Meditations on Psalm 8.
A strange conversation happened on the streets of Jerusalem after the resurrection of Jesus Christ. The incident is commonly known as The Walk to Emmaus. Jesus joins two forlorn and dejected disciples and engages them in conversation. The full text can be read here.(Luke 24:13–35)
The key point regarding this passage of scripture and how it relates to this Psalm 8 is found in verses 25–27 of Luke 24.
Then Jesus said to them, “How foolish you are, how slow you are to believe everything the prophets said! Was it not necessary for the Messiah to suffer these things and then to enter his glory?” And Jesus explained to them what was said about himself in all the Scriptures, beginning with the books of Moses and the writings of all the prophets
Jesus is reminding these disciples that the Scriptures they already possessed had predicted the historical happenings that had saddened them. It was written centuries ago.
Here in Psalm 8 is one of those instances.
Psalm 8 is A Messianic Psalm. It predicts the Messiah, the anointed one from God.
Let me share with you my Basic Observations:
1. Verses 1 and 9 are the same.
O Lord, our Lord
How majestic is your name in all the earth.
2.In three brief stanzas (v1b-2, 3–5, 6–8,) the psalmist gives his reasons for praising God.
3.My eye is drawn to the description, Son of Man, in verse 4. Jesus Christ took upon himself this title. Is this psalm, identified as a Messianic psalm, pointing to the deeper truth of the gospel- with the humility of Christ foreshadowed here in history?(Yes, the author of Hebrews quotes this psalm in Hebrews 2:6–10, referring to Jesus.) This is a Messianic psalm without a doubt!
Jesus Christ lived the life of the perfect man, in fellowship with the Father, empowered by the Spirit of God. Why? The New Testament records are clear. To give his life a ransom for many, according to Mark’s gospel.(Mark10:45NIV)
As Messiah, He has come to purchase man for God through His obedience to the Father’s will. Among other references this is made plain in Isaiah 53 and in Isaiah 61:1–2, Jesus himself quotes from the very scroll of Isaiah at the beginning of his ministry in Nazareth.
Given the beginning and the ending of the Psalm are its boundaries, let me explore the flow of the river within its banks, so to speak.
Verses 1b-2 You are Supreme above the heavens. However, You also reveal yourself to the lowly upon earth to confound your enemies. From this perspective, You rule both in heaven and on earth.
Verses 3–5 The work of your hands in the heavens is mindboggling. In the light of such majesty and power, why do you care for man as you do?
Verses 6–8 Man is ruler- like you. You made him ruler over the works of Your hands.
Everything is Yours. We find our place in Your universe as Your servants, Your stewards. You have honoured man with responsibility and accountability.
Man is significant on your sight.
Especially so is the Son of Man, who was made a little lower than the angels, whom You crowned with glory and honour!( Psalm 2)
I’ll write you a poem this morning, my Lord.
For you are Almighty!
The moon and the stars at night
The sun by day.
The photographic images from deep into space
Are beamed back to earth,
Galaxy after galaxy,
Nova and supernova-
Stars, who can count them?
Distances- who can measure them?
The complexities of earth’s systems are one thing
The mysteries of space another,
And You created them all.
Oh what is man?
So insignificant in size,
So brief in lifespann,
Yet you esteem him
Above your other deeds of creation.
Man is significant
Because You made him so,
You have made him
A co-ruler with you
For his years upon the earth.
People learn the skills of scuba diving,
Some train as astronauts,
Others as photographers,
Still others as ecologists,
Some as doctors and nurses,
Each in their own way
Investigating and appreciating
The wonders of your world,
Over which Your glory shines.
May I, too, with this songster,
Praise the Lord.