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Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Psalms 65:8

 

 

They who dwell in the ends of the earth stand in awe of Your signs; You make the dawn and the sunset shout for joy.

Adam Clarke Commentary

Are afraid at thy tokens - Thunder and lightning, storms and tempests, eclipses and meteors, tornadoes and earthquakes, are proofs to all who dwell even in the remotest parts of the earth, that there is a Supreme Being who is wonderful and terrible in his acts. By these things an eternal power and Godhead become manifest even to the most barbarous. From this verse to the end of the Psalm there is a series of the finest poetic imagery in the world.

The outgoings of the morning, etc. - The rising and setting sun, the morning and evening twilight, the invariable succession of day and night, are all ordained by thee, and contribute to the happiness and continuance of man and beast. Or, All that fear thee praise thee in the morning, when they go to their work, and in the evening, when they return home, for thy great goodness manifested in the continuance of their strength, and the success of their labor.


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Bibliography
Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on Psalms 65:8". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/psalms-65.html. 1832.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

They also that dwell in the utter-most parts - That is, Those who dwell in the remotest regions; far from civilized lands; far from those places where people are instructed as to the causes of the events which occur, and as to the being and character of the great God who performs these wonders. The idea is, that even they see enough of the evidences of the divine presence and power to fill their minds with awe. In other words, there are in all lands evidences of the Divine existence and might. There is enough to fill the minds of people with awe, and to make them solemn.

Are afraid - Thus the thunder, the storm, the tempest, the earthquake, the eclipse of the sun or the moon, fill the minds of barbarous nations with terror.

At thy tokens - Or signs. That is, the signs which really indicate the existence, the presence, and the power of God.

Thou makest the outgoings - The word rendered outgoings means properly a going forth, as of the rising of the sun Psalm 19:7; and then, a place of going forth, or from which anything goes forth, as a gate or door Ezekiel 42:11, or fountains from which water issues Isaiah 41:18; and hence, the east, where the sun seems to come forth from his hiding-place. The representation here is that the morning seems to come forth, or that the rays of light stream out from the east; and, in like manner, that the fading light of the evening - the twilight - seems to come from the west.

Of the morning and evening to rejoice - The allusion is to the east and the west. The sun in his rising and his setting seems to rejoice; that is, he appears happy, bright, cheerful. The margin is to sing - a poetic expression indicating exultation and joy.


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Bibliography
Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on Psalms 65:8". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/psalms-65.html. 1870.

The Biblical Illustrator

Psalms 65:8

Thou makest the outgoings of the morning and evening to rejoice.

God’s favours

The psalmist recognized a close relation between nature and nature’s God. He saw all the beauty and blessedness of nature as divine.

I. The incomparableness of God’s favours. The matchless phenomena of the dawn and sunset are unique in nature. When God sows the “earth with orient pearl,” and the fragrance of a thousand flowers exhales upon the morning air; or when eve, all clad in sober grey, comes forth, the “firmament with living sapphire glowing.” We have a hint, too, of the kingdom of grace in our text. There is probably an allusion to the morning and evening sacrifice, a God-appointed ordinance, and therefore an allusion to Christ and His atonement.

II. The freshness of God’s favours. Each new morning and evening is as much a new thing as if just created. The beauty of dawn and sunset never pale. It is not only our lives that He crowns with lovingkindness and tender mercies, not only the year that He crowneth with goodness, but each morning and each evening He visiteth us. Day unto day uttereth speech. Night publisheth to night His mercies.

III. The fitness of God’s favours. “Thou makest the outgoings of the morning and evening to rejoice.” Just the time when we most need a fresh supply. The issues of the day are taken at their fount and the results of the day are blessed at their fruition. Some of the outgoings of the morning are--

1. Forebodings. Bright mornings often usher in sad thoughts, ‘tis well to be met at the threshold of the day by God’s benison and smile.

2. Duty lies before us every morning. The law of duty transformed to blessed personal service, if we meet Jesus at the door of the day, His statutes then shall be our “songs in the house of our pilgrimage,” and “the joy of the Lord shall be our strength.”

3. Uncertainty. We never know what a day may bring forth, but if God bless its outgoings we shall not be afraid of evil tidings nor of sudden fear, our heart is fixed.

IV. The fulness of His favours. From outgoing to outgoing, He fills up the whole day with the light that comes ix the dawn, and the whole night with the sweet peace and protection that comes at eve.

V. The universality of God’s favours. Once in twenty-four hours each hemisphere of the world is alternately bathed in light, or rests in the peaceful shadow of night. This is true also of His grace and Gospel.

VI. The immutability of God’s favours. The covenant of day and night was made with Noah. Every dawn and sunset is a pledge of His unchangeable fidelity to His promise (Genesis 8:22; Jeremiah 33:20-21). The morning fails not by the thousandth part of a second, nor shall God’s Word ever fail. (F. A. Trotter.)

Blithe childhood, and blither old age

I. Life both in prospect and retrospect is beautiful. To look on at the start, to look back at the close, are both a delight. Old age corroborates childhood, evening renews the morning; and whoever fails to enjoy life, both these succeed.

1. First, the glorious days of childhood, the sweet hours of early life. We often speak of youth’s power of prophecy, of the young soul’s anticipation of the future, the expectation of what life is going to be; oh, enchanting first days! But that is not what I mean. I speak of a time that comes before even that--of youth’s pure enjoyment of life. You believe in life; you open out your souls trustfully to it; you have not begun yet to be suspicious; you do not imagine every cup which life sets to your lips to be poisoned; you dare smell every fragrant flower; you believe in to-day as well as yesterday, and you are not afraid of to-morrow with any fresh truth which it may bring. You never feel inclined to suspect every new prophet to be a traitor, and every new book to have the inspiration of the evil one in it. You are willing to hear every new call that comes; the charm has not disappeared for you from the work of the Lord, and you could know no shame so great as to be dismissed from His service. No prophecy has ever failed to you--“the Word of the Lord standeth sure”; you discount nothing which God has promised, and the fulfilment will be richer than the promise itself. Welcome, life! Hail, blessed future! “The outgoings of the morning . . . rejoice.”

2. The retrospect will be blither still. Believe me, the brightest season is yet to be. “And the evening to rejoice.” The surging process through which your faith may be passing will be over, and your faith will be richer than ever. The scares which many of us have through criticism; through the testing fires into which the Word of God is cast; through the rapid succession of books that crime questioning the authority of the Bible, absolutely denying its right to the deference it has always received; through the breaking up of old forms of thought, the recasting of old theories, the new terms in which we have got to speak of the Atonement and future retribution;--this scare will have ceased. The confusion and uncertainty in which you feel as if everything were breaking up and you were losing every truth you had treasured most, will have passed into a firm hold of all absolute verities.

II. The prospect and the retrospect are both made beautiful by God. Youth and old age--it is God touches both into beauty. Not one word of what I have said is true apart from God. Youth possesses no power of icy but in Him, old age is ugly severed from Him; the morning opens with the mutterings of a storm, evening closes in blackness and hopelessness God puts into both the lines that constitute their charm. You have climbed through a narrow mountain-pass. Morning was radiant when you started, and every foot you climbed the scene became more enchanting, and your spirits rose with every step. But presently the prospect narrows, the mountains close in upon you, the sun is hidden, and a cold wind sweeps through the defile; your spirits droop, and you can only doggedly plod along. But by and by the mountains open out again, the pass is over, and far away under your feet stretches a fairer scene than that which thrilled you in the early morning. Many of you, perhaps, are to-day in the pass. Youth is a memory which you find it hard to realize; you have left it far behind you. But you will be out of the pass soon. The prospect will open out again, and the sun will set upon a fairer world than you have ever seen. The best of life is yet to come. “Thou makest the outgoings of the morning and evening to rejoice.” (J. Morlais Jones.)

The song of morning and evening

Nature is here conceived of as rejoicing before her God, and uttering her joy, in glad and grateful song, praising Him whose power sustains her, and whose wisdom guides. It is not strange, if the psalmist found song in nature at all, that he should have found it in the phenomena of the day’s dawn and decline, “The breezy call of incense-breathing morn,” and “the balmy sigh which vernal zephyrs breathe in evening’s ear”; for of all that is impressive, inspiring and suggestive of high thought in nature’s scenic effects, surely it is the phenomena of morn and even; and whatever else is such in itself the light of opening and closing day gives it most transcendent revelation. Thus should it be with man. Our best performance, our highest reaches of thought, and our noblest forms of expression should be divine worship, and the song of our life be evermore a psalm of praise to God. The text conveys a hint also as to the seasons for prayer. This song of dawning and declining day is nature’s matin and vesper service of worship to her God. That which is a sentiment in nature’s heart, all day and all the night, attains the tuneful gladness of a song at morn and even. Thus should it be with man. When morning calls him from the realm of slumber to the world of conscious life, and the activities of the day are about to begin, he should make his first business worship. Before he opens the door to the world and gives it audience he should open the window that looks heavenward, and himself seek audience with his God, nor let the world’s cares and toils descend again upon him until he has refreshed himself by communion with the Father of lights. Each new dawn lights man to a new life, which should be hallowed in its inception by prayer and praise. And so when the daylight hours have sped, and the day’s toils are over, in the still hour “when hopes and memories meet and join, and in the light of suns gone down we wait the unveiling of the quiet stars, those suns which shine upon us from afar,” the human spirit should again uplift itself to God, and the day close, even as it began, with prayer and praise. But the text has yet deeper suggestiveness. Morning and evening may fitly represent the beginnings and ends of things, and in this construction what great truths the text brings to our thought. It is in the beginnings and ends of things that we see most of God. “He is the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end.” His presence pervades even as His power sustains all things. He fills all time as all space. But we recognize Him most in the inception and culmination of fact and event. In the intermediate stages we see more of law and less of God. We trace a development in which we note the play of finite agencies, and the factorship of finite force and will. But in the beginnings and ends of things the finite is less apparent, and the infinite absorbs the view. Thus “He maketh the outgoings of the morning and evening to sing.” Creation as it sprang from the forming hand of God and stood in its unsullied beauty, unstained by human sin, was “very good.” And not less so shall be that new creation, the new heavens and the new earth, which shall appear when the first heaven and the first earth are done away. At creation’s dawn “the morning stars sang together and all the sons of God shouted for joy.” Nor shall creation’s evening song be wanting; for o’er the final consummation ten thousand times ten thousand tongues, untuned when the creation was being celebrated, shall blend in song with those who raised the earlier strain. (J. W. Earnshaw.)


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Bibliography
Exell, Joseph S. "Commentary on "Psalms 65:8". The Biblical Illustrator. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/tbi/psalms-65.html. 1905-1909. New York.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

They also that dwell in the uttermost parts are afraid at thy tokens,.... The tokens of his wrath and displeasure at wicked men, seen in the punishments inflicted on them, which cause them to fear and tremble. Some interpret them of the sun, moon, and stars, which are set for "signs", as the wordF13מאותתיך "a signis tuis", Pagninus, Montanus, &c. used signifies; and which declare the glory of God to the uttermost parts of the earth, and strike men with awe and reverence of him; and others of thunder and lightning, which are sometimes very dreadful and terrible. Moreover, the wordF14"A signis et prodigiis tuis", Michaelis. signifies signs and wonders, marvellous things, miraculous operations; and may be understood of those that were wrought in the first times of the Gospel, for the confirmation of it; some of which were wrought in the uttermost parts of the earth; or, however, were heard of there, and believed; which caused them to receive the Gospel with all reverence, not as the word of man, but as the word of God;

thou makest the outgoings of the morning and of the evening to rejoice; some interpret this of the morning and evening sacrifices; others of the sun that goes forth in the morning, and rejoices as a strong man to run his race, and of the moon and stars that appear in the evening, and both give pleasure and delight to the inhabitants of the earth; others of men who go forth in the morning cheerfully to their labour, and of the beasts that go out in the evening to seek their prey, Psalm 19:5; but it seems better to understand it of the rising of the stars before the sun in the morning, and the appearance of them after the moon is up in the evening; or of the rising and setting sun; of the east and west, which include the whole world, and the inhabitants of it; who are made to rejoice at the coming of the Gospel among them, which rings the good news and glad tidings of peace, pardon, righteousness, and salvation, by Christ, whereby his name becomes great, and is praised among the Gentiles; see Malachi 1:11.


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Bibliography
Gill, John. "Commentary on Psalms 65:8". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/psalms-65.html. 1999.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

outgoings of … rejoiceall people from east to west.


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These files are a derivative of an electronic edition prepared from text scanned by Woodside Bible Fellowship.
This expanded edition of the Jameison-Faussett-Brown Commentary is in the public domain and may be freely used and distributed.

Bibliography
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Psalms 65:8". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jfb/psalms-65.html. 1871-8.

Wesley's Explanatory Notes

They also that dwell in the uttermost parts are afraid at thy tokens: thou makest the outgoings of the morning and evening to rejoice.

Thy tokens — Terrible thunders and lightnings, and earthquakes, and comets or other strange meteors, or works of God in the air.

Morning — The successive courses of the morning and evening; or of the sun and moon which go forth at those times. Thus the whole verse speaks of the natural works of God, the former clause, of such as are extraordinary and terrible, the latter of such as are ordinary and delightful.


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These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website.

Bibliography
Wesley, John. "Commentary on Psalms 65:8". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/wen/psalms-65.html. 1765.

Calvin's Commentary on the Bible

8They also that dwell, etc. By the signs referred to, we must evidently understand those signal and memorable works of the Lord which bear the impress of his glorious hand. It is true, that the minutest and meanest objects, whether in the heavens or upon the earth, reflect to some extent the glory of God; but the name mentioned emphatically applies to miracles, as affording a better display of the divine majesty. So striking would be the proofs of God’s favor to his Church, that, as the Psalmist here intimates to us, they would constrain the homage and wonder of the most distant and barbarous nations. In the latter part of the verse, if we take the interpretation suggested by some, nothing more is meant, than that when the sun rises in the morning, men are refreshed by its light; and again, that when the moon and stars appear at night, they are relieved from the gloom into which they must otherwise have been sunk. Were this interpretation adopted, a preposition must be understood; as if it had been said, Thou makest men to rejoice on account of, or by the rising of the sun, of the moon, and of the stars. But the words, as they stand, convey a sense which is sufficiently appropriate without having recourse to any addition. It was said, that in consequence of the wonders done by the Lord, fear would spread itself over the uttermost parts of the earth; and the same thing is now asserted of the joy which they would shed abroad: from the rising to the setting sun, men would rejoice in the Lord, as well as fear him.


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Bibliography
Calvin, John. "Commentary on Psalms 65:8". "Calvin's Commentary on the Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/cal/psalms-65.html. 1840-57.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

Psalms 65:8 They also that dwell in the uttermost parts are afraid at thy tokens: thou makest the outgoings of the morning and evening to rejoice.

Ver. 8. They also that dwell in the uttermost parts, &c.] And are, therefore, Duri, horridi, immanes, latrociniis dediti, omnium denique pessimi, not farther distant from the sun than from all humanity, except the Sun of righteousness shine upon them, as he hath done upon us here in England.

Are afraid at thy tokens] Thy notable works, thine executions.

Thou makest the outgoings of the morning, &c.] That is, the inhabitants of east and west, or the vicissitudes of day and night, whereby men are occasioned to praise and glorify God. See Jeremiah 31:35. The Jews at this day, as they are bound to say over a hundred benedictions every day, so these two among the rest: when they go forth in a morning they say, Blessed be he who hath created the greater lights; and in the evening they say, Blessed be he who causeth the darkness of the night (R. Solom. in loc.).


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Bibliography
Trapp, John. "Commentary on Psalms 65:8". John Trapp Complete Commentary. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/psalms-65.html. 1865-1868.

Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible

Psalms 65:8. They also that dwell, &c.— That is, "The remotest and most barbarous people are struck with the dread of thee, when thou alarmest them by any unusual tokens of thy power;" such as extraordinary thunders, lightnings, and storms.


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Bibliography
Coke, Thomas. "Commentary on Psalms 65:8". Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/tcc/psalms-65.html. 1801-1803.

Hawker's Poor Man's Commentary

This is a sweet verse, if read with reference to Christ: looking at him as the morning and evening sacrifice set forth under the law, and reading God's covenant of the perpetuity of morning and evening, seed-time and harvest; these things become very refreshing to the soul. Well might the church, therefore, under these impressions, record the faithfulness of the Lord. Pray look at those scriptures in proof: Numbers 28:3-8; Genesis 8:20-22; Lamentations 3:22-23. And what are the tokens at which those that dwell in the uttermost parts of the earth are said to be afraid, but the manifestations of salvation by Jesus? When sinners are awakened, and saints refreshed, these tokens excite in every looker-on astonishment and surprise: so said the prophet should be the effect, Isaiah 41:5.


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Bibliography
Hawker, Robert, D.D. "Commentary on Psalms 65:8". "Hawker's Poor Man's Commentary". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/pmc/psalms-65.html. 1828.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

The uttermost parts, to wit, of the earth, which is added to this word, Psalms 65:5.

Thy tokens, or signs; either,

1. At the sun, and moon, and stars, which are called signs, Genesis 1:14. But these are not matter of terror, but of delight to men; and the commonness and constancy of their courses makes most men neither fear nor much regard them. Or,

2. At the great and terrible judgments which God inflicts upon wicked men, and particularly upon the enemies of his people. Or rather,

3. At those terrible thunders, and lightnings, and earthquakes, and comets, or other strange meteors or works of God in the air; for he is here speaking of the natural works of God.

The outgoings of the morning and evening; by which he understands, either,

1. The east, from whence the morning, or the sun, the cause of it, goeth forth, as it is expressed, Psalms 19:6; and the west, from whence the evening or night is poetically supposed to come forth. So the meaning is, that God gives all the people of the world, from east to west, occasion to rejoice in the effects of his bounty and goodness to them. But if the psalmist had meant this, it is not probable that he would have expressed it in such a dark and doubtful phrase, which is never used in that sense; but rather by those known and usual expressions, from east to west, or, from the rising of the sun to the going down thereof, which phrase he useth Psalms 1:1 113:3. Or rather,

2. The successive courses of the morning and evening; or of the sun and moon, which go forth at those times, thereby making the morning and evening; both which are said to rejoice poetically, because they give men occasion of rejoicing, which the sun or the morning doth, because it gives them opportunity for the despatch of business, and for the enjoyment of manifold recreations and delights; and the moon or evening doth so, because it invites men to that rest and sleep which is both refreshing and necessary for them. Thus this whole verse speaks of the natural works of God; the former clause of such as are extraordinary and terrible, the latter of such as are ordinary and delightful.


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Bibliography
Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Psalms 65:8". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/psalms-65.html. 1685.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

8. Uttermost parts—The boundaries, the whole compass. The full phrase occurs Isaiah 40:28, “The ends,” or compass, “of the earth.” So Job 28:24.

Afraid at thy tokens—The “terrible things” (Psalms 65:5) which God shall perform in the redemption of his people, by his judgments upon guilty men and nations, shall cause all dwellers upon earth to fear him. See Revelation 14:7.

Outgoings of… morning… evening—The breaking forth, or place of going forth; that is, the portals of morning and evening. These shall sing. That is, all creatures within the compass of the earth, from the gates of the east to those of the west, shall be made to rejoice. Such shall be the benign reign of the one only God and Jesus Christ his Son.


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Bibliography
Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on Psalms 65:8". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/psalms-65.html. 1874-1909.

Joseph Benson's Commentary of the Old and New Testaments

Psalms 65:8. They also that dwell in the uttermost parts — Namely, of the earth; are afraid at thy tokens — Hebrew, מאותתיךְ, meothotheicha, at thy signs, at the great and terrible judgments which thou inflictest upon wicked men, and particularly on the enemies of thy people. Or rather, at such occurrences as extraordinary thunders, lightnings, and meteors in the air, comets in the heavens, or volcanic eruptions and earthquakes on the earth; all which are the works of God, whatever secondary causes he may use to produce them. As if he had said, The remotest and most barbarous people are struck with the dread of thee, when thou alarmest them with any unusual tokens of thy power. Thou makest the out goings of the morning and evening to rejoice — The successive courses of the morning and evening, or of the sun and moon, which go forth at those times, the one bringing the light of the morning, and the other the shades of the evening, and both which are said poetically to rejoice, because they give men occasion of rejoicing. For as it is God that scatters the light of the morning, and draws the curtains of the evening, so he does both in favour to man. And how contrary soever light and darkness are to each other, or how inviolable soever the partition between them may be, both are equally welcome to the world in their season. And it is hard to say which is more welcome to us, the light of the morning, which befriends the business of the day, or the shadows of the evening, which befriend the repose of the night. Doth the watchman wait for the morning? So doth the hireling earnestly desire the shadow. Thus, this whole verse speaks of the natural works of God; the former clause of such as are extraordinary and terrible, the latter of such as are ordinary and delightful.


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Bibliography
Benson, Joseph. "Commentary on Psalms 65:8". Joseph Benson's Commentary. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/rbc/psalms-65.html. 1857.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Gentiles. By this invitation, he predicts their conversion.


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Bibliography
Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on Psalms 65:8". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/psalms-65.html. 1859.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

and evening. Supply Ellipsis from preceding clause: "and [the incomings of the] evening".

to rejoice = to shout for joy.


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Bibliography
Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on Psalms 65:8". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/psalms-65.html. 1909-1922.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(8) They also . . .—Or, So they.

The outgoings . . .—A pregnant expression for the rising of the morning and setting of the evening sun. East and west.

To rejoice.—Better, to sing for joy. The whole earth from one utmost bound to the other is vocal with praise of the Creator and Ruler of the universe. So the morning stars sang together at the creation (Job 38:7).


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Bibliography
Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on Psalms 65:8". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/psalms-65.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

They also that dwell in the uttermost parts are afraid at thy tokens: thou makest the outgoings of the morning and evening to rejoice.
in the
2:8
afraid
Thunder and lightning, storms and tempests, eclipses and meteors, tornadoes and earthquakes, are proofs to all that there is a Supreme Being, who is wonderful and terrible in His acts.
48:5,6; 66:3; 126:2; 135:9; Exodus 15:14-16; Joshua 2:9-11; Habakkuk 3:3-19; Acts 5:38,39; Revelation 11:13
outgoings
19:5; 74:16; 104:20-23; 136:8; Genesis 8:22; Deuteronomy 4:19; Job 38:12
the morning
The rising and setting sun, the morning and evening twilight, the invariable succession of day and night, are all ordained by Thee, and contribute to the happiness and continuance of man and beast.
rejoice
or, sing.
13; 148:3

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Bibliography
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Psalms 65:8". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/psalms-65.html.

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