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Bible Commentaries

Arthur Peake's Commentary on the Bible
Psalms 47

 

 

Introduction

BOOK II.—PSS. XLII.-LXXII.

Psalms 42-83 are Elohistic, i.e. they use the word God (Elohim) and avoid the proper name Yahweh, probably from motives of reverence. Here and there, however, the name Yahweh has crept into the text by a natural slip of the scribes.


Verses 1-9

XLVII. Joy of all Mankind in Yahweh.—All nations are invited to rejoice in Yahweh's exaltation. It seems strange that they should be expected to rejoice in their own defeat; but this is explained by the belief (Psalms 47:9) that the heathen nobles are to be gathered together with the people of the God of Abraham. In other words, they are to share in the promise made to Abraham (Genesis 12:3), "In thee shall all the nations of the earth be blessed." The Ps. is sung in the synagogues on the "Feast of Trumpets" (p. 104, the Jewish New Year's Day. This ritual use may have been suggested by Psalms 47:5, or on the other hand, the Ps. may have been composed for liturgical use.

Psalms 47:3. Translate "He subdueth" (mg.).

Psalms 47:4. chooseth (mg.), i.e. chooseth anew, by restoring it to us.—excellency of Jacob: substitute "pride of Jacob," i.e. the land of which the Jews are so proud.

Psalms 47:5. God is gone up: the meaning may be that God came down to the sacrifices in the Temple on New Year's Day, and while the trumpets sounded, returned to His throne on high.

Psalms 47:7. The rendering sing with understanding, though supported by the VSS, is certainly inadmissible. "A didactic poem" is a possible rendering, so far as linguistic grounds go, but is quite out of keeping with the context. Probably some musical direction is intended, or we may write the word "Maschil" in the plural and translate "Sing ye that are skilful" [in music].

Psalms 47:9. the shields of the earth: i.e. its princes and protection.

 


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Bibliography Information
Peake, Arthur. "Commentary on Psalms 47:4". "Arthur Peake's Commentary on the Bible ". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/pfc/psalms-47.html. 1919.

Lectionary Calendar
Wednesday, November 20th, 2019
the Week of Proper 28 / Ordinary 33
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