The Treasury of David

The Treasury of David is one of several C.H. Spurgeon books that are in the public domain. If you propose to study the Psalms, I suggest you download this as a companion for your other references.

Psalm 47

Exposition
Explanatory Notes and Quaint Sayings
Hints to the Village Preacher
Other Works


TITLE. To the Chief Musician. Many songs were dedicated to this leader of the chorus, but he was not overloaded thereby. God’s service is such delight that it cannot weary us; and that choicest part of it, the singing of his praises, is so pleasurable that we cannot have too much of it. Doubtless, the chief musician, as he was commissioned with so many sacred songs, felt that the more the merrier. A Psalm for the Sons of Korah. We cannot agree with those who think that the sons of Korah were the authors of these Psalms; they have all the indications of David’s authorship that one could expect to see. Our ear has grown accustomed to the ring of David’s compositions, and we are morally certain that we hear it in this Psalm. Every expert would detect here the autography of the Son of Jesse, or we are greatly mistaken. The Sons of Korah sang these Psalms, but we believe they did not write them. Fit singers were they whose origin reminded them of sin, whose existence was a proof of sovereign grace, and whose name has a close connection with the name of Calvary.

SUBJECT. Whether the immediate subject of this Psalm is the carrying up of the ark from the house of Obededom to Mount Zion or the celebration of some memorable victory, it would be hard to decide. As even the doctors differ, who should dogmatize? But it is very clear that both the present sovereignty of Jehovah and the final victories of our Lord is here fitly hymned, while his ascension, as the prophecy of them, is sweetly gloried in.

DIVISION. In so short a Psalm, there is no need of any other division than that indicated by the musical pause at the end of Ps 47:4.

Verse 2. For the Lord or JEHOVAH, the self-existent and only God; Most high, most great in power, lofty in dominion, eminent in wisdom, elevated in glory. Is terrible, none can resist his power or stand before his vengeance; yet as these terrors are wielded on the behalf of his subjects, they are fit reasons for rejoicing. Omnipotence, which is terrible to crush, is almighty to protect. At a grand review of the troops of a great prince, all his loyal subjects are filled with triumph, because their liege lord is so able to defend his own, and so much dreaded by his foes. He is a great King over all the earth. Not over Judea only, but even to the utmost isles, his reign extends. Our God is no local deity, no petty ruler of a tribe; in infinite majesty, he rules the mightiest realm as absolute arbiter of destiny, sole monarch of all lands, King of kings, and Lord of lords. Not a hamlet or an islet is excluded from his dominion. How glorious will that era be when this is seen and known of all; when in the person of Jesus all flesh shall behold the glory of the Lord!

Singing psalms 47

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