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Old 05-19-2008, 04:58 AM
Steven Avery Steven Avery is offline
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 462
Default Psalm 12:7 - Commentaries

Hi Folks,

Psalm 12:6-7
The words of the LORD are pure words:
as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times.
Thou shalt keep them, O LORD,
thou shalt preserve them from this generation for ever.

Originally Posted by freesundayschoollessons
the commentaries... are unanimously agreed that vs 7 refers to the poor.
FSSL, this is simply not true. Many of the commentaries are hard to access and some take either a dual or unsure view (e.g. Kraus, Kidner and Anderson recently) however I will share a bit. Lest somebody reading may otherwise actually believe what you declare above.

Thanks to Thomas Holland and David Cloud, the sources for some of these.

Dr. G. Campbell Morgan - (1863-1945) Notes on the Psalms
"The psalmist breaks out into praise of the purity of His words, and declares that Jehovah will 'keep them' and 'preserve them.' The 'them' here refers to the words. There is no promise made of widespread revival or renewal. It is the salvation of a remnant and the preservation of His own words which Jehovah promises."

John Wesley Commentary (Notes on the Old Testament - 1765)
Pure - Without the least mixture of falsehood;
and therefore shall infallibly be fulfilled.
Thou shalt keep them - Thy words or promises:
these thou wilt observe and keep,
both now, and from this generation for ever.

J. H. Eaton - Torch Bible Commentaries (1967)
"...but we may rather follow the main Hebrew tradition:
"Thou O Lord shalt keep them (i.e. watch over the words to fulfill them, Jer. 1:12)..."

Jeremiah 1:12
Then said the LORD unto me,
Thou hast well seen: for I will hasten my word to perform it.

Early Hebraics was split, and Ibn Ezra having the words of God as kept.

It is true there is less understanding in modern times as the study of Hebrew is more one-dimensional (computer lexicon vs. daily study of writers like Kimchi and Rashi and Ibn Ezra ... you can see a perfect example of this in the critically important verse in apologetics, Jeremiah 8:8, mangled in the modern versions) and diminished in modern scholarship. John Hinton being one of the only writers bringing this to the fore on Psalm 12, afaik only he and Bryan Racine even mention the energic nun in modern discussions. Today there also as there is more reliance on the wrong Hebrew text (note that there is a substantive variant in Psalm 12:7) and more confusion from variant readings like the Greek OT.

The next commentary is one of my favorites on Psalm 12, with the crisp relating to other scripture verses. From David Cloud.

Annotations by Henry Ainsworth, 1626.
Briggs commends Ainsworth as the "prince of Puritan commentators" and that his commentary on the Psalms is a "monument of learning." ... Ainsworth states that "the sayings" [of Psalm 12:7] are "words" or "promises" that are "tried" or "examined" "as in a fire." He cross references the reader to Psalm 18:31; 119:140; and Proverbs 30:5, each reference having to do with the purity of the word.

Psalms 18:31
As for God, his way is perfect:
the word of the LORD is tried:
he is a buckler to all those that trust in him.
For who is God save the LORD?
or who is a rock save our God?

Psalms 119:140
Thy word is very pure:
therefore thy servant loveth it.

Proverbs 30:5
Every word of God is pure:
he is a shield unto them that put their trust in him.

Note that the context of Psalm 18 is dual, saving the afflicted people as well.

Also please consider that the Reformation confessions, built on scripture, teaches exactly what we share as sound understanding of Psalm 12.

Westminster Confession on Bible Preservation
“The Old Testament in Hebrew (which was the native language of the people of God of old), and the New Testament in Greek (which, at the time of the writing of it, was most generally known to the nations), being immediately inspired by God, and by His singular care and providence, kept pure in all ages, are therefore authentical; so as, in all controversies of religion, the Church is finally to appeal unto them” (I.VIIIa).

If you agree .. what verses do you believe best supports this view ?


Last edited by Steven Avery; 05-19-2008 at 05:16 AM.