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Bible Commentaries

Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable

Psalms 125



Verses 1-3

1. The security of God"s people125:1-3

Believers in Yahweh are as secure in their position as the mountain God had chosen and established as His special habitation (cf. Romans 8:31-39). The Lord forever surrounds His people as a protective army keeping overwhelming forces from defeating them (cf. 1 Corinthians 10:13).

"Mount Zion is not the highest peak in the mountain range around Jerusalem. To its east lies the Mount of Olives, to its north Mount Scopus, to the west and south are other hills, all of which are higher than Mount Zion. Surrounded by mountains, Mount Zion was secure, by its natural defensibility. So the psalmist compares the Lord to the hills around Jerusalem and the people to Mount Zion." [Note: VanGemeren, p788.]

God promised not to let wicked authorities overcome the righteous totally. God did permit Israel"s foreign neighbors to oppress and dominate her for periods in her history. However, Psalm 125:3 promises that they would never completely and finally defeat Israel. The NIV translators rendered the last part of Psalm 125:3, "For then the righteous might use their hands to do evil."

Verses 1-5

Psalm 125

The psalmist praised God that believers are secure in their salvation and that God will keep temptation from overwhelming them. However, he cautioned God"s people to follow the Lord faithfully-or lose His blessing because they lived as unbelievers do. This psalm of ascent is a communal song of confidence and a communal lament. [Note: Dahood, 3:214.]

Verse 4-5

2. The choices before God"s people125:4-5

However, even though God"s people are secure, they have a choice concerning how they will live. They can be faithful to the Lord, or depart from Him and live sinful lives. In Psalm 125:4, the psalmist asked God to bless those of His people who do good and remain upright in their attitudes and affections. In Psalm 125:5, he warned that those believers who did not follow Him faithfully would suffer a fate similar to that of the wicked. They would cease to enjoy the privileges of intimate fellowship with Yahweh. For Israel, this meant banishment and captivity as an ultimate punishment. Nevertheless, they would never cease to be His people ( Psalm 125:1-3). The psalmist closed by praying for peace on Israel, which in the context required walking with God.

"The life of faith is not easy, but the life of unbelief is much harder-in this life and in the life to come." [Note: Wiersbe, The . . . Wisdom . . ., p344.]

This psalm makes a distinction that is obvious in the history of Israel. The New Testament teaches that these principles apply to Christians as well. Those who trust in the Lord are eternally secure, but they can choose to follow Him faithfully and experience His blessing, or depart from Him and suffer His discipline.


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These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of Used by Permission.

Bibliography Information
Constable, Thomas. DD. "Commentary on Psalms 125:4". "Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable". 2012.

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