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“ ‘Solomon’s design,’ writes Matthew Henry, in driving us off from the world, by showing us its vanity, is to drive us to God and to our duty, that we may not walk in the way of the world, but by religious rules, nor depend upon the wealth of the world, but on religious advantages.’ The very tone of these verses indicate that there is a special intimacy of communion with God when His people enter into the solemn exercises of worship. Therefore, when we come into His courts to engage in formal worship, we are exhorted to put a restraint on our feet, lest we walk in a way that gives offense to Him.

Not only our feet, but our mouths are to be restrained, for we are taught to come before the presence of God to hear, and not to offer the sacrifice of fools. The ‘fools’ spoken of here are those who rush into God’s courts as though they have something to offer Him with their words. They are more concerned with what they will do and say in His presence- with the exercise of their ‘gifts,’ than with humbly and reverently bowing before His Word. They come to speak and please themselves with the overflow of their lips, and are not even conscious that they give offense to God: they ‘do not know that they do evil.’

Against this vain worship, Solomon reminds us, ‘God is in heaven, and you on earth: therefore let your words be few.’ The emphasis in worship is the transcendence of God, which requires His worshippers to approach Him in all due humility…

A proper understanding of God’s exalted glory will keep us from trampling His courts with vain and showy worship which serves no other purpose than to exalt the creature instead of the Creator. Open your ears, close your mouth, examine your heart, and govern your actions in the house of God as a humble creature who draws near to the Lord of Glory according to His Word.” (Comin, 206-207)

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