Preface to Volume 3, Psalms 53-78
This volume completes half of my labor on this priceless book. It is my humble prayer that I may be spared to conclude the other portion. So uncertain is life and so often have people's plans remained unfinished that I will press on with all diligence, lest the lamp of life goes out before the writer has seen the word Finis at conclusion of the last volume.
This volume has taken more labor than any other because no great writers have explored this section of the Psalms. Some six or seven Psalms are exceptions and have been expounded and preached on, but the rest remain almost unplowed ground. Thus research has required a wider range of reading and far more laborious research. when one author writes on a portion of Scripture, all write, but other passages remain almost untouched. This has driven me more to the Latin authors and to a vein of exposition little worked these days. The neglect of these voluminous expositors is not reprehensible, for as a rule the authors are heavier than weighty.
"Work is long and life is short," and thus I found myself unequal to accomplish this accomplish this task unaided. So I called on the aid of my excellent friend, Mr. Gracey, the accomplished classical tutor of The Pastors' College, to help me in winnowing the enormous heaps of Latin comments. Huge folios, full of dreary word-spinning, yielded here and there a few good grains. I trust these will be valuable enough to repay my coadjutor and myself for our efforts. For the selection of extracts, I alone am responsible.
No object has been before me but to serve the church and to glorify God by thoroughly doing this work. I cannot hope to be financially remunerated for this effort. If only the expenses are met, I will be well content. The rest is an offering to the best of Masters, whose word is food and drink to those who study it. The enjoyment of this work is more than sufficient reward, and the hope of helping believers in their biblical studies is sweet.
The recent wage increase to printers and the rise of cost in paper and binding may compel an increase in the low price charged for these volumes, but this will not happen unless it becomes absolutely necessary to screen me from loss. As a larger sale will secure a return of my outlay, the matter is mainly in the hands of the public. Volume One is now in the third edition, and the second edition of Volume Two is on the press. I am led to hope that this present volume will also meet with a large and rapid sale. If so, the old price may be sufficient to cover the expenses.
My venerable friend, Mr. George Rogers, has furnished me with many hints for the notes to preachers. It is hoped that this portion of the work has been so improved that it will be the most useful part. Testimonies received lead to the belief that many students have found much help in that department in the first two volumes.
There is no need to multiply words in this preface, but it is necessary for me to bless the Lord for help given, help daily and hourly sought, while I have been occupied in this service. It is also on my heart to ask a favorable mention of my volumes from those who kindly appreciate them.