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Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Psalms 96:5

 

 

For all the gods of the peoples are idols, But the LORD made the heavens.

Adam Clarke Commentary

All the gods of the nations are idols - אלהי elohey . All those reputed or worshipped as gods among the heathens are אלילים elilim, vanities, emptinesses, things of nought. Instead of being Elohim, they are elilim; they are not only not God, but they are nothing." "Jehovah made the heavens." He who is the creator is alone worthy of adoration.


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Bibliography
Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on Psalms 96:5". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/psalms-96.html. 1832.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

For all the gods of the nations are idols - All the gods worshipped by the people of other lands are mere “idols.” None of them can claim to have a real existence as gods. The word here rendered “idols” is translated by the Septuagint, δαιμόνια daimonia “demons.” So the Latin Vulgate “daemonia.” The Hebrew word - אליל 'ĕlı̂yl - means properly “of nothing, nought, empty, vain.” See Job 13:4. The meaning here is, that they were mere nothings; they had no real existence; they were the creations of the imagination; they could not in any sense be regarded as what it was pretended they were; they had no claim to reverence and worship as gods. Of most of them it was a fact that they had no existence at all, but were mere creatures of fancy. Of those that did really exist, as the sun, moon, stars, animals, or the spirits of departed people, though it was true that they had an actual existence, yet it was also true that they had no existence “as gods,” or as entitled to worship; and hence, it was also true that the worship offered to them was as vain as that which was offered to mere beings of the imagination. This verse is extracted literally from 1 Chronicles 16:26. The Hebrew is the same.

But the Lord made the heavens - Yahweh created the heavenly hosts, and therefore he is the true God, and is entitled to worship. The power of “creation” - of causing anything to exist where there was nothing before - must pertain to God alone, and is the highest act of Divinity. No pretended pagan god has that power; no man has that power. The true God has reserved the exercise of that power to himself, and has never, in any instance, imparted it to a created being.


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Bibliography
Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on Psalms 96:5". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/psalms-96.html. 1870.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

For all the gods of the nations are idols,.... Or are "nothings"F15אלילים "nihila", Tigurine version, Cocceius, Michaelis. , nonentities; such as have not, and never had, any being, at least many of them, but in the fancies of men; and all of them such as have no divinity in them;

an idol is nothing in the world, 1 Corinthians 8:4,

but the Lord made the heavens; and all the hosts of them, the sun, moon, and stars; these are the curious workmanship of his fingers, and which declare his glory, and show him to be truly and properly God, who is to be feared and worshipped; see Hebrews 1:10.


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The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rightes Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
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Bibliography
Gill, John. "Commentary on Psalms 96:5". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/psalms-96.html. 1999.

Geneva Study Bible

For all the gods of the nations [are] idols: but the LORD c made the heavens.

(c) Then the idols or whatever did not make the heavens, are not God.

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Bibliography
Beza, Theodore. "Commentary on Psalms 96:5". "The 1599 Geneva Study Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/gsb/psalms-96.html. 1599-1645.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

Psalms 96:5 For all the gods of the nations [are] idols: but the LORD made the heavens.

Ver. 5. For all the gods, &c.] Deunculi, deastri, those petty gods, those dunghill deities of the heathens, are nullities; indeed, they are devils, and those idols were their receptacles, and, as it were, their bodies, from whence in some places they gave oracles; but were silenced at Christ’s coming in the flesh, to the great amazement of their superstitious worshippers.

But the Lord made the heavens] With singular artifice, Hebrews 11:10, using παση σοφιας μηχανη, every engine of wisdom (Clem. Alex. Paid. l. 1. c. 9).


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Bibliography
Trapp, John. "Commentary on Psalms 96:5". John Trapp Complete Commentary. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/psalms-96.html. 1865-1868.

Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible

Psalms 96:5. The gods of the nations are idols Things of nothing. Mudge. Vanities; things which have no substance or being. The words strength and beauty, or glory, in the next verse, are the very words by which the ark is described in Psalms 78:61.


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Bibliography
Coke, Thomas. "Commentary on Psalms 96:5". Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/tcc/psalms-96.html. 1801-1803.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

Idols; or, nothings, as they are called, 1 Corinthians 8:4 10:19; or, vain things, as the word signifies, and is translated by others. The sense is, Though they have usurped the name and place of the Divine Majesty, yet they have nothing of his nature or power in them.


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Bibliography
Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Psalms 96:5". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/psalms-96.html. 1685.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

5. Idols—The name is one of contempt: אלילים (eleeleem,) images, nothings, vanities, in opposition to אלהים, (Eloheem,) God. The former word is a play upon the latter, (by paronomasia;) by altering the letters a little the similarity of sound is retained with a sense satirically opposite. Thus, the heathen gods are called “no gods,” (2 Chronicles 13:9,) in opposition to the true God, (chap. Psalms 15:3;) “nothing,” (1 Corinthians 8:4,) “vanity,” (Jeremiah 14:22,) and “devils,” from the character and effect of their worship. 1 Corinthians 10:19-20; Revelation 9:20.

The Lord made the heavens—He is to be judged of by his works. They are his “glory,” his “wonders,” (Psalms 96:3,) and the appeal is made to show that the Author of nature and of salvation is one and the same God. Psalms 95:4-5


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Bibliography
Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on Psalms 96:5". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/psalms-96.html. 1874-1909.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

All. Which is conformable to the Hebrew, &c., though the Vulgate terra, means, "all the earth" melted. (Haydock)


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Bibliography
Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on Psalms 96:5". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/psalms-96.html. 1859.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

all the gods . . . idols. Figure of speech Paronomasia. App-6Hebrew. kalelohey . . . "elilim.

nations = peoples.

idols = nothings. Compare 1 Corinthians 8:4.


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Bibliography
Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on Psalms 96:5". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/psalms-96.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

For all the gods of the nations are idols: but the LORD made the heavens.

For all the gods of the nations are idols - literally, 'are vanities' or 'nullities' [ '


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Bibliography
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Psalms 96:5". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/psalms-96.html. 1871-8.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(5) Idols.—Literally, nothings; Heb., elîlîm, with a play on the word el, God. This plainly shows that by Gods, in Psalms 96:4, the heathen deities, and not angels, are meant. (See Note, Psalms 95:3.) The LXX. sometimes renders the Hebrew word “idols,” sometimes “vanities,” but here “demons.” Symmachus “nonexistences.”

But the Lord made the heavens.—Nothings could not do that, but only Jehovah.


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Bibliography
Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on Psalms 96:5". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/psalms-96.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

For all the gods of the nations are idols: but the LORD made the heavens.
For
115:3-8; 135:15,18; Isaiah 44:8-28; 46:1,2; Jeremiah 10:3-5,11,12,14,15; Acts 19:26; 1 Corinthians 8:4
but
115:15; Genesis 1:1; Isaiah 42:5; Jeremiah 10:11

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Bibliography
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Psalms 96:5". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/psalms-96.html.

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