House of the Lord

This entry is part 460 of 484 in the series Inquiring Minds
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What is the meaning behind Psalm 114:2?

Psalm 114:1-2 describes how Israel as a people is God’s holy and sanctified people. They are separate from Egypt, where he freed them from the house of slavery. Egypt is the people of a strange language or tongue.

There is parallelism between Israel and Jacob in Psalm 114:1. This refers to the whole people of Israel. In Psalm 114:2, the parallelism changes from Israel and Jacob to Judah and Israel. The suggestion is that Judah refers to the southern kingdom while Israel refers to the northern kingdom.

Once again, this is a parallelism of a different type, still talking about the whole nation of Israel. It’s just referring to the two kingdoms instead of to Israel and Jacob. Israel is often referred to as the “house of Jacob.”

In Psalm 114:2, Judah and Israel may refer to Judah as the sanctuary, housing the Temple in the city of Jerusalem. Israel refers to the northern kingdom or to Israel as a whole when it talks about a people for God’s dominion. God rules over all of Israel.

One may be speaking nationally while the other, Judah, is speaking about the spiritual aspect of the nation. All of Israel is represented with these different references. In both verses, Israel is God’s people, his chosen nation.

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