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Psalms 97:2

    Psalms 97:2 Translations

    King James Version (KJV)

    Clouds and darkness are round about him: righteousness and judgment are the habitation of his throne.

    American King James Version (AKJV)

    Clouds and darkness are round about him: righteousness and judgment are the habitation of his throne.

    American Standard Version (ASV)

    Clouds and darkness are round about him: Righteousness and justice are the foundation of his throne.

    Basic English Translation (BBE)

    Dark clouds are round him; his kingdom is based on righteousness and right judging.

    Webster's Revision

    Clouds and darkness are round about him: Righteousness and justice are the foundation of his throne.

    World English Bible

    Clouds and darkness are around him. Righteousness and justice are the foundation of his throne.

    English Revised Version (ERV)

    Clouds and darkness are round about him: righteousness and judgment are the foundation of his throne.

    Clarke's Commentary on Psalms 97:2

    Clouds and darkness are round about him - It is granted that this is a subject which cannot be comprehended. And why? Because God is infinite; he acts from his own counsels, which are infinite; in reference to ends which are also infinite: therefore, the reasons of his government cannot be comprehended by the feeble, limited powers of man. There must be clouds and darkness - an impenetrable obscurity, round about him; and we can no more comprehend him in what is called aeternitas a parte ante - the eternity that passed before time commenced, than we can in the aeternitas a parte post - the eternity that is to come, when time shall be no more. Yet such a Being cannot but see all things clearly, and do all things well; therefore the psalmist properly asserts: -

    Righteousness and judgment are the habitation of his throne - Righteousness, צדק tsedek, the principle that acts according to justice and equity; that gives to all their due, and ever holds in all things an even balance. And judgment, משפט mishpat, the principle that discerns, orders, directs, and determines every thing according to truth and justice: these form the habitation of his throne; that is, his government and management of the world are according to these; and though we cannot see the springs, the secret counsels, and the times, which this omniscient and almighty

    Father must ever have in his own power, yet we may rest assured that all his administration is wise, just, holy, good, and kind. For, although his counsels be inscrutable, and the dispensations of his providence be sometimes apparently unequal, yet righteousness and judgment are the habitation of his throne.

    In this most sublime description,the psalmist, by the figure termed prosopopoeia, or personification, gives vitality and thought to all the subjects he employs; here, the very throne of God is animated; righteousness and judgment are two intellectual beings who support it. The fire, the lightnings, the earth, the heavens themselves, are all intellectual beings, which either accompany, go before him, or proclaim his majesty.

    Barnes' Notes on Psalms 97:2

    Clouds and darkness are round about him - This is a description of the majesty of God, derived probably from the manner in which he manifested himself at Mount Sinai. Exodus 19:16-19. God is often thus represented as encompassed with clouds. Psalm 104:3; Daniel 7:13; Matthew 24:30; Revelation 1:7. See the notes at Psalm 18:7-15. The word rendered "clouds" is the common word to denote a cloud; the word translated "darkness" means properly "thick clouds, cloudy darkness, gloom." It would refer to a cloud considered as dark, and as casting a gloom over the world. There is no reference here to the fact that the dealings of God are dark, mysterious, and incomprehensible, as if he were surrounded by clouds and darkness. This is indeed often true; but that is not the truth taught here. The meaning here is, that the character of God is suited to fill the mind with solemn awe, or with emotions of sublimity.

    Righteousness and judgment - He is a righteous God; he is a God who will execute just judgment. Though he is encompassed with clouds, yet he is a just God; and this is suited to impress the mind with profound reverence. That he will do right we may be assured, even when he covers himself with clouds; the fact that he will thus do right is suited to calm the minds of those who love and obey him, and at the same time to fill the minds of the wicked with alarm.

    Are the habitation of his throne - Margin, "establishment." The Hebrew word means "place;" the place where one stands, or where one abides; a habitation, or a dwelling. It then means a foundation or basis, Psalm 89:14; Psalm 104:5. This would seem to be the idea here. His throne rests upon, or is sustained by, justice and righteousness. Nothing else would uphold the government of the universe; nothing else will sustain any government.

    Wesley's Notes on Psalms 97:2

    97:2 Darkness - A dark cloud doth encompass him.