Verse 13. Those that be planted in the house of the Lord shall flourish in the courts of our God. In the courtyards of Oriental houses trees were planted, and being thoroughly screened, they would be likely to bring forth their fruit to perfection in trying seasons; even so, those who by grace are brought into communion with the Lord, shall be likened to trees planted in the Lord's house, and shall find it good to their souls. No heart has so much joy as that which abides in the Lord Jesus. Fellowship with the stem begets fertility in the branches. If a man abide in Christ he brings forth much fruit. Those professors who are rooted to the world do not flourish; those who send forth their roots into the marshes of frivolous pleasure cannot be in a vigorous condition; but those who dwell in habitual fellowship with God shall become men of full growth, rich in grace, happy in experience, mighty in influence, honoured and honourable. Much depends upon the soil in which a tree is planted; everything, in our case, depends upon our abiding in the Lord Jesus, and deriving all our supplies from him. If we ever really grow in the courts of the Lord's house we must be planted there, for no tree grows in God's garden self sown; once planted of the Lord, we shall never be rooted up, but in his courts we shall take root downward, and bring forth fruit upward to his glory for ever.
EXPLANATORY NOTES AND QUAINT SAYINGS
Verse 13. Those that be planted in the house of the Lord shall flourish in the courts of our God, are not distinctive of some from others, as though some only of the flourishing righteous were so planted; but they are descriptive of them all, with an addition of the way and means whereby they are caused so to grow and flourish. And this is their implantation in the house of the Lord, -- that is, in the church, which is the seat of all the means of spiritual life, both as unto growth and flourishing, which God is pleased to grant unto believers. To be planted in the house of the Lord, is to be fixed and rooted in the grace communicated by the ordinances of divine worship. Unless we are planted in the house of the Lord, we cannot flourish in his courts. See Psalms 1:3 . Unless we are partakers of the grace administered in the ordinances, we cannot flourish in a fruitful profession. -- John Owen.
Verse 13. Those that be planted in, the house of the Lord, etc. Saints are planted in the house of God; they have a kind of rooting there: but though the tabernacle be a good rooting place, yet we cannot root firmly there, unless we are rooted in Jesus Christ. To root in tabernacle work, or in the bare use of ordinances, as if that would carry it, and commend us to God, when there is no heart work, when there is no looking to the power of godliness, and to communion with Christ, what is this but building upon the sand? Many come often to the tabernacle, who are more strangers to Christ; they use pure ordinances, but are themselves impure. These may have a great name in the tabernacle for a while, but God blots their names, and roots their hopes out of the tabernacle; yea, he puts them from the horns of the altar, or slays them there, as Solomon gave commandment concerning Joab. --Abraham Wright.
Verse 13. In the house of the Lord. As if in a most select viridarium or as if in a park, abounding in trees dedicated to God. And as in Psalms 5:12 he had made mention of Lebanon, where the cedars attain their highest perfection, so now he tacitly opposes to Lebanon the house of God, or church, wherein we bloom, grow, and bring forth fruit pleasing to God. --Martin Geier.