Psalm 20:2

 

EXPOSITION

Verse 2. Send thee help from the sanctuary. Out of heaven's sanctuary came the angel to strengthen our Lord, and from the precious remembrance of God's doings in his sanctuary our Lord refreshed himself when on the tree. There is no help like that which is of God's sending, and no deliverance like that which comes out of his sanctuary. The sanctuary to us is the person of our blessed Lord, who was typified by the temple, and is the true sanctuary which God has pitched, and not man: let us fly to the cross for shelter in all times of need and help will be sent to us. Men of the world despise sanctuary help, but our hearts have learned to prize it beyond all material aid. They seek help out of the armoury, or the treasury, or the buttery, but we turn to the sanctuary.

And strengthen thee out of Zion. Out of the assemblies of the pleading saints who had for ages prayed for their Lord, help might well result to the despised sufferer, for praying breath is never spent in vain. To the Lord's mystical body the richest comes in answer to the pleadings of his saints assembled for holy worship as his Zion. Certain advertisers recommend a strengthening plaster, but nothing can give such strength to the loins of a saint as waiting upon God in the assemblies of his people. This verse is a benediction befitting a Sabbath morning, and may be the salutation either of a pastor to his people, or of a church to its minister. God in the sanctuary of his dear Son's person, and in the city of his chosen church is the proper object of his people's prayers, and under such a character may they confidently look to him for his promised aid.

 

EXPLANATORY NOTES AND QUAINT SAYINGS

Verse 1-2. See Psalms on "Psalms 20:1" for further information.

Verse 1-5. See Psalms on "Psalms 20:1" for further information.

Verse 2. Send thee help from the sanctuary. Here we see the nature of true faith, that it causeth us to see help in heaven, and so to pray for it when there is none to be seen in the earth. And this is the difference between faith and unbelief; that the very unbelievers can by reason conceive of help, so long as they have any means to help them; but if they fail they can see none at all; so they are like unto those that are purblind, who can see nothing but near at hand. But faith seeth afar off, even into heaven, so that it is "the evidence of things that are not seen;" for it looketh unto the power of God, who hath all means in his hand, or can work without them, who made all of nothing, and "calleth the things that be not, as though they were." So that as the holy martyr Stephen, when his enemies were ready to burst for anger, and gnash at him with their teeth, looked steadfastly into heaven, and saw Christ standing at the right hand of God ready to defend him; so faith in the promises of the word doth see help in heaven ready for us, when there are no means in earth, Nicholas Bownd.

Verse 2. Send thee help from the sanctuary. Why "from the sanctuary," but because the Lord presented himself there as upon the mercyseat! The sanctuary was in Zion, the mercyseat was in the sanctuary, the Lord was in the mercyseat; he would have himself set forth as residing there. Herein they pray, and pray in faith, for help and strength. David Clarkson.

Verse 2. Strengthen thee out of Zion. That is, out of the assemblies of the saints, where they are praying hard for thy welfare. John Trapp.

 

HINTS FOR PASTORS AND LAYPERSONS

Verse 1-2.

  1. The Lord's trouble in its nature and its cause.
  2. How the Lord exercised himself in his trouble.
  3. We ought not to be unmoved spectators of the trouble of Jesus.

Hamilton Verschoyle.

Verse 1-3. A model of good wishes for our friends. See Psalms on "Psalms 20:1" for further information.

Verse 2. Sanctuary help -- a suggestive topic.