Psalms 27 Summary - The Cambridge Bible for Schools and Colleges
Enthusiastic confidence is the keynote of the first six verses of the Psalm. Under Jehovah’s guardianship the Psalmist knows no fear in the midst of dangers ( Psa 27:1-3). His highest desire is to enjoy Jehovah’s fellowship and protection as a guest in His house. He anticipates a speedy triumph over his foes, and promises grateful thanksgiving ( Psa 27:4-6). The swing of the rhythm corresponds to the energy of the thought.
Suddenly all is changed: the jubilant rhythm is abandoned; anxious supplication takes the place of joyous faith. Earnestly the Psalmist pleads that Jehovah will not forsake His servant, and appeals to His promises and His past mercies ( Psa 27:7-12). Yet in this crisis Jehovah is his only stay, and he concludes by encouraging himself to faith and patience ( Psa 27:13-14).
Thus the Psalm falls into two equal divisions, with a conclusion. If the two parts are by the same poet, he must clearly have written them at different times, and under the influence of different circumstances. When he added the prayer of Psa 27:7-14 to his former song he reaffirmed the faith of happier days, though it had ceased to give joy and comfort in his present distress. But the marked difference in tone, contents, and rhythm, makes it not improbable that two independent Psalms are here combined, or that a later poet appended Psa 27:7-14 to Psa 27:1-6. It is as though he would say: ‘I would fain appropriate this bold utterance of faith; but all is dark around me, and I can only pray in faltering tones, and strive to wait in patience.’
The Psalm (or at any rate the first part) has strong claims to be regarded as Davidic, and may best be assigned to the time of Absalom’s rebellion, shortly before the final battle. The language of Psa 27:2-3 is that of a warrior; Psa 27:3 breathes the same spirit as Psa 3:6; and with Psa 27:4 ff. comp. 2Sa 15:25. Jehovah’s abode is still a tent ( Psa 27:6), though it can be called a temple or palace ( Psa 27:4) as the abode of a king. Comp. 2Sa 6:17. The Sept. addition to the title, before he was anointed, would refer it to Saul’s persecution, or to the wars of the first seven years of his reign.
Comp. Psalms 3, 23, 91.
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The Cambridge Bible for Schools and Colleges
The Cambridge Bible for Schools and Colleges is a biblical commentary set published in parts by Cambridge University Press from 1882 onwards. Anglican bishop John Perowne was the general editor. The first section published was written by theologian Thomas Kelly Cheyne and covered the Book of Micah.
Perowne exercised limited editorial control over the writers of individual commentaries: his aim was "to leave each contributor to the unfettered exercise of his own judgment".