“Do not wear yourself out to get rich.
Be wise enough to desist.
When your eyes light upon it,
It is gone.
Suddenly it takes wings to itself.
It flies like an eagle toward heaven.”
Don’t bother working hard to get rich. Be smart enough not to try. If you do get rich, it will be gone right before your eyes. This wealth takes wings and flies like an eagle toward the skies. Bye-bye money!
Praise Yahweh from the heavens!
Praise Yahweh in the heights!
All his angels!
His entire host!
Sun and moon!
All you shining stars!
You highest heavens!
You waters above the heavens!
Let them praise the name of Yahweh!
Thus they were created.
He established them forever and ever.
He fixed their bounds.
They cannot be passed.”
Psalm 148 is another “praise Yahweh” psalm, another way of saying alleluia, the Hebrew “Hallelujah.” This time all created things are to praise Yahweh, not just Israelites or other humans. Everything and everyone was to praise Yahweh. In particular the highest heavens are to praise Yahweh. All the angels and hosts of armies of Yahweh were to praise him. The sun, the moon, and the stars in the skies were to praise Yahweh. The highest heavens with the water that was to fall on the earth were to praise Yahweh. This is truly a cosmic praise of Yahweh. However, all theses heavenly angels and sky were created at the command of Yahweh. He established them forever with a certain boundary that they cannot pass.
“Yet he commanded the skies above.
He opened the doors of heaven.
He rained down on them manna to eat.
He gave them the grain of heaven.
Mortals ate of the bread of the angels.
He sent them food in abundance.
He caused the east wind to blow in the heavens.
By his power he led out the south wind.
He rained flesh upon them like dust.
Winged birds like the sand of the seas.
He let them fall within their camp.
They were all around their dwellings.
They were well filled.
He gave them what they craved.”
Yahweh was kind to the Israelites. He opened the skies of heaven and let manna rain down on them. Here this manna is called the bread of angels. This is an embellishment of the story in Exodus, chapter 16. There the manna was more quizzical “what is this stuff?” Here, this is the grain or bread of angels as if angels had to eat food like humans. Here, instead of quails it is winged birds that fall from the sky. These winged birds were as plentiful as dust on the earth or sand in the seas. They ate the manna and birds until they were filled. They got what they were asking for.
“O rider in the heavens!
The ancient heavens!
He sends out his voice.
He has a mighty voice.
Ascribe power to God.
His majesty is over Israel.
His power is in the skies.
Awesome is God in his sanctuary.
The God of Israel gives power.
He gives strength to his people.
Blessed be God!”
This long psalm ends with a rousing song to God as a rider in the ancient heavens. He sends out his voice so that we should listen to it. He has the power over Israel and all the skies. His sanctuary is awesome. The God of Israel gives power and strength to this people so that God is to be blessed.