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 60

Exposition
Explanatory Notes and Quaint Sayings
Hints to the Village Preacher


Here is a lengthy title, but it helps us much to expound on the Psalm. To the Chief Musician upon Shushaneduth, or the Lily of Testimony. The forty-fifth was on the lilies, and represented the kingly warrior in his beauty going forth to war; here we see him dividing the spoil and bearing testimony to the glory of God. Tunes have strange names apparently, but this results from the fact that we do not know what was in the composer’s mind, else they might seem to be touchingly appropriate; perhaps the music or the musical instruments have more to do with this title than the Psalm itself. Yet in war songs, roses and lilies are often mentioned, and one remembers Macaulay’s Song of the Hugenots, though perhaps we err in mentioning so carnal a verse—”Now by the lips of those ye love, fair gentlemen of France,
Charge for the golden lilies now, upon them with the lance.”

Michtam of David, to teach. David obeyed the precept to teach the children of Israel; he recorded the Lord’s mighty acts that they might be rehearsed in the ears of generations to come. Golden secrets are to be told on the housetops; these things were not done in a corner and ought not to be buried in silence. We ought gladly to learn what inspiration so beautifully teaches. When he strove with Aramnaharaim and with Aramzobah. The combined Aramean tribes sought to overcome Israel but were signally defeated. When Joab returned. He had been engaged in another region, and the enemies of Israel took advantage of his absence, but on his return with Abishai, the fortunes of war were changed. And smote of Edom in the valley of salt twelve thousand. More than this appear to have fallen according to 1Ch 18:12, but this commemorates one memorable part of the conflict. Terrible must have been the battle, but decisive indeed were the results, and the power of the enemy was utterly broken. Well did the Lord deserve a song from his servant?

DIVISION. Properly the song may consist of three parts: the complaining verses, Ps 60:1-3; the happy, Ps 60:4-8; the prayerful, Ps 60:9-12. We have divided it as the sense appeared to change.

Verse 6. God hath spoken in his holiness. Faith is never happier than when it can fall back upon the promise of God. She sets this over against all discouraging circumstances; let outward providences say what they will, the voice of a faithful God drowns every sound of tear. God had promised Israel victory, and David the kingdom; the holiness of God secured the fulfilment of his own covenant, and therefore the king spake confidently. The goodly land had been secured to the tribes by the promise made to Abraham, and that divine grant was an abundantly sufficient warrant for the belief that Israel’s arms would be successful in battle. Believer make good use of this, and banish doubts while promises remain. I will rejoice, or “I will triumph.” Faith regards the promise not as fiction but fact, and therefore drinks in joy from it, and grasps victory by it. “God hath spoken; I will rejoice:” here is a fit motto for every soldier of the cross.

I will divide Shechem. As a victor David would allot the conquered territory to those to whom God had given it by lot. Shechem was an important portion of the country, which as yet had not yielded to his government; but he saw that by Jehovah’s help it would be, and indeed was all his own. Faith divides the spoil, she is sure of what God has promised, and enters at once into possession. And mete out the valley of Succoth. As the east so the west of Jordan should be allotted to the proper persons. Enemies should be expelled, and the landmarks of peaceful ownership set up. Where Jacob had pitched his tent, there his rightful heirs should till the soil. When God has spoken, his divine shall, our I will, becomes no idle boast, but the fit echo of the Lord’s decree. Believer, up and take possession of covenant mercies. Divide Shechem, and mete out the valley of Succoth. Let not Canaanitish doubts and legalisms keep thee out of the inheritance of grace. Live up to thy privileges, take the good which God provides thee.

Singing Psalms

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