on Psalms 72 :8
He shall have dominion also from sea to sea - The best comment on this, as it refers to Solomon, may be found in 1 Kings 4:21, 1 Kings 4:24 : "And Solomon reigned over all kingdoms, from the river unto the land of the Philistines, and unto the border of Egypt; for he had dominion over all on this side the river, from Tiphsah even to Azzah, over all the kings on this side the river; and he had peace on all sides round about him."
Solomon, it appears, reigned over all the provinces from the river Euphrates to the land of the Philistines, even to the frontiers of Egypt. The Euphrates was on the east of Solomon's dominions; the Philistines were westward, on the Mediterranean sea; and Egypt was on the south. Solomon had therefore, as tributaries, the kingdoms of Syria, Damascus, Moab, and Ammon, which lay between the Euphrates and the Mediterranean. Thus he appears to have possessed all the land which God covenanted with Abraham to give to his posterity.
Unto the ends of the earth - Or land, must mean the tract of country along the Mediterranean sea, which was the boundary of the land on that side: but, as the words may refer to Christ, every thing may be taken in its utmost latitude and extent.
on Psalms 72 :8
He shall have dominion also from sea to sea - There is probably an allusion here to the promise in Exodus 23:31 : "And I will set thy bounds from the Red Sea even unto the sea of the Philistines, and from the desert unto the river." This was the original promise in regard to the bounds of the promised land. A promise similar to this occurs also in Genesis 15:18 : "In the same day the Lord made a covenant with Abram, saying, Unto thy seed have I given this land, from the river of Egypt unto the great river, the river Euphrates." The meaning here is, that what was implied in these ancient promises would be carried out under the reign of the king referred to in the psalm. The "immediate" allusion, therefore, in the phrase "from sea to sea," may have been from the Red Sea on the East to the Mediterranean on the West; but still the language is susceptible of a more enlarged application, and may mean from one sea to another; that is, embracing all the lands or countries lying between seas and oceans; or, in other words, that the dominion would be universal. Compare the notes at Psalm 2:8.
And from the river ... - The Euphrates. This was emphatically "the river" to the Hebrews - the great river - the greatest river known to them; and this river would be naturally understood as intended by the expression, unless there was something to limit it. Besides, this was expressly designated in the original covenant as the boundary of the promised land. See, as above, Genesis 15:18. The meaning here is, that, taking that river as one of the boundaries, or as a starting point, the dominion would extend from that to the utmost limits of the earth. It would have no other boundary but the limits of the world. The promise, therefore, is, that the dominion would be universal, or would pervade the earth; at once a kingdom of peace, and yet spreading itself all over the world. It is hardly necessary to say that this did not occur under Solomon, and that it could not have been expected that it would occur under him, and especially as it was expected that his reign would be one of peace and not of conquest. It would find its complete fulfillment only under the Messiah.
on Psalms 72 :8