Psalms 75:0 ¶ To the chief Musician, Altaschith, A Psalm or Song of Asaph.
Another psalm attributed to Asaph for use by the chief Musician. “Altaschith” is concluded by many to identify the tune to which it was to be sung. This tune was also specified for psalms 57-59.
Psalms 75:1 ¶ Unto thee, O God, do we give thanks, unto thee do we give thanks: for that thy name is near thy wondrous works declare.
The psalmist opens this psalm with words of thanksgiving to God in light of all the wonderful and miraculous (from the Hebrew) things He has done on behalf of His people.
Psalms 75:2 When I shall receive the congregation I will judge uprightly.
Psalms 75:3 The earth and all the inhabitants thereof are dissolved: I bear up the pillars of it. Selah.
After reading several translations, it seems that the point the God is making is that He is the one who chooses when He will dispense judgment.
The Hebrew for “dissolve” states “to melt, flow down, disappear….” It makes sense with the rest of the verse to be referencing earthquakes and volcanoes as God declares that He is the one that holds the earth together throughout their impact.
I couldn’t help but think of the greatest earthquake of all that will happen during the tribulation; yet through it all, the LORD will hold the earth together.
Revelation 16:18 “And there were voices, and thunders, and lightnings; and there was a great earthquake, such as was not since men were upon the earth, so mighty an earthquake, and so great.”
EBC Abridged Commentary: “The “upright” judgment of God pertains to both aspects of his righteous rule: vengeance on the enemies and vindication of the godly.”
Selah – a pause, an opportunity for reflection
Psalms 75:4 I said unto the fools, Deal not foolishly: and to the wicked, Lift not up the horn:
Psalms 75:5 Lift not up your horn on high: speak not with a stiff neck.
Psalms 75:6 ¶ For promotion cometh neither from the east, nor from the west, nor from the south.
Psalms 75:7 But God is the judge: he putteth down one, and setteth up another.
We learned previously that the Chronicler identified Asaph as a prophet or seer. In that capacity, he has spoken out in warning to those who are wicked, boastful and full of pride. He has warned them that they should not act defiantly before God. He has told them that there is no man from anywhere who can put a man in power without God’s oversight. It is God that is the sovereign judge and ultimately decides whom to place in power and whom to take down.
Because our perspective is so small, I think there are very few in this world that recognize that truth. Because God’s ways are so different than ours, we can’t imagine why He would allow so many wicked men to occupy powerful positions and rule with such tyranny. The truth is, however, that His purposes are being accomplished as He positions each person in power throughout the world.
The prophet Daniel affirms this truth.
Daniel 2:20–21 “Daniel answered and said, Blessed be the name of God for ever and ever: for wisdom and might are his: And he changeth the times and the seasons: he removeth kings, and setteth up kings: he giveth wisdom unto the wise, and knowledge to them that know understanding….”
Psalms 75:8 For in the hand of the Lord there is a cup, and the wine is red; it is full of mixture; and he poureth out of the same: but the dregs thereof, all the wicked of the earth shall wring them out, and drink them.
The psalmist paints a word picture of God’s sovereignty, assuring that the wicked of the earth will be judged. He pictures God holding a cup of red wine mixed with spices. He pictures all the wicked being forced to drink the entire contents of the cup to the very last bit of remaining sediment in the bottom.
There are other places in scripture picturing God’s judgment as coming from a cup of wine.
Isaiah 51:17 “Awake, awake, stand up, O Jerusalem, which hast drunk at the hand of the Lord the cup of his fury; thou hast drunken the dregs of the cup of trembling, and wrung them out.”
Jeremiah 25:15 “For thus saith the Lord God of Israel unto me; Take the wine cup of this fury at my hand, and cause all the nations, to whom I send thee, to drink it.”
Revelation 16:19 “And the great city was divided into three parts, and the cities of the nations fell: and great Babylon came in remembrance before God, to give unto her the cup of the wine of the fierceness of his wrath.”
Psalms 75:9 But I will declare for ever; I will sing praises to the God of Jacob.
Psalms 75:10 All the horns of the wicked also will I cut off; but the horns of the righteous shall be exalted.
The psalmist declares that he will declare the praises of the God of Jacob forever and prophesies that God will destroy the wicked and exalt the righteous. Scripture affirms that truth throughout, e.g.:
Isaiah 13:11 “And I will punish the world for their evil, and the wicked for their iniquity; and I will cause the arrogancy of the proud to cease, and will lay low the haughtiness of the terrible.”
Revelation 21:8 But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.
Revelation 21:6–7 “And he said unto me, It is done. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely. He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son.”