PSALM 70 OVERVIEW
Title. To the Chief Musician, A Psalm of David. So far the title corresponds with Psalm 40, of which this is a copy with variations. David appears to have written the full length Psalm, and also to have made this excerpt from it, and altered it to suit the occasion. It is a fit pendant to Psalm 69, and a suitable preface to Psalm 71. To bring to remembrance. This is the poor man's memorial. David personally pleads with God that he may not be forgotten, but David's Lord may be heard here also. Even if the Lord seems to forget us, we must not forget him. This memorial Psalm acts as a connecting link between the two Psalms of supplicatory expostulation, and makes up with them a precious triad of song.
(The Reader is referred for full Exposition and Notes to Psalms 40:13-17 , in "Treasury of David," Vol. 2, pp 267- 268.)
Verse 1. This is the second Psalm which is a repetition of another, the former being Psalm 53, which was a rehearsal of Psalm 14. The present differs from the Fortieth Psalm at the outset, for that begins with, "Be pleased," and this, in our version, more urgently with,
Make haste; or, as in the Hebrew, with an abrupt and broken cry, O God, to deliver me; O Lord, to help me hasten. It is not forbidden us, in hours of dire distress, to ask for speed on God's part in his coming to rescue us. The only other difference between this and verse 13 of Psalm 40, is the putting of Elohim in the beginning of the verse for Jehovah, but why this is done we know not; perhaps, the guesses of the critics are correct, but perhaps they are not. As we have the words of this Psalm twice in the letter, let them be doubly with us in spirit. It is most meet that we should day by day cry to God for deliverance and help; our frailty and our many dangers render this a perpetual necessity.
EXPLANATORY NOTES AND QUAINT SAYINGS
Whole Psalm. Francke would apply the present Psalm to the state of the Christian church after the resurrection and exaltation of Christ, and would put the words in the mouths of the faithful of that time. On the same ground of transferring the language adapted to Christ in Psalm 40 to the faithful in this Psalm, we need not hesitate to take them on our lips, as the language of the church in every age. I cannot but reassert my conviction of the intentional arrangement of the Psalms in the order in which we now have them, made in all probability, partially at least, at the time they were handed over to public use. It is surely a daring conjecture made by Walford, that the repetition of this Psalm arose from some mistake of the persons by whom the Psalms were collected and arranged, after the return from the captivity in Babylon. W. Wilson.
HINTS FOR PASTORS AND LAYPERSONS
- Occasion of his prayer.
- Subject of his prayer. Deliverance, help.
- Importunity of his prayer. The time of deliverance
may be an answer to prayer, as well as deliverance
- Times when such urgent prayer is allowable,
praiseworthy, or faulty.
- Reasons for expecting a speedy reply.
- Consolations if delay should occur.