Psalm 89:12

 

EXPOSITION

Verse 12. The north and the south thou hast created them. North and south, opposite poles, agree in this -- that Jehovah fashioned them.

Tabor and Hermon shall rejoice in thy name, that is to say, east and west are equally formed by thee, and therefore give thee praise. Turn to all points of the compass, and behold the Lord is there. The regions of snow and the gardens of the sun are his dominions: both the land of the dawning and the home of the setting sun rejoice to own his sway. Tabor was on the west of Jordan and Hermon on the east, and it seems natural to consider these two mountains as representatives of the east and west. Keble paraphrases the passage thus: --

"Both Heman moist, and Tabor lone,
They wait on thee with glad acclaim."

 

EXPLANATORY NOTES AND QUAINT SAYINGS

Verse 12. The north and the south thou hast created them. etc. The heights of Huttin, commonly fixed on by tradition as the Mount of Beatitudes, appear a little to the west of Tiberias. Over these the graceful top of Mount Tabor is seen, and beyond it the little Hermon, famous for its dews; and still farther, and apparently higher, the bleak mountains of Gilboa, on which David prayed that there might fall no dew nor rain. A view of the position of Tabor and Hermon from such a situation as that which we now occupied, shewed us how accurately they might be reckoned the "umbilicus terroe" -- the central point of the land, and led us to infer that this is the true explanation of the manner in which they are referred to in the Psalms 89:12 . It is as if the Psalmist had said North, South, and all that is between -- or in other words, the whole land from North to South, to its very centre and throughout its very marrow -- shall rejoice in thy name. --R.M. Macheyne.

Verse 12. Tabor and Hermon. These hills, the one to the east and the other to the west, in Canaan, were much frequented by the saints of God. David speaks of the sacred hill of Hermon, and compares brotherly love to the dew of it. Psalms 42:6 133:3. And Tabor, yet more eminent for the memorable spot of Christ's transfiguration, and from whence God the Father proclaimed his perfect love and approbation of Jesus as his dear Son. Well might this hymn, therefore, in allusion to those glorious events, call even the holy hills to rejoice in Jehovah's name, Matthew 17:1-5 . --Robert Hawker.

 

HINTS FOR PASTORS AND LAYPERSONS

Verse 12. The joy of creation in its Creator.