version. And it filled the land (comp. Deuteronomy 11:24; Joshua 1:3). Possession was taken of the whole land, not at once (Judges 1:27-36), but slowly and surely; the furthest limits being reached in David's time (1 Kings 4:21, 24). The first strophe contains nothing but petition. First of all the nation is called Israel as springing from Jacob; then, as in Psalm 81:6, Joseph, which, where it is distinct from Jacob or Judah, is the name of the kingdom of the ten tribes (vid., Caspari on Obadiah 1:18), or at least of the northern tribes (Psalm 77:16; Psalm 78:67.). Psalm 80:3 shows that it is also these that are pre-eminently intended here. The fact that in the blessing of Joseph, Jacob calls God a Shepherd (רעה), Genesis 48:15; Genesis 49:24, perhaps has somewhat to do with the choice of the first two names. In the third, the sitting enthroned in the sanctuary here below and in the heaven above blend together; for the Old Testament is conscious of a mutual relationship between the earthly and the heavenly temple (היכל) until the one merges entirely in the other. The cher׫bim, which God enthrones, i.e., upon which He sits enthroned, are the bearers of the chariot (מרכבה) of the Ruler of the world (vid., Psalm 18:11). With הופיעה (from יפע, Arab. yf‛, eminere, emicare, as in the Asaph Psalm 50:2) the poet prays that He would appear in His splendour of light, i.e., in His fiery bright, judging, and rescuing doxa, whether as directly visible, or even as only recognisable by its operation. Both the comparison, "after the manner of a flock" and the verb נהג are Asaphic, Psalm 78:52, cf. Psalm 26:1-12. Just so also the names given to the nation. The designation of Israel after the tribes of Ephraim and Manasseh attaches itself to the name Joseph; and the two take the brother after the flesh into their midst, of whom the beloved Rachel was the mother as well as of Joseph, the father of Ephraim and Manasseh. In Numbers 2 also, these three are not separated, but have their camp on the west side of the Tabernacle. May God again put into activity - which is the meaning of עורר (excitare) in distinction from חעיר (expergefacere) - His גבורה, the need for the energetic intervention of which now makes itself felt, before these three tribes, i.e., by becoming their victorious leader. לכה is a summoning imperative.

(Note: Not a pronoun: to Thee it belongs to be for salvation for us, as the Talmud, Midrash, and Masora (vid., Norzi) take it; wherefore in J. Succa 54c it is straightway written לך. Such a לכה equals לך is called in the language of the Masora, and even in the Midrash (Exod. Rabba, fol. 121), לכה ודאית (vid., Buxtorf, Tiberias, p. 245).)

Concerning ישׁעתה vid., on Psalm 3:3; the construction with Lamed says as little against the accusative adverbial rendering of the ah set forth there as does the Beth of בּחרשׁה (in the wood) in 1 Samuel 23:15, vid., Bttcher's Neue Aehrenlese, Nos. 221, 384, 449. It is not a bringing back out of the Exile that is prayed for by השׁתבנוּ, for, according to the whole impression conveyed by the Psalm, the people are still on the soil of their fatherland; but in their present feebleness they are no longer like themselves, they stand in need of divine intervention in order again to attain a condition that is in harmony with the promises, in order to become themselves again. May God then cause His long hidden countenance to brighten and shine upon them, then shall they be helped as they desire (ונוּשׁעה).

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