The LORD executes righteousness and judgment for all that are oppressed.…
In the preceding verses the hymnist exhorts himself to praise the Great God on account of the benefits conferred on himself. Here he strikes off into general reasons why he and all men should bless His holy name.
I. God's conduct in relation to the SOCIALLY OPPRESSED. He "executeth righteousness and judgment for all that are oppressed" (Job 36:5, 6; Isaiah 10:1, 2; Proverbs 22:22, 23; Psalm 111:12; Amos 8:4-6; Deuteronomy 24:14, 15; Matthew 19:27; James 5:1-5).
1. To some extent in this life this is seen in the strength that is given the oppressed to bear up under all their trials, and in the unhappiness and the ruin that God brings upon their oppressors. Pharaoh, Nebuchadnezzar, Herod, Napoleon.
2. He does so fully in the life to come.
II. God's conduct in relation to the METHODS OF REVEALING HIMSELF TO MANKIND (ver. 7). There is a great difference between the "ways" and the acts of any intelligent agent; as different as cause and effect. All men have their particular ways of doing a thing. God has His way, His method of action.
1. It is more difficult to know the "ways" of God than to know the "acts" of God. A child may understand many of the actions of a philosophic father, but not his ways or methods of action. Israel understood many of the acts of God; but Moses only rose to a knowledge of His ways, His principles, and manner of actions.
2. It is more important to know the ways of God than the acts of God.
(1) As a man knows His ways, he may forecast the future. Such and such events will occur in the future because it is in the order of the Divine procedure.
(2) As a man knows His ways he may acquiesce in His dispensations.
(3) As a man knows His ways he becomes exalted in thought and sympathy.
III. God's conduct in relation to SINNERS IN GENERAL (vers. 8-10).
1. His mercy is longsuffering. "Slow to anger."
2. His mercy is abundant. "Plenteous in mercy."
3. His mercy overcomes His resentment.
4. His mercy restrains punishment (ver. 10).
IV. God's conduct in relation to the GENUINELY PIOUS (vers. 11-14).
1. Immeasurable grace (ver. 11).
2. Sin-removing grace (ver. 12).
3. Fatherly considerateness (vers. 13, 14). Our physical, intellectual, and moral constitutions are thoroughly understood by Him. If He thus knows us, we may infer two things —
(1) That He will not lay on us more trials than we are capable of enduring.
(2) That He will not demand of us more service than we are capable of rendering.
Parallel VersesKJV: The LORD executeth righteousness and judgment for all that are oppressed.