Psalm 91 commentary

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Psalm 91 commentary

Psalms He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. It is not every man who dwells there; no, not even every Christian man.

Psalm 91 Prophecy, Not Promises – “Secret Place” Location Found

Oh, labour to get to that blessed position! You who know the Lord, pray that you may attain to this high condition of dwelling in the inner shrine, always near to God, always overshadowed by those cherubic wings which indicate the presence of God.

Let us come boldly there; and, when we once enter, let us dwell there. This is a daring utterance, as if the psalmist would claim for himself the choicest privileges of any child of God. When you hear a glorious doctrine preached, it may be very sweet to others; but the honey lies in the particular application of it to yourself. You must, like the bee, go down into the bell of the flower yourself, and fetch out its nectar.

Can any language be loftier? Can any thought be more profound? Can any comfort be surer? Surely he shall deliver thee from the snare of the fowler.

If you dwell near to God, you will not be deceived by Satan. And from the noisome pestilence. The pestilence is something that you cannot see. He shall cover thee with his feathers. And under his wings shalt thou trust:. God is to his people a strong defense and a tender defense. God hides not his people in a casing of iron; their shelter is stronger than iron, yet it is soft as the downy wings of a bird for ease and comfort.

His truth shall be thy shield and buckler. Thou shalt not be afraid for the terror by night. Nervous as you are, and naturally timid, when you dwell near to God, your fears shall all go to sleep. Nor for the arrow that flieth by day.Upgrade to the best Bible learning experience! Try it free for 30 days. All rights reserved worldwide. You'll get this book and many others when you join Bible Gateway Plus. Learn more.

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Psalm Psalm 90 Psalm Bible Gateway Recommends. View More Titles. Advance your knowledge of Scripture with this resource library of over 40 reference books, including commentaries and Study Bible notes. Try it for 30 days FREE.

Matthew Henry :: Commentary on Psalms 91

You must be logged in to view your newly purchased content. Please log in below or if you don't have an account, creating one is easy and only takes a few moments. After you log in your content will be available in your library. More on the NIV. Viewing of. Cancel Save.Only with your eyes shall you behold and see the reward of the wicked. Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary. Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary.

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible. Observe well, reader, those that preserve their purity in times of general corruption, may trust God with their safety in times of general desolation.

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When multitudes die around us, though thereby we ought to be awakened to prepare for our own death, yet we ought not to be afraid with any amazement, nor make ourselves subject to bondage, as many do all their lifetime, through fear of death. The sprinkling of blood secured the firstborn of Israel, when thousands fell.

Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary He that by faith chooses God for his protector, shall find all in him that he needs or can desire.

And those who have found the comfort of making the Lord their refuge, cannot but desire that others may do so. The spiritual life is protected by Divine grace from the temptations of Satan, which are as the snares of the fowler, and from the contagion of sin, which is a noisome pestilence. Great security is promised to believers in the midst of danger. Wisdom shall keep them from being afraid without cause, and faith shall keep them from being unduly afraid.

Whatever is done, our heavenly Father's will is done; and we have no reason to fear. God's people shall see, not only God's promises fulfilled, but his threatenings. Then let sinners come unto the Lord upon his mercy-seat, through the Redeemer's name; and encourage others to trust in him also.

The only thing which you have to anticipate is, that you will see how God punishes sinners. With thine eyes shalt thou behold and see the reward of the wicked - Your own eyes shall see it. See the notes at Psalm You will see the just punishment of the ungodly, the vicious, the profane, the sensual. You will see what is the proper fruit of their conduct; what is the just expression of the views which God takes of their character.

This undoubtedly refers to the general principle that there is a moral government on earth; that vice is often punished as such; that the general course of the divine dealings is such as to show that God is favorable to virtue, and is opposed to vice. The system is not complete here, and there are many things which could not be reconciled with this, if the present world were all, and if there were no future state: but the course of events indicates the general character of the divine administration, and what is the tendency of things.

The completion - the actual and perfect adjustment - is reserved for a future state. The facts as they occur on earth prove that there is an attribute of justice in God; the fact that his dealings here are not wholly and fully in accordance with what justice demands, proves that there will be a state where full justice will be done, and where the whole system will be adjusted.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary 7, 8.

psalm 91 commentary

The security is more valuable, as being special, and, therefore, evidently of God; and while ten thousands of the wicked fall, the righteous are in such safety that they only see the calamity.

The reward of the wicked; the just recompence of their sins, or the vengeance of God upon them. Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Only with thine eyes shall thou behold, The flying arrow, the walking pestilence, and wasting destruction, and the great devastations made by it: and see the reward of the wicked; the vengeance of God upon them, and this as a just punishment for their sins; not looking upon it with delight and pleasure, rejoicing in the misery of their fellow creatures, any otherwise than as the glory of divine justice is displayed in it; see Psalmthe pestilence is always threatened, and it always comes, as a Judgment upon a wicked generation of men; and so it is ever to be considered, and is considered by good men, Leviticus So Israel in the land of Goshen "looked on," and saw the calamities of the Egyptians.

In connection with Psalm we are reminded of the expressions of the Book of Job, Jobconcerning the eagle's building its nest in its eyrie. According to the accentuation, Psalm ought to be rendered with Geier, "Dicit: in Domino meo or Domini latibulum, etc.He that dwells in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers.

Psalm 91: Commentary, Bible Study and Summary

Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary. Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary. Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible. Cambridge Bible for Schools and Colleges. The change in the last clause presents no particular difficulty, as many similar instances occur; but that from the third person, in the first verse, to the first, in the second, is very awkward, and many shifts have been adopted to get out of it.

By their accumulation the poet makes the sum of assurance doubly sure. Benson Commentary Psalm A shadow, in Scripture, often signifies protection.

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But there evidently seems to be an allusion to the most holy place in the tabernacle and temple, and to the outstretched wings of the cherubim covering the ark and mercy-seat: see notes on Psalm ; Psalm And it is as if the psalmist had said, He shall dwell like the ark in the holy of holies, under the immediate shadow and protection of the Divine Majesty. It is justly observed here by Dr. And those who have found the comfort of making the Lord their refuge, cannot but desire that others may do so.

The spiritual life is protected by Divine grace from the temptations of Satan, which are as the snares of the fowler, and from the contagion of sin, which is a noisome pestilence. Great security is promised to believers in the midst of danger. Wisdom shall keep them from being afraid without cause, and faith shall keep them from being unduly afraid. Whatever is done, our heavenly Father's will is done; and we have no reason to fear.

God's people shall see, not only God's promises fulfilled, but his threatenings. Then let sinners come unto the Lord upon his mercy-seat, through the Redeemer's name; and encourage others to trust in him also.

Barnes' Notes on the Bible He that dwelleth - Everyone that so dwells. The proposition is universal, and is designed to embrace all who are in this condition. It is true of one; it is true of all. The word rendered "dwelleth" here is a participle from the verb to "sit," and here means "sitting:" literally, "sitting in the secret place," etc.

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The idea is that of calm repose; of resting; of sitting down - as one does in his dwelling. In the secret place - On the meaning of this see the notes at Psalm Compare Psalm ; Psalm Abiding where God abides.Psalm 91 is the second most popular psalm thanks to its powerful description of God's supernatural protection which most read as promises for everyday Christian life.

Yet Psalm 91 never says it is a promise for a universal audience and what it does say is very specific and parallel to end times prophecy.

psalm 91 commentary

It describes God protecting only the faithful from extreme conditions in one "secret place. To say Psalm 91 is one of the Bible's more popular psalms is an understatement. It's actually the number two psalm of course after the beloved "The Lord is my Shepherd" Psalm At least as judged by the suggestions Google offers when you type "psalm " in search:. Google top 10 search suggestions for "psalm ".

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If you don't know why it is so popular already, all you need to do is consider just a few of its sixteen verses:. Psalm 91 — 1 He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. It's obvious why Christians like it so much. It describes some very desirable protection given to those God says he knows intimately.

It seems to almost offer this very protection to anyone who decides to "dwell" close to the Almighty. That's really the key to why this psalm is so popular. Christians read it as a book of promises of protection for them today. For this reason Psalm 91 is known as the "soldier's psalm. Mom's pray Psalm 91 daily over their children serving in the military or working in dangerous professions like law enforcement or firefighting.

You can find many testimonials online about how professing Psalm 91 has kept people safe whether it be during the Vietnam War or modern wars like in in the Middle East. Psalm 91 for children; one for mothers; another for military; others for youth and for kids. It's practically a cottage industry, like Chicken Soup for the Soul. The premise is you just need to "join the covenant" by loving and serving God and all the threats listed in Psalm 91 will be neutralized.

If this is the first time you've heard this, it probably sounds exaggerated or only a fringe belief. But I'm not making this up. Many people believe in Psalm 91 like this.

psalm 91 commentary

Really, it's not surprising if you remember how many people believed in "the blessing power of praying 1 Chronicles " when the Prayer of Jabez book came out full of anecdotal evidence in support of it.

It's OK with me if you or others read Psalm 91 allegorically and find comfort in that.

psalm 91 commentary

I don't judge. Just please understand that this view does not work everyone. Especially when someone steps back from this fantasy view which I admit we'd all love to be true and look at it objectively and sensibly. If you are a big believer in the "Psalm 91 protection covenant," you may want to skip the rest of this section to avoid hearing my reasons why I don't view Psalm 91 as you do.

I don't wish to be a downer or buzzkill by taking away any comforting belief you need to hold onto. No matter how many positive testimonies of Psalm 91 protection there may be, you can find plenty more examples of Christians who have had tragedy touch their lives. I would bet you don't even have to look further than own family history for sad examples. Christians don't universally get "long life" or freedom from attacks or accidents.

Quite the contrary. In fact, many Christians end up losing their faith because they trusted in Psalm 91 and other so-called "promises of God in the Bible" because other actual promises of the Bible happened to them instead Psalm — Many are the afflictions of the righteous : but the LORD delivereth him out of them all. Acts — Confirming the souls of the disciples, and exhorting them to continue in the faith, and that we must through much tribulation enter into the kingdom of God.

By the way, do you see the clear general-promise-to-all language in these verses? If you read Psalm 91 carefully you won't find anything like that.Such a message is timeless. It would have served them well during the Babylonian Exile, when only the eyes of faith could see the possibility that they would ever again see Jerusalem. It would have served them well when King Cyrus of Persia defeated Babylon and freed Israelites to return to Jerusalem and rebuild the city, where they found a ruined city and were faced with many enemies.

If we are to keep our equilibrium in such circumstances, we need assurance that God is with us——that God loves us and is committed to helping us——that God will redeem even our darkest day. That is a message that we need to hear in good times so that it will bring us strength during bad times.

The Hebrew word sadday means almighty or the Almighty. We find this name as early as Genesisbut whether that name was familiar to Abram is uncertain. It would have been familiar to the author s of Genesis. The other names are all descriptive such as Most High and Almighty. El means god note the small gand can be used for any god.

Psalm 91 - A Psalm for a Time of Plague

Elohim is plural, so it can apply to any gods. The Hebrew word seter means a secret place or hiding place. The Hebrew word lin rest means to lodge or dwell or tarry or rest, and can designate either a temporary or permanent lodging. The Hebrew word sel means shadow of shade. However, the words shadow and shade also acknowledge that the faithful person dwells in a world that is sometimes dark. Even there, God is present. This verse repeats the idea of verse 1b, but with different imagery.

Once again, the idea is of the protection afforded by the Almighty God. Under his wings you will take refuge. His faithfulness is your shield and rampart. The psalmist can feel secure, because he is confident that Yahweh will deliver him from the snare pah of the fowler a person who sets traps to catch birds, usually for eating.

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In our experience, most hunting is done with guns instead of traps. However, we are familiar with traps of other kinds:.

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Muggers would hide in recessed doorways and whack people whom they could reach easily. Today they have to watch for IEDs. The word deber means plague or pestilence. In this case, the psalmist emphasizes its deadly character. Those of us who live in first world countries have almost forgotten the dangers of deadly diseases that spread rapidly and kill large numbers of people.

Vaccines and other medical treatments have almost eliminated them for us. However, when I was a child in the s and 50s, before the polio vaccine became available, I had friends who had suffered from polio. Some suffered mild impairment but others suffered catastrophic impairment. Towns across the country closed their swimming pools. Our church recently experienced a norovirus that sickened 54 of the 60 people present for worship that Sunday. While no one died, it was a terrible illness that required weeks for recovery.

Plagues and pestilences of various kinds are still occasional threats in first world countries, and are frequent threats in less developed countries.W hat is Psalm 91 all about? What are things that we can learn from it for today? Psalm 91 appears to be a psalm in the setting of warfare with threats of an imminent battle that is about to, has or is currently taking place between solders that may be facing impossible odds.

If the face of such a harsh reality as this, God is placed in the position of being the protecting parent of His young as their fortress, shield, and protector. I will say to the Lord, My refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust. For he will deliver you from the snare of the fowler and from the deadly pestilence.

The one who abides in the shelter or under the protection of the Most High God has a shadow over him or her, much like Gods providing the cloud of glory that protected Israel in her wanderings in the wilderness from the scorching sun and like a fortress, He will deliver those who face the snare or trap or the threat of a deadly pestilence or disease.

The imagery here is that of God being a protective parent bird like the eagle which covers His young under their wings and shades them from the elements and any prey that might attack them. There is need to fear the night filled with terror or the arrows that are visibly seen flying during the day. There is even the unseen threat of pestilence that seeks their victims under the cover of darkness. The buckler is also part of the protection and this device is a defensive piece of armor used in ancient times when close range attacks occurred.

Here we read about thousands falling to the left and to the right as in the day when Israel battled ancient nations…the land would be scattered with dead bodies so those who read this at the time it was written had a good idea what this meant. With death all around them God tells them that it will not even come near them because they are not looking at all the dead bodies but their eyes are looking at the Lord Who is recompensing or paying back those who are the enemies.

It is only because they have made the Lord God their dwelling place, dwelling in safety and abiding in Him, therefore as their refuge, nothing evil will befall them and no plague will come close to their tents. You will tread on the lion and the adder; the young lion and the serpent you will trample underfoot. This is the verse that Satan used to tempt the Lord in the Wilderness to tell Jesus to throw Himself off the highest part of the temple Matt because the angels are commanded to protect Him Matt Many people have told me that only the supernatural intervention by angels commanded by God could explain certain miraculous situations that they were involved with, some having their lives being spared.

There has even been protection from the wild predators, snakes, spiders, and a multitude of various other dangerous insects and animals that many have experienced receiving protection from, like Paul when he was bitten by a poisonous snake and should have died Acts Not only does He deliver His own from trouble, He honors them and satisfies them, promises them long life and how long is the life that comes when He shows us His salvation?

How about eternity? All of this because He says we know Him by name v 14 and can call Him Father. This psalm is a powerful chapter when a believer is in a time of crisis. I have read of some soldiers who were in a literal valley of death that read this chapter to feel a little more peace of mind. God truly is our fortress and our refuge.

Take a look at another study and commentary: Psalm Used by permission. All rights reserved.


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