Bible Verse Explanations and Resources


Psalms 99:1

Adam Clarke
Bible Commentary

The Lord reigneth - See the note on Psalm 97:1.

Let the people tremble - He will establish his kingdom in spite of his enemies; let those who oppose him tremble for the consequences.

He sitteth between the cherubims - This is in reference to the ark, at each end of which was a cherub of glory; and the shechinah, or symbol of the Divine Presence, appeared on the lid of the ark, called also the mercy-seat, between the cherubim. Sitting between the cherubim implies God's graciousness and mercy. While then, in his reign, he was terrible to sinners, he is on the throne of grace to all who fear love, and obey him. Though this symbol were not in the second temple, yet the Divine Being might very well be thus denominated, because it had become one of his titles, he having thus appeared under the tabernacle and first temple.

Albert Barnes
Notes on the Whole Bible

The Lord reigneth - The Lord, Yahweh, is king. See Psalm 93:1.

Let the people tremble - The Septuagint and the Latin Vulgate render this, “Let the people rage” - or, be angry: as if the idea were that God reigned, although the people were enraged, and were opposed to him. The true meaning of the word used here, however, is “tremble,” properly signifying to be moved, disturbed, disquieted, thrown into commotion; and then it may mean to be moved with anger, Proverbs 29:9; Isaiah 28:21; or with grief, 2 Samuel 18:33: or with fear, Psalm 4:4; or with joy, Jeremiah 33:9. Hence, it means to be agitated or moved with fear or reverence; and it refers here to the reverence or awe which one has in the conscious presence of God.

He sitteth between the cherubims - See the notes at Psalm 80:1.

Let the earth be moved - Margin, “stagger.” The word means to move or quake. It occurs nowhere else. Compare the notes at Psalm 18:7. See also Habakkuk 3:6, Habakkuk 3:10.

Matthew Henry
Concise Bible Commentary
God governs the world by his providence, governs the church by his grace, and both by his Son. The inhabitants of the earth have cause to tremble, but the Redeemer still waits to be gracious. Let all who hear, take warning, and seek his mercy. The more we humble ourselves before God, the more we exalt him; and let us be thus reverent, for he is holy.
Ellen G. White
Prophets and Kings, 176

In the vision of the prophet Ezekiel there was the appearance of a hand beneath the wings of the cherubim. This is to teach God's servants that it is divine power that gives success. Those whom God employs as His messengers are not to feel that His work is dependent on them. Finite beings are not left to carry this burden of responsibility. He who slumbers not, who is continually at work for the accomplishment of His designs, will carry forward His work. He will thwart the purposes of wicked men and will bring to confusion the counsels of those who plot mischief against His people. He who is the King, the Lord of hosts, sitteth between the cherubim, and amidst the strife and tumult of nations He guards His children still. When the strongholds of kings shall be overthrown, when the arrows of wrath shall strike through the hearts of His enemies, His people will be safe in His hands. PK 176.1

Through the long centuries that have passed since Elijah's time, the record of his lifework has brought inspiration and courage to those who have been called to stand for the right in the midst of apostasy. And for us, “upon whom the ends of the world are come” (1 Corinthians 10:11), it has special significance. History is being repeated. The world today has its Ahabs and its Jezebels. The present age is one of idolatry, as verily as was that in which Elijah lived. No outward shrine may be visible; there may be no image for the eye to rest upon; yet thousands are following after the gods of this world—after riches, fame, pleasure, and the pleasing fables that permit man to follow the inclinations of the unregenerate heart. Multitudes have a wrong conception of God and His attributes, and are as truly serving a false god as were the worshipers of Baal. Many even of those who claim to be Christians have allied themselves with influences that are unalterably opposed to God and His truth. Thus they are led to turn away from the divine and to exalt the human. PK 177.1

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Ellen G. White
The Ministry of Healing, 438

“These things happened unto them for ensamples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come.” 1 Corinthians 10:11. MH 438.1

“The Lord is in His holy temple:
Let all the earth keep silence before Him.”
MH 438.2

“The Lord reigneth; let the people tremble:
He sitteth between the cherubims; let the earth be moved.
The Lord is great in Zion;
And He is high above all the people.
Let them praise Thy great and terrible name;
For it is holy.”
MH 438.3

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Ellen G. White
Testimonies for the Church, vol. 8, 285

“These things happened unto them by way of example; and they were written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the ages are come.” 1 Corinthians 10:11, A. R. V. 8T 285.1

“The Lord is in His holy temple:
Let all the earth keep silence before Him.”
8T 285.2

Habakkuk 2:20. 8T 285

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Ellen G. White
Prophets and Kings, 39

Realizing the significance of this cloud, Solomon declared: “The Lord hath said that He would dwell in the thick darkness. But I have built an house of habitation for Thee, and a place for Thy dwelling forever.” 2 Chronicles 6:1, 2. PK 39.1

“The Lord reigneth;
Let the people tremble:
He sitteth between the cherubims;
Let the earth be moved.
“The Lord is great in Zion;
And He is high above all the people.
Let them praise Thy great and terrible name;
For it is holy....
“Exalt ye the Lord our God,
And worship at His footstool;
For He is holy.”
PK 39.2

Psalm 99:1-5. PK 39

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