The Book of Psalms
Commentary by A. R. FAUSSET
PSALM 81 Psa 81:1-16
--(See on JF & B for Ps 8:1
, title). A festal Psalm, probably for the passover (compare Mat 26:30
), in which, after an exhortation to praise God, He is introduced, reminding Israel of their obligations, chiding their neglect, and depicting the happy results of obedience.
1. our strength-- ( Psa 38:7 ).
2. unites the most joyful kinds of music, vocal and instrumental.
3. the new moon--or the month.
the time appointed--(Compare Pro 7:20 ).
5. a testimony--The feasts, especially the passover, attested God's relation to His people.
Joseph--for Israel ( Psa 80:1 ).
went out through--or, "over," that is, Israel in the exodus.
I heard--change of person. The writer speaks for the nation.
language--literally, "lip" ( Psa 14:1 ). An aggravation or element of their distress that their oppressors were foreigners ( Deu 28:49 ).
6. God's language alludes to the burdensome slavery of the Israelites.
7. secret place--the cloud from which He troubled the Egyptians ( Exd 14:24 ).
proved thee-- ( Psa 7:10 17:3 ) --tested their faith by the miracle.
8. (Compare Psa 50:7 ). The reproof follows to Psa 81:12 .
if thou wilt hearken--He then propounds the terms of His covenant: they should worship Him alone, who ( Psa 81:10 ) had delivered them, and would still confer all needed blessings.
11, 12. They failed, and He gave them up to their own desires and hardness of heart ( Deu 29:18 Pro 1:30 Rom 11:25 ).
13-16. Obedience would have secured all promised blessings and the subjection of foes. In this passage, "should have," "would have," &c., are better, "should" and "would" expressing God's intention at the time, that is, when they left Egypt.