A Christian Perspective on Psalm 8

v1, God is magnificent, in that he has displayed his glorious nature throughout heaven and earth, See Romans 1:19-20. In our physical universe we have tangible evidence of a superior intelligence that is powerful in nature and beautiful in design. 

v2, “From the mouths of babes”, David here touched on a familiar theme in the Bible: the idea that God uses otherwise weak things to display His glory and strength. 1st Corinthians 1:27 is an example of this idea: But God has chosen the foolish things of the world to put to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to put to shame the things which are mighty. Jesus quoted from this Psalm as recorded in Matthew 21:15-16, but his critics hated it. Jesus warned them that if people didn’t praise him with the purity of an innocent child, the rocks would cry out to praise Him. Never forget the power of praise from your own lips, no matter how insignificant you seem in the world’s view. God has done great things through praise, He has even won wars with praise. Jesus told His accusers who He was and who they were. Since the little children praise God in Psalm 8, Jesus identified Himself as God. In this, Jesus also identified the indignant scribes and teachers as an enemy described in this psalm. C.H. Spurgeon put it this way, “Aha! O adversary! To be overcome by a behemoth might make thee angry; but to be smitten out of infants’ mouths causes thee to bite the dust in utter dishonor. Thou art sore broken, now that ‘out of the mouth of babes and sucklings’ thou art put to shame.”

v3, “Consider the heavens”, With the naked eye, we can see about 5,000 stars. With a four-inch telescope, we can see about 2 million stars. With a 200-inch mirror in a great observatory, one can see more than a billion stars. The universe is so big that if we were to travel at the speed of light, it could take 40 billion years to reach the edge of the universe, and it is EXPANDING! Considering the heavens makes us see the greatness of God. 

v4-5 is quoted in Heb. 2:5-9 to reinforce and build upon this exact point. In it he notes that man’s low estate relates only to this world, and not the world to come. More pointedly, the writer of Hebrews used this passage from Psalm 8 to show that Jesus really did add a genuinely human nature to His divine nature and so became a little lower than the angels in our humanity and in this way has “crowned him with glory and honor. Though for a little while we are set lower than the angels, man’s destiny is one day to be crowned with a glory and honor that surpasses even the angels. It is the destiny of redeemed men and women to one day be lifted above the angels, see 1st Corinthians 6:3 & Revelation 1:6, 5:10.

v6-9, For now, on this side of eternity, we have a wonderful domain over His creation, but Jesus has even more, Matthew 28:18. What a Lord we follow! Praise Him.

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