Verse 37. For their heart was not right with him. There was no depth in their repentance, it was not heart work. They were fickle as a weathercock, every wind turned them, their mind was not settled upon God.
Neither were they stedfast in his covenant. Their promises were no sooner made than broken, as if only made in mockery. Good resolutions called at their hearts as men do at inns; they tarried awhile, and then took their leave. They were hot today for holiness, but cold towards it tomorrow. Variable as the hues of the dolphin, they changed from reverence to rebellion, from thankfulness to murmuring. One day they gave their gold to build a tabernacle for Jehovah, and the next they plucked off their earrings to make a golden calf. Surely the heart is a chameleon. Proteus had not so many changes. As in the ague we both burn and freeze, so do inconstant natures in their religion.
EXPLANATORY NOTES AND QUAINT SAYINGS
Verse 36-38. See Psalms on "Psalms 78:36" for further information.
Verse 37. Their heart was not right with him. God pleases them when he replenishes themselves with food, not their heart with his graces; therefore they repay him with the mouth, and not with the heart. They are altogether mouth and tongue: but God is all heart and breast. They give words; God gives milk and perfect love. Love does not reach the inner nature of many men, it sticks in the entrance. Thomas Le Blanc.
Verse 37. Their heart was not right with him, neither were they steadfast, etc. This is the ever repeated complain, see Psalms 78:8 Psalms 78:22 . There is no permanence, no stability in the reformation which has been produced. Compare Hosea 6:4 . J. J. Stewart Perowne.
HINTS FOR PASTORS AND LAYPERSONS
Verse 34-37. The hypocrite's feet, Psalms 78:34 . The hypocrite's memory, Psalms 78:35 . The hypocrite's tongue, Psalms 78:36 . The hypocrite's heart, Psalms 78:37 . Or, the hypocrite's cloak and the hypocrite's heart. C. D.