Psalm 9:14
That I may shew forth all thy praise in the gates of the daughter of Zion: I will rejoice in thy salvation.
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9:11-20 Those who believe that God is greatly to be praised, not only desire to praise him better themselves, but desire that others may join with them. There is a day coming, when it will appear that he has not forgotten the cry of the humble; neither the cry of their blood, or the cry of their prayers. We are never brought so low, so near to death, but God can raise us up. If he has saved us from spiritual and eternal death, we may thence hope, that in all our distresses he will be a very present help to us. The overruling providence of God frequently so orders it, that persecutors and oppressors are brought to ruin by the projects they formed to destroy the people of God. Drunkards kill themselves; prodigals beggar themselves; the contentious bring mischief upon themselves: thus men's sins may be read in their punishment, and it becomes plain to all, that the destruction of sinners is of themselves. All wickedness came originally with the wicked one from hell; and those who continue in sin, must go to that place of torment. The true state, both of nations and of individuals, may be correctly estimated by this one rule, whether in their doings they remember or forget God. David encourages the people of God to wait for his salvation, though it should be long deferred. God will make it appear that he never did forget them: it is not possible he should. Strange that man, dust in his and about him, should yet need some sharp affliction, some severe visitation from God, to bring him to the knowledge of himself, and make him feel who and what he is.That I may show forth all thy praise - That I may praise time in the land of the living; that I may finish the work of praise by rendering to thee all that is due. The idea is, that the dead could not praise God, or that his praise could be uttered only by the living; and he calls on God, therefore, to interpose and save him, that he might yet worship and praise him on the earth. In this sentiment the psalmist utters only what man naturally feels when he looks upon the grave; that it is an end of human plans and pursuits; that it is a land of silence; that the worship of God is not there celebrated. Such language must be retarded as uttered under the impulse of natural feeling, and not as uttered by the deliberate judgment of the mind when calmly contemplating the whole subject. All pious persons baize these feelings at times, and it was proper that these feelings should be expressed in the sacred writings, as illustrating human nature even under the influence of religion. The same sentiment occurs in several places, as is, that he was apparently near to the gates of death, and that the only one who could raise him up was God, and he now invoked His interposition that it might be done. The phrase "gates of death" relates to the prevalent views about the unseen world - the world where the dead abide. That world was represented as beneath; as a dark and gloomy abode; as enclosed Psalm 115:17, "The dead praise not the Lord, neither any that go down into silence." See the notes at Psalm 6:5. It is not necessary to say that the sacred writers had brighter views at times than these. But who can keep the mind always from desponding when it looks at the grave? Who can always help feeling that it is a place of darkness and gloom?

In the gates of the daughter of Zion - As contradistinguished from the "gates of death." Gates in ancient cities were places of concourse, where important transactions were performed; and the "gates" of Jerusalem were regarded as attractive and sacred, because it was through them that the people passed on their way to worship God at the tabernacle or in the temple. Hence, it is said, Psalm 87:2, "The Lord loveth the gates of Zion more than all the dwellings of Jacob." Psalm 100:4, "enter into his gates with thanksgiving." Compare Psalm 118:19. The phrase, "daughter of Zion," means Jerusalem. For the reason of this appellation see the notes at Isaiah 1:8. The language used here proves that the psalm was composed after Zion or Jerusalem was made the capital of the kingdom and the seat of public worship, and, therefore, that it cannot refer, as is supposed in the Aramaic Paraphrase, to the death of Goliath.

I will rejoice in thy salvation - In the salvation which thou wilt bestow on me; here particularly, in delivering him from his dangers. The language, however, is general, and may be employed with reference to salvation of any kind.

14. gates … Zion—The enclosure of the city (compare Ps 48:12; Isa 23:12), or, church, as denoted by this phrase contrasted with that of death, carries out the idea of exaltation as well as deliverance. Signal favors should lead us to render signal and public thanks. In the gates, i.e. in the great assemblies, which were usually in the gates. Compare Proverbs 31:31 Isaiah 3:26. These gates he elegantly opposeth to the former, and declareth that if he be brought off them, he will go into these.

Of the daughter of Zion; either,

1. Of Jerusalem, so called also Isaiah 1:8 Zechariah 9:9, because at this time it was subject to Zion; which at this time was the seat of the king’s palace, and of the ark. For cities or towns belonging or subject unto any metropolis are commonly called its daughters, as Joshua 15:45 2 Chronicles 13:19 Psalm 48:11; as the chief cities are called mothers, as 2 Samuel 20:19 Galatians 4:26. Or,

2. Of the people who live in, or belong to, or meet together for civil and religious matters in Zion. For cities are as it were mothers to their people, giving them birth and breeding, and therefore the people are commonly called their daughters. So the names of the daughters of Egypt, Jeremiah 46:11, and of Edom, Lamentations 4:21,22, and of Tyre, Psalm 45:12, and of Babel, Psalm 137:8, and of Jerusalem, Lamentations 2:13,15 Mic 4:8, are put for the people of those places.

I will rejoice, to wit, with spiritual joy and thanksgiving; else it were no fit motive to be used to God in prayer.

That I may show forth all thy praise,.... That is, all thy bounties and acts of goodness, deserving of praise; even as many of them as he had an experience of, and which came within his knowledge; and as much of them as he was capable of observing: for otherwise the instances of divine grace and goodness are so many, that they cannot be reckoned up in order, nor God be praised for them, in the present state of things, as he should; See Gill on Psalm 9:1;

in the gates of the daughter of Zion: it was usual with the Hebrews to represent a chief city as a mother city, and the towns and villages, and places adjacent, as daughters; and so, as Zion or Jerusalem signifies the church of God in general, or the mother church, Galatians 4:26; so "the daughter" of Zion may mean a particular church: the Targum renders it the congregation of Zion; and "the gates" of it are the public ordinances of divine worship in it; and the sense is, that the psalmist desired to show forth the praises of God in the most public manner in the congregation and assembly of the saints;

I will rejoice in thy salvation, or "that I may rejoice in thy salvation" (m): meaning either temporal salvation and deliverance from enemies, wrought by God for him, which would be matter of joy to him; or spiritual salvation, which may be called God's salvation, because contrived by him in the council of peace, and secured by him in the covenant of grace, and wrought out by his Son in the fulness of time, and applied by his Spirit at conversion. And a gracious man rejoices in this salvation more because it is the Lord's than because it is his own; or he rejoices more because of the glory of God, which is displayed in it, than because of his own advantage and happiness by it.

(m) "exultem", Junius & Tremellius, Musculus; "ut exultem", Piscator, Gejerus, Michaelis; "gaudeam", Cocceius; so Ainsworth.

That I may shew forth all thy praise in the {f} gates of the daughter of Zion: I will rejoice in thy salvation.

(f) In the open assembly of the Church.

14. in the gates] i.e. with the utmost publicity (Psalm 116:14); for the city gates were the common place of concourse and business, corresponding to the agora or forum of Greece and Rome. Cp. Job 29:7; Proverbs 8:3; Jeremiah 17:19-20. The implied contrast between “the cheerful ways of men” and the gloomy entrance to the nether world is obvious.

Ports (P.B.V.) is an obsolete word for gates, from Lat. porta.

the daughter of Zion] A poetical personification of the citizens or the city as an individual. Originally Zion was thought of as the mother, the citizens collectively as her daughter; but as terms for land and people are easily interchanged, the expression came to be applied to the city itself (Isaiah 1:8; Lamentations 2:15). ‘Daughter of Zion’ occurs nowhere else in the Psalter (see however ‘daughter of Tyre,’ Psalm 45:12; ‘daughter of Babylon,’ Psalm 137:8), but together with the cognate phrases ‘daughter of Jerusalem,’ ‘daughter of my people’ &c. frequently in Isaiah, Jeremiah, Micah, Zephaniah, Zechariah, and is specially characteristic of the Lamentations.

salvation] R.V. marg., saving help. See note on Psalm 3:8.

Verse 14. - That I may show forth all thy praise in the gates of the daughter of Zion. The "daughter of Zion" is, of course, Jerusalem. Compare "daughter of Babylon" (Psalm 137:8; Isaiah 47:1; Jeremiah 50:42; Zechariah 2:7), "daughter of the Chaldeans" (Isaiah 47:1, 5), "daughter of Edom" (Lamentations 4:21, 22), "daughter of Gallim" (Isaiah 10:30). Hengstenberg is probably right in understanding "in the gates" as "within the gates," since, as he observes, "God's praise is not to be celebrated in the gates, amid the throng of worldly business, but in the temple." The references in the ' Speaker's Commentary' do not bear out the statement there made, that "public mournings and public thanksgivings were proclaimed in the gates." I will rejoice in thy salvation; or, that I may rejoice (Kay). Psalm 9:14(Heb.: 9:14-15) To take this strophe as a prayer of David at the present time, is to destroy the unity and hymnic character of the Psalm, since that which is here put in the form of prayer appears in what has preceded and in what follows as something he has experienced. The strophe represents to us how the עניּים (ענוים) cried to Jahve before the deliverance now experienced. Instead of the form חנּני used everywhere else the resolved, and as it were tremulous, form חננני is designedly chosen. According to a better attested reading it is חננני (Pathach with Gaja in the first syllable), which is regarded by Chajug and others as the imper. Piel, but more correctly (Ewald 251, c) as the imper. Kal from the intransitive imperative form חנן. מרוממי is the vocative, cf. Psalm 17:7. The gates of death, i.e., the gates of the realm of the dead (שׁאול, Isaiah 38:10), are in the deep; he who is in peril of death is said to have sunk down to them; he who is snatched from peril of death is lifted up, so that they do not swallow him up and close behind him. The church, already very near to the gates of death, cried to the God who can snatch from death. Its final purpose in connection with such deliverance is that it may glorify God. The form תּהלּתיך is sing. with a plural suffix just like שׂנאתיך Ezekiel 35:11, אשׁמתימו Ezra 9:15. The punctuists maintained (as עצתיך in Isaiah 47:13 shows) the possibility of a plural inflexion of a collective singular. In antithesis to the gates of death, which are represented as beneath the ground, we have the gates of the daughter of Zion standing on high. ציּון is gen. appositionis (Ges. 116, 5). The daughter of Zion (Zion itself) is the church in its childlike, bride-like, and conjugal relation to Jahve. In the gates of the daughter of Zion is equivalent to: before all God's people, Psalm 116:14. For the gates are the places of public resort and business. At this period the Old Testament mind knew nothing of the songs of praise of the redeemed in heaven. On the other side of the grave is the silence of death. If the church desires to praise God, it must continue in life and not die.
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