8. For in the hand of Jehovah there is a cup, and the wine is turbid, [or full of dregs: ] it is full of mixture, and he shall pour forth of it: surely they shall wring out the dregs of it, and all the wicked of the earth shall drink of it.9. But I will publish for ever, and will sing praise to the God of Jacob.10. And I will break all the horns of the wicked: but the horns of the righteous shall be exalted.
8. For in the hand of Jehovah there is a cup. The Psalmist here applies more directly to the use of the godly that judgment of which he has just now spoken. He affirms, that the object for which God reigns is, that no iniquity may remain unpunished; but that when wicked men have broken through all restraint and abandoned themselves to wickedness, he may drag them to deserved punishment. From this we again learn what estimate we ought to form of the providence of God -- that we ought to regard it as exercising its control by an ever-present energy over every part of our life. It is therefore asserted that God has in his hand a cup with which to make the wicked drunk. The word chmr, chamar, signifies full of dregs, and also red. As red wine among the Jews was the strongest and sharpest, we may suppose that it is here referred to; and the similitude is very appropriate, which represents God as having in his hand wine of a highly intoxicating character, with which to make the ungodly drunk even to death. It is implied, that the swiftness of divine vengeance is incredible, resembling the rapidity and power with which strong wine penetrates to the brain, and either produces madness or kindles a fever. It is on this account said, that the wine in God's cup is of a red color; as it is said in Proverbs 23:31,
|Look not upon the wine when it is red in the cup.|
Nor is it any objection to this that it is described a little after as full of mixture. These two things do not ill agree with each other; first, that the wicked are suddenly made drunk with the vengeance of God; and, secondly, that they drink it out even to the dregs, until they perish. Some give a different explanation of the term mixture, considering, but without any just ground, the allusion to be to the custom which prevails in warm climates of diluting wine with water. This expression, it is full of mixture, was rather added to give additional force to the statement of the prophet; his object being to compare the vehemence and fury of God's wrath to spiced wine. By these figures he intimates that it will be impossible for the ungodly to escape drinking the cup which God will put into their hands, and that they will be compelled to drain it to the last drop.
9. and 10. But I will publish for ever. This conclusion of the psalm evinces the joy which God's people felt from having experienced that He was their deliverer in adversity; for it seems to be their own experience which they engage to publish, and on account of which they resolve to sing praise to God. Whence also they gather, that by the divine aid they will overcome all the power of the reprobate; and that being themselves possessed of righteousness and equity, they will be sufficiently armed for their own preservation and defense. The expression, the horns of the righteous shall be exalted, implies, that the children of God, by a blameless and holy life, acquire greater strength, and more effectually protect themselves than if it were their endeavor to advance their own interests by every species of wickedness.