The Strength of Feeble Instrumentalities
Psalm 8:2
Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings have you ordained strength because of your enemies…

The sudden drop from the glories of the heavens to the babble and prattle of infancy and childhood is most impressive, and gives extraordinary force to the paradox that the latter's witness is more powerful to silence gainsayers than that of the former. This conviction is expressed in a noble metaphor, which is blurred by the rendering "strength." The word here rather means "a strength," in the old use of the term — that is, a stronghold or fortress; and the image, somewhat more daring than cold western taste finds permissible, is that out of such frail material as children's speech, God builds a tower of strength, which, like some border castle, will bridle and still the restless enemy. There seems no sufficient reason for taking "children and sucklings" in any but its natural meaning, however the reference to lowly believers may accord with the spirit of the Psalm. The children's voices are taken as a type of feeble instruments, which are yet strong enough to silence the enemy. Childhood, "with no language but a cry," is, if rightly regarded in its source, its budding possibilities, its dependence, its growth, a more potent witness to a more wondrous name than are all the stars. In like manner, man is man's clearest revelation of God. The more lowly he is, the more lofty his testimony. What are all His servants' words but the babbling of children who "do not know half the deep things they speak"? God's strongest fortress is built of weakest stones If the two parts of the Psalm are to be kept together, the theme of the compendious first portion must be the same as that of the second, namely, the glory of God as revealed by nature and man, but most chiefly by the latter, notwithstanding and even by his comparative feebleness.

(A. Maclaren, D. D.)

Parallel Verses
KJV: Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings hast thou ordained strength because of thine enemies, that thou mightest still the enemy and the avenger.

WEB: From the lips of babes and infants you have established strength, because of your adversaries, that you might silence the enemy and the avenger.

Little Children God's Stronghold for Troubled Men
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