Verse 9. "Save, Lord " - This verse was spoken by all the congregation, and was the chorus and conclusion of the piece.
The verse may be read, Lord, save the king! He will hear as in the day of our calling. The Vulgate, Septuagint, AEthiopic, Arabic, Anglo-Saxon, read the verse thus: Lord, save the king! and hear us whensoever we shall call upon thee. The Syriac reads differently: The Lord will save us: and our king will hear us in the day in which we shall call upon him. This refers all to God: while the others refer the latter clause to DAVID. Lord, save David; and David will save us. "If thou preservest him, he will be thy minister for good to us." This appears to be the easiest sense of the place, and harmonizes with all the rest.
ANALYSIS OF THE TWENTIETH PSALM
This Psalms is a form of prayer delivered by David to the people, to be used by them for the king, when he went out to battle against his enemies.
In this Psalm there are the following parts: - I. A benediction of the people for their king, ver. 1-4.
II. A congratulation or triumph of the people after the victory, supposed to be already obtained, ver. 5-8.
III. A petition, ver. 9.
I. The benediction directed to David's person. The particulars; that he may have, 1. Audience in his necessity: "The Lord hear thee in the day of trouble." 2. Protection: "The name of the God of Jacob defend thee," ver. 1.
3. Help and strength in battle: "Send thee help-strengthen thee;" which is amplified, 1. By the place: "Help from the sanctuary;" 2.
"Strength out of Zion." 4. Acceptance of his person; testified by the acceptance of his offerings and sacrifices, ver. 3.
5. Answers to his petitions: "Grant thee according to thy own heart, and fulfill all thy counsel," ver. 4; which is plainly set down in the next verse: "The Lord fulfill all thy petitions," ver. 5.
This benediction being ended, they persuade themselves that the prayer of it shall be granted, because it will redound to God's glory; and they will be thankful, and honour him for the victory.
1. "We will rejoice in thy salvation." Or Do this, "that we may rejoice." 2. "In the name of our God will we set up our banners." We will enter the city joyfully with displayed banners, which we still erect as trophies to the honour of God.
II. Now follow the congratulation and triumph of their faith: for they give thanks as for a victory already obtained; as to their faith it was certain.
Before they prayed for audience and protection: here they testify they are certain and secure of both.
1. Of protection: "Now know I that the Lord will save," &c.
2. Of audience: "He will hear from his holy heaven." 3. Of help: "With the saving strength of his right hand," ver. 6.
The certainty they had of this victory proceeded solely from their confidence in God. And this they illustrate by an argument drawn a dissimili: they were not like others who trust more to their arms than to their prayers; more to their numbers than to Gcd.
1. "Some trust in chariots, and some in horses;" as the Ammonites, 2 Sam. x. 6.
2. But we do not so: "We will remember the name of the Lord our God; the Lord of hosts, mighty in battle." Arms may be used by good or bad men; but the difference lies in the object, the end, and the confidence. A bad cause cannot have God's concurrence: a good cause will have his countenance and support.
3. And therefore the success was according to the confidence. 1. They who trusted in their arms, &c., are brought down, and fallen. 2. We who trusted in the Lord our God, are risen, and stand upright, ver. 8.
III. The third part contains a short ejaculation, and is the sum of the Psalm.
1. "Save, Lord!" Thou alone canst save us: in thee, and in none other, do we put our trust.
2. "Let the king hear us." We propose to continue in prayer and faith; therefore, when we call, let the king, the messiah, which thou hast set on thy holy hill, Psa. ii. 6, hear us. Or, according to another arrangement of the words: 1. Lord, save our king. Make him wise and good, preserve his person, and prosper his government; that we may have peace in our time, and secular prosperity. 2. Hear thou us when we call. Let us have also spiritual prosperity, that we may perfectly love thee, and worthily magnify thy name. - "O thou Lord, health give the king." - Anglo-Saxon.