You made him rule over the works of Your hands Psalm 8:6
Made Him Rule – David asks the question. “What is Man that You should be mindful of him?” David gives the answer. It’s a surprising answer; one that should make us uncomfortable. Man is defined in the same terms that define everything else in God’s creation – according to purpose.
What is Man? Man is the one God made to rule. What is Man’s purpose? To rule in God’s place.
That sounds pretty good, doesn’t it? Nothing better than being at the top of the food chain. But hold on. There is a subtle implication buried in the Hebrew text that radically alters our egocentric evaluation. The verb for “made him rule” is mashal. It means “to rule, to reign, to have dominion over.” David echoes Genesis 1:28, but not with the same verb. We don’t see the difference in English, but it’s there in Hebrew. In Genesis, God commands Man to exercise authority (radah). In this psalm, God causes Man to act as His representative. The critical difference is in the tense of the verb. In Genesis, the verb is an qal imperative. That means it is a normal present tense command, like “Do this!” In Genesis, God assigns a task to Man and expects him to carry it out. But in this psalm, the verb is a hiphil imperfect. Once you see the difference, everything changes. First, the imperfect means that it is an incomplete or fluid action; something that goes on and on. So, the first part of the answer to the question, “What is Man?” contains the idea of a continuous, incomplete (as yet) purpose. In other words, you and I are not defined by what we have done, but by what we still have to do.
But that’s not all. The verb stem is a hiphil. That means it is a causative verb. David tells us that God causes Man to rule over God’s creation. Did you get that? It is not voluntary. I didn’t choose the assignment. God didn’t create me to be His regent and then ask if I wanted the job. God caused me to rule. It was divine appointment. Before the Fall, God assigned Man the task of ruling. Now, David tells us that God places that task on us and makes us rule. This verse does not read, “You created me in such a way that I am able to rule.” This verse reads, “You caused me to rule, regardless of my desire.”
What does this mean for you and me? It means that we are responsible for the way that we handle God’s creation even if we don’t acknowledge God. What is Man? He is the steward of God’s assets whether he likes it or not. Man was made for the purpose of ruling and God causes Man to rule. So, you and I are held accountable for what we do with God’s creation. Here’s the definition of what we are – we are accountable to Him.
God owns it all. You and I are accountable to Him for everything we act on, with or through. He makes us rule in order to fulfill our purpose. And He expects us to exercise authority in the same way that He would. You have been given the King’s signet ring. You can’t take it off. He will ask for an accounting of all that your hand touches. So, how are you doing?
Topical Index: Man