April 22: Psalm 96


April 22: Psalm 96

Sing a new song to the Lord

86.86.86                   Coronation (All Hail the Power of Jesus’ Name)

(There is another tune, Diadem, often used for this hymn, which will not fit)

O sing a new song to the Lord; all earth sing to the Lord.

Sing to the Lord, and bless His name; “He saves!” each day proclaim.

His glory to all nations show; his deeds let peoples know.

The Lord is great. How great His praise! Above all gods He’s feared.

For heathen gods are idols vain; the Lord the heavens made.

Before Him beauty, majesty, and strength and splendor be!

O families of earth, ascribe all glory to the Lord!

All strength ascribe unto the Lord; the glory due His name

Give to the Lord. To His courts come and bring and offering.

In splendor of His holiness bring worship to the Lord.

All earth, before Him stand in awe; proclaim, “The Lord God reigns!”

For made by Him, the world stands firm; His judgments, just and true.

Let heav’ns be glad and earth rejoice, in vast expanse untold.

Let seas speak out with endless roar. Let fields and all they hold

Their glory give; let trees and woods with rustling boughs give praise.

Let all prepare to greet the Lord, because He coming is.

He surely comes to judge the earth, and righteousness is His.

He’ll nations judge with faithfulness, the world with justice bless.

We know that Psalm 96 was among the psalms chosen to be sung when the Ark of the Covenant was placed in the new tabernacle that David had constructed for it in Jerusalem (1 Chron. 16: 23-33). This piece of information is valuable because it sets Psalm 96 in at least one of its interpretive contexts in biblical history: God’s enthronement as King in the worship of His holy people. Inasmuch as the Lord’s symbolic enthronement “between the cherubim” in the Holy of Holies was one of the more important Old Testament institutions preparatory for His definitive presence in the human race by reason of the Incarnation, the deeper meaning of this psalm is likewise to be sought in its relationship to God’s Word that “became flesh and dwelt among us” (John 1:14). This psalm, then, and all other Old Testament references to God as King are prophecies fulfilled in the Kingship of Jesus the Lord, who declared to the local representative of the Roman Empire, “You say rightly that I am a king” (John 18:37). Thus, our psalm commands, “Announce among the nations that the Lord is King.” (Reardon, p.189)