1 Sing a new song to the Eternal;
sing in one voice to the Eternal, all the earth.
2 Sing to the Eternal of all the good things He’s done.
Bless His name;
broadcast the good news of His salvation each and every day.
3 Enlighten the nations to His splendor;
describe His wondrous acts to all people.
4 For the Eternal is great indeed and praiseworthy;
feared and reverenced above all gods, the True God shall be.
5 For all human-made, lifeless gods are worthless idols,
but the Eternal plotted the vast heavens, shaped every last detail.
6 Honor and majesty precede Him;
strength and beauty infuse His holy sanctuary.
One of the great themes of Scripture and Psalms is the kingship of God. While lesser kings come and go, God is the One who ultimately rules and reigns over His people, and by extension over the rest of creation. Psalm 96 and others in the collection are often referred to as “enthronement” psalms because they declare boldly and unequivocally that the Eternal is King. There is evidence to suggest that an annual festival at the beginning of the year provided an opportunity to reaffirm the people’s loyalty to the one True God. Psalm 96 calls for new songs to be composed and sung to God and about God as a witness. The enthronement psalms call the world and all its inhabitants to come and recognize His beauty and majesty.
7 Give all credit to the Eternal, families of the world!
Credit Him with glory, honor, and strength!
8 Credit Him with the glory worthy of His magnificent name;
gather your sacrifice, and present it at His temple.
9 Bow down to the Eternal, adorned in holiness;
lay awestruck before Him, trembling, all people of the earth.
10 Shout out to the nations, “The Eternal reigns!
Yes, indeed, the world is anchored and will not shake loose.
He governs all people with a fair hand.”
11 And so, let the heavens resound in gladness!
Let joy be the earth’s rhythm as the sea and all its creatures roar.
12 Let the fields grow in triumph, a grand jubilee for all that live there.
Let all the trees of the forest dig in and reach high with songs of joy before the Eternal,
13 For the Eternal is on His way:
yes, He is coming to judge the earth.
He will set the world right by His standards,
and by His faithfulness, He will examine the people.