Verse 16. With long life will I satisfy him. The man described in this Psalm fills out the measure of his days, and whether he dies young or old he is quite satisfied with life, and is content to leave it. He shall rise from life's banquet as a man who has had enough, and would not have more even if he could.
And shew him my salvation. The full sight of divine grace shall be his closing vision. He shall look from Amana and Lebanon. Not with destruction before him black as night, but with salvation bright as noonday smiling upon him he shall enter into his rest.
EXPLANATORY NOTES AND QUAINT SAYINGS
Verse 16. With long life will I satisfy him. Saint Bernard interprets this of heaven; because he thought nothing long that had an end. This, indeed, is the emphasis of heaven's joy; those blessed souls never sin, never weep more; they shall not only be with the Lord, but ever with the Lord. This is the accent which is set on the eulogies given to heaven in Scripture. It is "an inheritance," and that an "incorruptible one, that fadeth not away;" it is "a crown of glory," and that a weighty one, yea, "an exceeding great and eternal weight of glory." When once it is on the saint's head it can never fall, or be snatched off; it is a feast, but such a one that hath a sitting down to it but no rising up from it. William Gurnall.
Verse 16. With long life will I satisfy him. Observe the joyful contrast here to the mournful words in the foregoing Psalm. "We spend our years as a tale that is told. The days of our years are threescore years and ten," ( Psalms 90:9-10 .) The life of Israel in the wilderness was shortened by Disobedience. The Obedience of Christ in the wilderness has won for us a blessed immortality. Christopher Wordsworth.
Verse 16. With long life will I satisfy him, etc. The margin here is "length of days;" that is, days lengthened out or multiplied. The meaning is, I will give him length of days as he desires, or until he is satisfied with life; -- implying
- that it is natural to desire long life;
- that long life is to be regarded as a blessing (comp. Proverbs 3:2 Proverbs 3:16 Exodus 20:12 );
- that the tendency of religion is to lengthen out life; since virtue, temperance, regular industry, calmness of mind, moderation in all things, freedom from excesses in eating and drinking, -- to all of which religion prompts, -- contribute to health and to length of days; and
- that a time will come, even under this promised blessing of length of days, when a man will be "satisfied" with living; when he will have no strong desire to live longer; when, under the infirmities of advanced years, and under his lonely feelings from the fact that his early friends have fallen, and under the influence of a bright hope of heaven, he will feel that he has had enough of life here, and that it is better to depart to another world. And shew him my salvation. In another life, after he shall be satisfied with this life. Albert Barnes.
Verse 16. With long life will I satisfy him. This promise concerning length of life contains a gift of God by no means to be despised. Many enemies indeed will plot against his life, and desire to extinguish him as suddenly and as quickly as possible; but I shall so guard him that he shall live to a good old age and be filled with years, and desire to depart from life. J. B. Folengius.
Verse 16. With long life will I satisfy him.
We live in deeds, not years; in thoughts, not breaths;
In feelings, not in figures on a dial.
We should count time by heart throbs. He most lives
Who thinks most, feels noblest, acts the best. Philip James Bailey, in "Festus."
Verse 16. Long life.
They err who measure life by years,
With false or thoughtless tongue;
Some hearts grow old before their time;
Others are always young.
It is not the number of the lines
On life's fast filling page,
It is not the pulse's added throbs,
Which constitute their age.
Some souls are serfs among the free,
While others nobly thrive;
They stand just where their fathers stood
Dead, even while they live.
Others, all spirit, heart, and sense,
Theirs the mysterious power
To live in thrills of joy or woe,
A twelvemonth in an hour! Bryan W. Procter
Verse 16. Long life.
He liveth long who liveth well!
All other life is short and vain:
He liveth longest who can tell
Of living most for heavenly gain.
Fie liveth long who liveth well! All else is being flung
away; He liveth longest who can tell of true things
truly done each day. Horatius Bonar
Verse 16. I will show him my salvation. The last, greatest, climax of blessing, including and concluding all! What God does is perfectly done. Hitherto has his servant caught glimpses of the "great salvation." The Spirit has revealed step by step of it, as he was able to bear it. The Word has taught him, and he has rejoiced in his light. But all was seen in part and known in part. But when God has satisfied his servant with length of days, and time for him is over, eternity begun, he will "shew him his salvation." All will be plain. All will be known. God will be revealed in his love and his glory. And we shall know all things, even as we are known! Mary B. M. Duncan.
WORKS ON THE NINETY-FIRST PSALM.
S. Patris Bernardi, in Psalmum 90. (91). Qui habitat. Sermones (In the Paris edition of Bernard's works, imperial 8vo. 1839, Volume one part 2, also in the quarto volume of Sermons, Salisburgi MDCL
The Shield of the Righteous: or, the Ninety-first Psalme, expounded, with the addition of Doctrines and Verses. Verie necessarie and comfortable in these dayes of heauinesse, wherein the Pestilence rageth so sore in London, and other parts of this Kingdome. By ROBERT HORN, Minister of God's Word ... London. 1628 (4to).
The Righteous man's Habitation in the Time of the Plague and Pestilence; being a brief Exposition of the Ninety-first Psalm: (In the Works of William Bridge (1600-1670) Tegg's Edition, Volume one pg 463-500.)
In "UNDER THE SHADOW: being additional leaves from the Note Book of the late Mary B.M. Duncan, 1867", pp. 85-172, there is an Exposition of this Psalm.