Commentary for Psalms 8

God is to be glorified, for making known himself to us. (1,2) And for making even the heavenly bodies useful to man, thereby placing him but little lower than the angels. (3-9)

1,2 The psalmist seeks to give unto God the glory due to his name. How bright this glory shines even in this lower world! He is ours, for he made us, protects us, and takes special care of us. The birth, life, preaching, miracles, suffering, death, resurrection, and ascension of Jesus are known through the world. No name is so universal, no power and influence so generally felt, as those of the Saviour of mankind. But how much brighter it shines in the upper world! We, on this earth, only hear God's excellent name, and praise that; the angels and blessed spirits above, see his glory, and praise that; yet he is exalted far above even their blessing and praise. Sometimes the grace of God appears wonderfully in young children. Sometimes the power of God brings to pass great things in his church, by very weak and unlikely instruments, that the excellency of the power might the more evidently appear to be of God, and not of man. This he does, because of his enemies, that he may put them to silence.

3-9 We are to consider the heavens, that man thus may be directed to set his affections on things above. What is man, so mean a creature, that he should be thus honoured! so sinful a creature, that he should be thus favoured! Man has sovereign dominion over the inferior creatures, under God, and is appointed their lord. This refers to Christ. In #Heb 2:6-8|, the apostle, to prove the sovereign dominion of Christ, shows he is that Man, that Son of man, here spoken of, whom God has made to have dominion over the works of his hands. The greatest favour ever showed to the human race, and the greatest honour ever put upon human nature, were exemplified in the Lord Jesus. With good reason does the psalmist conclude as he began, Lord, how excellent is thy name in all the earth, which has been honoured with the presence of the Redeemer, and is still enlightened by his gospel, and governed by his wisdom and power! What words can reach his praises, who has a right to our obedience as our Redeemer?

Commentary by Matthew Henry, 1710.

Discussion for Psalms 8

  • Mishael ROMANS 11 on Psalms 8
    (Read it real real slow)

    It was PROPHESY. It all happened as the Godhead Wrote it. Through Jesus's suffering He set the new Covenant in motion until the mystery be completed: until the fullness of the Gentiles.

    Romans 11:11 ...have they stumbled that

    they should fall? God forbid: but rather

    through their fall...salvation is come

    unto the Gentiles (WHY?) for to provoke

    them (the JEWS) to jealousy.

    For if the casting away from them be THE

    RECONCILING of the WORLD...what shall be

    the the RECEIVING of them be...but life

    from the dead?


    Verse 27: For this is MY COVENANT unto them (Israel) , WHEN I shall take away their sins.

    Verse 28: As concerning the gospel (birth, life, death, resurrection of Jesus) They are enemies (now) FOR YOUR SAKES (us).

    BUT as touching the election, they are BELOVED for the fathers sakes (plural) Deuteronomy 9:5.

    They're OUT now, and we are IN. God did that all by Himself. Didn't need any of us to debate the soundness of His Decision. Why indeed should any of us Gentiles shed a tear for millions of Jews who were murdered?

    Well, they were on the OUTS so it's ok?

    Romans 11:8. According as it is written, God hath given them a spirit of slumber;

    Eyes that they should not see, and ears that they should not hear....unto THIS DAY.

    Everyone is going to give an account for every idle word that has come out of the mouth.

    Once more I will try: God is dealing with Israel. He doesn't need our help. We should be grateful, because us Gentiles are being blessed huge because God has Israel off in a corner wondering why so many Gentiles are in love with Jesus, and follow him around like a flock of sheep. That was a positive statement. They are jealous. They are OUT. We are IN.

    Soon, God is going to bring them in again.
  • Bob Hilt - in Reply on Psalms 8
    1 John Chapter 5:10 He that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in himself: he that believeth not God hath made him a liar; because he believeth not the record that God gave of his Son.

    11 And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son.

    12 He that hath the Son hath life; [and] he that hath not the Son of God hath not life.

    John 3:36 He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.

    There is only one door and that is Jesus, I do not care what anyone says they are a Jew and if they do not have Christ they are under the wrath of God eternally.
    Page 1. Chris, don't take things to the extreme. First, how many days (24 hours) did it take God to create the universe and man? How long did God rest? How long was the 7th Day? How long did it take for the trees to grow in the Garden? See Gen 2:1-9. What did God do on the day after the 7th Day?

    The fact is that there is an element of allegory and metaphor in the Genesis creation account. Christians are afraid to admit that because they think it diminishes the account and credibility of the Bible as a whole. But a realistic approach to Genesis 1-3 does no such thing. From Gen 2, for example, we see that it took time for vegetation to grow and cover the Garden. Adam could not have identified and named every animal in the world Gen 2:19-20. That is a stretch. Six days doesn't begin to explain the 13 Billion years old universe we live in. Careful examination of Genesis shows that God does things in an orderly and deliberate manner, in time. If God didn't work that way, why is it taking so long for God to rescue us from sin? Why not just say, 'let there be no sin' and poof, sin disappears?

    Now, I covered the matter of the 2 Trees in the Garden before. When God expelled Adam from the Garden He set pillars of fire to guard the Tree of Life. Is that to be taken literally? And what happened? Did the fire run out? Where are those pillars? Clearly the imagery is metaphorical. From Revelation 22 and we know what the 2 Trees represented. They were not 2 physical Trees. The fruit was not a physical fruit. And eating the fruit was a metaphor for taking part in something they should not have been doing. Psalm 1:3. Read all of Ezek 31 to see a full picture of the Tree of the knowledge of Good and Evil. Who is that Tree? It is non other than the devil.

    And who is the Tree of Life? None other than Christ

    Yes, there is an element of symbolism, allegory and metaphor in Genesis 1-3. And the 2 Trees were representative of something other than trees. Continued in page 2.
  • Chris - in Reply on Psalms 8
    Carlos, I realize that this subject is being addressed by Adam also, so I'll not duplicate too much.

    To state, at the outset, I don't believe that the Genesis account is allegorical. If that were intended to be so by God, then we would be all over the place as to what is allegorical or not, are there metaphors also being used, etc. I would rather accept the account as factual & stand before God on that position, than see 'things' in the account that are supposed to be representative elsewhere or indeed untrue. So if one holds to this position (a factual one) & then says I also believe in Rev 13:1 that it speaks of a literal beast coming out of the sea, even though it clearly doesn't, then I would rather accept his belief than presuppose that some of the creation account is allegorical.

    Whether it took time for vegetation to grown in Eden or was accomplished in an instant by the Word of God is only speculation. And "why it takes so long for God to rescue us from sin?" Well, we are in God's Plan & it no doubt includes 2 Pet 3:9 & Rom 5:6 (about Christ being sent at the appointed time in God's Plan). So, God doesn't need to do all things over a period of time - there is room for His instantaneous response, as I see the days of creation & entrance of sin into man & world. And using our venerable scientists timeline of the age of the universe (e.g. 13 billion yrs old), is anything but factual but based on guesswork: primarily by studying the oldest stars & measuring the rate of expansion of the universe. And what is the basis of their observations? Man's present & limited knowledge of the universe & through which all his determinations are made. I have little regard to such 'findings' where his studies & measurements are based on finite & undefined judgements. I think that we would be better served by them not making such non-provable predictions.

    Finally, I won't even try to discuss the actuality of the two trees, pillars, etc. I think you know my position.
  • CARLOS RAMIREZ TREVINO - in Reply on Psalms 8
    Chris, I'm not sure I'm getting my point across. I don't mean the entire Genesis account is allegorical, but that there is an element of allegory, metaphor and symbolism in it. Many of the passages we read in Scripture are like that. It doesn't devalue or make it less credible. However, with what we now know about history and science, it is imperative for Christians to reexamine the Creation story. The reliability of science on this is not questionable.

    Example: Heb 3-4 clearly state we are still in the 7th Day Rest of God. If that is the case. God has not resumed His creative activity for 6,000 years. Consequently, the 7th Day is 6,000 yrs long. That means the 'Day' of Day 7, is not a 24 hour day.

    We also know from history that cultures and languages developed much longer ago than 6,000 years, given the earliest writings, such as Gilgamesh and Sanskrit. If there are writings that old, the cultures and languages they came from must be older.

    Science tells us, with a high degree of certainty, that the universe is over 13 Billion years in the making. And the earth is approximately 5 Billion years old.

    In light of things like that, and what Genesis itself says, I conclude Day 1 was longer than 24 hrs. The same holds true for Day 2 and the rest. Adam and Eve were created on the 6th Day, but in that time, Adam named all the animals, etc. If we accept that God works within the framework of reality, we have to accept that when Genesis says God made trees grow from the ground, it took more than a couple of minutes for it to happen.

    So, the story is valid because it conveys a message. But that message is delivered in a package that's not entirely literal. The issue of interpretation comes up because we insist on fitting a square literal peg, in the round hole of reality. It just doesn't fit. But your fears are obvious when you say you don't want God to blame you for accepting that not all of Genesis is hyper-literal. I don't blame you. I was taught the same.
  • Adam - in Reply on Psalms 8
    Hi Carlos,

    Just so you know you have to click the Reply button to actually reply to someone and notify them, otherwise they may not see your post.

    You mentioned: "The fact is that there is an element of allegory and metaphor in the Genesis creation account."

    What are your examples?

    I've noticed other comments from you and agree with many of your points and thought they were well thought out, but the one below I don't believe.

    >Christians are afraid to admit that because they think it diminishes the account and credibility of the Bible as a whole."

    Why assume if someone takes the Bible literally then they must be 'afraid'? Is this really true for all Christians? Have you prayed to God about this and did you hear any confirmation from him? It would seem like dangerous ground to pluck parts the Bible and claim they're untrue. What if the opposite was true that maybe you're the one uncomfortable with Genesis being literal so you claim that it isn't then try to discredit other Christians for believing it?

    For me: (1) I'm a Christian, and (2) I believe the Genesis creation is literal and not a metaphor, and (3) I'm not afraid, but feel confident and have total trust in God's Word.

    An ABC poll showed 61% most Christians believe Genesis creation is literal.

    So, how can your statement be true? Should statements like this be posted publicly to other Christians to try to create distrust in the Bible? Does this come from God?
  • Mild Bill - in Reply on Psalms 8
    Adam, In earlier posts you mention "free will", what is it free of?
  • Adam - in Reply on Psalms 8
    Hi Mild Bill, is this a genuine question you have? It's like asking someone shooting a basketball free throw what his throw is free of.
  • Mild Bill - in Reply on Psalms 8
    Yes,genuine question. In basketball it would be interference.
  • CARLOS RAMIREZ TREVINO - in Reply on Psalms 8
    Adam, there are 2 parts to my response to Chris on creation. If you saw Page 1, I'll assume you saw Page 2. You bring up some worthy issues. Thanks for telling me about the reply button. I didn't mean to imply that all Christians are afraid. But we ought to interpret the Bible literally where it calls for it.

    If all you got from my responses is that I think parts of the Bible are untrue, you missed the point. I don't believe any of the Bible is untrue. And yes, I am uncomfortable with a literal interpretation where it doesn't belong. But your troubled, accusatory response is what makes me think some Christians fear an honest examination of the Genesis Creation account, without preconceptions. Why would it upset you that I argue that not all the Genesis account is to be taken literally?

    If there is in fact no symbolism in Gen 1-3, you shouldn't be troubled by it. You yourself say that only 61% of Christians polled think the Genesis account is literal. That means 39% don't. As we approach a study of Genesis we must Keep an open mind.

    I don't know everything about creation, but it is clear that there are things that are unrealistic, if taken literally in the Bible. One such thing has to do with plucking your eye out. And when did God give you direct confirmation that you are the arbiter of Biblical Hermeneutics? I would encourage you and everyone else to examine Genesis 1-3 in light of what I wrote in my response to Chris.

    You say, "God made Adam and Eve perfect + gave them freewill." Many people believe that because that is what they were taught to believe. But where does the Bible say we were created Perfect and with a Free Will? What exactly does it mean to have Free Will? Can a man have the ability to choose without having a Free Will? Do animals have Free Will? Can they choose to eat or not to eat? Have you ever told a dog not to do something and he does it anyway? Can you love without Free Will? Can you be obedient without it? Don't be afraid, Adam.


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