Make us glad according to the days wherein thou hast
The days of affliction are times of sorrow; and days of prosperity make glad and joyful; and the psalmist here seems to desire an equal number of the one as of the other; not that an exact precise number of the one with the other is intended; but that there might be a proper proportion of the one to the other; and commonly God does "set the one over against the other": there is a mixture of both in the believer's life, which is like unto a chequer of black and white, in which there is a proper proportion of both colours; and so prosperity and adversity are had in turns, "and work together for good" to them that love the Lord: and when it is said "make us glad", that is, with thy favour and presence, it suggests, that these are a sufficient recompence for all affliction and trouble; and if so here, what must the enjoyment of these be in heaven! Between this and present afflictions there is no proportion, neither with respect to the things themselves, nor the duration of them; see ( Romans 8:18 ) ( 2 Corinthians 4:17 ) and "the years" wherein "we have seen evil"; afflictions are evils; they flow from the evil of sin, and to some are the evil of punishment; and even chastisements are not joyous, but grievous: this may have respect to the forty years' travel in the wilderness, in which the Israelites saw or had an experience of much affliction and trouble; and even to the four hundred years in which the seed of Abraham were afflicted in a land not their's; see ( Numbers 14:33 Numbers 14:34 ) ( Genesis 15:13 ) . Hence the Jews F9 make the times of the Messiah to last four hundred years, answerable to those years of evil, and which they take to be the sense of the text; and so Jarchi's note on it is,
``make us glad in the days of the Messiah, according to the number of the days in which thou hast afflicted us in the captivities, and according to the number of the years in which we have seen evil.''
F9 T. Bab. Sanhedrin, fol. 99. 1.