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pecting when he should open his hand, and distribute to each member his portion of meat in due season ! The case is the same with regard to beings intellectual and spiritual, of which are composed the church and family of Christ in heaven and earth : these wait all upon him, by whom Jehovah has opened the hand of mercy, and abundantly supplied all our needs, through the riches of his grace.

29. Thou hidest thy face, they are troubled: thou takest away their breath, they die, and return to their dust. 30. Thou sendest forth thy spirit, they are creatod: and thou renewest the face of the earth.

When God, in the season of winter, seems to hide his face, and to withdraw his beneficent influences, we hear the cries of the creation in distress : if he recal the breath of life from any creature, to which he had communicated it, that creature presently ceases to be what it was; sense and motion are at an end; the form and figure of it perish; and it is resolved into its original dust. But again he exerts his quickening power, and, lo, fresh generations of animals are produced ;

crops of vegetables shoot forth to nourish them; and there is a renovation of universal nature. The presence of God, in like manner, is the life, his absence is the death, of the soul. If he withdraw his grace, we perish everlastingly; but when he sends forth his Spirit, as he did on the day of Pentecost, “ old things pass away, and all things become new ;" the winter is over, and spring succeeds in its place. Nay, the hour is coming, when, through the same Spirit, he shall also quicken our mortal bodies;


and thus, in a more evident and wonderful manner, renew the face of the earth."

31. The glory of the LORD shall endure for ever: the LORD shall rejoice in his works. 32. He looketh on the earth, and it trembleth; he toucheth the hills, and they' smoke.

Such being the works of God, so manifold, and so marvellous, the prophet foretells, that his glory, dis- played and declared by the -same, shall endure for ever; that creatures would never be wanting, to give him the praise and honour due unto him; insomuch that, graciously accepting this their tribute, and pleased to find a proper return made him, Jehovah should, as at the first creation, acquiesce and rejoice in all his works and dispensations. In the mean time, let the unruly and disobedient reflect upon the greatness of his power, and the terrors of his vengeance, who with a look can shake the earth, and with a touch can fire the mountains, as when he once descended on Sinai.

33. I will sing unto the LORD, as long as I live: I will sing praise unto my God, while I have my being. 34. My meditation of him shall be sweet; I will be glad in the LORD.

And who, o divine Psalmist, will not sing with thee, that has an understanding to apprehend, and a tongue to celebrate, the works of his Maker and Redeemer ? To whom will not thy heavenly meditations be sweet as honey, fragrant as the breath of spring, pleasant and cheering as the fruit of the vine? Who does not long to partake of thy spiritual joy and holy gladness?

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35. Let the sinners, or, the sinners shall, be consumed out of the earth, and let the wicked, or, the wicked shall, be no more. Bless thou the LORD, O my soul. Praise ye the LORD.

The sinners, and the wicked, are they of whom it is elsewhere said, that they “ consider not the works of Jehovah, nor regard the operations of his hands," to give him praise and glory for them. These shall one day experience the power of that God, whose wisdom and goodness they would never acknowledge. They shall be consumed, and “perish from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power, when he ariseth to shake terribly the earth.” The Psalmist, therefore, ends as he began : “ Bless THOU the LORD, O my soul;" adding, by way of exhortation to us, and to all the world, “ Praise ye the Lord.” Let us, then, with the “ four-and-twenty elders, fall down before him that sitteth upon the throne, and worship him that liveth for ever and ever; saying, Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory, and honour, and power; for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created." Rev. iv. 10, 11,


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The redeemed of the Lord are exhorted in this Psalm,

to praise him for his goodness in redeeming, and gathering them from the four quarters of the world. Their danger and their deliverance are represented under the four striking images, of travellers lost in à wilderness, but directed and conducted home; of prisoners rescued from captivity; of sick and dying men restored to health ; of mariners preserved in a Storm at sea, and brought safe into port. Some other instances of God's providence in the government of the world, and of the church, are adduced and insisted on, for the consolation of the righteous, and the instruction of all.

1. O give thanks unto the Lord, for he is good, for his mercy endureth for ever. 2. Let the redeemed of the LORD say so, whom he hath redeemed from the hand of the enemy: 3. And gathered them out of the lands, from the east, and from the west, from the north, and from the south,

Eternal mercy is the theme here proposed; and they who have tasted its sweets are invited to join in setting forth its praises. The members of the Christian church are now, in the most proper and emphatical sense of the words, the redeemed of Jehovah ; whom he hath redeemed from the hand of the enemy, and gathered them, by the Gospel, out of all lands, and from all the four quarters of the world, to form a church, and to supply the place of the apostate Jews; whose forefathers experienced, in type and shadow, the good things prepared for them and for us, in truth and substance. “ Many,” saith our Lord to the Jews, « shall come from the east, and from the west, and from the north, and from the south, and shall sit down in the kingdom of God--and ye yourselves shall be thrust out:" We, converted Gentiles, are the happy people ; and we are taught in this Psalm to celebrate that mercy which made us so.

4. They wandered in the wilderness, in a solitary way, they found no city to dwell in. 5. Hungry and thirsty, their soul fainted in them. 6. Then they cried unto the Lord in their trouble, and he delivered then out of their distresses. 7. And he led them forth by the right way, that they might go to a city of habitation.

The spiritual blessings of redemption are represented by the Psalmist under four exquisitely beautiful and expressive images; which images are themselves four special acts of God's providential care and love, shown towards the bodies of men in the world; corresponding with as many works of grace, wrought on the souls of believers, in the church. The first of these pictures exhibits to our view a set of travellers lost in a pathless desert, and well nigh famished through want of necessary provisions. They make their distresses known by prayer to Jehovah, and, lo,

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