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Notes on the Psalms.



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Analysis of the Contents.
“In its general arrangement the volume begins with a consideration of
the claims of the Bible as a guide on the subject of religion (1), and with an
effort to show (11.) that the acknowledged obscurities in that Book should
not deter us from accrediting its claims; with a statement (111.) of the
claims of Christianity, and an attempt to show (IV.) that the condition of
man could not be benefitted by the rejection of Christianity, and that the
same difficulties precisely would remain with no known method whatever of
relief. The next object (v.) is to show that Christianity reveals the true
ground of the importance attributed to man in the plan of salvation ; that
the earth is fitted to be a place of probation (v1.), and that man is actually
on probation (v11.); and that in religion, as in other things, he should
accommodate himself to what are the actual arrangements of the Divine
government (VIII.) The next object is to explain the condition in which
the Gospel FINDS man—as an actual state which Christianity did not
originate, for which it is not responsible, and which is a simple matter of fact
in which all men are equally interested, whatever system of religion may be
true or false (Ix.); a state which naturally prompts to the inquiry what
must be done in order to be saved—an inquiry which springs up in the
heart of man everywhere, and in reference to which man pants for an
answer (x.) This is followed (XI.—XIV.) by a description of the struggles
of a convicted sinner-and by an attempt to show what is necessary, in the
nature of things, to give peace to a mind in that condition. To meet the
case, the mind thus anxious is directed to the mercy of God (xv.), and the
effort is made to show that it is only an atonement for sin that can give
permanent peace to the soul conscious of guilt (xvI., XVII.) The doctrine
of Regeneration, or the new birth, is then considered (XVIII.-XX.); an
attempt is made to vindicate and explain the conditions—repentance and
faith-which are. made necessary to salvation, and to show not only their
place in a revealed system of religion, but their relation to the human mind
and the circumstances in which man is placed (XXI.-XXVIII.); and the
whole series is closed (XXIX.-XXXVI.) by a consideration of the nature of
justification, or the method by which a sinner may be just with God.

“It will be seen that these topics embrace the most material and important
inquiries which can come before the mind on the question how man may be
saved ; and if a correct representation is given of them, they will furnish to
an inquirer after truth a just view of the way of salvation. I commit this
volume to the public with the hope that it may be found to be a safe guide
on the most momentous inquiry which can come before the human mind.
I have abundant occasion for gratitude for the manner in which the volumes
that I have published heretofore have been received by the British public,
as well as by my own countrymen; and I would hope that this volume may
contribute something to the diffusion of the knowledge of the great principles
of religious duty and doctrine which it has been the labour of my life to
illustrate and defend."--ALBERT BARNES.

Copyright in Great Britain and Freland, and the Colonies.

(First Published in London during the Author's residence in the British Dominions.)









Printed and published by EDWARD KNIGHT, 90, Bartholomew Close;



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THESE Notes on the Book of Psalms complete my labours in endeavouring to explain and illustrate the sacred Scriptures. At my time of life,—with the partial failure of vision with which I have been afflicted for more than twelve years,—with the other cares and burdens resting on me, —and with the moral certainty that the infirmities of age, if I am spared, must soon come upon me, I could hope to accomplish no more ;-and I shall attempt no more.

These Notes were commenced more than twelve years ago, and were undertaken in pursuance of a desire long cherished. For this work I had been making preparation for several years previous by the collection of such Commentaries on the Psalms as I'could obtain, that might assist me in preparing something on this portion of the Sacred Volume that might at once be useful to others, and might make it my duty and privilege, in this the closing labour of my life in this department, to contemplate the beauties of this book by a close study,--an employment than which none could be more appropriate for one who looks at the end of all his earthly labours as rapidly approaching.

The work has been prosecuted with such leisure as I could command,—the whole of it having been written, as all my other Commentaries have been, in the early hours of the morning, uniformly closing my daily task in this

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