E i¹ 1-4. The righteous. Their salvation. k² 5,6. The wicked. Brought down. i² 7-9. The righteous. Their way. k² 10,11. The wicked. Devoured. i³ 12,13. The righteous. Their God. k³ 14. The wicked (Rephaim). No resurrection. i4 15-19-. The righteous nation. Increased. Resurrection. k4 -19. The wicked (Rephaim). No resurrection. i5 20. The righteous nation. Preserved. k5 21. The wicked. Destroyed.
1 In that day (i.e. in the yet future day, when these judgments shall have been accomplished) shall this song be sung in the land of Judah (in Chapter 26 we have the Song of Judah; in Chapter 27, the Song of Israel); We have a strong city; salvation will God appoint for walls and bulwarks.
2 Open you all the gates, that the righteous nation which maintains fidelity may enter in. (see Deut.32:20)
3 You wilt keep him in perfect peace (Heb. peace, peace. Cp. 27:5), whose thought is stayed on You: because he confides in You.
4 Trust you all in the Lord for ever: for in THE LORD, YAHAVEH is a Rock of ages: (see Deut. 32:4,18,30, same word as here. Found only in Deuteronomy and as applied to God; and here, and 30:29; and 44:8. Cp. Hab. 1:12. 1 Sam.2:2. 2 Sam. 2:3, and Psalms)
5 For He brings down them that dwell on high (see 25:12); the lofty city, He lays it low; He lays it low, even to the earth; He brings it even to the dust.
6 The foot shall tread it down, even the feet of the afflicted, and the steps of the lowly ones.
7 The way (see 2:3 "path") of a just one is a level way: You, most upright, do ponder the path of a just one.
8 Yes, in the way of your judgments, O Lord, have we waited for You (see 25:9); the desire of our soul is to Your name, and to the remembrance of you. (same as "memorial" in Ex. 3:15. The words are again quoted in Pss. 102:12; 135:13 and Hos. 12:5, and nowhere else)
9 With my soul have I desired You in the night; yes, with my spirit (ruach) within me will I seek thee early: for when Your judgments are in the earth, the inhabitants of the world will learn righteousness. (hence the multitudes will come out of the great tribulation in Rev. 7:14-17)
10 Let favor be showed to the lawless one, yet will he not learn righteousness: in the land of uprightness will he deal unjustly, and will not behold the majesty of the Lord.
11 The Lord, when Your hand is lifted up, they will not see: but they shall see, and be ashamed for their envy at the people; yes, the fire of Your enemies shall devour them. (or, fire shall devour Your adversaries)
12 Lord, You will arrange peace for us: for You also have wrought all our works for us.
13 O Lord our God, other owners beside You have domineered over us (referring to the Canaanite oppressors of Israel and their false gods): but by thee only will we call upon You (see Ps.20:1).
14 They are dead (i.e. the "other lords" of v.13. Heb. methim. Not dead men, as such, for "all" men shall rise again [Dan.12:2. John 5:28,29. Acts 23:6,8; 24:15. 1 Cor. 15:22. Rev.20:4-6,13], but those referred to in v.13), they shall not live; they are the Rephaim (this is a proper name, and should not be translated. Where it is translated it is always rendered "giants" or "dead" [v.10. Job 26:5. Ps. 88:10. Prov. 2:18; 9:18; 21:16. Isa. 14:9]; why not so here? or transliterated, as it is in 17:5), they shall not rise (these Rephaim will not rise. They were the progeny of the fallen angels: these latter are kept "in prison" [1 Pet.3:19], in "chains" [2 Pet. 2:4.. Jude 6], "reserved" unto judgment: but their progeny will "not rise" [vv.14,19] or be judged, for they have been "visited", "destroyed", and "perished". See Gen. 6:2,4): therefore have You visited and destroyed them, and made all their memory to perish.
15 You have added to the nation (i.e. Israel. The future nation of Matt.21:43), O Lord, You have increased the nation: thou art glorified: You have enlarged (or extended) all the boundaries of the land.
16 Lord, in trouble have they visited You, they poured out a prayer when Your discipline was upon them.
17 Like as a woman with child, that draws near the time of her delivery, is in pain, and cries out in her pangs (see Gen. 3:16. Cp. 13:8;37:3; 42:14; 66:7,9. These refer to the birth-pangs of the Great Tribulation, which issue in the new nation); so have we been in Your sight, O Lord.
18 We have been with child, we have been in pain, we have as it were brought forth wind (ruach); we have not wrought any deliverance in the earth; nor did the inhabitants of the world come to the light (i.e. by being born).
19 Your dead ones shall live (Heb. methim, as in v.14. These are very different from the dead in v.14. They are Yehovah's dead. These shall rise), together with my dead body shall they arise (i.e. all the dead bodies of Yehovah's people. I.e. spiritual body. All these shall awake and sing [Ps.17:15]). Awake and sing, all you that lie in the dust (i.e. buried in the dust of the earth): for thy dew is like the dew upon herbs, (i.e. reviving them. Cp. 66:14)
but (introducing the important contrast already expressed in v.14) the earth shall cast out the Rephaim. (or, cast away. Not yield up in resurrection. Whom will the earth thus cast away? the Rephaim. These will "not rise". See v.14)
20 Go, My People, enter you into your chambers, and shut your doors about thee: hide yourself as it were for a little moment (see Prov.5:14), until the indignation be overpast.
21 For, behold, the Lord comes out of His place to punish the inhabitants of the earth for their iniquity: the earth also shall disclose her blood (see Gen.4:10,11), and shall no more cover her slain.