Verse 4. Behold, God is mine helper. He saw enemies everywhere, and now to his joy as he looks upon the band of his defenders he sees one whose aid is better than all the help of men; he is overwhelmed with joy at recognizing his divine champion, and cries,
Behold. And is not this a theme for pious exultation in all time, that the great God protects us, his own people: what matters the number or violence of our foes when HE uplifts the shield of his omnipotence to guard us, and the sword of his power to aid us? Little care we for the defiance of the foe while we have the defence of God.
The Lord is with them that uphold my soul. The reigning Lord, the great Adonai is in the camp of my defenders. Here was a greater champion than any of the three mighties, or than all the valiant men who chose David for their captain. The psalmist was very confident, he felt so thoroughly that his heart was on the Lord's side that he was sure God was on his side. He asked in the first verse for deliverance, and here he returns thanks for upholding: while we are seeking one mercy which we have not, we must not be unmindful of another which we have. It is a great mercy to have some friends left us, but a greater mercy still to see the Lord among them, for like so many cyphers our friends stand for nothing till the Lord sets himself as a great unit in the front of them.
EXPLANATORY NOTES AND QUAINT SAYINGS
Verse 4. Behold, says he, I produce a certain fact, well known, demonstrated by a new proof, and worthy of all attention; for the particle behold, contains this breadth of meaning. Hermann Venema.
Verse 4. Christ sees with the utmost clearness, that God will be his own helper, and of them -- the disciples and believers -- that uphold his soul. In the same moment, does he foresee the destruction of his enemies. He views, in thought, the armies of Titus, the fall of the Jewish nation, and the dispersion of the remnant. He beholds the avenging hand of God, stretched in fury over the destroyers. William Hill Tucker.
Verse 4. (second clause). Such as take part with the persecuted saints, God will take part with them! The Lord is with them that uphold my soul. David Dickson.
Verse 4-5. He is assured of help to himself and to his friends, and of vengeance to his enemies. Whence learn,
- Fervent prayer hath readily a swift answer, and sometimes wonderfully swift, even before a man have ended speech, as here David findeth in experience. Behold, saith he, God is my helper.
- The sight of faith is very clear and piercing through all clouds when God holds forth the light of his Spirit unto it, it can demonstrate God present in an instant; ready to help in greatest straits: Behold, God is my helper.
- There is more joy in God's felt presence than grief in felt trouble; for, Behold, God is mine helper, was more comfortable to David than his friends' unkindness, and strangers' malice was grievous. David Dickson.
HINTS FOR PASTORS AND LAYPERSONS
Verse 4. A theme for wonder.
- At his unmerited grace, that he should side with me.
- At his gracious power, for who can resist him?
- At his practical help, for he has upheld my soul.