by Connie J. Horn
“The earth is the LORD’s, and the fulness thereof; the world, and they that dwell therein” (Psalm 24:1).
“Earth” means the habitable part of our world as we know it today. It is the “dry land” that God called “earth” in Chapter 1 of Genesis. Other verses in Scripture reiterate Psalm 24’s “ownership clause”: “For all the earth is mine” (Exodus 19:5); “know how that the earth is the LORD’s” (Exodus 9:29).
“The fulness thereof” further defines what the Lord means by “earth.” If there is any doubt in one’s mind as to the truth of who owns the earth, God doubles the emphasis by adding a word that elsewhere in the Bible is translated “all that is therein.” In essence, Psalm 24:1 says, “The whole earth is the LORD’s and all the parts that make up the whole!”
Upon what is Psalm 24’s ownership clause based? God gives us the foundation of His claim in verse 2. “For He hath founded it. . . .” He claims ownership, and then tells us that is His right, because He has “founded” the earth. Founded means “to settle,” or “establish.” Elsewhere, this word is translated “ordain,” or “foundation.” “The earth . . . He hath established for ever” (Psalm 78:69). He has “laid the foundation of the earth” (Psalm 102:25). The concept of creation is also used with the word “founded” in Psalm 89:11: “The heavens are thine, the earth also is thine: as for the world and the fulness thereof, thou hast founded them.”
Psalm 24 continues, “Who shall ascend into the hill of the LORD? or who shall stand in His holy place? He that hath clean hands, and a pure heart; who hath not lifted up his soul unto vanity, nor sworn deceitfully” (vs.3,4).
What gives God the right to make the rules about who shall stand in His presence? In His wisdom, He lays the foundation of ownership before He establishes any rules. God’s position, as Creator and Owner of all, gives Him the right to make the rules! CJH