Psalms 68:20 MEANING

Psalm 68:20
(20) He that is.--The insertion is unnecessary. Render, God unto us (i.e., our God) is a God of salvation.

Issues from death.--Literally, for death goings out. The same word rendered issues in Proverbs 4:23, there means sources. Here it will mean sources of death, or escapes from death as we connect the clause with what precedes or follows; Jehovah would provide an issue out of death for Israel, but a source of death to Israel's enemies. The LXX. and Vulgate apparently take it in the former connection.

Verse 20. - He that is our God is the God of salvation; rather, God is to us a God of saving deeds (Kay), or of deliverances (Revised Version); i.e. net of salvation only in the abstract (ver. 19), but of deeds by which we are saved. And unto God the Lord belong the issues from death. It is through God only that, when death threatens, men escape it.

68:15-21 The ascension of Christ must here be meant, and thereto it is applied, Eph 4:8. He received as the purchase of his death, the gifts needful for the conversion of sinners, and the salvation of believers. These he continually bestows, even on rebellious men, that the Lord God might dwell among them, as their Friend and Father. He gave gifts to men. Having received power to give eternal life, the Lord Jesus bestows it on as many as were given him, Joh 17:2. Christ came to a rebellious world, not to condemn it, but that through him it might be saved. The glory of Zion's King is, that he is a Saviour and Benefactor to all his willing people, and a consuming fire to all that persist in rebellion against him. So many, so weighty are the gifts of God's bounty, that he may be truly said to load us with them. He will not put us off with present things for a portion, but will be the God of our salvation. The Lord Jesus has authority and power to rescue his people from the dominion of death, by taking away the sting of it from them when they die, and giving them complete victory over it when they rise again. The crown of the head, the chief pride and glory of the enemy, shall be smitten; Christ shall crush the head of the serpent.He that is our God,.... Or "God for us" (q); is on our side; and is the mighty God, able to save to the uttermost;

is the God of salvation; or "God for salvations" (r); for the obtaining of them for his people, and giving them to them, even of every kind;

and unto God the Lord belong the issues from death; deliverance from it; Christ has abolished it, and him that had the power of it; has delivered himself from it, and will deliver all his people from it, though they become subject to it, as well as from eternal death; for he has the keys of hell and death in his hands. Some render the words, "to God the Lord belong the issues", or "ways unto death" (s); he has various ways of bringing persons to death, of destroying his and his people's enemies; and so Jarchi, Aben Ezra, and Kimchi interpret it; though the following words seem to be opposed to these: the Heathens had a notion that the power of death belonged to God; hence they had a deity called the god of death, "Dites" (t).

(q) "Deus nobis, vel est nobis", Pagninus, Montanus, Vatablus, Piscator. (r) "Deus ad salutes", Pagninus, Montanus, &c. (s) "ad mortem exitus", Pagninus, Montanus; "mille viae laethi", Lucan. (t) Macrob. in Somn. Scip. l. 1. c. 11.

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