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blessedness should be the subject of our serious study and earnest prayer.

2. See the true penitent. While he conceals his sins he is unhappy; when he confesses them to God, he obtains pardon and peace.

3. The gracious dealings of God with the penitent are recorded in Scripture for our guidance and encouragement. If we humble ourselves before Him, no trials and afflictions shall hurt us; for God will be our comforter and preserver.

4. Here see the true penitent rejoicing in faith: he looks to God as his refuge and his guardian, and is assured that he shall celebrate His praise in joyful


5. Here is a gracious promise; God will teach us by His word and Spirit, and He will guide us by His watchful providence. If we look to God, and wait on Him, He will be thus gracious to us.

6. Here is a salutary caution. If we be self-willed and obstinate, many sorrows will be our portion: but if we be humble and teachable, and trust in the divine mercy, we shall largely experience the lovingkindness of God.

7. It is the privilege and duty of the real Christian to rejoice in the Lord, and to declare his joy and gladness in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs.


Grant us grace, O Lord, so to believe in the Lord Jesus Christ that we may be blessed in Him. Give us

true repentance; give us a sure trust in Thy mercy; teach us in Thy truth, and guide us in all our ways: make us humble and submissive, teachable and obedient; and grant that we, being upright in heart, may rejoice in Thee, and celebrate Thy goodness with joyful lips. We beseech Thee thus to be gracious to us, for Jesus Christ's sake. Amen.


Displaying the Divine perfections, as Psalm viii. Probably written by David.

(I. Exhortation to joy and praise.)

1 Rejoice in the Lord, O ye righteous :
For praise is comely for the upright.
2 Praise the Lord with harp:

Sing unto Him with the psaltery,
And an instrument of ten strings.
3 Sing unto Him a new song;
Play skilfully with a loud noise.

(II. Truth, righteousness, and goodness of God.)
4 For the word of the Lord is right;
And all His works are done in truth.
5 He loveth righteousness and judgment:
The earth is full of the goodness of the Lord.

(III. His power in Creation.)

6 By the word of the Lord were the heavens made; And all the host of them by the breath of His


7 He gathereth the waters of the sea together as a heap:

He layeth up the depth in storehouses.

8 Let all the earth fear the Lord:

Let all the inhabitants of the world stand in awe

of Him.

9 For He spake, and it was done;

He commanded, and it stood fast.

(IV. His providence, especially over His people.) 10 The Lord bringeth the counsel of the heathen to nought:

He maketh the devices of the people of none effect. 11 The counsel of the Lord standeth for ever,

The thoughts of His heart to all generations. 12 Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord; And the people whom He hath chosen for His own inheritance.

13 The Lord looketh from heaven;

He beholdeth all the sons of men. 14 From the place of his habitation

He looketh upon all the inhabitants of the earth. 15 He fashioneth their hearts alike;

He considereth all their works.

16 There is no king saved by the multitude of a host: A mighty man is not delivered by much strength. 17 A horse is a vain thing for safety:

Neither shall he deliver any by his great strength. 18 Behold, the eye of the Lord is upon them that fear Him,

Upon them that hope in His mercy ;

19 To deliver their soul from death,

And to keep them alive in famine.

(V. Confidence and joy of the righteous.)

20 Our soul waiteth for the Lord :

He is our help and our shield.

21 For our heart shall rejoice in Him,

Because we have trusted in His holy Name.

(VI. Their prayer.)

22 Let Thy mercy, O Lord, be upon us, According as we hope in Thee.


1. The righteous and upright are here called upon to rejoice in the Lord, to praise Him, to sing unto Him, to use all their talents in celebrating His goodness.

2. The wisdom of God in His word, the righteousness of His ways, His holiness, and His abounding goodness, are subjects to inspire our hearts with joy, and to fill our lips with praise.

3. The visible works of creation should always remind us of their Maker; of His wisdom, power, and goodness: and when we think of Him, our souls ought to be filled with reverence and holy awe.

4. In Providence we see another exhibition of the divine perfections, to inspire our hearts with gladness. God frustrates the plans and purposes of the wicked. His own counsel stands for ever. He looks down upon all His creatures, and observes all their proceedings. And while the ungodly trust in an arm of flesh and in human resources, He looks with approbation on those who fear Him and trust in His mercy; and He deli

vers them from their enemies, and supports them in all their trials.

5. See here the faith of the real Christian: he trusts in God, and waits for Him. See also his assurance: he knows, whatever be the present trouble, that his heart shall rejoice in Him.

6. Assurance does not supersede prayer. We are always dependent on mercy; we always need it; and if our hope be in God, it shall be shown us, in answer to our supplications.


Give us, O Lord, such knowledge of Thy word and ways, of Thy holiness and goodness, that we may rejoice in Thee, and declare Thy praise. Help us to meditate with devout minds on Thy works in creation, and to stand in awe of Thee. And while we consider Thy counsel, Thy presence, and Thy righteous government, may we fear Thee, hope in Thy mercy, and find Thee to be our help and our shield. Thus may it please Thee to be gracious to us and to Thy whole Church, for Jesus Christ's sake. Amen.


Instructive, as Psalm i. A Psalm of David, written after his escape from the court of Achish (or Abimelech).

(I. Praise: invitation to it.)

1 I will bless the Lord at all times:

His praise shall continually be in my mouth. 2 My soul shall make her boast in the Lord:

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