Having worshiped God in a short doxology, David reflects on the greatness of his God and, in doing so, offers praise. Observe as King David takes his place before a congregation of believers to lead them in worship.
[You] have displayed Your splendor above the heavens!
From the mouth of infants and nursing babes You have established strength
Because of Your adversaries,
To make the enemy and the revengeful cease. (Psalm 8:1-2)
The difference between praise and petition is the absence of self. David leaves himself out of the picture in this expression of praise. He declares that the majesty and glory of God are "displayed" in the heavens. The Lord has invested the physical universe with the awesome splendor of His majesty. Psalm 19:1 verifies this fact: "The heavens are telling of the glory of God; and their expanse is declaring the work of His hands." And, again, Romans 1:20:
For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made.
David then goes on to illustrate his concept of God's glory by the other extreme; he considers the powerlessness of babes and how God can use even tiny infants—even those still nursing—to silence those who stand against Him. God shows Himself majestic and glorious in His love for the powerless.
I have an obstetrician friend who testifies that even before he became a Christian he could not ignore the power of God as he delivered and then held in his hands one tiny, screaming infant after another. He testifies that this ultimately led him to search for answers in the Bible and finally to find salvation through faith in Jesus Christ. In a very real sense, therefore, "infants and nursing babes" declare God's power and majesty. It is in His love for the powerless that we see living proof of God's creative might. When we study the delicate tiny features of their newborn state, we marvel at His attention to detail. Verse 2 concludes with the reminder that even God's enemies are silenced when the heavens are observed . . . or when little ones are considered.
Infants may be small and the stellar spaces silent, but both convey a profound significance to the observer. So it is at those times in our lives when we may think we are no longer that valuable or necessary. While God honors us by accomplishing His work through us, that is not the basis of our value. To put it another way, we are not valuable to God because of our usefulness. He values us whether we are productive or not.
There is an overwhelming comfort in that message. Human power or ability does not earn our Creator's love. He loves us regardless. We are special to Him no matter what happens, even if we become as weak as a newborn.
From Living the Psalms by Charles R. Swindoll, copyright © 2012. Reprinted by permission of Worthy Inspired, an imprint of Hachette Book Group, Inc.
Used with permission. All rights reserved.
In Embraced by the Spirit, we step away from the heat of theological battle that analyzes and criticizes and move quietly and closely to the One who has been sent alongside to help.