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Bible Commentaries
Psalms 46

Kretzmann's Popular Commentary of the BibleKretzmann's Commentary

Verses 1-11

The Church's Comfort and Security.

To the chief musician, for use in the Temple-services, for the sons of Korah, composed by a member of this talented family, a song upon Alamoth, for soprano voices, either for a chorus of virgins or for instruments in the treble clef, with a high pitch. It is a song of faith and trust, by which the Church of God is enabled to stand firm and secure in the midst of all enmity, in spite of the attacks of the armies of Satan.

v. 1. God is our Refuge, under whose protection the Church and every individual believer is safe, and Strength, the Source and Fountain of all true strength, whose almighty power can overthrow all enemies, a very present Help in trouble, a Helper in the oppressions and anxieties, in the fightings and fears, with which the children of God must ever contend.

v. 2. Therefore, because God is our great and invincible Champion, will not we fear, though ever inclined to do so on account of the smallness of our faith, though the earth be removed, be changed entirely, receive an entirely different form, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea, sinking down into the depths from which they rose at the almighty power of God's word, Genesis 1:9-10;

v. 3. though the waters thereof roar, as in fierce anger, and be troubled, rushing, foaming, and frothing like fermenting wine, though the mountains shake with the swelling thereof, as from the impact of a mighty tidal wave which threatens to undermine them. Selah. Such is the picture of the catastrophes which threaten the existence of the Church, but in whose midst the believers wait quietly for the Lord, knowing that the gates of hell shall not prevail against His Church. The reason for this simple trust is now given.

v. 4. There is a river, a mighty stream, rich in water for purposes both of drinking and irrigating, the streams whereof, the various channels of which, shall make glad the city of God, the Holy Place of the Tabernacles of the Most High, where the great Ruler of the universe, the King of His Church, resides, that is, His strong city, with the walls and bulwarks of His salvation, Isaiah 26:1-2. It is the stream of the fullness of God's mercy, dividing into so many channels, in order to gladden the many congregations of the Church, wherever they may be found, including the fellowship with the Triune God in the beauty of His revelation.

v. 5. God is in the midst of her, as her Protector and Savior; she shall not be moved, not be made to totter and fall; God shall help her, and that right early, literally, "before the face of morning," before break of day, no matter how dark the night of tribulation may have seemed. The help of Jehovah is sure in spite of all enemies.

v. 6. The heathen raged, now foaming in terror over the deliverance which the Lord sends to His people, the kingdoms were moved, all their bulwarks tottering and falling with a mighty, booming noise; He uttered His voice, shouting in anger, the earth melted, dissolving before the devouring heat of His wrath, Amos 9:5; Nahum 1:5.

v. 7. The Lord of hosts, the supreme Commander of all the heavenly armies, is with us; the God of Jacob is our Refuge, a high and safe Stronghold, which no enemies can storm and capture. Selah. Jehovah is with His Church, He is Immanuel, God-with-us, not only as trusted Ally, but as our Leader and Hero, before whose almighty power all enemies are as chaff before the wind. Therefore the challenging cry of the believers rings out:

v. 8. Come, behold the works of the Lord, what desolations He hath made in the earth, in overthrowing the buildings and the enterprises of puny men, in punishing the world by bloody and destructive wars.

v. 9. He maketh wars to cease unto the end of the earth, in the interest of His Holy City, in carrying out His plans for the deliverance of His saints; He breaketh the bow and cutteth the spear in sunder; He burneth the chariot in the fire, all instruments of the enemies employed in attacking the work of the Church, all the weapons of Satan intended for the overthrow of God's Zion. The kingdom of the Prince of Peace is established in the midst of all adversaries, and the Church Militant will become the Church Triumphant. The Church, therefore, issues a final solemn proclamation.

v. 10. Be still, desist from making war upon Jehovah's Zion, and know that I am God, the God of the Church, the only true God; I will be exalted among the heathen, the great Victor on the field of encounter, I will be exalted in the earth, even the enemies being obliged to acknowledge His glory and majesty, forced to give Him the honor due Him as the Ruler of the universe.

v. 11. The Lord of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our Refuge. Selah. That is the confident Amen of the Christian Church and of every believer, in the trust of a world-conquering faith; for "the kingdom ours remaineth. " With Christ on our side, we remain victors.

Bibliographical Information
Kretzmann, Paul E. Ph. D., D. D. "Commentary on Psalms 46". "Kretzmann's Popular Commentary". https://studylight.org/commentaries/eng/kpc/psalms-46.html. 1921-23.
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