And I will bring the third part through the fire, and will refine them as silver is refined, and will try them as gold is tried: they shall call on my name, and I will hear them: I will say, It is my people: and they shall say, The LORD is my God.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)Psalm 66:9-11. "I have refined thee, but not with silver, I have chosen thee in the furnace of affliction" Isaiah 48:10; and, "Through much tribulation we must enter into the kingdom of God" Acts 14:22.
Dionysius: "In adversity virtue is most tried, and it is shown what advance a person has made; for 'patience' hath 'a perfect work' James 1:4; and it is called the touchstone of all other virtues, as is written; 'God tried His elect as gold in the furnace and received them as a burnt offering' ; and, 'All the faithful who have pleased the Lord have passed through many tribulations' . And the angel Raphael saith to Tobias, 'Because thou wert accepted of God, need was that temptation should prove thee' ." "Adversities are granted to the elect of God, and therefore to be rejoiced in with the whole heart." "Fire, crosses, racks were prepared; swords executioners torturers were put in action; new forms of suffering were invented, and yet Christian virtue remained moveless, unconquered: the fiercer the onslaught, the more glorious was the triumph." : "The more suffered, the more believed in Christ." Osorius: "Whose virtue they adimired, these they imitated, and shared the suffering, that they might be partakers of the glory. This was that fire, whereby God willed that His own should be tried and purified, that, with Christ whom they gave themselves to imitate, they might enjoy everlasting glory."
I will bless him and will say, It is My people - Dionysius: "not only by creation as the rest, but by devotion and worship, by predestination and infusion of grace, by singular Providence, by mutual love; 'and it shall say, The Lord is my God,' whom alone above all things, I long for, love, worship."
This promise is oftentimes renewed through the prophets, oftentimes fulfilled in Christ, whenever the Church is recalled from listlessness by fiery trials, and through them her children are restored to deeper devotedness and closer union with God.
my people—(Jer 30:18-22; Eze 11:19, 20; Ho 2:23).I will bring the third part through the fire; that part that is preserved shall be brought into afflictions, hot as fire.
And will refine them as silver is refined; these afflictions shall purify them, and so better them, as silver and gold are bettered by the furnace, made fitter to be vessels of honour.
They shall call on my name; pray to me, and own me for their God.
I will hear; I will answer them, and own them for my people, my purified people, &c. Revelation 3:10. Daniel's time of trouble, such as there never was since there was a nation, Daniel 12:1 and the time of the slaying of the witnesses, Revelation 11:7,
and will refine them as silver is refined, and will try them as gold is tried; their graces, principles, and profession, will be tried; their dross and tin will be removed, and they will be purged and purified; a more pure and glorious state of the church will take place, in which there will be great purity of Gospel worship, discipline, and conversation; when the word will be more purely preached, the ordinances more purely administered, and the saints will live more holy lives and conversations, signified by the witnesses ascending up into heaven, Revelation 11:12,
they shall call on my name; which includes the whole of divine worship, and particularly designs prayer, that pure offering and incense, which shall now be offered to the name of the Lord in every place, Malachi 1:11 hence it follows,
and I will hear them; accept their prayers, and give an answer to them: so the Targum paraphrases the words,
"he shall pray in my name, and I will receive his prayer:''
I will say, It is my people; the Lord will make it appear to themselves and others that they are his special, peculiar, and covenant people, by calling them out of Babylon; by bestowing his favours upon them; and by granting his presence with them, as well as by the witnessing of his Spirit to them; see Revelation 18:4,
and they shall say, The Lord is my God: they shall know him to be their covenant God and Father, and claim their interest in him, and acknowledge him as such; which is the greatest happiness that can be enjoyed, Psalm 144:15.And I will bring the third part through the fire, and will refine them as silver is refined, and will try them as gold is tried: they shall call on my name, and I will hear them: I will say, It is my people: and they shall say, The LORD is my God.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)9. the third part] Comp. Romans 11:5.Verse 9. - Through the fire. This third part, like its Master, passes through much tribulation, and is thereby refined and purified (comp. Psalm 66:10; Isaiah 48:10; Jeremiah 9:7; Daniel 12:10; Malachi 3:3; 1 Peter 1:6, 7). Call on my Name. In their distress they shall turn in faith to Jehovah, as the covenant God, a very present Help in trouble (Isaiah 65:24). Thus is represented God's dealing with his Church in every age.
Zechariah 2:10. "Exult and rejoice, O daughter Zion: for, behold, I come, and dwell in the midst of thee, is the saying of Jehovah. Zechariah 2:11. And many nations will attach themselves to Jehovah in that day, and become a people to me: and I dwell in the midst of thee; and thou wilt know that Jehovah of hosts hath sent me to thee." The daughter Zion, or the church of the Lord, delivered out of Babel, is to rejoice with joy, because her glorification is commencing now. The Lord comes to her in His angel, in whom are His name (Exodus 23:21), and His face (Exodus 33:14), i.e., the angel of His face (Isaiah 63:9), who reveals His nature, to dwell in the midst of her. This dwelling of Jehovah, or of His angel, in the midst of Zion, is essentially different from the dwelling of Jehovah in the Most Holy Place of His temple. It commences with the coming of the Son of God in the flesh, and is completed by His return in glory (John 1:14 and Revelation 21:3). Then will many, or powerful, nations, attach themselves to Jehovah, and become His people (cf. Zechariah 8:20-21; Isaiah 14:1). This kingdom of God, which has hitherto been restricted to Israel, will be spread out and glorified by the reception of the heathen nations which are seeking God (Micah 4:2). The repetition of the expression, "I dwell in the midst of thee," merely serves as a stronger asseveration of this brilliant promise; and the same remark applies to the repetition of וידעתּ וגו (and thou shalt now): see at Zechariah 2:13. Jerusalem will thereby receive the expansion shown to the prophet in Zechariah 2:4; and through the dwelling of God in the midst of her, the promise in Zechariah 2:5 will also be fulfilled. The next verse refers to this.
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