Psalm 98

Psalm 98[a]

Praise of the Lord, King and Judge

1 A psalm.

Sing to the Lord a new song,[b]
for he has accomplished marvelous deeds.
His right hand and his holy arm
have made him victorious.
2 The Lord has made known his salvation;
he has manifested his righteousness for all the nations to see.[c]
3 He has remembered his kindness[d] and his fidelity
to the house of Israel.
The farthest ends of the earth have witnessed
the salvation of our God.
4 Sing joyfully to the Lord, all the earth;
raise your voices in songs of praise.
5 Sing praise to the Lord with the harp,
with the harp and melodious singing.
6 With trumpets and the sound of the horn
sing joyfully to the King, the Lord.[e]
7 [f]Let the sea resound and everything in it,
the world[g] and all its inhabitants.
8 Let the rivers clap their hands
and the mountains shout for joy.
9 Let them sing before the Lord, who is coming,
coming to judge the earth.
He will judge the world with justice
and the nations with fairness.[h]


  1. Psalm 98:1 Israel has returned from the Exile; God has saved her, and the whole world is a witness of it. Hence, the Lord is pursuing his project of salvation. Let all peoples acclaim him as their sovereign and let joy burst out over the whole face of the earth, for God comes to inaugurate a kingdom of peace and justice for all humanity. The same worldwide perspective is glimpsed in the second part of the Book of Isaiah (Isa 40–55) with which the psalms of the kingdom have much in common.
    The previous psalm brought to mind the second coming of Christ. This psalm recalls the first coming of the Lord and the faith of all peoples. Hence, the Christian Liturgy uses it during the Christmas season, since the latter is so filled with joy at the coming of the Lord, the Savior of all human beings.
  2. Psalm 98:1 God’s deliverance of Israel from the Exile, a type of the Messianic redemption, is such a wondrous deed that it deserves to be praised in song. New song: see note on Ps 33:3. Marvelous deeds: see note on Ps 9:2. His right hand and his holy arm: God is portrayed as a champion warrior.
  3. Psalm 98:2 Reminiscent of his wonders during the Exodus, God has once again revealed his infinite power and greatness (see note on Ps 46:11; see also Isa 52:10).
  4. Psalm 98:3 God has kept the promise he made to the house of Israel, and it is fully visible to all nations. The complete fulfillment of this promise was what God performed in the redemption worked by his Son Jesus Christ—which also was seen by all nations. Kindness: see note on Ps 6:5.
  5. Psalm 98:6 The whole of creation is summoned to acclaim the Lord as King, as Israel acclaimed her kings at their coronation, with trumpets and horns (see 1 Ki 1:34).
  6. Psalm 98:7 All creation is exhorted to honor its King (see note on Ps 96:11-12).
  7. Psalm 98:7 Sea . . . world: the two major areas that contain living things.
  8. Psalm 98:9 The Lord will come to rule everyone impartially. Jesus announced that the long-awaited coming of the Lord to rule the earth had begun in his ministry (see Mk 1:15: “The kingdom of God is close at hand”). See also note on Ps 96:13.

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