Notes on Psalm 29 (Pt.1)

[Read: Psalm 29]

I. The Perfect Voice of the Lord

While stating that God’s Voice/Word is perfect is really an exercise in stating the obvious, it serves us well to be reminded of this truth. Beginning in verse 3, we are given seven statements regarding the power and majesty of God’s Voice/Word. The number seven, therefore, typifying perfection or completion, points us to remember the perfect Voice of God, Jesus Christ the Righteous. Christ was in the beginning with the Father and the Spirit, the Agent of God’s Creation, the Creator Himself, by whom and through whom and for whom all things came into existence. Is there any blemish in Christ? Then there is no blemish in God’s Word. Is there a contradiction in Christ? Then there is no contradiction in Christ. Which one of us can accuse Christ of sin? Then none of us can accuse His Word of containing a single error.

The interesting parallel, at least in content, I think may be found in Psalm 12, specifically in vv.2-6, which contrasts the impure words of sinners with the perfectly pure Word of God which is “like silver refined in a furnace on the ground, purified seven times.” God’s Word is perfect, David is saying, not only in His power over all of creation, but He is also morally perfect, not containing a single imperfection, and revealing perfectly what God has chosen to disclose to us about Himself.

II. The Trinity in Psalm 29

However, while this psalm is primarily about Christ, the Voice of God exercising omnipotence over all of creation from His throne, verse 3 strikes me as being Trinitarian in nature. There is a threefold repetition of Divine appellatives which leads me to believe that David is differentiating between Three Co-equal and Co-eternal Persons of the Godhead. He first mentions the Voice of the Lord, which is Christ Himself;[1] then the God of glory who thunders (i.e. the Father),[2] and, finally, the Lord (i.e. the Holy Spirit).[3] Note that the Voice of the Lord and the Lord are both mentioned over the waters, while “the God of glory” is said to thunder,” i.e. to speak. This verse is very reminiscent of Genesis 1:1-3, where God the Father’s Word is sent forth to create as the Holy Spirit hovers over the face of the waters.

The passage seems to me to indicate that David’s reference here is not primarily to Christ but to the Triune God of Scripture who is revealed in His Word/Voice. The Divinity of the Voice of the Lord, moreover, is seen throughout this text as David parallels “the Voice of the Lord” with “the Lord,”[4] and transitions from speaking of “the Voice of the Lord” to using personal pronouns like “He” and “His.”[5] We find this same transition elsewhere in Scripture, but probably most prominently in Hebrews 4:12-13,[6]where Christ is equated with the Word of God. The function of the word of God in Hebrews 4:12-13 is still omnipotent; however, as it is related to the judgment of the thoughts and intentions of the heart and mind of man, the emphasis is not on His sheer power over creation as Omnipotent Lord God. There is, nevertheless, a very evident continuity of revelational content. Christ is the Voice/Word of God who is both Creator and Redeemer.

[Continued in Part 2]

[1] Cf. Gen 3:8

[2] Cf. John 12:28-29

[3] The New Testament refers to the Holy Spirit as “the Lord” in 2 Cor 3:17-18.

[4] Cf. Ps 29:5, 8

[5] Cf. vv.5-6, 9


2 thoughts on “Notes on Psalm 29 (Pt.1)

involve yourself

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