Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Psalm 8

Psalm 8 extols the glory of God based on the majesty of creation. While I usually read this psalm and focus on vv 5–6, "You made him [mankind] a little lower than the heavenly beings and crowned him with glory and honor. You made him ruler over the works of your hands; you put everything under his feet:" (NIV). This makes me think that the psalm is about the preeminence that mankind has among creation. However, the psalm begins and ends with the refrain, "O LORD, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth!" (NIV)

I am starting to think that this psalm is more about God than it is about us. Perhaps when the psalmist rattles off the roll call of the animal kingdom that has been subjected to mankind, what he is really saying is, "I can't believe that you have entrusted all of this to us!" Perhaps those verses continue the thought, "What is man that you are mindful of him?"

When we think of creation, we should think about how it reflects the glory of God. How are we going to treat this glory? Are we going to subject it to the glory of man, or are we going to tend to it as we were comissioned to do? Perhaps our desire to control nature is a symptom of our desire to control God--to show Him that He is not the only one who can bring rain to the crops and heal people from disease.

While I am not at all suggesting that these technological advances are a bad thing, I am suggesting that perhaps they rob us of a bit of our awe of God. Maybe we should start viewing nature, not as an obstacle to be overcome, but as a reflection of the brilliance of God.

"Father, I confess that I don't aways give You the glory that You deserve. I sit here in my man-made kingdom with my man-made toys and can't help but marvel at the glory of man. Yet all around me there are illustrations of something that is bigger than myself. I pray that You would restore to me this awe. I pray that I would realize my insignificance and the insignificance of the kingdom of man compared to Your creation. I confess that my very existence depends on your sustaining it. You are good. Amen."

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