Verse 11. "Be glad-and rejoice " - Let every righteous soul rejoice and glory, but let it be in the Lord. Man was made for happiness, but his happiness must be founded on holiness: and holiness, as it comes from God, must be retained by continual union with him. Probably this verse belongs to the next Psalm, and was originally its first verse.
ANALYSIS OF THE THIRTY SECOND PSALM
This Psalms is doctrinal, and shows the happiness of the man whose sin is pardoned, and who is himself restored to the favour and image of God. It is called maschil, or instruction, and the reason of this is shown at the eighth verse: "I will instruct thee, and teach thee." In it we have instruction, especially on these three points, which divide the Psalm: - I. The happy state of a justified person, ver. 1, 2.
II. The unhappy condition of that man who is not assured that he is justified and reconciled to God, ver. 3, 4. And the way is prescribed how to gain this assurance, ver. 5.
III. A lesson given for obedience after a man is brought into that state, ver. 8, 9.
I. The prophet first instructs us in what justification consists: - I. It is a free remission, a covering of sin; a nonimputation of iniquities. 2.
In what state a person must be in order to obtain it. He must be honest, sincere, and upright in heart; deeply penitent, feeling the guilt of sin, and acknowledging its enormity. He must avoid guile or deceit; and not excuse, palliate, or extenuate his sin, but confess it.
II. This he proves by his own experience: he hid his sin, he confessed it not; and was in consequence, miserable.
1. I held my peace I confessed not. I did not ask pardon: "When I kept silence," &c.
2. I was wounded with the sting of a guilty conscience; fears, horrors, troubles of soul, came upon me: "My bones waxed old through my roaring." 3. And then he shows the way he took to regain happiness; it was a contrary course to that above; he concealed his sin no longer. 1. "I acknowledged my sin unto thee, and mine iniquity I have not hidden." 2. "I said, I will confess my transgressions to the Lord." Of which the effects were various: - 1. Upon himself. He recovered his happiness in being justified: "Thou forgavest the iniquity of my sin." 2. On the whole Church: "For this shall every one that is godly pray unto thee." 3. Comfort in extremities, and safety in the greatest danger: "Surely in the floods of great waters," in an inundation of calamities, they-the troubles- shall not come nigh him who depends upon God's goodness and mercy, and is reconciled to him. And he shows the reason from his own experience. God was his Protector:
1. "Thou art my hiding place: thou shalt preserve me from trouble." 2. "Thou shalt compass me about with songs of deliverance." III. And now David sets down the duty of a justified person; that he is, after his pardon, obedient to God; and that not out of compulsion, but freely and willingly. In order to this, God condescends to be his Instructor.
1. "I will instruct;" give thee general counsel.
2. "I will guide thee with mine eye." A good servant needs no stripes; he will observe nutum, the nod, or nicturn heri, the wink of the master. As my eye is always over you, carefully to instruct; so be you as ready to observe it.
3. Be not like beasts: the Horse, headlong; the MULE, headstrong; "whose mouths must be held in with bit and bridle," lest they fling, kick, hurt, or kill thee. Constrained obedience is for a beast; free and voluntary obedience, for a man.
4. Besides, to quicken your obedience, I will teach you two reasons. 1.
From inconvenience and loss: "Many sorrows shall be to the wicked:" their griefs, troubles and punishments, are many and grievous. Be not, therefore, disobedient like the wicked. 2. From the gain. Your obedience shall be rewarded, and that amply: "He that trusteth in the Lord, mercy shall compass him round about." It shall be like the girdle with which he is girded. God will be present with him in his troubles. He shall perceive that he is in favour with God, that his sins are pardoned, and that he is an heir of eternal life.
Upon which he concludes with this exhortation: "Be glad in the Lord, and rejoice, ye righteous and shout for joy, all ye that are upright in heart." For this rejoicing there is great cause for this doctrine of free remission of sin can alone quiet a guilty conscience. And this pardon can only be odtained by faith in Christ Jesus.