Conditional Bestowments
Psalm 84:11, 12
For the LORD God is a sun and shield: the LORD will give grace and glory: no good thing will he withhold from them that walk uprightly.

What God is to his people, and what he does for them, may be put into two figures, and expressed in two plain statements. But what he is to them, and what he does for them, depend on what they are in themselves, and what they are toward him. This the sincerely good man is always willing to recognize.


1. Suggested by two figures.

(1) "The Lord God is a Sun. This figure for God is only used in this place. The sun in nature is the source of light, life, warmth, beauty, fruitfulness. The psalmist seems, even in this figure, to have God's defendings chiefly in mind. God is Light against darkness, which Easterns so greatly fear.

(2) The Lord God is a Shield." See this figure treated in the homily on ver. 9. We may add the picture of the tents of the army ranged in circles round the king's tent, and forming an almost impregnable shield; so "the Lord is round about his people." Some have suggested making one figure of the two, and reading it, "The Lord God is a bright and shining Shield." They think reference may be to the brazen shields, which were kept polished, so that, catching the sun's rays, they might dazzle the enemy.

2. Suggested by two statements.

(1) "The Lord will give grace and glory." We may think of Divine bestowment exactly according with human necessities. Grace fits into all present needs; glory fits into all future needs. But the psalmist probably used the terms as figures for the two things he needed - help and success.

(2) "No good thing will he withhold." A carefully qualified promise. It does not say, "Nothing will he withhold." It is "no good thing;" and no one can decide what is good for us as he can who has the infinite knowledge, and is the infinite Wisdom and Love.

II. THE DIVINE CONDITIONS. "From them that walk uprightly." That being regarded as the sure sign that the heart is right with God. A man may walk uprightly before his fellows who is not heart right with God. But this is quite certain - if a man does not walk uprightly, he cannot be right with God. God is an unstinted Giver; we put the limitations by the failure of our faith, love, submission, and obedience. God would have his bestowmeuts to be the best possible blessing to us; and therefore they are withheld until it is quite plain that we are prepared to make the best of them. - R.T.

Parallel Verses
KJV: For the LORD God is a sun and shield: the LORD will give grace and glory: no good thing will he withhold from them that walk uprightly.

WEB: For Yahweh God is a sun and a shield. Yahweh will give grace and glory. He withholds no good thing from those who walk blamelessly.

Children of the Sun
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