A Prayer for the Welfare of the Country.
To the chief musician, for use in liturgical worship, a psalm for the sons of Korah, an inspired singer of this family praying to God for renewed blessings and rejoicing in the certainty of their being given. V. 1. Lord, Thou hast been favorable unto Thy land, showing His merciful kindness to the land of Canaan, the inheritance of Israel; Thou hast brought back the captivity of Jacob, the deliverance not only out of the serfdom of Egypt being meant, but also out of the many tribulations which had come upon the Lord's people till the time of David. V. 2. Thou hast forgiven the iniquity of Thy people, the entire history of Israel recounting this fact, Thou hast covered all their sin, this being the essence of the forgiveness of sins, not to ignore them, but to cover them. Selah. V. 3. Thou hast taken away all Thy wrath, withdrawing it, strong as the provocation continued; Thou hast turned Thyself from the fierceness of Thine anger, He still had occasion to let it burn against Israel, but had now caused it to retreat, no longer to be active. V. 4. Turn us, out of the captivity of sin and misery with which Israel was surrounded, O God of our salvation, who alone can give full deliverance from all bodily and spiritual tribulation, and cause Thine anger toward us to cease, bringing it to naught, withdrawing it entirely. V. 5. Wilt Thou be angry with us forever? Ps. 79, 5. Wilt Thou draw out Thine anger to all generations? prolonging it from generation to generation. V. 6. Wilt Thou not revive us again, giving them back the true enjoyment of life, in the assurance of His grace and in the power for sanctification flowing from His strength, that Thy people may rejoice in Thee? V. 7. Show us Thy mercy, O Lord, letting them see and enjoy it, and grant us Thy salvation, the idea of merit being excluded altogether. V. 8. I will hear what God the Lord will speak; for He will speak peace unto His people, the obstruction of their sins being removed, a cessation of enmity was made possible, and to His saints, that is, the godly, the believers in Him; but let them not turn again to folly, since deliberate sinning would once more provoke the anger of the Lord. V. 9. Surely His salvation is nigh them that fear Him, the believers always having a feeling of reverence for the Lord of their salvation, that glory may dwell in our land, being at home once more, where it had become a stranger, once more giving to the believer the honor of being called the sons of God. V. 10. Mercy and truth are met together, grace and faithfulness meeting as friends and operating in harmony; righteousness and peace have kissed each other, the cooperation of these virtues making for the welfare of the land. V. 11. Truth, the covenant faithfulness following the return of God's merciful kindness upon the land of Israel, shall spring out of the earth, as a fruit of God's love; and righteousness shall look down from heaven, promising to God's children the richness of His imputed grace. V. 12. Yea, the Lord shall give that which is good, which brings true happiness to the country; and our land shall yield her increase, His blessings being apparent in both temporal and spiritual benefits. V. 13. Righteousness shall go before Him, as the herald proclaiming His coming; and shall set us in the way of His steps, following Him closely and carefully, so that it is once more generally known and observed throughout the land. In this way the Lord turns to the prayer of His saints, refreshing them after the experience of so much tribulation on their part, giving them hours of gladness before His face.