Psalm 116:13

 

EXPOSITION

Verse 13. I will take the cup of salvation. "I will take" is a strange answer to the question, "What shall I render?" and yet it is the wisest reply that could possibly be given.

"The best return for one like me,
So wretched and so poor,
Is from his gifts to draw a plea
And ask him still for more."

To take the cup of salvation was in itself an act of worship, and it was accompanied with other forms of adoration, hence the Psalmist says, and call upon the name of the LORD. He means that he will utter blessings and thanksgivings and prayers, and then drink of the cup which the Lord had filled with his saving grace. What a cup this is! Upon the table of infinite love stands the cup full of blessing; it is ours by faith to take it in our hand, make it our own, and partake of it, and then with joyful hearts to laud and magnify the gracious One who has filled it for our sakes that we may drink and be refreshed. We can do this figuratively at the sacramental table, we can do it spiritually every time we grasp the golden chalice of the covenant, realizing the fulness of blessing which it contains, and by faith receiving its divine contents into our inmost soul. Beloved reader, let us pause here and take a long and deep draught from the cup which Jesus filled, and then with devout hearts let us worship God.

 

EXPLANATORY NOTES AND QUAINT SAYINGS

Verse 13. I will take the cup of salvation. -- It may probably allude to the libation offering, Numbers 28:7 ; for the three last verses seem to intimate that the Psalmist was now at the temple, offering the meat offering, drink offering, and sacrifices to the Lord. "Cup" is often used by the Hebrews to denote plenty or abundance. So, "the cup of trembling," an abundance of misery; "the cup of salvation," an abundance of happiness. Adam Clarke.

Verse 13. Cup of salvation. In holy Scripture there is mention made of drink offerings, Ge 25:14 Leviticus 23:13 Numbers 15:5 ; which were a certain quantity of wine that used to be poured out before the Lord; as the very notation of the word imports, coming from a root dmg, effudit, that signifieth to pour out. As the meat offerings, so the drink offerings, were brought to the Lord in way of gratulation and thanksgiving. Some therefore in allusion hereunto so expound the text, as a promise and vow of the Psalmist, to testify his public gratitude by such an external and solemn rite as in the law was prescribed. This he terms a cup, because that drink offering was contained in a cup and poured out thereof; and he adds this epithet, "salvation," because that rite was an acknowledgment of salvation, preservation and deliverance from the Lord.

After their solemn gratulatory sacrifices they were wont to have a feast. When David had brought the ark of God into the tabernacle, they offered burnt offerings and peace offerings, which being finished, "he dealt to every one of Israel, both man and woman, to every one a loaf of bread, and a good piece of flesh, and a flagon of wine." 1 Chronicles 16:8 . Hereby is implied that he made so beautiful a feast, as he had to give thereof to all the people there assembled. In this feast the master thereof was wont to take a great cup, and in lifting it up to declare the occasion of that feast, and then in testimony of thankfulness to drink thereof to the guests, that they in order might pledge him. This was called a cup of salvation, or deliverance, because they acknowledged by the use thereof that God had saved and delivered them. Almost in a like sense the apostle styles the sacramental cup, the cup of blessing. Here the prophet useth the plural number, thus, "cup of salvations," whereby, after the Hebrew elegancy, he meaneth many deliverances, one after another; or some great and extraordinary deliverance which was instead of many, or which comprised many under it. The word translated take (afa a afg) properly signifieth to lift up, and in that respect may the more fitly be applied to the aforementioned taking of the festival cup and lifting it up before the guests. Most of our later expositors of this Psalm apply this phrase, "I will take the cup of salvation," to the forenamed gratulatory drink offering, or to the taking and lifting up of the cup of blessing in the feast, after the solemn sacrifice. Both of these import one and the same thing, which is, that saints of old were wont to testify their gratefulness for great deliverances with some outward solemn rite. William Gouge.

Verse 13. Cup of salvation. Yeshuoth: Psalms 18:50 28:8 53:6. The cup of salvation, symbolized by the eucharistic cup of the Passover Supper. -- Zion that had drunk of the "cup of trembling" ( Isaiah 51:17 Isaiah 51:22 ) might now rise and drink of the cup of salvation.

To the church these words have had a yet deeper significance added to them by Mt 26:27. Jesus, on that Passover night, drank of the bitter wine of God's wrath, that he might refill the cup with joy and health for his people. William Kay.

Verse 13-14, 17-19. A fit mode of expressing our thanks to God is by solemn acts of worship, secret, social, and public. "The closet will be the first place where the heart will delight in pouring forth its lively joys; thence the feeling will extend to the family altar: and thence again it will proceed to the sanctuary of the Most High." (J. Morison). To every man God has sent a large supply of benefits, and nothing but perverseness can deny to him the praise of our lips. William, S. Plumer.

 

HINTS FOR PASTORS AND LAYPERSONS

Verse 13. Sermon on the Lord's supper. We take the cup of the Lord

  1. In memory of him who is our salvation.
  2. In token of our trust in him.
  3. In evidence of our obedience to him.
  4. In type of communion with him.
  5. In hope of drinking it new with him ere long.

Verse 13. The various cups mentioned in Scripture would make an interesting subject.

Read Psalm 116:13