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Psalm 8:

A Translation 

1For the director; upon the gittith.(1)

A psalm of David.


2(1) O LORD,(2) our Master, how majestic is your name in all the earth! 

          For your splendor has been told above the heavens.

          3(2) From the mouths of babes and infants you have established strength on account of your foes, 

                   to put an end to enemy and avenger.

          4(3) When I see your heavens, the work of your fingers, 

                   the moon and stars which you have firmly set in place;

                   5(4) what is man(3) that you should remember him, 

                   or the son of man(4) that you should care for him?

                    6(5) Yet you have made him a little less than God,(5)  

                   with glory and honor you crown him.

                     7(6) You make him master over the works of your hands;(6)  

                   you have placed all things under his feet,

                                                  8(7) flocks and cattle, all of them, even the beasts of the field;

                                                  9(8) birds of the heavens, and fish of the sea, those traveling the paths of the seas.

10(9) O Lord, our Master, how majestic is your name in all the earth.


 The meaning of gittith is uncertain.  Options typically offered include: (a) a type of musical instrument, such as a lyre; (b) a musical tune, (c) a specific occasion or in the case of the Greek text (LXX), ‘concerning the winepress.’

As is the case in the entire Hebrew Bible/Old Testament, when “LORD” appears in small caps, the Name of God, the “Tetragrammatan” occurs in the Hebrew text.  Translating the Name using “Lord” in this typeset reflects a reverence for the Name itself and continues the Jewish tradition of using Adonai, (Hebrew: “Lord, master”) as a respectful reflection of the Name. 

‘Man’ here is collective of the entirety of humanity.

As we find in Ezekiel, the phrase “son of man” was a general reference to humanity.  Jesus later uses this reference for himself in the “son of man” passages in the Gospels.

The Greek text (LXX), along with the Targums and Vulgate, translates Elohim as ‘angels.’

6  ‘Hands’ compared to ‘fingers’ earlier.  Also, note the movement between ‘hands’ and ‘feet’ in terms of direction and physical relationship.

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