The Psalms are beloved for their poetic beauty, poignant expression of human emotion and spiritual experience, and soaring depictions of God’s glory. This commentary examines literary elements to help understand each psalm as a whole. Further, it highlights the psalms in their liturgical role as part of Israel’s worship, with an eye toward enriching contemporary worship and prayer.
“In verses 3–8 we shall see celebrated that although humans initially appear insignificant, they have a position of power—not by virtue of their innate abilities but by virtue of God’s ordaining it. How then are the lips of mere infants connected with strength? Their cries are heard by their parents. So, strength resides in the cry of one who has privileged access to one who embodies strength.” (Page 71)
“But the key revelation of this psalm is not that humanity can dominate the animal world but that you made him a little lower than the heavenly beings and crowned him, and you made him ruler, and you put everything under his feet. This psalm reminds us that our supremacy in the natural world did not result from our own efforts or from something inherent in nature but from God’s deliberate choice. The psalm takes a radical departure from ancient Near Eastern ideology by its declaration that Yahweh has made every human a king (cf. the terminology used in 21:5, a royal psalm).” (Page 72)
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