Psalm 97:10
You that love the LORD, hate evil: he preserves the souls of his saints; he delivers them out of the hand of the wicked.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(10) Ye that love the Lord.—Notwithstanding certain points of similarity between this verse and Psalm 34:10-20; Psalm 37:28, and between Psalm 97:12 and Psalm 32:11, the psalmist shows himself at the close more than a compiler—a true poet.

Hate evil.—It is better to point for the indicative, They who love Jehovah, hate evil, in order to avoid the awkward transition in the next clause. This practical test of true religion can never be obsolete. Love of God implies the hatred of all He hates. A heathen writer has expressed this in a striking way. Philosophy, holding a dialogue with Lucian, is made to say, “To love and to hate, they say, spring from the same source.” To which he replies, “That, O Philosophy, should be best known to you. My business is to hate the bad, and to love and commend the good, and that I stick to.”

Psalm 97:10. Ye that love the Lord — O all you that love and worship the true God, and rejoice in the establishment of his kingdom; hate evil — Show your love to him by hating all sin in temper, word, and work. Thus the psalmist, “having sung the glory of the Redeemer, now delineates the duty of the redeemed. They are characterized by their love of God; they are enjoined to hate evil; the hatred of which indeed is a consequence and a sure proof of that love, when it is genuine and sincere. Religion must be rooted in the heart and spring from thence. A Christian must not only serve God outwardly, but must inwardly love him; he must not content himself with abstaining from overt acts of sin, but must truly hate it. They who do so are the saints of God, whose souls he preserveth from evil, and will finally deliver from the evil one and his associates, by a happy death and a glorious resurrection.” — Horne.97:8-12 The faithful servants of God may well rejoice and be glad, because he is glorified; and whatever tends to his honour, is his people's pleasure. Care is taken for their safety. But something more is meant than their lives. The Lord will preserve the souls of his saints from sin, from apostacy, and despair, under their greatest trials. He will deliver them out of the hands of the wicked one, and preserve them safe to his heavenly kingdom. And those that rejoice in Christ Jesus, and in his exaltation, have fountains of joy prepared for them. Those that sow in tears, shall reap in joy. Gladness is sure to the upright in heart; the joy of the hypocrite is but for a moment. Sinners tremble, but saints rejoice at God's holiness. As he hates sin, yet freely loves the person of the repentant sinner who believes in Christ, he will make a final separation between the person he loves and the sin he hates, and sanctify his people wholly, body, soul, and spirit.Ye that love the Lord, hate evil - Show your love for the Lord "by" hating all that is evil; that is, all that he hates, or that is evil in his sight. There can be no true love for God where evil is not hated in all its forms, since it is the object of the divine abhorrence. We cannot be like God unless we love what he loves, and hate what he hates. There is nothing more clearly affirmed in the Scriptures than that in order to the love of God there must be the hatred of all that is wrong, and that where there is the love of sin in the heart, there can be no true religion. Compare the notes at Isaiah 1:16-20.

He preserveth the souls of his saints - The lives of his saints, or his holy ones. That is, he guards them from danger, and watches over them with a careful eye. See Psalm 3:8; Psalm 37:39.

He delivereth them out of the hand of the wicked - That is, he often does this; they may expect that he will do it. He does not, indeed, always deliver them from the temporal calamities which wicked people bring upon them - for they are not unfrequently persecuted and wronged; but ultimately he will deliver them altogether from the power of the wicked. In heaven none of the machinations of wicked people can reach them. At the same time it is also true that God often interposes in behalf of his people, and delivers them as such from the designs of the wicked: that is, he delivers them because they are righteous, or because they are his friends. Compare the notes at Daniel 3:16-17, notes at Daniel 3:24-25; notes at Daniel 6:18-23.

10-12. Let gratitude for the blessings of providence and grace incite saints (Ps 4:3) to holy living. Spiritual blessings are in store, represented by light (Ps 27:1) and gladness.10 Ye that love the Lord, hate evil; he preserveth the souls of his saints; he delivereth them out of the hand of the wicked.

11 Light is sown for the righteous, and gladness for the upright in heart.

12 Rejoice in the Lord, ye righteous; and give thanks at the remembrance of his holiness.

Psalm 97:10

"Ye that love the Lord, hate evil." For he hates it, his fire consumes it, his lightnings blast it, his presence shakes it out of its place, and his glory confounds all the lovers of it. We cannot love God without hating that which he hates. We are not only to avoid evil, and to refuse to countenance it, but we must be in arms against it, and bear towards it a hearty indignation. "He preserveth the souls of his saints." Therefore they need not be afraid of proclaiming war with the party which favours sin. The saints are the safe ones: they have been saved and shall be saved. God keeps those who keep his law. Those who love the Lord shall see his love manifested to them in their preservation from their enemies, and as they keep far from evil so shall evil be kept far from them. "He delivereth them out of the hand of the wicked." It is not consistent with the glory of his name to give over to the power of his foes those whom his grace has made his friends. He may leave the bodies of his persecuted saints in the hand of the wicked, but not their souls, these are very dear to him, and he preserves them safe in his bosom. This foretells for the church a season of battling with the powers of darkness, but the Lord will preserve it and bring it forth to the light.

Psalm 97:11

"Light is sown for the righteous." All along their pathway it is strewn. Their night is almost over, their day is coming, the morning already advancing with rosy steps is sowing the earth with orient pearls. The full harvest of delight is not yet ours, but it is sown for us; it is springing, it will yet appear in fulness. This is only for those who are right before the Lord in his own righteousness, for all others the blackness of darkness is reserved. "And gladness for the upright in heart." Gladness is not only for one righteous man in the singular, but for the whole company of the upright, even as the apostle, after speaking of the crown of life laid up for himself, immediately amended his speech by adding, "and not for me only, but also for all them that love his appearing." The upright ought to be glad, they have cause to be glad, yea and they shall be glad. Those who are right-hearted shall also be glad-hearted. Bight leads to light. In the furrows of integrity lie the seeds of happiness, which shall develop into a harvest of bliss. God has lightning for sinners and light for saints. The gospel of Jesus, wherever it goes, sows the whole earth with joy for believers, for these are the men who are righteous before the Lord.

Psalm 97:12

"Rejoice in the Lord, ye righteous." The Psalmist had bidden the earth rejoice, and here he turns to the excellent of the earth and bids them lead the song. If all others fail to praise the Lord, the godly must not. To them God is peculiarly revealed, by them he should be specially adored. "And give thanks at the remembrance of his holiness" - which is the harmony of all his attributes, the superlative wholeness of his character. This is a terror to the wicked, and a cause of thankfulness to the gracious. To remember that Jehovah is holy is becoming in those who dwell in his courts, to give thanks in consequence of that remembrance is the sure index of their fitness to abide in his presence. In reference to the triumphs of the gospel, this text teaches us to rejoice greatly in its purifying effect; it is the death of sin and the life of virtue. An unholy gospel is no gospel. The holiness of the religion of Jesus is its glory, it is that which makes it glad tidings, since while man is left in his sins no bliss can be his portion. Salvation from sin is the priceless gift of our thrice holy God, therefore let us magnify him for ever and ever. He will fill the world with holiness, and so with happiness, therefore let us glory in his holy name, world without end. Amen.

Ye that love the Lord; O all you who love and worship the true God and his anointed, and rejoice in the establishment of his kingdom.

Hate evil; show your love to him by your abhorrency of all idolatry, which is sometimes called evil or sin by way of eminency, and of all other wickedness. And although you that love the Lord Christ and his kingdom will meet with many troubles and persecutions, yet be not discouraged, for he will preserve you in troubles, and in his time deliver you out of them all. Ye that love the Lord, hate evil,.... The evil of sin, which is to be hated, because of the evil nature of it, it being exceeding sinful; and because of its evil consequences, bringing death, ruin, and destruction with it to the souls of men, unless grace prevents; and disquietude, distress, and trouble to the saints themselves; and because it is hateful to God, being contrary to his nature, will, and law, and is hated by Christ; and therefore those that love him should hate that, shun it, avoid it, depart from it, and abstain from all appearance of it; as all such will that love him in sincerity above all persons and things; and all of him, and that belong to him, his people, ways, worship, truths, and ordinances: and such are they that have seen the loveliness of him, and know his love, and have had it shed abroad in their hearts; and these will not only hate the evil of sin, but evil men; not their persons, but their actions and conversations; and will avoid them, and have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness:

he preserveth the souls of his saints; that are set apart by him, and chosen in him to be holy; that are sanctified by his blood, and by his Spirit and grace, and to whom he is made sanctification: the "souls" of these, their better and more noble part, which are dear to him, and he has redeemed by his blood, and whose salvation he has obtained, and they still receive, he "preserves" from the evil of sin, from its governing and damning power, from a final and total apostasy by it, from ruin and destruction through it, from being hurt by the second death; and he preserves them from all their enemies, sin, Satan, and the world, from being destroyed by them, safe to his kingdom and glory; therefore he is to be loved, and sin to be hated by them:

he delivereth them out of the hand of the wicked; of wicked and unreasonable men, into whose hands they sometimes fall, cruel and bloodthirsty persecutors; as he is able to deliver them, so oftentimes he does; and will, ere long, put them entirely out of their reach. Kimchi interprets this of the deliverance of the Jews from the captivity of Babylon, Media, and Persia.

Ye that {h} love the LORD, hate evil: he preserveth the souls of his saints; he delivereth them out of the hand of the wicked.

(h) He requires two things from his children: the one that they detest vice, the other, that they put their trust in God for their deliverance.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
10. There is no need to alter the text as some modern critics would do, and read, They that love Jehovah hate evil; or, Jehovah loveth those that hate evil. An exhortation to those who love Jehovah to prove themselves what they profess to be by positive abhorrence of all that is antagonistic to Him was not superfluous, in an age when many an Israelite might still be tempted to half-hearted service. It corresponds to the warning of Psalm 95:7 ff. For the language of the whole verse cp. Amos 5:15; Psalm 37:28; Psalm 34:20.

his saints] His beloved, or, his godly ones. See Appendix, Note I.

10–12. The duty and the confidence of Israel.Verse 10. - Ye that love the Lord, hate evil. The psalmist ends his strain with an exhortation to the faithful - an exhortation, first of all, to "hate evil." God hates evil (Psalm 45:7); evil will separate them from God, evil will be their destruction. Therefore let them hate and abhor it. It is indifference to evil, that, more than anything else, lays men open to the assaults of Satan. He preserveth the souls of his saints. He (i.e. Jehovah) watches tenderly over the souls of his saints - his holy loving ones, and preserves them in being, keeps them from destruction, and delivereth them out of the hand of the wicked. Again we have nothing but echoes of the older literature: Psalm 97:4 equals Psalm 77:19; Psalm 97:4, cf. Psalm 77:17; Psalm 97:5, cf. Micah 1:4; Psalm 97:5, cf. Micah 4:13; Psalm 97:6 equals Psalm 50:6; Psalm 97:6, cf. Isaiah 35:2; Isaiah 40:5; Isaiah 52:10; Isaiah 66:18. The poet goes on to describe that which is future with historical certainty. That which Psalm 77:19 says of the manifestation of God in the earlier times he transfers to the revelation of God in the last time. The earth sees it, and begins to tremble in consequence of it. The reading ותּחל, according to Hitzig (cf. Ew. ֗232, b) traditional, is, however, only an error of pointing that has been propagated; the correct reading is the reading of Heidenheim and Baer, restored according to MSS, ותּחל (cf. 1 Samuel 31:3), like ותּבן, ותּקם, ותּרם, and ותּשׂם. The figure of the wax is found even in Psalm 68:3; and Jahve is also called "Lord of the whole earth" in Zechariah 4:14; Zechariah 6:5. The proclamation of the heavens is an expression of joy, Psalm 96:11. They proclaim the judicial strictness with which Jahve, in accordance with His promises, carries out His plan of salvation, the realization of which has reached its goal in the fact that all men see the glory of God.
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