This stanza of Psalm 119 begins each verse with the Hebrew letter “Tsade.” These verses are heavily salted with references to the psalmist’s state of persecution from enemies (verse 141, 143). The point he makes, and the lesson from the stanza, is that he takes comfort from God’s word.
Some ascribe Psalm 84 to David (Spurgeon says it “exhales to us a Davidic perfume, it smells of the mountain heather and the lone places of the wilderness, where King David must have often lodged during his many wars”). Others hold that it was written during times of actual Temple worship during the monarchy (verse 9), suggesting that it was written during Solomon’s reign; and verses 4 and 10 certainly have that air.
In any case, the twelve verses of this hymn of praise are beautiful; and the KJV (which we include below) do better justice to the poetry than other versions IMHO. The theme of the song is the joy of being in the house of worship to the Lord – a day of which, verse 10 says is better than a thousand elsewhere. This blogger whole-hardheartedly agrees. There is no time that I am happier or more at peace than when I am worshiping the Lord with my brothers and sisters.
How amiable are thy tabernacles, O Lord of hosts!
My soul longeth, yea, even fainteth for the courts of the Lord: my heart and my flesh crieth out for the living God.
Yea, the sparrow hath found an house, and the swallow a nest for herself, where she may lay her young, even thine altars, O Lord of hosts, my King, and my God.
Blessed are they that dwell in thy house: they will be still praising thee. Selah.
Blessed is the man whose strength is in thee; in whose heart are the ways of them.
Who passing through the valley of Baca make it a well; the rain also filleth the pools.
They go from strength to strength, every one of them in Zion appeareth before God.
O Lord God of hosts, hear my prayer: give ear, O God of Jacob. Selah.
Behold, O God our shield, and look upon the face of thine anointed.
For a day in thy courts is better than a thousand. I had rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God, than to dwell in the tents of wickedness.
For the Lord God is a sun and shield: the Lord will give grace and glory: no good thing will he withhold from them that walk uprightly.
O Lord of hosts, blessed is the man that trusteth in thee.
Read or listen to audio of ESV version of this selection from this link.
some images © V. Gilbert & Arlisle F. Beers
Please note: I did not design the reading plan that I am following in my blog. All of my comments in this blog, however, are solely my responsibility. When reading ANY commentary, you should ALWAYS refer first to the scripture, which is God’s unchanging and unfailing word. Reading schedules, as well as a link to the site where you can get the reading plan that I’m currently following for yourself can be found on the “Bible Reading Schedules” page of my website at http://graceofourlord.com. For questions and help, please see the “FAQ” and “Summaries” pages there.