Verse

Psalm 50:1

ESV A Psalm of Asaph. The Mighty One, God the LORD, speaks and summons the earth from the rising of the sun to its setting.
NIV A psalm of Asaph. The Mighty One, God, the LORD, speaks and summons the earth from the rising of the sun to where it sets.
NASB The Mighty One, God, the Lord, has spoken And summoned the earth, from the rising of the sun to its setting.
CSB The Mighty One, God, the Lord, speaks; he summons the earth from the rising of the sun to its setting.
NLT The Lord, the Mighty One, is God, and he has spoken; he has summoned all humanity from where the sun rises to where it sets.
KJV {A Psalm of Asaph.} The mighty God, even the LORD, hath spoken, and called the earth from the rising of the sun unto the going down thereof.

What does Psalm 50:1 mean?

Asaph was a leader of worship during the time of king David (1 Chronicles 6:31–32, 39). In this psalm, he creates a sense of drama leading into a series of accusations from the Lord against Israel. Asaph expresses personal frustration with the subject matter of this psalm in his other writing (Psalm 73:2–3; 74:10).

The beginning of the passage uses three separate terms which identify God. The same words, in the same order, were repeated by the people of certain tribes during a controversy early in the conquest of Canaan (Joshua 22:21–22). In Hebrew, these are 'Ēl, 'Elōhim', and YHWH. Each has its own meaning. 'Ēl most literally and simply means "power," and was frequently used in reference to a divine being. 'Elōhim' is actually plural, implying more than one thing, yet used as a singular noun, and also implies dominion and ability. YHWH is the closest thing God provides for His personal name; the word is often printed using small capitals—as "Lᴏʀᴅ"—in English translations. Asaph's focus here is on God's absolute power and supremacy, as well as His uniqueness as the only righteous judge.

As the supreme Judge, God orders Israel to come and hear His statement. He also calls all of creation as a witness to His judgment. Scripture notes that, as the one and only Creator, God owns everything and has authority over all things. Not all people experience God's direct judgment during their earthly lives—but each person will one day stand before the Lord God, the all-powerful Judge. Romans 14:12 says, "So then each of us will give account of himself to God." Believers will stand before Him to have their works approved (1 Corinthians 3:10–15). Unbelievers will stand before Him to be sentenced to eternity in the lake of fire (Revelation 20:11–15).
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