Friday, August 3, 2007

Psalm Eight

David, as great as he was, had much weakness and saw many troubles. In times of his troubles and weakness he would often return to God with praise to draw strength. As he looked upon the things created by the hand of God he was reminded of God’s great power and glory. In this hymn of praise, David marvels at the majesty of the Lord, and is reminded that He even uses the weak infants of man to confound the wise and defeat His adversaries. Then it seems that he ponders the question, what is man that God would take thought of him. He reminisces the splendor of God’s creation and then his thoughts turns to the fact that He had entrusted all these wonderful things to the dominion of man.

O LORD, our Lord, how majestic is Your name in all the earth, Who have displayed Your splendor above the heavens (Psalm 8:1 NASU)!

David begins by acknowledging our Lord as Lord of all and the greatness of His name in all the earth and that He has displayed His glory above or greater than the heavens.

From the mouth of infants and nursing babes You have established strength because of Your adversaries, to make the enemy and the revengeful cease (Psalm 8:2 NASU).

Now it seems that he begins to marvel at the fact that God has used the mouth of babes (the sons of men---see v. 4)) to establish strength to overcome the adversaries. (See Matthew 11:25; 21:14-16; 1st Corinthians 1:27).

When I consider Your heavens, the work of Your fingers, the moon and the stars, which You have ordained; what is man that You take thought of him, and the son of man that You care for him (Psalm 8:3-4 NASU)? (See Hebrews 2:6-9).

When David considers the stupendous work of God’s creation his thoughts are of man who may be seen as no more than a speck of dust in comparison, but yet God has high regard for him.

Yet You have made him a little lower than God, and You crown him with glory and majesty (Psalm 8:5 NASU)!

Here, in verses 5-8, his question is answered. David views man, created in God’s image, as “a little lower than God;” for “the creature is not greater than the Creator;” for God is the sustenance of the image (Genesis 2:7); thus man is the “crown jewel” of all God’s glorious creations.

You make him to rule over the works of Your hands; You have put all things under his feet, all sheep and oxen, and also the beasts of the field, the birds of the heavens and the fish of the sea, whatever passes through the paths of the seas (Psalm 8:6-8 NASU).

David acknowledges that God esteem man and gave him the high office of ruler of the earth and all that was in it. In doing so he gave man dignity above all other creatures.

O LORD, our Lord, how majestic is Your name in all the earth (Psalm 8:9 NASU)!

There is no doubt that with these thoughts David is humbled, but yet strengthened knowing that God loved him, and thus He ends as he began, with a note of praise.

James C Sanford

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