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 57

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


TITLE.To the Chief Musician. So glad a song as this becomes ere it closes, should be in the keeping of the most skilled of all the temple minstrels. Altaschith, i.e., DESTROY NOT. This petition is a very sententious prayer, as full as it is brief and well worthy to be the motto for a sacred song. David had said, “destroy not, “in reference to Saul, when he had him in his power, and now he takes pleasure in employing the same words in supplication to God. We may infer from the spirit of the Lord’s prayer, that the Lord will spare us as we spare our foes. There are four of these “Destroy not” Psalms, namely, the 57th, 58th, 59th, and 75th. In all of them, there is a distinct declaration of the destruction of the wicked and the preservation of the righteous, and they all have probably a reference to the overthrow of the Jews, on account of their persecution of the great Son of David: they will endure heavy chastisement, but concerning them, it is written in the divine decree, “Destroy them not.” Michtam of David. For quality, this Psalm is called golden, or a secret, and it well deserves the name. We may read the words and yet not know the secret joy of David, which he has locked up in his golden casket. When he fled from Saul in the cave. This is a song from the bowels of the earth, and, like Jonah’s prayer from the bottom of the sea, it has a taste of the place. The poet is in the shadow of the cave at first, but he comes to the cavern’s mouth at last, and sings in the sweet fresh air, with his eye on the heavens, watching joyously the clouds floating therein.

DIVISION. We have here prayer, Ps 57:1-6, and praise, Ps 57:7-11. The hunted one takes a long breath of prayer, and when he is fully inspired, he breathes out his soul in a jubilant song.

Verse 2. I will cry. He is quite safe, yet he prays, for faith is never dumb. We pray because we believe. We exercise by faith the spirit of adoption whereby we cry. He says not I do cry, or I have cried, but I will cry, and indeed, this resolution may stand with all of us until we pass through the gates of pearl; for while we are here below we shall still have a need to cry. Unto God most high.—Prayers are for God only; the greatness and sublimity of his person and character suggest and encourage prayer; however high our enemies, our heavenly Friend is higher, for he is Most high, and he can readily send from the height of his power the succor which we need. Unto God that performeth all things for me. He has a cogent reason for praying, for he sees God performing. The believer waits and God works. The Lord has undertaken for us, and he will not draw back, he will go through with his covenant engagements. Our translators have very properly inserted the words, “all things, “for there is a blank in the Hebrew as if it were a carte blanche, and you might write therein that the Lord would finish anything and everything which he has begun. Whatsoever the Lord takes in hand he will accomplish; hence past mercies are guarantees for the future and admirable reasons for continuing to cry unto him.

Singing psalms 57

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