Verse 5. Praise high upon the loud cymbals: praise him upon the high sounding cymbals. Let the clash of the loudest music be the Lord's: let the joyful clang of the loftiest notes be all for him. Praise has beaten the timbrel, swept the harp, and sounded the trumpet, and now for a last effort, awakening the most heavy of slumberers, and startling the most indifferent of onlookers, she dashes together the disks of brass, and with sounds both loud and high proclaims the glories of the Lord.
EXPLANATORY NOTES AND QUAINT SAYINGS
Verse 5. Loud cymbals ... high sounding cymbals. This important passage clearly points to two instruments under the same name, and leaves us to conclude that the Hebrews had both hand cymbals and finger cymbals (or castanets), although it may not in all cases be easy to say which of the two is intended in particular texts. --John Kitto.
Verse 5. (Prayer Book Version). Praise him upon the well tuned cymbals: praise him upon the loud cymbals. As I have heard these words read monthly in our churches, it has often come into my thoughts that when we intend to glorify God with our cymbals, it should not be our only care to have them loud enough, but our first care should be to have them well tuned, else the louder the worse. Zeal does very well -- there is great, yea, necessary use for it in every part of God's service. The cymbal will be flat, it will have no life or spirit in it, it will not be loud enough without it. But if meekness, peaceableness, and moderation do not first put the cymbal into good tune, the loudness will but make it the more ungrateful in the player, the more ungrateful to the hearer. --Robert Sanderson, 1587-1662