For his anger endures but a moment; in his favor is life: weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning.
There are many different opinions as to the place of true enjoyment. Some think it is in animal gratifications; others in material possessions; mental acquirements; personal refinements; social positions; and some even in present creature pleasures. The psalmist though it to be in the favour of God. And he was right. Until man is in friendship with God he will never be happy.
I. WHAT SORT IS IT? Not the creative favour of God, which has made us men, not brutes; not His providential favour, which has supplied our various needs — but His saving favour (Ephesians 2:4-7). That the psalmist had this favour of God in view, is evident from ver. 8.
II. THROUGH WHAT MEDIUM DOES GOD EXERCISE HIS SAVING FAVOUR? Jesus Christ (John 17:2; Acts 4:12; Romans 3:25, 26; 1 John 5:11). Jesus is to the regeneration of man what the atmosphere is to the fruitfulness of the earth — the medium through which the water of the ocean and the warmth of the sun act with generating power.
III. WHERE IS THIS FACT REVEALED? (Deuteronomy 18:15, 18; Luke 24:27; John 5:39). This invests the Scriptures with indescribable grandeur, inestimable worth, exclusive authority, and final appeal in everything pertaining to human redemption.
IV. To WHOM IS IT PROCLAIMED? (John 3:16; Luke 2:10; Matthew 9:13; Titus 2:11-14). To limit Gospel invitations to a favoured few is unscriptural.
V. WHAT WILL BE HAD BY SUITABLY REGARDING God's proclamation of His saving favour? "Life." That is, restoration to the moral likeness of God, reinstatement into right relations with God, and introduction into the real friendship of God. Viewed in regard to the law of God, it is called justification (Galatians 3:6-14); the character of God, sanctification (Ephesians 5:25-27); the person of God, fellowship (John 17:21; 1 John 1:3, 6, 7). All living is death which is not in God, nor like Him, nor according to His will.
VI. BY WHAT EXERCISE OF THE MIND do we obtain the blessed issues of God's saving favour? Believing.
(W. J. Stuart.)
Parallel VersesKJV: For his anger endureth but a moment; in his favour is life: weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning.