Verse 59. When God heard this, he was wroth. The mere report of it filled him with indignation; he could not bear it, he was incensed to the uttermost, and most justly so.
And greatly abhorred Israel. He cast his idolatrous people from his favour, and left them to themselves, and their own devices. How could he have fellowship with idols? What concord hath Christ with Belial? Sin is in itself so offensive that it makes the sinner offensive too. Idols of any sort are highly abhorrent to God, and we must see to it that we keep ourselves from them through divine grace, for rest assured idolatry is not consistent with true grace in the heart. If Dagon sit aloft in any soul, the ark of God is not there. Where the Lord dwells no image of jealousy will be tolerated. A visible church will soon become a visible curse if idols be set up in it, and then the pruning knife will remove it as a dead branch from the vine.
Note that God did not utterly cast away his people Israel even when he greatly abhorred them, for he returned in mercy to them, so the subsequent verses tell us: so now the seed of Abraham, though for awhile under a heavy cloud, will be gathered yet again, for the covenant of salt shall not be broken. As for the spiritual seed, the Lord hath not despised nor abhorred them; they are his peculiar treasure and lie for ever near his heart.
EXPLANATORY NOTES AND QUAINT SAYINGS
Verse 57-59. See Psalms on "Psalms 78:59" for further information.
Verse 59. When God heard this. The psalmist represents the noise of the ill deeds of the people ascending to the ears of the Eternal. Armand de Mestral, in "Commentaire sur le Livre de Psaumes." 1856.
HINTS FOR PASTORS AND LAYPERSONS