Ps 82

Ps. 82 This short psalm presents some difficult problems. Chief among them is the “gods” mentioned in vv. 1 and 6. A number of scholars take this as a reference to angelic powers, lesser spiritual beings who make up God’s heavenly council. A second interpretation understands “gods” literally, as deities made subordinate to Yahweh. The most probable interpretation is that the “gods” are human judges. The Hebrew word ’elohim (“gods”) is used of human judges in Ex. 21:6; 22:8, 9. Within Ps. 82, the human nature of these “gods” is indicated by vv. 6, 7. A rough paraphrase would be, “As judges, people may call you ‘lord,’ but you are as mortal as anyone else.”