“The Lord reigns! Let the peoples tremble. He is enthroned above the cherubim. Let the earth quake. Exalt the Lord our God; bow in worship at His holy mountain, for the Lord our God is holy.”
Psalms 99:1, 9
Becauae of its similarity to other confirmed writing, King David is credited with writing Psalm 99. David starts here with a proclaimation and a statement of his faith: “the Lord reigns”! “Let the peoples tremble.” This is a different perspective of God than what we normally take. Americans are extremely proud and independant people. We take pride in not trembling before anyone, yet David here says that the peoples or “whole earth” in older translations, tremble before God! Why tremble? In awesome amazement of the majesty of a King Who’s enthroned on high! His greatness, in contrast to our sin tendancies should indeed cause us to tremble! David next relies on mental pictures to make his point. He says, “He (God) is enthroned above the cherubim. Let the earth quake.”. . . The tabernacle of Moses was divided into 3 basic sections: the outer court, the holy place and the holy of holies. The outer court was accessable to all, the inner court or holy place to some, but the holy of holies only the high preist on only one specific day of the year. He had to bring specific sacrifices and be prepared spiritually, mentally and physically to meet God there. The place he would encounter god was in the holy of holies, above the mercy seat that covered the ark of the covenant that was protected by the wings of the cheribim. For David to say that God was enthroned above the wings of the cheribim was to say that God’s throne was in the holiest place ever! That’s why the peoples should tremble and the earth should quake! Of course, this mental picture was the whole reason for the building of the tabernacle and temple. It was to give a tangible visual image of the holiness of God and the glory of God so that people would understand correctly Who God is, how holy He is and how to correctly worship Him. It was an earthly picture of a Heavenly place and event.
Worship happens day and night around the throne of God. Isaiah and John both witnessed and wrote of this heavenly event in Isaiah 6 and Revelation 4. Though their encounters with God were milliniums apart, their account were almost identical! Both included accounts of these cheribim, flying around God’s throne, calling to one another, “Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord Almighty”. David incorperates this picture into Psaslm 99.
David finishes the psalm by eliciting a response from reader or worshipper: “Exalt the Lord our God; bow in worship at His holy mountain, for the Lord our God is holy.”
Once we understsnd God’s holiness and Who He really is, we’ll have no problem trembling before Him or bowing down to Him, for these are correct responses when encountering a holy God!
EVERY TIME you encounter God in ANY way, whether big or small, you must respond to Him, either positively or negatively. Make your response positive to Him today-welcome Him today, for you are encountering Him right now!
Think about it!