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Bible Commentaries

Garner-Howes Baptist Commentary

Psalms 87

Verses 1-7

Psalms 87

Where God Meets His People

This is a Korahite-Jehovah Psalm much like the Korahite-elohim Psalms 46. It was written in, tribute or praise to Jehovah; either upon completion of the Temple in Jerusalem, known as Zion, the city of God, and Holy place where God met His people in worship, 2 Corinthians 7:15-16; or at the time of Jerusalem’s triumph over Shennacherib, during the rule of Hezekiah, Isaiah 30:7; Isaiah 51:9; Psalms 89:10.

Scripture v. 1-7:

Verse 1 certifies that "His foundation," that of Jehovah God, v. 2, is (exists) in the holy mountains, that of Zion and her whole mountain range. Zion was the sanctuary-chosen city of God; And as such was declared to be an holy, sanctified, or separated place where God pledged to meet His people in spiritual matters, 2 Chronicles 7:12-16; just as He meets His holy people in and thru a special way in the church assembly, in power today, John 14:16-17; Acts 1:8; Ephesians 3:21; Hebrews 10:24-25.

Verse 2 adds that "the Lord loveth (continually loves) the gates (entrances or approaches) of Zion, (His center of worship) more than all the dwellings (residences of Jacob)," His chosen people. The idea is a dedicated sanctuary, where God meets and communes with His people, is to be considered the most holy place of assembly among the chosen people of God, John 15:16-17; John 15:27; Ephesians 3:21; Psalms 122:1; Isaiah 2:3; Zechariah 8:21. When the entrances (gates) of God’s city were guarded, it was safe from the enemy, Psalms 78:68; Isaiah 60:18; Matthew 16:18. So must the doors of the church be both open and guarded from entrance of the enemy. Only the saved, baptized, covenant-pledged, to follow the Master all the way, should become members of her assembly, Mark 8:34-37; Luke 9:23-46.

Verse 3 declares "glorious things are spoken (witnessed) of thee, O city of God. Selah;" Just meditate on them, draw spiritual strength from the things witnessed concerning this city of God! Psalms 46, 48 are samples of glorious things attributed to her, even by the heathen of the day. Once her glory was gone, "Ichabod," vain, empty, or inglorious was her state or condition; So it is with the church, 1 Samuel 4:21; Her lukewarm, indifferent, or unholy moral, ethical or doctrinal state may lead to her candlestick’s removal, the spirit’s shekinnah withdrawal from her, Revelation 1:5; or the Lord will spew her out of His mouth, reject her as a mouth-piece, a spokesman or witness any longer, lest she repent and do deeds of her first love, Revelation 3:15-19. See also Isaiah 60:1; 1 Peter 4:14; Luke 2:32.

Verses 4, 5 relate God’s intent to acknowledge Rahab and Babylon, to those who knew Him, came to know Him, even in Assyrian exile, as well as those of Philistia, Tyre, and Ethiopia of the Egypt area. For example, from where ever man received Him, He acknowledged them, as the Syrophoenican woman of Tyre and the Ethopian man of Queen Candace, Matthew 15:22; Acts 8:27-39; See also Psalms 89:10; Isaiah 51:9. Almighty God the Highest Himself shall establish Zion and acknowledge her people forever, Psalms 47:2; Ezekiel 48:35; Matthew 16:18.

Verses 6, 7 conclude with a note of certain triumph that the "Lord shall count, calculate, or compute, when He writes up (continually in all time) the people (the redeemed), that this man was born there," with a record on high of his every decision and deed, "Selah," digest it all, find nourishment in it, Psalms 22:30; Psalms 87:6; Ezekiel 13:9; Galatians 3:26-29. The witness of each shall be in heaven, on high, Ecclesiastes 12:13-14; Job 16:19; Psalms 7:5. See also Isaiah 4:3; Jeremiah 3:19.
Verse 7 verifies that in heaven, the New Jerusalem, city of God, "as well (surely) the singers as players on instruments (mechanical musical instruments) shall be there: All my hopes are in thee," the Lord, not in ceremonies of earthly forms of worship, Proverbs 29:25.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of Blessed Hope Foundation and the Baptist Training Center.
Bibliographical Information
Garner, Albert & Howes, J.C. "Commentary on Psalms 87". Garner-Howes Baptist Commentary. 1985.