I know all the fowls of the mountains: and the wild beasts of the field are mine.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)Wild beasts.—Literally, that which moveth. (Comp. Psalm 80:13.)
And the wild beasts of the field are mine - Margin, "with me." That is, they are before me. They are never out of my presence. At any time, therefore, I could use them as I might need them. The word rendered "wild beasts" - זיז zı̂yz - means any moving thing; and the idea here is, whatever moves in the field, or roams abroad. Everything is his - whether on the mountains, in the forest, or in the cultivated field.I know where they are, and whence I can easily fetch them when I think good.
The fowls of the mountains; not only tame and domestic fowls, but even such as are wild and fly up and down upon mountains; which though out of man’s reach, are at God’s command. Matthew 10:29; and therefore needed not their turtledoves and young pigeons, which were the only fowls used in sacrifice;
and the wild beasts of the field are mine; which are mentioned in opposition to domestic ones, such as they had in their houses or folds, Psalm 50:9.I know all the fowls of the mountains: and the wild beasts of the field are mine.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)11. The wild beasts of the field] A peculiar phrase, found only in another Asaphite Psalm (Psalm 80:13), meaning probably all that moveth in the field, including the ‘creeping thing’ (Genesis 1:24 f).
are mine] Lit., are with me, i.e. are in my sight (P.B.V.), or, in my mind (R.V. marg.).
12f. If God had need of sustenance, He would not be dependent upon man for it: but a spiritual Being needs no material support.Verse 11. - I know all the fowls of the mountains, and the wild beasts of the field are mine; literally, are 'with me. All creation is God's, known to him, and owned by him, to be dealt with at his pleasure. How, then, should he need gifts from men? Genesis 27:39; Genesis 49:25, an adverb, desuper, superne) and to the earth God calls (קרא אל, as, e.g., Genesis 28:1), to both לדין עמּו, in order to sit in judgment upon His people in their presence, and with them as witnesses of His doings. Or is it not that they are summoned to attend, but that the commission, Psalm 50:5, is addressed to them (Olshausen, Hitzig)? Certainly not, for the act of gathering is not one that properly belongs to the heavens and the earth, which, however, because they exist from the beginning and will last for ever, are suited to be witnesses (Deuteronomy 4:26; Deuteronomy 32:1; Isaiah 1:2, 1 Macc. 2:37). The summons אספוּ is addressed, as in Matthew 24:31, and frequently in visions, to the celestial spirits, the servants of the God here appearing. The accused who are to be brought before the divine tribunal are mentioned by names which, without their state of mind and heart corresponding to them, express the relationship to Himself in which God has placed them (cf. Deuteronomy 32:15; Isaiah 42:19). They are called חסידים, as in the Asaph Psalm 79:2. This contradiction between their relationship and their conduct makes an undesigned but bitter irony. In a covenant relationship, consecrated and ratified by a covenant sacrifice (עלי־זבח similar to Psalm 92:4; Psalm 10:10), has God placed Himself towards them (Exodus 24); and this covenant relationship is also maintained on their part by offering sacrifices as an expression of their obedience and of their fidelity. The participle כּרתי here implies the constant continuance of that primary covenant-making. Now, while the accused are gathered up, the poet hears the heavens solemnly acknowledge the righteousness of the Judge beforehand. The participial construction שׁפט הוּא, which always, according to the connection, expresses the present (Nahum 1:2), or the past (Judges 4:4), or the future (Jeremiah 25:31), is in this instance an expression of that which is near at hand (fut. instans). הוּא has not the sense of ipse (Ew. 314, a), for it corresponds to the "I" in אני שׁפט or הנני שׁפט; and כּי is not to be translated by nam (Hitzig), for the fact that God intends to judge requires no further announcement. On the contrary, because God is just now in the act of sitting in judgment, the heavens, the witnesses most prominent and nearest to Him, bear witness to His righteousness. The earthly music, as the סלה directs, is here to join in with the celestial praise. Nothing further is now wanting to the completeness of the judgment scene; the action now begins.
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