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Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Psalms 75:3

 

 

"The earth and all who dwell in it melt; It is I who have firmly set its pillars. Selah.

Adam Clarke Commentary

The earth and all the inhabitants thereof are dissolved - They all depend on me; and whenever I withdraw the power by which they exist and live, they are immediately dissolved.

I bear up the pillars of it - By the word of my power all things are upheld, and without me nothing can subsist. Those who consider this Psalm to have been written by David before he was anointed king over All Israel, understand the words thus: "All is at present in a state of confusion; violence and injustice reign: but when 'I shall receive the whole congregation,' when all the tribes shall acknowledge me as king, I will reorganize the whole constitution. It is true that the land and all its inhabitants are dissolved - unsettled and unconnected by the bands of civil interest. The whole system is disorganized: 'I bear up the pillars of it;' the expectation of the chief people is placed upon me; and it is the hope they have of my coming speedily to the throne of all Israel that prevents them from breaking out into actual rebellion."


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Bibliography
Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on Psalms 75:3". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/psalms-75.html. 1832.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

The earth and all the inhabitants thereof are dissolved - The word rendered “dissolved” means properly to melt, to flow down; then, to melt away, to pine away, to perish. Isaiah 64:7; Job 30:22; Nahum 1:5; Psalm 107:26. Here it means that there was, as it were, a general breaking up of things; or that none of the institutions of the land seemed to have any stability. There seemed to be no government, but universal anarchy and confusion.

I bear up the pillars of it - Of the earth; of society. The earth here is compared with an edifice supported by pillars. Compare Judges 16:26; 1 Samuel 2:8; 1 Timothy 3:15. As applied to a prince or ruler, this means that the permanent structure of the state, the welfare of society, depended on his administration. If, according to the view of others, it is applied to God, the meaning is, that as he upholds the world, there cannot be permanent misrule; that amidst all the commotions of earth, and all that seemed to threaten ruin, his hand sustained all, and he would not allow things to proceed to permanent disorder. In the former case, the assertion would be true if a prince felt that he had power to support the government, and to restore order; in the latter case, it must be true, for God sustains the earth, and as he can check disorder when he shall judge it best to interpose, so he will not permit it ultimately to prevail.

Selah - A musical pause. See the notes at Psalm 3:2.


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Bibliography
Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on Psalms 75:3". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/psalms-75.html. 1870.

The Biblical Illustrator

Psalms 75:3

I bear up the pillars of it.

God behind nature

It is literally true in the realm of nature. “I bear up the pillars of it.” God is being gradually eliminated from His own world. In olden time God was brought in at every nook and corner and turn. If it rained, the Lord had opened the bottles of heaven. If there was a drought, the Lord had locked up the heavens. If a hurricane occurred, the Lord had raised up a mighty wind. In ancient times men saw God in all the phenomena of nature. We are more educated now--indeed, so educated that we have nearly excluded God from the realm of His own universe. There is a scientific explanation for everything. No matter what may happen, we are told, “There are the pillars that support, and there is nothing supernatural.” But the Lord comes in and asks this question, “Who supports the pillars?” If a semi-infidel world says, “Everything can be explained by science, and that which at present seems almost insoluble has only to be waited for a little while, and the pillars will appear,” God says, “True, but then 1 bear up the pillars.” (A. G. Brown.)


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Bibliography
Exell, Joseph S. "Commentary on "Psalms 75:3". The Biblical Illustrator. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/tbi/psalms-75.html. 1905-1909. New York.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

The earth and all the inhabitants thereof are dissolved,.... Or "melted"F16נמגים "liquefacti", Montanus; "liquefiet", Musculus. ; the inhabitants, through fear and dread of the righteous Judge, appearing in the clouds of heaven, and of the wrath that is coming on they are deserving of; and the earth, through fire, when the heavens being on fire shall be dissolved, the elements melt with fervent heat, and the earth and the works therein shall be burnt up, 2 Peter 3:10.

I bear up the pillars of it.: so that it shall not utterly perish; for though by the fire, at the general conflagration, the heavens and the earth will be so melted and dissolved as to lose their present form, and shall be purged and purified from all noxious qualities, the effects of sin; yet the substance will remain, out of which will be formed new heavens and a new earth, and this through the power of Christ sustaining it, and preserving it from entire destruction or annihilation. R. Obadiah by "pillars" understands in a figurative sense the righteous, for whose sake the world is continued in its being; these at the general conflagration will be bore up and preserved by Christ, whom they shall meet in the air, even the church, who is the pillar and ground of truth; and not only the ministers of the Gospel, who are pillars in Christ's house, but also every believer, which is a pillar there, that shall never go out, 1 Timothy 3:15. Aben Ezra and Kimchi interpret the pillars of the mountains.

Selah. See Gill on Psalm 3:2.


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Bibliography
Gill, John. "Commentary on Psalms 75:3". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/psalms-75.html. 1999.

Geneva Study Bible

The earth and all the inhabitants thereof are dissolved: I bear up the pillars d of it. Selah.

(d) Though all things are brought to ruin, yet I can restore and preserve them.

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Bibliography
Beza, Theodore. "Commentary on Psalms 75:3". "The 1599 Geneva Study Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/gsb/psalms-75.html. 1599-1645.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

pillars of it — (1 Samuel 2:8).


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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 75:3". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jfb/psalms-75.html. 1871-8.

Wesley's Explanatory Notes

The earth and all the inhabitants thereof are dissolved: I bear up the pillars of it. /*Selah*/.

Dissolved — Or, destroyed; by intestine divisions and wars.

I hear — I support it, by maintaining religion and justice, by setting up good magistrates, and encouraging good ministers, and good men, who are indeed the pillars of a nation.


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Bibliography
Wesley, John. "Commentary on Psalms 75:3". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/wen/psalms-75.html. 1765.

Calvin's Commentary on the Bible

3.The earth is dissolved, and all its inhabitants. Many commentators are of opinion that these words are properly applicable to Christ, at whose coming it behoved the earth and its inhabitants to be shaken. He reigns, as we know, that he may destroy the old man, and he commences his spiritual kingdom with the destruction of the flesh; but he conducts his administration in such a manner as that afterwards there follows the restoration of the new man. Of the second part of the verse, I will establish the pillars of it, they make the same application, explaining it as if Christ had said, As soon as I come into the world, the earth with its inhabitants shall melt and be dissolved; but immediately after I will establish it upon firm and solid foundations; for my elect ones, renewed by my Spirit, shall no longer be like grass or withered flowers, but shall have conferred upon them new and unwonted stability. I do not, however, think that such a refined interpretation ever entered into the mind of the prophet, whose words I consider as simply meaning, that although the earth may be dissolved, God has the props or supports of it in his own hand. This verse is connected with the preceding; for it confirms the truth that God in due time will manifest himself to be an impartial and righteous judge; it being an easy matter for him, although the whole fabric of the world were fallen into ruins, to rebuild it from its decayed materials. At the same time, I have no doubt that there is a reference to the actual state of things in the natural world. The earth occupies the lowest place in the celestial sphere, and yet instead of having foundations on which it is supported, is it not rather suspended in the midst of the air? Besides, since so many waters penetrate and pass through its veins, would it not be dissolved were it not established by the secret power of God? While, however, the prophet alludes to the natural state of the earth, he, nevertheless, rises higher, teaching us, that were the world even in ruins, it is in the power of God to re-establish it.


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Bibliography
Calvin, John. "Commentary on Psalms 75:3". "Calvin's Commentary on the Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/cal/psalms-75.html. 1840-57.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

Psalms 75:3 The earth and all the inhabitants thereof are dissolved: I bear up the pillars of it. Selah.

Ver. 3. The earth and all the inhabitants thereof are dissolved] Both Church and commonwealth here are utterly out of order; I shall endeavour mine utmost to set all to rights, and so to preserve the world from ruin, which subsisteth by and for the sake of God’s Israel, Absque stationibus non staret mundus.

I bear up the pillars of it] Semen sanctum statumen terrae, Isaiah 6:13, The holy seed upholdeth the state. David did (as Lucan saith of Cato), toti genitum se credere mundo; Jesus Christ much more; he is the true Atlas, upholding all things by the word of his power, Hebrews 1:3.


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Bibliography
Trapp, John. "Commentary on Psalms 75:3". John Trapp Complete Commentary. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/psalms-75.html. 1865-1868.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

Dissolved; or, melted, consumed or destroyed; partly by the ill government of Saul and Ish-bosheth, and the great officers of state and war under them; and partly by intestine divisions and wars.

I bear up the pillars of it: howsoever I am traduced by mine enemies as the great disturber of the land, I must do myself this right, to affirm that, under God, I do support and establish it, by maintaining religion and justice, and by setting us good magistrates, and encouraging good ministers, and good men, which are indeed the pillars of a nation.


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Bibliography
Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Psalms 75:3". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/psalms-75.html. 1685.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

3. The earth and all the inhabitants… are dissolved—A figurative description of a wasted country and a dispirited people.

Dissolved— Melted, become faint with fear and discouragement. Psalms 107:26; Ezekiel 21:15. Isaiah 14:31, “Thou, whole Palestina, art dissolved:” this latter is spoken of this same or a subsequent Assyrian invasion.

Earth—The landthe “earth” so far as relates to Hebrew territory. To the eye the desolation seemed world wide.

I bear up the pillars of it—I adjust its pillars. The king still speaks in the name of God. Every thing in the kingdom is shaken and thrown out of order except the throne. From this solid centre and basis the reconstruction of government and the restoration of order and prosperity must proceed. “The pillars and foundations of the earth signify those fundamental laws which are essential to the existence and well being of society.”French and Skinner. The lofty image here employed is often used to denote the shaking or overthrow of governments. Psalms 46:2; Psalms 82:5; Jeremiah 4:23-27. It is quite common for interpreters to apply this to God, or to Christ as king, as speaking of himself and of mankind; but it is a safer method of interpretation to follow the historic and literal sense where it adequately meets the import of the language. To spiritualize historic facts does not interpret them; but the underlying moral of history is of universal application, and both fact and moral are given in holy Scripture to illustrate the divine government.


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Bibliography
Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on Psalms 75:3". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/psalms-75.html. 1874-1909.

Joseph Benson's Commentary of the Old and New Testaments

Psalms 75:3. The earth — Or land; and all the inhabitants thereof are dissolved — Or melted, as נמגים, nemogim, may be rendered. It seems to mean, either that the Israelitish affairs were thrown into confusion, and the frame of the government dissolved by their civil distractions, or that the people were consumed and destroyed by the continual irruptions of foreign enemies. I bear up the pillars of it — How much soever I am traduced by mine enemies, as the great disturber of the land, I must do myself this right to affirm that, under God, I do support and establish it, by maintaining religion and justice, by appointing, countenancing, and supporting good magistrates, and by encouraging the Lord’s prophets and servants, and all good men, who are indeed the pillars of a nation.


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Bibliography
Benson, Joseph. "Commentary on Psalms 75:3". Joseph Benson's Commentary. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/rbc/psalms-75.html. 1857.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Peace. Hebrew Shalem. --- Abode. Hebrew, "tent or hut," an expression which shews, how much the finest structure of the East was beneath God's majesty. (Calmet) --- He suffered the rest of the world to follow their own inventions, and false gods, reserving Israel for his Church. (Worthington)


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Bibliography
Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on Psalms 75:3". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/psalms-75.html. 1859.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

bear up = have established.

Selah. Connecting the set time of judgment with the judgment itself as it will affect the wicked and the righteous.


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Bibliography
Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on Psalms 75:3". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/psalms-75.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

The earth and all the inhabitants thereof are dissolved: I bear up the pillars of it. Selah.

The earth and all the inhabitants thereof are dissolved - figuratively describing the political disorganisation of the kingdoms by the Assyrian conqueror. So Psalms 46:2; Psalms 46:6-7 uses the same figure of the same event, ultimately to be fulfilled before Christ's coming (Luke 30:25-27; Isaiah 24:19-23 ).

I bear up the, pillars of it - `I have weighed the pillars of it' (Hengstenberg). The Hebrew [ tikan (Hebrew #8505)] means literally to weigh by exact weight and measure, and so to consolidate and to compact firmly: as God did at creation (Job ; 27:25; Isaiah 40:5; Isaiah 40:21 ). I, who called forth the world into its beautiful order at creation from the previous chaos, can and will also bring it back to order from its present disorganization.


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Bibliography
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Psalms 75:3". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/psalms-75.html. 1871-8.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(3) The earth . . .—Better—

“Are earth and all its inhabitants dissolved?

It was I adjusted its pillars.”

(See Hannah’s song, 1 Samuel 2:8.) Though the crisis be such that all is confusion and anarchy (comp. Isaiah 24:19-20 for the figure), there is no cause for fear; there is still a Ruler in heaven, He who built up the edifice which now seems to totter to its fall. The verb rendered in the Authorised Version “bear up,” is used in Job 28:15, Isaiah 40:12 in the sense of “weighing” or “measuring;” but with the same allusion to the creative work of God. Here it plainly means, so to adjust the pillars as to make them equal to the weight they have to bear.

The “pillars” are the “mountains,” as in Job 26:11. (See Note, Psalms 24:2.) Comp. Shelley—

“Sunbeam proof, I hang like a roof,

The mountains its columns are.”


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Bibliography
Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on Psalms 75:3". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/psalms-75.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

The earth and all the inhabitants thereof are dissolved: I bear up the pillars of it. Selah.
earth
60:1-3; 78:60-72; 1 Samuel 31:1-7; Isaiah 24:1-12
I bear
1 Samuel 18:7; 25:28; 2 Samuel 5:2; Isaiah 49:8; Hebrews 1:3
pillars
1 Samuel 2:8

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Bibliography
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Psalms 75:3". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/psalms-75.html.

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