Verse 6. He hath shewed his people the power of his works. They have seen what he is able to do and what force he is prepared to put forth on their behalf. This power Israel saw in physical works, and we in spiritual wonders, for we behold the matchless energy of the Holy Ghost and feel it in our own souls. In times of dire distress the Lord has put forth such energy of grace that we have been astonished at his power; and this was part of his intent in bringing us into such conditions that he might reveal to us the arm of his strength. Could we ever have known it so well if we had not been in pressing need of his help? We may well turn this verse into a prayer and ask to see more and more the power of the Lord at work among us in these latter days. O Lord, let us now see how mightily thou canst work in the saving of sinners and in preserving and delivering thine own people.
That he may give them the heritage of the heathen. He put forth all his power to drive out the Canaanites and bring in his people. Even thus may it please his infinite wisdom to give to his church the heathen for her inheritance in the name of Jesus. Nothing but great power can effect this, but it will surely be accomplished in due season.
EXPLANATORY NOTES AND QUAINT SAYINGS
Verse 6. He hath shewed his people, etc. The Prophet indicates the unbelief of the Jews, who murmured against God in the desert, as if he could not enable them to enter into the promised land, and possess it, because the cities were walled, and the inhabitants strong, and giants dwelt in it. He shewed, he says, i.e., he placed before their eyes, the power of His works, when he gave the lands of the heathen to be inhabited by his own people. --Wolfgang Musculus.
Verse 6. He hath shewed his people the power of his works. So he hath showed his works of power to his people in Gospel times, as the miracles of Christ, his resurrection from the dead, redemption by him, and the work of grace on the hearts of men in all ages. -- John Gill.
Verse 6. He hath shewed his people, etc. To them it is given to see, but not to others who are delivered up to a judicial blindness. Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and show thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not. Jeremiah 33:3 . --John Trapp.
Verse 6. To give them the heritage of the heathen. The heathen themselves are bequeathed to God's people, and they must take possession of this inheritance to draw them to themselves.] --Richter, in Zange's Commentary.
HINTS FOR PASTORS AND LAYPERSONS
Verse 6. The power of God an encouragement for the evangelization of the heathen.