Verse 5. God shall likewise destroy thee for ever. Fain would the persecutor destroy the church, and therefore God shall destroy him, pull down his house, pluck up his roots, and make an end of him. He shall take thee away. God shall extinguish his coal and sweep him away like the ashes of the hearth; he would have quenched the truth, and God shall quench him. And pluck thee out of thy dwelling place, like a plant torn from the place where it grew, or a captive dragged from his home. Ahimelech and his brother priests were cut off from their abode, and so should those be who compassed and contrived their murder. And root thee out of the land of the living. The persecutor shall be eradicated, stubbed up by the root, cut up root and branch. He sought the death of others and death shall fall upon him. He troubled the land of the living, and he shall be banished to that land where the wicked cease from troubling. Those who will not "let live" have no right to "live." God will turn the tables on malicious men, and mete to them a portion with their own measure. "SELAH." Pause again, and behold the divine justice proving itself more than a match for human sin.
EXPLANATORY NOTES AND QUAINT SAYINGS
Verse 5. God shall destroy thee forever, etc. There are four words the psalmist makes us of to denote the utter vengeance that awaited this deceitful and bloody wretch, all of them having a very strong meaning. The first, kvty from vtn, signifies to pull down, and break utterly into pieces; as when an altar is demolished. ( Judges 6:30 8:9.) The second, kth from the root hrh, which signifies to twist anything, or pluck it up by twisting it round, as trees are sometimes twisted up. The third, khmy from hmg, which properly signifies utterly to sweep away anything like dust or chaff; and the expression lhm khm means not sweep thee away from thy tent, but sweep thee away, that thou mayest be no longer a tent; thyself, thy family, thy fortune, shall be wholly and entirely swept away, and dissipated forever; to which the fourth word, kvrv, answers, eradicabit te, he shall root thee out from the land of the living. It is impossible words can express a more entire and absolute destruction. Samuel Chandler.
Verse 5. God shall likewise destroy thee forever. Here are quot verba tot tonotrua, so many words, so many thunderclaps. As thou hast destroyed the Lord's priests, and their whole city, razing and harassing it; so God will demolish and destroy thee utterly, as an house pulled down to the ground, so that one stone is not left upon another ( Leviticus 14:45 ); so shall God pull down Doeg from that high preferment, which he by sycophancy hath got at court. John Trapp.
Verse 5. Wonderful is the force of the verbs in the original, which convey to us the four ideas of laying prostrate, dissolving as by fire, sweeping away as with a besom, and totally extirpating root and branch, as a tree is eradicated from the spot on which it grew. If a farther comment be wanted, it may be found in the history of David's enemies, and the crucifiers of the son of David; but the passage will be fully and finally explained by the destruction of the world of the ungodly at the last day. George Horne.
Verse 5. The poet accumulates dire and heavy words, and mingles various metaphors that he might paint the picture of this man's destruction in more lively colours. Three metaphors appear to be joined together, the first taken from a building, the second from a tent, the third from a tree, if attention is given to the force and common acceptation of the words. Hermann Venema.
Verse 5. He shall take thee away; or, seize thee, as coals are taken with the tongs. J. J. Stewart Perowne.
HINTS FOR PASTORS AND LAYPERSONS