Psalm 22:21

 

EXPOSITION

Verse 21. Save me from the lion's mouth: for thou hast heard me from the horns of the unicorns. Having experienced deliverance in the past from great enemies, who were strong as the unicorns, the Redeemer utters his last cry for rescue from death, which is fierce and mighty as the lion. This prayer was heard, and the gloom of the cross departed. Thus faith, though sorely beaten, and even cast beneath the feet of her enemy, ultimately wins the victory. It was so in our Head, it shall be so in all the members. We have overcome the unicorn, we shall conquer the lion, and from both lion and unicorn we shall take the crown.

 

EXPLANATORY NOTES AND QUAINT SAYINGS

Verse 21. Save me from the lion's mouth. Satan is called a lion, and that fitly; for he hath all the properties of the lion: as bold as a lion, as strong as a lion, as furious as a lion, as terrible as the roaring of a lion. Yea, worse: the lion wants subtlety and suspicion; herein the devil is beyond the lion. The lion will spare the prostrate, the devil spares none. The lion is full and forbears, the devil is full and devours. He seeks all; let not the simple say, He will take no notice of me; nor the subtle, He cannot overreach me; nor the noble say, He will not presume to meddle with me; nor the rich, He dares not contest with me; for he seeks to devour all. He is our common adversary, therefore let us cease all quarrels amongst ourselves, and fight with him. Thomas Adams.

Verse 21. Save me... from the horns of the unicorns. Those who are in great trouble from the power or cruelty of others, often cry out to their gods, "Ah! save me from the tusk of the elephant! from the mouth of the tiger and the tusks of the boar, deliver me, deliver me!" Who will save me from the horn of the "Kandam?" This animal is now extinct in these regions, and it is not easy to determine what it was; the word in the Sathur -- Agarathe -- is rendered "jungle cow." Joseph Roberts.

Verse 21. The horns of the unicorns. On turning to the Jewish Bible we find that the word (~ar) is translated as buffalo, and there is no doubt that this rendering is nearly the correct one, and at the present day naturalists are nearly agreed that the reem of the Old Testament must have been now the extinct urus...The presence of these horns affords a remarkable confirmation to a well known passage in Julias Caesar's familiar "Commentaries." The uri are little inferior to elephants in size (magnitudine paulo infra elephantos;) but are bulls in their nature, colour, and figure. Great is their strength, and great their swiftness; nor do they spare man or beast when they have caught sight of them. J. G. Wood, M.A., F.L.S., in "Bible Animals." 1869.

 

HINTS FOR PASTORS AND LAYPERSONS

Verse 21. (first clause). Lion's mouth. Men of cruelty. The devil. Sin. Death. Hell.