Verse 11. They shall speak of the glory of thy kingdom. Excellent themes for saintly minds. Those who bless God from their hearts rejoice to see him enthroned, glorified, and magnified in power. No subject is more profitable for humility, obedience, hope, and joy than that of the reigning power of the Lord our God. His works praise him, but they cannot crown him: this remains for holy hands and hearts. It is their high pleasure to tell of the glory of his kingdom in its justice, kindness, eternity, and so forth. Kingdoms of earth are glorious for riches, for extent of territory, for victories, for liberty, for commerce, and other matters; but in all true glories the kingdom of Jehovah excels them. We have seen a palace dedicated "to all the glories of France"; but time, eternity, and all space are filled with the glories of God: on these we love to speak. And talk of thy power. This power supports the kingdom and displays the glory, and we are sure to talk of it when the glory of the divine kingdom is under discussion. God's power to create or to destroy, to bless or to punish, to strengthen or to crush, is matter for frequent rehearsal. All power comes from God. Apart from him the laws of nature would be inoperative. His power is the one source of force -- mechanical, vital, mental, spiritual. Beyond the power of God which has been put forth, infinite force lies latent in himself. Who can calculate the reserve forces of the Infinite? How, then, can his kingdom fail? We hear talk of the five great powers, but what are they to the One Great Power? The Lord is "the blessed and only Potentate." Let us accustom ourselves to think more deeply and speak more largely of this power which ever makes for righteousness and works for mercy.
EXPLANATORY NOTES AND QUAINT SAYINGS
Verse 11. They shall speak of the glory of thy kingdom, etc. The glory of a kingdom is synonymous with its power. The power of a kingdom consists in the number of its subjects, and the sufficiency of its revenues to maintain them. Now, the glory, or the power of God's kingdom, may be inferred from the difference between it and that of man. There are four points of difference. First, the kings of this world have but few subjects, with but little wealth, -- not more than the population and riches of one kingdom, or one province, while God reigns over all angels, all men, all demons; and all wealth on land, in the sea, or in the air, belongs to him. There is another difference, that while the kings of this world rule their subjects, they are still ruled by them, they are dependent on them, could do nothing without them; and, however abundant their revenues may be, they are generally in want, nay, even in debt, and, consequently, always calling for fresh tributes and taxes; but God, while he governs all, is subject to none, because he needs nobody's help or assistance. Instead of being in want, he abounds in everything, because he could, in one moment, bring from nothing much more than he now beholds or enjoys. The third difference is a consequence of the second, while the kings of this world seem so to enjoy their honours and dignities, they are, at the same time, suffering acutely from interior fears, doubts, and cares, which have sometimes been so burdensome, as to cause them to abdicate altogether. God never suffers such pressure, is subject to no fear, no misgivings, but reigns absolutely in perfect tranquillity. The fourth difference, an essential one, is, that the kings of the world reign but for a time; but God reigneth for ever. --Robert Bellarmine.
Verse 11. They shall speak ... and talk. Joy and sorrow are hard to conceal; as from the countenance, so from the tongue. There is so much correspondence betwixt the heart and tongue that they will move at once: every man therefore speaks of his own pleasure and care; the hunter and falconer of his game; the ploughman of his team; the soldier of his march and colours. If the heart were as full of God, the tongue could not refrain from talking of him: the rareness of Christian communication argues the common poverty of grace. If Christ be not in our hearts, we are godless; if he be there without our joy, we are senseless; if we rejoice in him and speak not of him, we are shamefully unthankful. Every man taketh, yea, raiseth occasion, to bring in speech of what he liketh. As I will think of thee always, O Lord, so it shall be my joy to speak of thee often; and if I find not opportunity, I will make it. --Joseph Hall.
HINTS FOR PASTORS AND LAYPERSONS
Verse 11. The glory of Christ's kingdom. The glory of this kingdom is manifested,
- In its origin.
- In the manner and spirit of its administration.
- In the character of its subjects.
- In the privileges that are attached to it. --Robert Hall.
Verse 11-12. Talk transfigured.
- The faculty of talk is extensively possessed.
- Is commonly misused.
- May be nobly employed.
- Will then be gloriously useful. --C. A. D.
Verse 11-13. To show the greatness of God's kingdom, David observes,
- The pomp of it. Would we by faith look within the veil, we should "speak of the glory of his kingdom" ( Psalms 145:11 ); "and the glorious majesty of it" (Ps 145:12).