God’s Kindness to Rebellious Israel
A #Ps. 74:titleContemplation of Asaph.
1Give ear, O my people, to my law;
Incline your ears to the words of my mouth.
2I will open my mouth in a #Matt. 13:34, 35parable;
I will utter dark sayings of old,
3Which we have heard and known,
And our fathers have told us.
4#Ex. 12:26, 27; Deut. 4:9; 6:7; Job 15:18; Is. 38:19; Joel 1:3We will not hide them from their children,
#Ex. 13:8, 14Telling to the generation to come the praises of the Lord,
And His strength and His wonderful works that He has done.
5For #Ps. 147:19He established a testimony in Jacob,
And appointed a law in Israel,
Which He commanded our fathers,
That #Deut. 4:9; 11:19they should make them known to their children;
6#Ps. 102:18That the generation to come might know them,
The children who would be born,
That they may arise and declare them to their children,
7That they may set their hope in God,
And not forget the works of God,
But keep His commandments;
8And #2 Kin. 17:14; 2 Chr. 30:7; Ezek. 20:18may not be like their fathers,
#Ex. 32:9; Deut. 9:7, 24; 31:27; Judg. 2:19; Is. 30:9A stubborn and rebellious generation,
A generation #Job 11:13; Ps. 78:37that did not set its heart aright,
And whose spirit was not faithful to God.
9The children of Ephraim, being armed and carrying bows,
Turned back in the day of battle.
10#2 Kin. 17:15They did not keep the covenant of God;
They refused to walk in His law,
11And #Ps. 106:13forgot His works
And His wonders that He had shown them.
12#Ex. 7—12Marvelous things He did in the sight of their fathers,
In the land of Egypt, #Num. 13:22; Is. 19:11; 30:4; Ezek. 30:14in the field of Zoan.
13#Ex. 14:21He divided the sea and caused them to pass through;
And #Ex. 15:8He made the waters stand up like a heap.
14#Ex. 13:21In the daytime also He led them with the cloud,
And all the night with a light of fire.
15#Ex. 17:6; Num. 20:11; Is. 48:21; (1 Cor. 10:4)He split the rocks in the wilderness,
And gave them drink in abundance like the depths.
16He also brought #Num. 20:8, 10, 11streams out of the rock,
And caused waters to run down like rivers.
17But they sinned even more against Him
By #Deut. 9:22; Is. 63:10; Heb. 3:16rebelling against the Most High in the wilderness.
18And #Ex. 16:2they tested God in their heart
By asking for the food of their fancy.
19#Ex. 16:3; Num. 11:4; 20:3; 21:5Yes, they spoke against God:
They said, “Can God prepare a table in the wilderness?
20#Num. 20:11Behold, He struck the rock,
So that the waters gushed out,
And the streams overflowed.
Can He give bread also?
Can He provide meat for His people?”
21Therefore the Lord heard this and #Num. 11:1was furious;
So a fire was kindled against Jacob,
And anger also came up against Israel,
22Because they #Deut. 1:32; 9:23; (Heb. 3:18)did not believe in God,
And did not trust in His salvation.
23Yet He had commanded the clouds above,
#Gen. 7:11; (Mal. 3:10)And opened the doors of heaven,
24#Ex. 16:4Had rained down manna on them to eat,
And given them of the bread of #John 6:31heaven.
25Men ate angels’ food;
He sent them food to the full.
26#Num. 11:31He caused an east wind to blow in the heavens;
And by His power He brought in the south wind.
27He also rained meat on them like the dust,
Feathered fowl like the sand of the seas;
28And He let them fall in the midst of their camp,
All around their dwellings.
29#Num. 11:19, 20So they ate and were well filled,
For He gave them their own desire.
30They were not deprived of their craving;
But #Num. 11:33while their food was still in their mouths,
31The wrath of God came against them,
And slew the stoutest of them,
And struck down the choice men of Israel.
32In spite of this #Num. 14:16, 17they still sinned,
And #Num. 14:11; Ps. 78:11, 22did not believe in His wondrous works.
33#Num. 14:29, 35Therefore their days He consumed in futility,
And their years in fear.
34#Num. 21:7; (Hos. 5:15)When He slew them, then they sought Him;
And they returned and sought earnestly for God.
35Then they remembered that #(Deut. 32:4, 15)God was their rock,
And the Most High God #(Ex. 15:13); Deut. 7:8; Is. 41:14; 44:6; 63:9their Redeemer.
36Nevertheless they #Ex. 24:7, 8; Ezek. 33:31flattered Him with their mouth,
And they lied to Him with their tongue;
37For their heart was not steadfast with Him,
Nor were they faithful in His covenant.
38#(Num. 14:18–20)But He, being full of #Ex. 34:6compassion, forgave their iniquity,
And did not destroy them.
Yes, many a time #(Is. 48:9)He turned His anger away,
And #1 Kin. 21:29did not stir up all His wrath;
39For #Job 10:9; Ps. 103:14–16He remembered #John 3:6that they were but flesh,
#(Job 7:7, 16; James 4:14)A breath that passes away and does not come again.
40How often they #Ps. 95:8–10; (Eph. 4:30); Heb. 3:16provoked Him in the wilderness,
And grieved Him in the desert!
41Yes, #Num. 14:22; Deut. 6:16again and again they tempted God,
And limited the Holy One of Israel.
42They did not remember His power:
The day when He redeemed them from the enemy,
43When He worked His signs in Egypt,
And His wonders in the field of Zoan;
44#Ex. 7:20Turned their rivers into blood,
And their streams, that they could not drink.
45#Ex. 8:24He sent swarms of flies among them, which devoured them,
And #Ex. 8:6frogs, which destroyed them.
46He also gave their crops to the caterpillar,
And their labor to the #Ex. 10:14locust.
47#Ex. 9:23–25He destroyed their vines with hail,
And their sycamore trees with frost.
48He also gave up their #Ex. 9:19cattle to the hail,
And their flocks to fiery lightning.
49He cast on them the fierceness of His anger,
Wrath, indignation, and trouble,
By sending angels of destruction among them.
50He made a path for His anger;
He did not spare their soul from death,
But gave their life over to the plague,
51And destroyed all the #Ex. 12:29, 30firstborn in Egypt,
The first of their strength in the tents of Ham.
52But He #Ps. 77:20made His own people go forth like sheep,
And guided them in the wilderness like a flock;
53And He #Ex. 14:19, 20led them on safely, so that they did not fear;
But the sea #Ex. 14:27, 28overwhelmed their enemies.
54And He brought them to His #Ex. 15:17holy border,
This mountain #Ps. 44:3which His right hand had acquired.
55#Josh. 11:16–23; Ps. 44:2He also drove out the nations before them,
#Josh. 13:7; 19:51; 23:4Allotted them an inheritance by survey,
And made the tribes of Israel dwell in their tents.
56#Judg. 2:11–13Yet they tested and provoked the Most High God,
And did not keep His testimonies,
57But #Ezek. 20:27, 28turned back and acted unfaithfully like their fathers;
They were turned aside #Hos. 7:16like a deceitful bow.
58#Deut. 32:16, 21; Judg. 2:12; 1 Kin. 14:9; Is. 65:3For they provoked Him to anger with their #Deut. 12:2high places,
And moved Him to jealousy with their carved images.
59When God heard this, He was furious,
And greatly abhorred Israel,
60#1 Sam. 4:11; Jer. 7:12–14; 26:6–9So that He forsook the tabernacle of Shiloh,
The tent He had placed among men,
61#Judg. 18:30And delivered His strength into captivity,
And His glory into the enemy’s hand.
62#Judg. 20:21; 1 Sam. 4:10He also gave His people over to the sword,
And was furious with His inheritance.
63The fire consumed their young men,
And #Jer. 7:34; 16:9; 25:10their maidens were not given in marriage.
64#1 Sam. 4:17; 22:18Their priests fell by the sword,
And #Job 27:15; Ezek. 24:23their widows made no lamentation.
65Then the Lord awoke as from sleep,
#Is. 42:13Like a mighty man who shouts because of wine.
66And #1 Sam. 5:6He beat back His enemies;
He put them to a perpetual reproach.
67Moreover He rejected the tent of Joseph,
And did not choose the tribe of Ephraim,
68But chose the tribe of Judah,
Mount Zion #(Ps. 87:2)which He loved.
69And He built His #1 Kin. 6:1–38sanctuary like the heights,
Like the earth which He has established forever.
70#1 Sam. 16:11, 12; 2 Sam. 7:8He also chose David His servant,
And took him from the sheepfolds;
71From following #2 Sam. 7:8; (Is. 40:11)the ewes that had young He brought him,
#2 Sam. 5:2; 1 Chr. 11:2To shepherd Jacob His people,
And Israel His inheritance.
72So he shepherded them according to the #1 Kin. 9:4integrity of his heart,
And guided them by the skillfulness of his hands.