On Psalm 47

In our days, the enemy is "the prince of this world" (Jn 14:30, 16:11). However, the Lord restricts his authority. Eventually, the Lord will terminate his authority. Then, the Lord will reign on earth, as we also read in Revelation.

(Rev 19:6) And I heard as it were the voice of a great multitude, and as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of mighty thunderings, saying, Alleluia: for the Lord God omnipotent reigneth.

(Psa 47:1) To the chief Musician, A Psalm for the sons of Korah. O clap your hands, all ye people; shout unto God with the voice of triumph.

The Hebrew word translated "people" is actually a plural form meaning "peoples". The BDB lexicon defines the word translated "triumph" with the meaning "ringing cry". The word can refer to a proclamation, as in Ps 107:22 and 1Ki 22:36, or to a supplication, as in Ps 17:1 and Ps 61:1. The word is also used in the context of joy and praise, as in Ps 126:2, Ps 118:15, and Is 35:10. It is also translated "singing, rejoicing, ... ". The phrase translated here "voice of triumph" is translated "voice of joy" in Ps 42:4, "voice of rejoicing" in Ps 118:15, and "voice of singing" in Is 48:20. Those who love the Lord will rejoice when he will reign.

(Psa 47:2)NKJVTM  For the LORD Most High is awesome;
He is a great King over all the earth.

(Psa 47:3) He shall subdue the people under us, and the nations under our feet.

A more literal translation of verse 3 is "He shall subdue peoples under us, and nations under our feet". Related is Ps 18:47: "It is God who avenges me, and subdues the peoples under me"NKJVTM . Indeed, "we shall also reign with him" (2Ti 2:12).

(Psa 47:4) He shall choose our inheritance for us, the excellency of Jacob whom he loved. Selah.

The word translated "excellency" means also "majesty, pride". The fact that "our inheritance" is "the excellency of Jacob" can remind us that believers have been grafted in Israel (Rom 11:17, Rom 2:29).

(Psa 47:5)Darby God is gone up amid shouting, Jehovah amid the sound of the trumpet.

In Hebrew, related to Psa 47:5 are 2Sa 6:15, 1Ch 15:28, and Am 2:2, since they use exactly the same phrases for "shouting" and "sound of the trumpet". In 2Sa 6:15 we read that "David and all the house of Israel brought up the ark of the LORD with shouting, and with the sound of the trumpet". Just as there was joy when the ark of the covenant was brought, so also there will be great joy when the Lord will come.

(Psa 47:6) Sing praises to God, sing praises: sing praises unto our King, sing praises.

In Hebrew, the first part of the verse does not have the particle for "to". Therefore, it would appear that a more literal translation would be "Sing about God". (Note that in Hebrew we do not have זמרו לאלהים "sing to God", but זמרו אלהים "sing about God". There are many examples in which the object of the verb זמר "to sing" appears without a particle, such as זמרו יהוה "sing about the LORD" in Is 12:5 and זמרו שמו "sing about his name" in Ps 68:4 (68:5). In this interpretation אלהים means "God". If אלהים is interpreted instead as a plural noun referring to people, as in Ps 82:6, then אלהים would appear to be the subject of זמרו. However, this interpretation of אלהים is unlikely because this word means "God" in Ps 47:5.)

(Psa 47:7) For God is the King of all the earth: sing ye praises with understanding.

(Psa 47:8)MKJV God reigns over the nations, God sits on the throne of His holiness.

(Psa 47:9)KJV The princes of the people are gathered together, even the people of the God of Abraham: for the shields of the earth belong unto God: he is greatly exalted.

In Hebrew, the word translated "people" at the beginning of verse 9 is a plural form. Thus, verse 9 states "The princes of the peoples are gathered together, the people of the God of Abraham ... ". Now, "the princes of the peoples" are those who have believed. They make up "the people of the God of Abraham". They will be gathered to God because God will reign at that time. The statement that "the shields of the earth belong unto God" speaks about the fact that God will reign at that time and that he will be greatly exalted.


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