Psalm 8 - Overcomer - O Lord, our Lord how excellent Your name
This is 4th Psalm to the Overcomer. Be simple like a babe, to praise the Lord (v2) genuinely, simply taking the word for what it says, and to overcome the slavery to death through the Lord's death and resurrection. This is a Psalm of spiritual warfare.
This song is based on hymn #1097, but made to more literally follow the text of the Hebrew Psalm for my purpose of memorizing the Psalm.
v1 - There are 3 Psalms that are "To the overcomer upon the winepresses": Psalms 8, 81, and 84. I think "the winepresses" refers to when the Lord comes back, He and those overcomers who are with Him, will tread upon the armies at Armageddon as upon a great winepress (Joel 3:13; Rev 14:18-20; 19:11-15). In order to be an overcomer upon the winepresses, we must praise the Lord like a suckling babe in this Psalm. This defeats the Lord's enemies (v2).
Also winepresses indicate that we should be beside ourselves in praising the Lord.
v2 - Lit. Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings ... because of Your adversaries, to destroy the enemy and the avenger.
The Hebrew words translated "established strength" are translated "perfected praise" by LXX and the Lord in Matt 21:16. Out of the mouth of babes, the Lord has perfected praise, and this praise is strength against all kinds of enemies. We think that to perfect something takes maturity, but perfect praise does not require maturity. Perfect praise comes when we are as genuine as a babe.
We need to be genuine like a babe to share the gospel to win over the Lord's adversaries.
v4- The 1st word "man" is enosh, mortal man. The second is son of Adam, which is the Biblical way of saying "a human being". Both terms refer to human beings after the fall of man. Enosh can refer to mortal man as a whole or as an individual, while son of man refers to an individual man. God thinks about and visits us both as a group and as individuals.
v5 - I used the word "then" in v5 because the Hebrew starts with a vav-consecutive, which means this verse takes place after something else. Usually, it takes place after what occurred in the previous verse, but that does not make sense here because there is no previous event in the Psalm to follow. Also, God could not have visited a son of man until after Cain was born, and God had lowered man before that. I think the preceding event is the implied creation of man. "Then" implies that God lowered man after He had created him.
Most versions either don't translate the vav-consecutive in this verse or they translate it as "for". LXX and YLT are the most strict about always translating the vav, usually as "and", but in this verse, even they skipped the vav. I have not found any place in the Bible where a vav-consecutive should be translated as "for".
The Hebrew word which I translated as "gods" is elohim, meaning "gods" or "God" depending on the context. It would not make sense to say, "Then You lowered man below God", because that would mean that man previously was not below God.
Also, since David is talking to God as "You" it doesn't make sense to say, "You lowered him a little below God". If David meant to say that, he should say, "You lowered him a little below Yourself" (Ps 7:6; 10:1; 18:25-26; etc). I do not know of any place in the Bible where someone talks to God in the 2nd person, and in the same sentence refers to God in the 3rd person. Therefore the correct translation is "gods", referring to angels, both good angels and fallen ones (Ps 82:1; 86:8; Exo 15:11). Since the inspired text of Hebrews 2:7 translated elohim in this verse as "angels", not "God", we know that "angels" is the correct meaning. The LXX also translated it as "angels".
Most English translations translate the beginning of this verse as "You have made him a little lower than the angels", which sounds like God's creating Adam. But there is no word "made" in the Hebrew of this verse. The Hebrew verb literally means, "caused to lack". To lack means to not have something that you should have (Exo 16:18). God did not create man lacking anything, but when man fell, then God caused him to lack everlasting life. This verse does not refer to the creation of man. It refers to the fall of man, when God caused man to suffer death (Heb 2:9; Gen 2:17; 3:17-19) and to toil to eat bread. Death is something man was not originally supposed to suffer. This lack caused mankind and each man individually to be a slave to the things that were supposed to be subject to him (Heb 2:15). LXX and the Greek of Heb 2:7 both translate the Hebrew word with a Greek word meaning "lowered".
The Hebrew verb "lowered" is in what is called the "perfect aspect", which means that the action is already completed. This was done in Gen 3:17-19. The verbs "crown" and "cause to have dominion" are imperfect, meaning they are not completed yet.
v6 - God subjected all things under man's feet in Gen 1:26-28. The verb here is perfect, meaning that it is already completed.
God put everyting on earth under man's feet, so when man fell, everything on earth fell with him. The "all things" refer to all things on earth (Heb 2:5,8). But today man is under slavery to earthly things due to the fear of death (Heb 2:15). Man became a servant of the ground (Gen 3:17-19).
God became the Son of Man, Jesus, a little lower than the angels so that He could suffer all the sufferings of human life and death to destroy the devil and release us from living under the fear of death.
11/4/2016 changed tune from #1097 to use same tune as Psalm 84 since both are "upon the winepresses".
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