Psalm 63:5

 

EXPOSITION

Verse 5. My soul shall be satisfied as with marrow and fatness. Though unable to feast on the sacrifice at thine altar, my soul shall even here be filled with spiritual joys, and shall possess a complete, a double contentment. There is in the love of God a richness, a sumptuousness, a fulness of soul filling joy, comparable to the richest food with which the body can be nourished. The Hebrews were more fond of fat than we are, and their highest idea of festive provision is embodied in the two words, marrow and fatness: a soul hopeful in God and full of his favour is thus represented as feeding upon the best of the best, the dainties of a royal banquet.

And my mouth shall praise thee with joyful lips. More joy, more praise. When the mouth is full of mercy, is should also be full of thanksgiving. When God gives us the marrow of his love, we must present to him the marrow of our hearts. Vocal praise should be rendered to God as well as mental adoration; others see our mercies, let them also hear our thanks.

 

EXPLANATORY NOTES AND QUAINT SAYINGS

Verse 5. My soul shall be satisfied as with marrow and fatness. My soul shall be satisfied as if I had received all that is intimated by the rich pieces of the peace offering. Andrew A. Bonar, on Leviticus 3:9-10 .

Verse 5. My soul shall be satisfied with fatness and fatness: so the Hebrew hath it; that is, my soul shall be full of comfort, it shall be filled up to the brim with pleasure and delight, in the remembrance and enjoyment of God upon my bed, or upon my beds, in the plural, as the Hebrew hath it. David had many a hard bed and many a hard lodging, whilst he was in his wilderness condition. It oftentimes so fell out that he had nothing but the bare ground for his bed, and the stones for his pillow, and the hedges for his curtains, and the heavens for his canopy; yet, in this condition, God was sweeter than marrow and fatness to him; though his bed was never so hard, yet in God he had full satisfaction and content. Jeremiah 14; Philippians 4:9 . Thomas Brooks.

Verse 5. There is that in a gracious God and in communion with him, which give abundant satisfaction to a soul. Psalms 36:8 65:4. And there is that in a gracious soul, which takes abundant satisfaction in God, and in communion with him. Matthew Henry.

Verse 5. Sanctified Knowledge, saith, There is an infinite fulness in Christ, the fulness of a fountain. Faith saith, This is all for me, for he is my husband; then Prayer saith, If all this be thine, I will go and fetch it for thee; and Thankfulness says, I will return praise to God for it (and that's better than the receiving of mercies): My soul shall be satisfied as with marrow and fatness; and my mouth shall praise thee with joyful lips. Matthew Lawrence, in "The Use and Practice of Faith," 1657.

Verse 5. In the words which I have chosen as the subject of discourse, the psalmist expresses his humble expectation of having his soul feasted in the sanctuary. I intend, first, to show how the Lord satisfies the souls of men as with marrow and fatness; and, secondly, to point out the reason which believers have to conclude that they shall be thus satisfied in the ordinances of divine worship.

  1. I will endeavour, then, in the first place, to show how
    the Lord sanctifies the souls of men as with marrow and
    fatness. And, in general, it may be observed, that he
    imparts such satisfaction by condescending to hold
    communion with them. This is the feast which our Lord
    promises to every sinner who opens his heart to receive
    him: "Behold, I stand at the door and knock: if any man
    hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him,
    and will sup with him, and he with me." Revelation 3:20.
    .
    This was also the banquet to which the spouse of Christ was
    admitted, when she said, "He brought me to the banqueting
    house, and his banner over me was love." Song of Solomon 2:4 . More
    particularly,
  • The Lord satisfies the souls of his people as with marrow and fatness, by feasting them with the flesh and blood of Jesus Christ. The Son of God became incarnate, shed his blood, and fulfilled all righteousness, that he might be food for our souls. "The Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us." John 1:14 . And in his incarnate person he is living bread to us, bread that gives spiritual and eternal life to our souls, and effectually prevents them from perishing...
  • The Lord satisfies the souls of his people was with marrow and fatness, by showing them his glory in the face of Christ. By this means the psalmist David desired and expected to have his soul feasted, as we learn from the second verse of this Psalm: "To see thy power and thy glory, so as I have seen thee in the sanctuary." ... A saving sight of the glory of God in our Immanuel must be inexpressibly comfortable; it is a feast to the soul, and is productive of joy unspeakable and full of glory...
  • The Lord satisfies the souls of his people as with marrow and fatness, by shedding abroad his love in their hearts. This was another way in which David expected to have his soul feasted. He had felt the sweetness of divine love, he had tasted that the Lord was gracious; he knew by happy experience that his lovingkindness was sweeter than all the comforts of life; and he hoped to be blessed with further experience of his love, with such experience as would warm his heart, and afford matter of a new song of praise to God: and thus he expected to be satisfied as with marrow and fatness. He says, therefore, in the third verse of this Psalm, Because thy lovingkindness is better than life, my lips shall praise thee...
  • The Lord satisfies the souls of his people as with marrow and fatness, when he feasts them with new covenant promises. He hath given us exceeding great and precious promises; promises which are filled with all the fulness of God, and which are all in Christ, yea, and amen, to the glory of God. These promises are published to us all in the gospel, that we may embrace them by faith. But, alas! so great is the folly of men, that they put from them these words of grace, and judge themselves unworthy of everlasting life. Such folly is natural even to the people of God as well as others... But when the rock of Israel, in a day of power, speaks these promises to them, they no longer reject, but cordially receive them in Christ, and gladly feast upon them. Then his words are found, and they eat them; and his word is the joy and rejoicing of their hearts...
  • The Lord also satisfies the souls of his people, by filling them with the Spirit. We are famishing while we are in a state of nature, "having not the Spirit;" for while without the Spirit, we are also without Christ. But when the Lord puts his Spirit within us, then our starving souls begin to be feasted; for this blessed Spirit shows us the things of Christ, and applies him to us; by which means we are enabled to eat his flesh, and drink his blood. And after the Holy Ghost is thus given, he is never taken away... It is the promise of our Redeemer, that, if a man believe on him, "out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water;" and "this spake he of the Spirit, which they that believe on him should receive." John 7:38-39 .
  • The Lord satisfies his people as with marrow and fatness, when he revives former experiences of his kindness. Often he gives them so to speak, a new feast upon an old experience...
  • I now proceed to point out some of the reasons which
    believers have to conclude that their souls shall be
    satisfied in the ordinances of divine worship. And,
  • They may reasonably found such a conclusion upon the divine goodness.
  • Believers may ground an expectation of being satisfied as with marrow and fatness, on the incarnation, the humiliation, and the death of Christ.
  • The fulness laid up in Christ is also a good foundation for such a hope.
  • Believers may also conclude from the divine promise that their souls shall be satisfied as with marrow and fatness.
  • From their being blessed with the spiritual appetite.
  • Their former experience of the Lord's satisfying them, may also encourage believers to hope that he will again satisfy them, as with marrow and fatness. Outline of a Sermon, by John Fraser (1745-1818).

    Verse 5.: --

    Ever full, but hungry ever, What they have, they still desire; Never suffer surfeit's loathing Nor yet famine's torments dire: Hungering still, they eat, and eating, Still the sacred food require. Peter Damiano (988-1072).

    Verse 5-6. David had his sweetmeats and heavenly junkets in the night, when the eyes of others were closed, and saw not the charger which was sent from above for his spiritual refreshment. His solitary meditations brought him more solace and comfort than the whole creation could afford him: When I remember thee upon my bed, and meditate on thee in the night watches, my soul shall be satisfied as with marrow and fatness. Communion with God in secret is a heaven upon earth. What food can compare with the hidden manna? Some persons have excellent banquets in their closets. That bread which the saints eat in secret, how pleasant is it! Ah! what stranger can imagine the joy, the melody, which even the secret tears of the saints cause! Believers find rich mines of silver and gold in solitary places; they fetch up precious jewels out of secret holes, out of the bottom of the ocean, where are no inhabitants. Naturalists observe that those fish are sweetest which lie hid. Saints have often sweet joy and refreshment in secret; they have meat to eat, which the world knoweth not of. The fig tree, olive, and vine would not leave their sweetness, fatness, and cheerfulness, to be kings over other trees. Judges 9:11-13 . They that know what it is to enjoy God in secret, would not leave it, or lose it, to be kings or commanders over the whole world. George Swinnock.

     

    HINTS FOR PASTORS AND LAYPERSONS

    Verse 5-6.

    1. The empty vessel filled. How? By meditation.
      With what? God's goodness as marrow and fatness. To
      what extent? Satisfaction.
    1. The full vessel running over. My mouth shall
      praise thee with joyful lips. The soul overflows
      with praise -- joyful praise. G. J. K.

    Verse 5-6. Describe the nature of, and show the intimate connection between

    1. the believer's employments and
    2. his enjoyments. J. S. Bruce.