Psalms 118 Commentary

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Psalm 118:1

Psalm 118 begins with a common exhortation to “Give thanks to the LORD.” The reason he provides for us to give thanks is: “for He is good.” The psalmist’s proof that the LORD is good is: “For His lovingkindness is everlasting.”

Psalm 118:2-4

The psalmist concludes his introductory chorus by emphatically reinforcing the truth that the LORD’s lovingkindness is everlasting. He does this by repeating three times what he said in verse 1.

Psalm 118:5-7

The psalmist begins his poetic narrative (Psalm 118:5-27) by recalling a time when he called out to the LORD in his distress. The LORD answered and exalted him.

Psalm 118:8-9

The psalmist punctuates his poetic narrative to make the claims that it is better to refuge in the LORD than to trust in man or in princes.

Psalm 118:10-14

Three times the psalmist recounts how the nations surrounded him. Three times the psalmist boasts “In the name of the LORD I will cut them off.” He describes how the LORD will extinguish his enemies with fire.

Psalm 118:15-18

The Psalmist continues his poetic narrative testifying to the LORD’s everlasting kindness by depicting a rejoicing camp following the stunning victory in battle.

Psalm 118:19-21

With this portion of scripture, the psalmist continues his poetic narrative with a triumphal parade of the righteous entering the LORD’s gate. The lines of this song are prophetic of Jesus the Messiah’s triumphal entrance into Jerusalem.

Psalm 118:22-23

The Psalmist punctuates his poetic narrative with a memorable architectural metaphor. He says that the stone which the builders rejected has become the chief cornerstone.

Psalm 118:24-26

The psalmist continues his poetic narrative testifying of the LORD’s salvation with a praise that this day is the day of salvation which the LORD has made.

Psalm 118:27

The psalmist completes his poetic narrative with a declaration that the LORD is God and has given us light.

Psalm 118:28-29

Psalm 118 concludes with a familiar refrain: “Give thanks to the LORD for He is good; His lovingkindness is everlasting."