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are cited from thence by our Lord and his apostles, and applied to matters evangelical.
“ No sooner have we opened the book, but the second Psalm presenteth itself, to all appearance, as an inauguration-hymn, composed by David, the anointed of Jehovah, when by him crowned with victory, and placed triumphant on the sacred hill of Zion. But let us turn to Acts iv, 25, and there we find the apostles, with one voice, declaring the Psalm to be descriptive of the exaltation of Jesus Christ, and of the opposition raised against bis Gospel, both by Jew and Gentile.
“In the eighth psalm we imagine the writer to be setting forth the pre-eminence of man in general above the rest of the creation; but by Heb. ii. 6, we are informed, that the supremacy conferred on the second Adam, the man Christ Jesus, over all things in heaven and earth, is the subject there treated of.
" St. Peter stands up, Acts ii. 95, and preaches the resurrection of Jesus from the latter part of the sixteenth Psalm; and lo, three thousand souls are converted by the sermon.
“ Of the eighteenth Psalm we are told, in the course of the sacred history, 2 Sam. xxii. that . David spake before the Lord the words of that song, in the day that the Lord delivered him out of the hand of all his enemies, and out of the hand of Saul;'. yet in Rom. xv. 9, the 50th verse of that Psalm is adduced as a proof, that the Gentiles should glorify God for his mercy in Jesus Christ, as it is written, For this cause will I confess to thee among the Gentiles, and sing unto thy name.'
“ In the nineteenth Psalm, David seems to be speaking of the material heavens, and their operations only, when he says, • Their sound is gone out into all the earth and their words onto the ends of the world;' but St. Paul, Rom. 8. 18, quotes the passage to show, that the Gospel had been universally pub-, lished by the apostles.
“ The twenty-second Psalm, Christ appropriated to himself, by beginning it in the midst of his sufferings on the cross; 'My God, my God,' &c. Three other verses of it are, in the New Testament, applied to him; and the words of the 8th verse were actually used by the chief priets, when they reviled him; 'He. trusted in God,' &c. Matt. xxvii. 43.
" When David saith, in the fortieth Psalm, Sacrifice and offering, thou didst not desire-Lo, I come to do thy will;' wo might suppose him only to declare, in his own person, that obedience is better than sacrifice. But from Heb. s. 5, we learn that Messiah, in that place, speaketh of his advent in the flesh, to abolish the legal sacrifices, and to do away sin, by the oblation of himself, once for all,
" That tender and pathetic complaint, in the forty-first Psalm, • Mine own familiar friend in whom I trusted, which did eat of my bread, hath lift up his heel against me,' rndoubtedly might be, and probably was originally uttered by David, upon the revolt of his own friend and counsellor Ahitophel, to the party of his rebellious son Absalom. But we are certain, from John xiii. 18, that this Scripture was fulfilled, when Christ was betrayed by his apostate disciple-I speak not of you all; I know whom I have chosen; but that the Scriptures may be fulfilled, He that cateth bread with me hath lift up his heel against me.'
“ The forty-fourth Psalm we must suppose to have been written on occasion of a persecution under which the church, at that time laboured; but a verse of it is cited, Rom. viii. 36, as expressive of what Christians were to suffer, on their blessed Master's account; • As it is written, For thy sake are killed all the day long; we are counted as sheep appointed to be slain.
“ A quotation from the forty-fifth Psalm in Heb. i. 8, certifies us, that the whole is addressed to the Son of God, and therefore celebrates his spiritual union with the church, and the happy fruits of it.
“The sixty-eighth Psalm, though apparently conversant about Israelitish victories, the translation of the ark to Zion, and the services of the tabernacle, yet does, under those figures, treat of Christ's resurrection, his going up on high, leading captivity captive, pouring out the gifts of the Spirit, erecting his church in the world, and enlarging it by the accession of the nations to the faith; as will be evident to any one who considers the force and consequence of the apostle's citation from it, Eph. iv. 7, 8. • Unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ. Wherefore he saith, When he ascended up on high, he led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men.'
“ The sixty-ninth Psalm is five times referred to in the gospels, as being uttered by the prophet, in the person of Messiah. The
imprecations, or rather predictions, at the latter end of it, are applied, Rom. xi. 9, 10, to the Jews; and to Judas, Acts i. 20; where the hundred and ninth Psalm is also cited, as prophetical of the sore judgments which should befall that arch traitor, and the wretched nation of which he was an epitome.
“St. Matthew, informs us, chap. xiii. 34, that Jesus spake to the multitudes in parables, gives it as one reason why he did so,
that it might be fullfilled which was spoken by the prophet,' Psalm lxxviii. 2, I will open my mouth in a parable ; I will utter things which have been kept secret from the foundation of the world.'
“The ninety-first Psalm was applied, by the Tempter, to Messiah : nor did our Lord object to the application, but only to the false inference, which his advcrsary suggested from it, Matt. iv. 6, 7.
“The pinety-fifth Psalm is explained at large in Heb. iii, and iv. as relative to the state and trial of Christians in the world, and to their attainment of the heavenly rest.
“ The hundred and tentb Psalm is cited by Christ himself, Matt. xxii. 44, as treating of his exaltation, kingdom, and priesthood.
• The hundred and seventeenth Psalm, consisting only of two verses, is employed, Rom. xv. 11, to prove that the Gentiles were one day to praise God for the mercies of Redemption.
“ The 22d verse of the hundred and eighteenth Psalm, “The stone which the builders refused,' &c, is quoted six different times as spoken of our Saviour.
And, lastly, 'the fruit of David's body,' which God is said, in the hundred and thirty-second Psalm, to have promised that he would place upon his throne,' is asserted, Acts ii. 30, to be Jesus Christ.
“ These citations, lying dispersed through the Scriptures of the New Testament, are often suffered by common readers to pass unnoticed. And many others content themselves with saying, that they are made in a sense of accommodation, as passages may be quoted from poems or histories merely human, for the illustration of truths, of which their authors never thought. ' And this (as a learned critic observes) is no fault, but rather a beauty in writing. A passage applied justly, and in a new sense, is ever pleasing to an ingenious reader, who loves to be agreeably snr.
prised, and to see a likeness and pertinency, where he expected
He has that surprise, which the Latin poet so poetically. gives to the tree;
“Miraturque novas frondes, et non sua poma.' "The readers who have been accustomed to consider the NewTestament-citations in this view of accommodation only, must perceive the necessity of such accommodation, at least, to adapt the use of the Psalms, as a part of divine service, to the times and circumstances of the Gospel; and cannot therefore reasonably object, upon their own principles, to the applications made. in the following sheets, for that purpose. But not to inquire, at present, whether passages are not sometimes cited in this manner, surely no one can attentively review the above-made collection of New Testament-citations from the book of Psalms, as they have been placed together before him, without perceiving that the Psalms are written upon a divine, preconcerted, prophetical plan, and contain much more than at first sight they appear to do. They are beautiful without, but all glorious within, like 'apples of gold in pictures, or net-work cases of silver.'—Prov. xxv. 11. The brightness of the casket attracts our attention, till through it, upon a nearer approach, we discover its contents. And then, indeed, it may be said to have ‘no glory, by reason of the glory that so far excelleth. Very delightful and profitable they are, in their literal and historical sense, which well repayeth all the pains taken to come at it. But, that once obtained, a farther scene begins to open upon us, and all the blessings of the Gospel present themselves to the eye of faith. So that the expositor is as a traveller ascending an eminence, neither unfruitful, nor unpleasant; at the top of which, when he is arrived, he beholds, like Moses from the summit of Mount Nebo, a more lovely and extensive prospect lying beyond it, and stretching away to the utmost bounds of the everlasting hills. He sees valleys covered over with corn, blooming gardens, and verdant meadows, with flocks and herds feeding by rivers of water; till, ravished with the sight, he cries out, as St. Peter did, at the view of his Master's glory, 'It is good to be here!'
“ It would be unreasonable to suppose, that no parts of the Psalms may by us be spiritually applied, but such as are already expressly applied for us by the inspired writers. Let any man consider attentively a New Testament-citation; then let him as
carefully read over, with a view to it, the Psalm from which it is taken, and see if it will not serve him as a key, wherewith to unlock the treasures of eternal wisdom; if it will not open his eyes,' and show him wonderful things' in God's law. When we are taught to consider one verse of a Psalm as spoken by Messiah, and there is no change of person, what can we conclude, but that he is the speaker through the whole? In that case, the Psalm becomes at once as much transfigured, as the blessed person, supposed to be the subject of it, was on mount Tabor. And if Messiah be the speaker of one Psalm, what should hinder, but that another Psalm, where the same kind of scene is evidently described, and the same expressions are used, may be expounded in the same manner?
“It is very justly observed by Dr. Allix, that, although the sense of near fifty Psalms be fixed and settled by divine authors, yet Christ and his apostles did not undertake to quote all the Psalms they could quote, but only to give a key to their hearers, by which they might apply to the same subjects the Psalms of the same composure and expression. The citations in the New Testament were made incidentally, and as occasion was given.
But can we imagine, that the church was not farther instructed in the manner of applying the Psalms to her Redeemer, and to herself? Did she stop at the applications thus incidentally and occasionally made by the inspired writers ? Did she stop, because they had directed her how to proceed ? We know she did not. The primitive Fathers, it is true, for want of critical learning, and particularly a competent knowledge of the original Hebrew, often wandered in their expositions; but they are unexceptionable witnesses to us of this matter of fact, that such a method of expounding the Psalms, built upon the practice of the apostles in their writings and preachings, did universally prevail in the church from the beginning."
“ Very few of the Psalms, comparatively, appear to be simply prophetical, and to belong only to Messiah, without the intervention of any other person. Most of them, it is apprehended, have a double sense, which stands upon this ground and foundation, that the ancient patriarchs, prophets, priests, and kings, were typical characters, in their several offices, and in the more remarkable passages of their lives, their extraordinary depressions, and miraculous exaltations, foreshowing Him