The Majesty of God

The Book of Psalms 

Psalm 8 – The Majesty of God 

Mosaic Rockford – Dave Spooner – Jan.20th, 2019

*Our apologies, but due to technical difficulties, there is no audio file for this sermon. Click on the video link to catch the message.https://youtu.be/SthZbdxDCVM

Intro:

  • So far in our series, we have looked at the scriptures as a whole: how they are put together and where the psalms fit in.  We have talked about the 5 different books of psalms: what their themes are and how they fit together as a whole.  We have learned about the different genre and authors and how to see them in their context to give greater meaning and depth to the text. 
  • Last week, the message was centered in the introductory psalms, psalm 1 and 2, how they related to the book as psalms of wisdom giving the reader two clear choices between two pathways: the way of the Word and the way of the world. We also learned what these pathways entail and where they lead in the end.  
  • Hopefully this information has be helpful, illuminating, encouraging and strengthening in your understanding of scripture and your resolve to following the pathway of the Word from discipline to desire to delight.  
  • This morning, we are turning to Psalm 8 for the text for this sermon.  It is a psalm of praise with the focus on the majesty of God. In it we learn why God is majestic and why His name is worthy to be praised.  I trust because of the power of the Holy Spirit coming upon His Word, that you will leave here today understanding who God is more fully, which would in turn result in your heart being full of awe of God, and praise for God. Let’s read this psalm in its entirety, and then we will dig into it.  Today I am using the NIV version. 
Ps 8 NIV
For the director of music. According to gittith.A psalm of David.
O Lord, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth!
You have set your glory upon the heavens.  2 From the lips of
children and infants you have ordained praise because of
your enemies, to silence the foe and the avenger.  3 When I
consider your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and
the stars, which you have set in place, 4 what is man that you
are mindful of him, the son of man that you care for him? 
5 You made him a little lower than the heavenly beings and
crowned him with glory and honor. 6 You made him ruler over
the works of your hands; you put everything under his feet:
7 all flocks and herds, and the beasts of the field, 8 the birds of
the air, and the fish of the sea, all that swim the paths of the
seas. 9 O Lord , our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the
earth! 
  • We need to play detective here to try to understand the context for this psalm.  From the intro we read that this psalm is the lyrics for a song – “for the director of music.” This song is to be played “according to gittith.”   Literally it means “upon gittith.”  “Gittith” is a Gittite stringed instrument (think a form or harp or a guitar). Gittites were a people who lived in and around the city of Gath and were apart of a bigger group of people called the Philistines – who were enemies of the Israelites.  This was the place where Goliath was from (I Sam. 17:4).  And where some of David’s “mighty men” came from [Ittai the Gittite, (2 Samuel 15:18 2 Samuel 15:19 )]. 
  • Gath was the first place David fled to when he was being hunted down by King Saul (I Sam. 21:10) and he lived near there a little later (I Sam. 27).  Since this psalm was placed near the front of the first book (a book about trust), I think it is safe to say that he wrote this when he was living from place to place in caves, in the country and different towns. David would have time to reflect upon his relationship with God, who he was and what he had done for Him.  He is writing from a perspective of seeing a portion of the goodness of God while still living in a less than ideal situation still waiting for the full promises of God to be fulfilled. 
  • This understanding helps us to remember who God is and what His connection is to us.  It also causes us to reflect on these things, take them to heart and to sing and think about them.  Doing this will give you courage and strength to continue to move forward in your life, despite the obstacles. It will also enlarge your love and trust in the Lord. 
  • David start and ends this song with the lyrics “O Lord, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth! You have set your glory upon the heavens”(Psalm 8:1).  He calls out to God “O Lord” and then takes it to a personal level “our Lord.”  God is not just someone who is out there but someone that we claim, and He claims us. These point to a relationship and an identity with God.  
  • Then David goes on to say, “how majestic is your name in all the earth.”  He praised God by saying that he is “majestic,” he is “magnificent,” He is “glorious.” So, why is God’s name majestic?  Why is He magnificent? Why is He glorious? Why are we to stand in awe of God? Why should He be praised? In the rest of the song David gives us the reasons why, and they are the main points of this message. 

Because He made the heavens

Psalm 8:1 
O Lord, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth!
You have set your glory upon the heavens.  
  • The “glory” of a being can be seen in what they produce . . . the glory of God is also seen in what He has created. God spoke creation into existence.  God breathed, and we came to life.   Think about creation from both a macro (big picture) and a micro (small picture) sense.  
  • David, being a shepherd, spent many a night out in the fields under the stars with no other lights to dim his view.  If you have ever had an experience like that in is astonishing! (Africa Ill.)  there are hundreds of billions of galaxies and each galaxy has hundreds of billions of stars and planets.  We are learning more and more about them as our technology improves.  What kind of being could do that, and make it all work?  And be able to count them all?
  • Think of just our planet called “earth.”  That it is just the right temperature, with just the right balance of elements, and the right rotation and tilt, etc. to support life.  And then all the plants, and creatures on this planet, how amazing they are and how it all fits and flows together.  Then we can look at the micro level in both biology and physics and all the life that is happening at that level as well.  The more we know, the more there is to know and the more we should stand in awe of the design.  Not only in everything itself, but how it all works together. God’s name is majestic, magnificent because he made the heavens 
  • God’s name is majestic because of how He silences His enemies. 

Because of how He silences His enemies

Psalm 8: 2 NIV
From the lips of children and infants you have ordained praise
because of your enemies, to silence the foe and the avenger.
  • God has hard wired in each one of us the desire and ability for awe, wonder and amazement. It is seen the clearest in children, who everything is new and amazing, in those who have a pure, good heart. (video of young boy with Christmas lights.) It is a gift to keep this heart of being amazed.  Why did God give us this ability? Why did he “ordain praise” from us?  It is a gift to be in wonder and to be awed.  It is a gift to us and it glorifies God.  The reason that is stated in this passage is that God had ordained praise to silence His enemies, the foe, the avenger. 
  • Because of the goodness and majesty of God, the enemies go silent.  This psalm and this verse was quoted by Jesus in Matt. 21
Matt 21:14-16 ESV
And the blind and the lame came to him in the temple, and
he healed them. 15  But when the chief priests and the scribes
saw the wonderful things that he did, and the children crying
out in the temple, "Hosanna to the Son of David!" they were
indignant, 16 and they said to him, "Do you hear what these
are saying?" And Jesus said to them, "Yes; have you never read,

 "'Out of the mouth of infants and nursing babies you have
prepared praise'?"
  • Jesus continued to do wonderful things in the presence of His enemies, and the children out of the purity of their heart saw it and cried praised Him for it.  The good works and the wonderful things of God silence enemies.  This is true in the life of Jesus, and it must be true in our lives as well if we also are going to silence our enemies.  Evil is only overcome with good. (Rom. 12.)  This is brilliant, this is amazing, this is supernatural and the way of God and must be the way of those who are His children. This is another way that the name of God is majestic, because of how He silences His enemies.  David goes on to list another way, because He cares for us. 

Because He cares for us

Psalm 8:3-4 NIV
When I consider your heavens, the work of your fingers, the
moon and the stars, which you have set in place, 4 what is
man that you are mindful of him, the son of man that you care
for him?
  • David then returns to the magnificence and magnitude of creation, the heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars which God has set in place, and then compares all of that with mankind- we are such a very, very small part of all of this and yet God is mindful of us and He cares for us.  This is mind blowing indeed.  That God even is thinking of us and involved with us and cares for us.  
  • This should humble us and at the same time make us grateful for the worth that He has given to us because of His care and attention.  He cares for us, He provides for us, He listens to us, He responds to us, He talks to us, He has given Angels to attend to us, He gave His Son for us, and He is preparing a place for us. This is indeed amazing! This is so significant that He does this for us because He loves us.  And in all creation, we are precious in His sight. This was His doing, this is His choosing and He should be held in the highest honor.  Not only does He care for us, but He also has given us glory and honor.    

Because He has given us glory and honor

Psalm 8:5-8 NIV
You made him a little lower than the heavenly beings and
crowned him with glory and honor. 6 You made him ruler over
the works of your hands; you put everything under his feet:
7 all flocks and herds, and the beasts of the field, 8 the birds
of the air, and the fish of the sea, all that swim the paths of
the seas. 
  • God, in His hierarchy of creation, crowned us with glory and honor by making us a little lower than the heavenly beings (angels). This is the position that He gave us, and it pleased Him to do so.  God has given us aposition of responsibility and authorityby making us the ruler over the works of His hands, that He has put everything under our feet, the flocks and herds, the beast of the field, the birds of the air, and the creatures of the sea.  It is a great honor to be given this responsibility and a great responsibility to be given this honor.  We can do what we want with what He has given – for good or for evil . . . and the children of God must rule with goodness and in wisdom.
  • These verses were also quoted in Hebrews chapter 2 as proof and evidence that God has done this and will complete this work even putting the devil and death under Jesus, the son of man.  This is the order, and this is the glory of God. He has given us glory and honor by making us ruler of the works of His hands.  For this freedom and this honor that God had freely given to us, His name is to be held in the highest honor and should be praised, and how David stated the psalm is how he ends it. 

Conclusion 

Psalm 8:9 NIV 
O Lord , our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth! 
  • So, in hearing these things from psalm 8 after we mined some of the richness that is here, my hope is that your awe, wonder and praise of God will rise to another level. That the Lord, our Lord, will be seen for what He is and that His name will be honored and majestic in all the earth! Because of what He has created, because of how He silences His enemies, because He cares for us and has given us glory and honor.  
  • Think about these things, meditate on them, apply them to your life and your living. 
  • Next week we will learn from Psalm 22 – the psalm that describes the crucifixion and that Jesus quoted from the cross. In preparation for next Sunday, read and study this psalm as well, think it through as to how it applies to your life and how you would prepare it to communicate a message.