Psalm 96:1
O sing unto the LORD a new song: sing unto the LORD, all the earth.
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(1) A new song.—See Note, Psalm 33:3. It appears to have been a kind of national and religious “lyric cry” after the Restoration. (Comp. Isaiah 42:10.)

Psalm 96:1-3. O sing unto the Lord a new song — Upon this new and great occasion, not the removal of the ark, wherein there was nothing new but an inconsiderable circumstance of place, but the coming of the Messiah, the confirming of the new covenant by his blood, and the calling of the Gentiles; bless and praise the name of the Lord, by singing a new, that is, an excellent song, the product of new affections, clothed with new expressions. Show forth his salvation from day to day — That great work of the redemption and salvation of the world by the Messiah. Declare his glory among the heathen — You who shall be appointed his messengers to the Gentile nations, and all you who shall be called out of those nations to the knowledge of God and of Christ, publish this glorious and wonderful work to all the heathen among whom you live, or to whom you may come.

96:1-9 When Christ finished his work on earth, and was received into his glory in heaven, the church began to sing a new song unto him, and to bless his name. His apostles and evangelists showed forth his salvation among the heathen, his wonders among all people. All the earth is here summoned to worship the Lord. We must worship him in the beauty of holiness, as God in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself. Glorious things are said of him, both as motives to praise and matter of praise.O sing unto the Lord a new song - See the notes at Psalm 33:3. This is the only addition made to the original form of the psalm. The word new here implies that there was some fresh occasion for celebrating the praises of God; that some event had occurred, or that some truth relating to the divine character had now been made known, which could not well be expressed in any psalm or hymn then in use. It is a call on all to celebrate the praises of the Lord in a "new" song - new, particularly, as it calls on "all the earth" to join in it; and possibly this was designed to suggest the idea that while that temple stood, a dispensation would commence, under which the distinction between the Jews and the Gentiles would be broken down, and all mankind would unite in the praise of God.

Sing unto the Lord, all the earth - All nations. All people had occasion to bless his name; to praise him. What he had done, what he was still doing, was of interest to all lands, and made an appeal to all people to praise him. The psalm is constructed on this supposition, that the occasion for praise referred to was one in which all people were interested; or, in other words, that Yahweh was the true God over all the nations, and that all people should acknowledge him.


Ps 96:1-13. The substance of this Psalm, and portions of the ninety-seventh, ninety-eighth, and hundredth, are found in 1Ch 16:7-36, which was used by David's directions in the dedication of the tabernacle on Mount Zion. The dispensation of the Messiah was typified by that event, involving, as it did, a more permanent seat of worship, and the introduction of additional and more spiritual services. Hence the language of these Psalms may be regarded as having a higher import than that pertinent to the occasion on which it was thus publicly used.

1-3. All nations are invited to unite in this most joyful praise.

new song—literally, "fresh," or new mercies (Ps 33:3; 40:3).

1 O Sing unto the Lord) a new song; sing unto the Lord, all the earth.

2 Sing unto the Lord, bless his name; shew forth his salvation from

day to day.

3 Declare his glory among the heathen, his wonders among all people.

4 For the Lord is great, and greatly to be praised: he is to be feared above all gods.

5 For all the gods of the nations are idols; but the Lord made the heavens.

6 Honour and majesty are before him: strength and beauty are in his


7 Give unto the Lord, O ye kindreds of the people, give unto the Lord glory and strength.

8 Give unto the Lord the glory due unto his name; bring an offering, and come into his courts.

9 O worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness: fear before him, all the earth.

10 Say among the heathen that the Lord reigneth: the world also shall be established that it shall not be moved; he shall judge the people righteously:

11 Let the heavens rejoice, and let the earth be glad; let the sea roar, and the fulness thereof.

12 Let the field be joyful, and all that is therein: then shall all the trees of the wood rejoice

continued...THE ARGUMENT

This Psalm was composed by David upon occasion, or at the time, of the bringing of the ark of God into the tabernacle which David had prepared for it in Zion, as may be gathered by comparing it with 1 Chronicles 16:7,23,24, &c., where almost the whole Psalm is to be found, But as the ark was an evident type of the Messiah, which David very well knew, as hath been oft noted before; so David’s thoughts, or at least the design of God’s Spirit, which indited this Psalm, was extended beyond and above it, even to the times of the Messiah, and to his glorious and universal kingdom, in which not the Jews only, but the heathen nations also, should worship the true God, and kiss his Son the Messiah.

All the inhabitants of the earth and sea are called to praise the Lord for his great honour and majesty, Psalm 96:1-7; for his wise governing the world, Psalm 96:8-10. Heaven and earth are called to rejoice before him for his righteous judgment, Psalm 96:11-13.

A new song, upon this new and great occasion; not the removal of the ark, wherein there was nothing new but an inconsiderable circumstance of place, and that not yet fixed; but the coming of the Messiah, and the confirming of the new covenant by his blood, and the calling of the Gentiles.

All the earth; all the nations of the earth, who shall then partake of those great blessings and privileges which are now peculiar to Israel.

O sing unto the Lord a new song,.... A famous excellent one, suited to Gospel times, on account of the new benefit and blessing of redemption and salvation lately obtained by the Messiah; which should be sung to him, who is the Lord or Jehovah here designed, by all the redeemed ones, Revelation 5:9; see Gill on Psalm 33:3, the Targum adds,

"sing, ye angels on high:''

sing unto the Lord all the earth: not the whole land of Israel only, as Aben Ezra interprets it; though here the Saviour first appeared, taught his doctrines, wrought his miracles, suffered, and died for the salvation of his people; here the angels first begun the new song; and here those that believed in him first expressed that spiritual joy which afterwards spread through the whole world, and who are here called upon to sing; namely, all those that are redeemed from among men, throughout all the earth: believing Gentiles are here intended: the Targum is,

"sing before the Lord, all ye righteous of the earth.''

O sing {a} unto the LORD a new song: sing unto the LORD, all the earth.

(a) The prophet shows that the time will come, that all nations will have opportunity to praise the Lord for the revealing of his gospel.

1. O sing unto the Lord a new song] From Isaiah 42:10. Cp. Psalm 98:1; Psalm 149:1; Psalm 33:3. Fresh mercies demand fresh expressions of thanksgiving, and the deliverance of Israel from Babylon inaugurates a new stage in the nation’s history. All the earth is summoned to join in Israel’s thanksgiving (Psalm 100:1).

1–3. A call to the universal praise of Jehovah.

Verse 1. - O sing unto the Lord a new song (comp. Psalm 33:3; Psalm 98:1; Psalm 144:9; Psalm 149:1; Isaiah 42:10). This clause does not occur in 1 Chronicles 16. It seems to belong to the second recension of the psalm, when it was recast to suit some "new" occasion. Sing unto the Lord, all the earth. So in Isaiah 42:10, "Sing unto the Lord a new song, his praise from the end of the earth." The psalmist at once makes known his "universalism" by calling on the whole earth to join in his song of praise (comp. Psalm 66:1, 4). This psalm has been well called "a missionary hymn for all ages." Psalm 96:1Call to the nation of Jahve to sing praise to its God and to evangelize the heathen. שׁירוּ is repeated three times. The new song assumes a new form of things, and the call thereto, a present which appeared to be a beginning that furnished a guarantee of this new state of things, a beginning viz., of the recognition of Jahve throughout the whole world of nations, and of His accession to the lordship over the whole earth. The new song is an echo of the approaching revelation of salvation and of glory, and this is also the inexhaustible material of the joyful tidings that go forth from day to day (מיּום ליום as in Esther 3:7, whereas in the Chronicles it is מיום אל־יום as in Numbers 30:15). We read Psalm 96:1 verbally the same in Isaiah 42:10; Psalm 96:2 calls to mind Isaiah 52:7; Isaiah 60:6; and Psalm 96:3, Isaiah 66:19.
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