Psalm 88:13

 

EXPOSITION

Verse 13. But unto thee have I cried, O LORD; I have continued to pray for help to thee, O Jehovah, the living God, even though thou hast so long delayed to answer. A true born child of God may be known by his continuing to cry; a hypocrite is great at a spurt, but the genuine believer holds on till he wins his suit.

And in the morning shall my prayer prevent thee. He meant to plead on yet, and to increase his earnestness. He intended to be up betimes, to anticipate the day light, and begin to pray before the sun was up. If the Lord is pleased to delay, he has a right to do as he wills, but we must not therefore become tardy in supplication. If we count the Lord slack concerning his promise we must only be the more eager to outrun him, lest sinful sloth on our part should hinder the blessing.

"Let prayer and holy hymn
Perfume the morning air;
Before the world with smoke is dim
Bestir thy soul to prayer."
"While flowers are wet with dew
Lament thy sins with tears,
And ere the sun shines forth anew
Tell to thy Lord thy fears."

 

EXPLANATORY NOTES AND QUAINT SAYINGS

Verse 13. But, etc. That "but" seems to come in as an expression of his resolution hitherto, that though these were his apprehensions of his condition, yet he had sought the Lord, and would go on to do the same. Suppose thou findest no relish in the ordinances, yet use them; thou art desperately sick, yet eat still take all that is brought thee, some strength will come of it. Say, Be I damned or saved, hypocrite or no hypocrite, I resolve to go on. -- Thomas Goodwin.

Verse 13. In the morning shall my prayer prevent thee. The morning prayer is the best ... In the morning God gave various gifts. First, the manna, Exodus 16:13 , And in the morning the dew lay round about the host: He who is in the camp of God, and bravely fights, receives from God dew and consolation, if in the morning, that is, in the beginning of temptation, he prays. In the evening flesh was given, whence death overtook them, but in another case in the morning the manna was given, whereby life was sustained, until they came into the land of promise. Secondly, the law was given in the morning, Exodus 19:16 , And it came to pass on the third day in the morning, that there were thunders and lightnings, and a thick cloud upon the mount, and the voice of the trumpet exceeding loud. In morning devotion the thunders of God, that is, his judgments, are more distinctly heard; his lightnings, that is, his divine enlightenments, are best seen; the thick cloud upon the mount, that is, the divine overshadowing of the soul, is perceived; and the voice of the trumpet is best heard, that is, inspiration then with greater force moves the mind. Thirdly, in the morning, very early, the children of Israel went forth from Egypt; for in the middle of the night God smote all the first born in the land of Egypt, Exodus 12:29 ... In the morning pray, and you shall conquer your daily and nightly foes; and the Red Sea itself, that is the place of temptation, shall be to thee a field of glory, of victory and exultation and all things shall go well with thee. --Le Blanc.

Verse 13. Unto thee have I cried, O Lord. There is something comitant with the Christian's present darkness of spirit that distinguishes it from the hypocrite's horror; and that is the lively working of grace, which then commonly is very visible, when his peace and former comfort are most questioned by him; the less joy he hath from any present sense of the love of God, the more abounding you shall find him in sorrow for his sin that clouded his joy; the further Christ is gone out of his sight, the more he clings in his love to Christ, and vehemently cries after him in prayer, as we see in Heman here. O the fervent prayers that then are shot from his troubled spirit to heaven, the pangs of affection which are springing after God, and his face and favour! Never did a banished child more desire admittance into his angry father's presence, than he to have the light of God's countenance shine on him, which is now veiled from him. --William Gurnall.

 

HINTS FOR PASTORS AND LAYPERSONS

Verse 13.

  1. Blessings delayed to prayer, -- "Unto thee", etc.
  2. Blessings anticipated by prayer, -- "in the morning", etc. Daily mercies anticipated by morning prayers. --G.R.

Verse 13. (last clause). -- The advantages of early morning prayer meetings.