Summary: The first message in a short series on Psalm 8, inspired by Clay Crosse's rendition of "The Majesty and Glory of Your Name" and Psalm 8 itself! God's creation is wonderful and beautiful--but how God and man is above it all. Why is God mindful of man?
The Majesty and Glory of Your Name
The Majesty and Glory
of Your Name
Over the next few weeks, we will be studying King David’s Psalm 8. It is one of the Psalms that shows, the title of this short series describes, the “Majesty and Glory” of God. There is a song by the same title, performed by both Sandi Patty and Clay Crosse, with my favorite version being the latter.
What Psalm 8 accomplishes is magnifying God. Growing up, I heard that term “magnify”...and I had this vision in my mind of the older folks in the congregation pulling out their magnifying glasses and looking at the scripture. In a sense that was right, in that to magnify means “to make large” or “to make great”; the Hebrew term in the Old Testament is used 115 times and the Greek term in the Greek New Testament 8 times. In the Bible in it’s entirety, the term is used in a broad range of meaning for both men and God, but most often when applied to men it was negative. However, when spoken of by men referring to God, it was meant to honor God, to exalt Him or to make Him “large” to others.
It’s important to remember that we cannot make God any larger than He is already. God is whom He is, and has always been whom He is. He cannot be added to or taken away from. Jesus, God the Son and therefore God as well, is the same yesterday, today and forever (Hebrews 13:8). The best example of what it means to magnify God is found in an illustration in astronomy. The famous Hubble Telescope in orbit around the earth takes magnificent pictures of planets, moons, stars and far away nebulae that are more than breathtaking. However, it does not make those heavenly bodies any bigger than they actually are; it’s that you and I cannot see them with the naked eye and we make them visible by magnifying them through the lens of the telescope. God is bigger than we can imagine; we discover more and see more of the majesty and glory of God by reading and studying His Word.
Rejoice In The Lord!
To the Chief Musician. On the instrument of Gath. A Psalm of David. Psalm 8:1a (NKJV)
Here in verse 1, the title is “To the Chief Musician. On the instrument of Gath. A Psalm of David”. The Psalms are, for the most part, poetry like writings that were set to music; they were lyrics. This Psalm was sent to the “Chief Musician”, the term refers to the superintendent of the worship in the temple, or, in David’s case, the tabernacle and the nation of Israel. The term also means “to glitter” (Strong’s) or “to excel, to be bright, to be preeminent” (Brown, Driver, Briggs). The master musician then was in charge of all music, and his job was to make music that was outstanding; should we not do this as well with anything we do for God? Our actions can either shine a light on God, making Him more visible or also putting the telescope on God bringing the person who is far away from God closer to Him so he or she can see Him for whom He is.
There are many ideas about “On the instrument of Gath”. Other translations are “On the Gittith” (NASB, NIV, HCSB). Basically, it is thought that it was a stringed instrument played by the people of Gath or because of victory over Goliath, who was from Gath or in honor of Obed-edom the Gittite, in whose home the ark of the covenant rested. In any case, it’s important to remember that this is a joyous song, a song of victory even.
Myself, I’m not much on slow dirges. Yes, they have their place, and we do hear some of the more mournful songs of the faith during Passion Week as we should be perhaps more somber in remembering the sufferings of our Lord. I’ve been to funerals where sad, sad music is played and, well, for the Christian I feel it’s wrong. We should rejoice in the Lord: what He has done in our lives, what he is doing in our lives, and what he will do in our lives and when we die the music should be happy because we have gone to be with Jesus.
We should be joyful. There will be no pessimists in Heaven, as those who currently lean toward pessimism will become joyful in the presence of the Lord. Paul wrote: Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice! and in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. (Phil 4:4,1 Thess 5:18, NKJV).
Each and every thing that you experience in life all meant to glorify God in some way. How? Because those times of obvious blessing are times when we should not look to ourselves but instead to God as the source of blessing. In those times of trial, God is preparing you for something by either building your endurance and strength and/or giving you skills and gifting to comfort those in the same circumstance in the future (2 Cor 1:3,4) In times of blessing, or in times of trial rejoice.