Verse 5. The voice of the Lord breaketh the cedars.
"Black from the stroke above, the smouldering pine
Stands a sad shattered trunk."
Noble trees fall prostrate beneath the mysterious bolt, or stand in desolation as mementoes of its power. Lebanon itself is not secure, high as it stands, and ancient as are its venerable woods: Yea, the Lord breaketh the cedars of Lebanon. The greatest and most venerable of trees or men, may not reckon upon immunity when the Lord is abroad in his wrath. The gospel of Jesus has a like dominion over the most inaccessible of mortals; and when the Lord sends the word, it breaks hearts far stouter than the cedars.
EXPLANATORY NOTES AND QUAINT SAYINGS
Verse 3-10. The Lord, etc. See Psalms on "Psalms 29:3" for further information.
Verse 3-10. See Psalms on "Psalms 29:3" for further information.
Verse 3-11: -- See Psalms on "Psalms 29:3" for further information.
Verse 5. The voice of Jehovah. Philosophers think not that they have reasoned skilfully enough about inferior causes, unless they separate God very far from his works. It is a diabolical science, however, which fixes our contemplations on the works of nature, and turns them away from God. If any one who wished to know a man, should take no notice of his face, but should fix his eyes only on the points of his nails, his folly might justly be derided. But far greater is the folly of those philosophers, who, out of mediate and proximate causes, weave themselves vails lest they should be compelled to acknowledge the hand of God, which manifestly displays itself in his works. John Calvin.
Verse 5. The voice of the Lord breaketh the cedars, etc. Like as tempests when they arise, and lightnings, quickly and in a trice, hurl down and overturn mountains and the highest trees; even so doth the Lord bring down with a break neck fall, the proud, haughty, arrogant, and insolent, who set themselves against God, and seek the spoil of those that be quiet and godly. Robert Cawdray.
Verse 5. The voice of the Lord breaketh the cedars. The ancient expositors remind us that the breaking of the cedar trees by the wind, is a figure of the laying low of the lofty and proud things of this world, by the rushing mighty wind of the Holy Spirit, given on that day. Confringit cedros Deus, hoc est humiliat superbos. (S. Jerome, and so S. Basil.) Christopher Wordsworth.
Verse 5. The Lord breaketh the cedars of Lebanon. What a shame is it then that our hard hearts break not, yield not, though thunder struck with the dreadful menaces of God's mouth! John Trapp.
Verse 5. "Breaketh the cedars of Lebanon:" --
When high in the air the pine ascends,
To every ruder blast it bends.
The palace falls with heavier weight,
When tumbling from its airy height;
And when from heaven the lightning flies,
It blasts the hills that proudest rise.
Horace, translated by Philip Francis, D.D., 1765.
Verse 5. The cedars of Lebanon. These mighty trees of God, which for ages have stood the force of the tempest, rearing their evergreen colossal boughs in the region of everlasting snow, are the first objects of the fury of the lightning, which is well known to visit first the highest objects. Robert Murray Macheyne.
HINTS FOR PASTORS AND LAYPERSONS
Verse 5. The breaking power of the gospel.