Verse 11. Let the heavens rejoice, and let the earth be glad. Above and below let the joy be manifested. Let the angels who have stood in amaze at the wickedness of men, now rejoice over their repentance and restoration to favour, and let men themselves express their pleasure in seeing their true prince set upon his throne. The book of creation has two covers, and on each of these let the glory of the Lord be emblazoned in letters of joy.
Let the sea roar, and the fulness thereof Let it be no more a troubled sea, wailing over shipwrecked mariners, and rehearsing the griefs of widows and orphans, but let it adopt a cheerful note, and rejoice in the kingdom of the Lord. Let it thunder out the name of the Lord when its tides are at its full, and let all its teeming life express the utmost joy because the Lord reigneth even in the depth of the sea. In common with the rest of the creation, the sea has groaned and travailed until now; is not the time close at hand in which its hollow murmur shall be exchanged for an outburst of joy? Will not every billow soon flash forth the praises of him who once trod the sea?
"Waft, waft, ye winds, his story!
And you ye waters, roll,
Till, like a sea of glory,
It spreads from pole to pole."
EXPLANATORY NOTES AND QUAINT SAYINGS
Verse 11. Let the heavens rejoice. As the whole creation, both animate and inanimate, has groaned beneath the weight of the curse, so shall the whole creation partake of the great deliverance." The Speaker's Commentary," 1873.
Verse 11. Let the sea roar.
Thou paragon of elemental powers,
Mystery of waters -- never slumbering sea!
Impassioned orator with lips sublime,
Whose waves are arguments which prove a God! Robert Montgomery, 1807-1855.
Verse 11-12. God will graciously accept the holy joys and praises of all the hearty well wishers to the kingdom of Christ, be their capacity never so mean. The sea can but roar, and how the trees of the wood can show that they rejoice, I know not; but "he that searcheth the heart, knows what is the mind of the Spirit," and understands the language, the broken language of the weakest. Matthew Henry.
Verse 11-13. These verses are full of comprehensive beauty and power. They present the gathering together of everything under the confessed dominion of the reigning Christ. Things in heaven, as well as things on earth, rejoice together in the acknowledged blessing of the Lord of peace. The Psalm is throughout a very sweet strain of millennial prophecy. Arthur Pridham.
Verse 11-13. Nothing can excel that noble exultation of universal nature in the 96th Psalm, which has been so often commended, where the whole animate and inanimate creation unite in the praises of their Maker. Poetry here seems to assume the highest tone of triumph and exultation, and to revel, if I may so express myself, in all the extravagance of joy. Robert Lowth.
Verse 11-13. Although there are some who by heaven understand angels; by the earth, men; by the sea, troublesome spirits; by trees and fields, the Gentiles who were to believe, yet this need not be thought strange, because such prosopopaeias are frequent in Scripture. Adam Clarke.
HINTS FOR PASTORS AND LAYPERSONS
Verse 11-12. The sympathy of nature with the work of grace; especially dwelling upon its fuller display in the millennial period.