Psalm 8 is a joyful admiration of the glory and majesty of the one and only God; and of God’s universe. It begins and ends with the acknowledgment of the transcendent excellency of God’s personal name. See also “Let them praise the name of the LORD: for his name alone is excellent; his glory [is] above earth and heaven.” Psalm 148:13
Psalm 8 explores the theme of God’s majestic splendor and at the same time humans’ great potential to care for and improve life on our planet. God has created us in His image and graciously crowned us with glory and majesty. He has assigned mankind the role of ruling over His creation.
Humans are expected to be aware of the natural balance of nature and to care for God’s gifts. We are the only species that can conscientiously hurt or heal our planet. Prophet David, King of Israel’s psalm 8 should be the anthem of those who are committed to overcoming the dangers of global warming.
Psalm 8 should remind humans every day: “When I consider your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you set in place. What is mankind that you should be aware, human beings that you should even care? You have made them a little lower than God and crowned them with glory and honor. You made them rulers over the works of your hands; and you put everything under their feet.”
And above us is the sheer vastness of outer space. At the speed of light, 186,000 miles per second, it would take you 8 minutes to get to the sun. To go from the sun to the center of the Milky Way would take about 33,000 years. The Milky Way belongs to a group of some 20 galaxies known as the Local Group. To cross that group, you’d have to travel for 2 million years. The Local Group belongs to the Virgo Cluster, part of an even larger Local Supercluster, which is a half-billion light years across. We ourselves, and all living things, use the energy that comes from sunlight to grow and to live. Al this was created by God 13.8 billion years ago.
But we now live in a decade of growing danger. Planet Earth has pushed past seven out of eight scientifically established safety limits and into “the danger zone,” not just for an overheating planet that’s losing its nature areas, but for the well-being of people living on it, according to a new study by an international scientist group published in the May 30, 2023 issue of Nature which looks at climate, air pollution, phosphorus and nitrogen contamination of water from fertilizer overuse, groundwater supplies, fresh surface water, the unbuilt natural environment and the overall natural and human-built environment. The study found “hotspots” problem areas throughout Eastern Europe, South Asia, the Middle East, Southeast Asia, parts of Africa and much of Brazil, Mexico, China and some of the U.S. West.
This is not a terminal diagnosis. Planet Earth can recover if its people change, by reducing human’s use of coal, oil and natural gas and the way humans treat the land and water, the scientists said. Humans need to accept our responsibility as God’s custodians of this planet and expand everyone’s connection to God’s creation of everything on earth.
When Prophet David begins Psalm 8 with the exclamation, “O Lord, our Lord, how majestic is Your name in all the earth” The first word translated “Lord” is the Hebrew word, YHVH, God’s personal covenant with Israel name. It stems from the Hebrew verb, “to become.” God revealed it first to Moses at the burning bush when He said (Exodus 3:14), “I will become who I will be.” It points to God’s forever ongoing potentiality to inspire humans to become people who live up to their ongoing potentiality.
Psalm 8 For the director of music. In gittith style. A psalm of David.
1 Lord, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth!
You have set your glory in the heavens.
2 Out of the mouth of children and infants
you established a stronghold against your enemies,
to silence the foe and the covetous ones.
3 When I consider your heavens, the work of your fingers,
the moon and the stars, which you set in place,
4 What is mankind that you should be aware,
human beings that you should even care?
5 You have made them a little lower than God
and crowned them with glory and honor.
6 You made them rulers over the works of your hands;
and you put everything under their feet:
7 all flocks and herds,
and the animals of the wild,
8 the birds in the sky, and the fish in the sea,
all that swim the paths of the seas.
9 Lord, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth!