Psalm 147:17

 

EXPOSITION

Verse 17. He casteth forth his ice like morsels. Such are the crumbs of hail which he casts forth, or the crusts of ice which he creates upon the waters. These morsels are his ice, and he casts them abroad. The two expressions indicate a very real presence of God in the phenomena of nature. Who can stand before his cold? None can resist the utmost rigours of cold any more than they can bear the vehemence of heat. God's withdrawals of light are a darkness that may be felt, and his withdrawals of heat are a cold which is absolutely omnipotent. If the Lord, instead of revealing himself as a fire, should adopt the opposite manifestation of cold, he would, in either case, consume us should he put forth all his power. It is ours to submit to deprivations with patience, seeing the cold is his cold. That which God sends, whether it be heat or cold, no man can defy with impunity, but he is happy who bows before it with childlike submission. When we cannot stand before God we will gladly lie at his feet, or nestle under his wings.

 

EXPLANATORY NOTES AND QUAINT SAYINGS

Verse 17. He casteth forth his ice like morsels. Or, shivers of bread. It is a worthy saying of one from this text, -- The ice is bread, the rain is drink, the snow is wool, the frost a fire to the earth, causing it inwardly to glow with heat; teaching us what to do for God's poor. --John Trapp.

Verse 17. He casteth forth his ice like morsels. The word here translated "morsels", means, in most of the places where it occurs in the Bible, pieces of bread, exactly the LXX ywmoj; for this very ice, this wintry cold, is profitable to the earth, to fit it for bearing future harvests, and thus it matures the morsels of bread which man will yet win from the soil in due season. --Genebrardus, in Neale and Littledale.

Verse 17. Morsels. Or, crumbs. Genesis 18:5 Judges 19:5 . Doubtless the allusion is to hail. --A.S. Aglen.

Verse 17. "It is extremely severe", said his sister to Archbishop Leighton one day, speaking of the season. The good man only said in reply, "But thou, O God, hast made summer and winter." --From J.J. Pearson's Life of Archbishop Leighton, 1830.