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.
Explanatory Notes and Quaint Sayings
Hints to the Village Preacher
TITLE. There is no title to this Psalm, and hence some conjecture that Psalm 70 is intended to be a prelude to it, and has been broken off from it. Such imaginings have no value to us. We have already met with five Psalms without title, which is, nevertheless, as complete as those which bear them. We have here THE PRAYER OF THE AGED BELIEVER, who, in holy confidence of faith, strengthened by a long and remarkable experience, pleads against his enemies, and asks for further blessings for himself. Anticipating a gracious reply, he promises to magnify the Lord exceedingly.
DIVISION. The first four verses are faith’s cry for help; the next four are a testimony of experience. From Ps 71:9-13, the aged saint pleads against his foes and then rejoices in hope, Ps 71:14-16. He returns to prayer again in Ps 71:17-18, repeats the confident hopes which cheered his soul, Ps 71:19-21; and then he closes with the promise of abounding in thanksgiving. Throughout, this Psalm may be regarded as the utterance of struggling, but unstaggering, faith.
Verse 16. I will go in the strength of the Lord God. Our translators give us a good sense, but not the sense in this place, which is on this wise, “I will come with the mighty deeds of the Lord Jehovah.” He would enter into those deeds by admiring study, and then, wherever he went, he would continue to rehearse them. He should ever be a welcome guest who can tell us of the mighty acts of the Lord, and help us to put our trust in him. The authorized version may be used by us as a resolve in all our exertions and endeavors. In our own strength we must fail; but, when we hear the voice which saith, “Go in this thy might, “we may advance without fear. Though hell itself were in the way, the believer would pursue the path of duty, crying: I will go in the strength of the Lord God: I will make mention of thy righteousness, even of thine only. Man’s righteousness is not fit to be mentioned—filthy rags are best hidden; neither is there any righteousness under heaven, or in heaven, comparable to the divine. As God himself fills all space, and is, therefore, the only God, leaving no room for another, so God’s righteousness, in Christ Jesus, fills the believer’s soul, and he counts all other things but dross and dung “that he may win Christ, and be found in him, not having his own righteousness which is of the law, but the righteousness which is of God by faith.” What would be the use of speaking upon any other righteousness to a dying man? and all are dying men. Let those who will cry up man’s natural innocence, the dignity of the race, the purity of philosophers, the loveliness of untutored savages, the power of sacraments, and the infallibility of pontiffs; this is the true believer’s immovable resolve: “I will make mention of thy righteousness, even of thine only.” Forever dedicated to thee, my Lord, be this poor, unworthy tongue, whose glory it shall be to glorify thee.
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