These verses are part of a psalm of praise that extols God's greatness and sovereignty. The psalmist reminds us that God is the creator of all things and that his power and wisdom are beyond measure. In verses 10-11, the psalmist contrasts God's delight with that of humans.
Verse 10 says that God does not delight in the strength of the horse or the legs of a man. This is a way of saying that God is not impressed by human strength or power. The horse was a symbol of military might in ancient times, while the legs of a man symbolized his ability to run and escape danger. The psalmist is saying that these things do not impress God, and that he does not take pleasure in them.
In contrast, verse 11 says that God takes pleasure in those who fear him and hope in his loving kindness. The fear of the Lord refers to a deep reverence and respect for God, acknowledging his holiness and sovereignty. To hope in God's loving kindness means to trust in his mercy and grace. The psalmist is saying that these attitudes are what truly please God.
These verses teach us that God is not interested in human strength or power, but in the attitude of the heart. While humans may be impressed by outward displays of strength, wealth, and influence, these things do not impress God. What pleases God is a heart that reveres him and trusts in his mercy and grace. As the prophet Micah said, "He has shown you, O mortal, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God" (Micah 6:8).
In the context of the psalm, the psalmist is praising God for his care for Jerusalem and his people. He is acknowledging that it is not the strength of their armies or the wisdom of their leaders that has brought them security and prosperity, but rather God's love and mercy. The psalmist is calling on the people of Jerusalem to trust in God and to place their hope in his loving kindness.
In a broader sense, these verses remind us that true worship and devotion to God come from the heart, not from outward displays of strength or power. God is not impressed by human accomplishments or achievements, but by our faith and trust in him. As Jesus said, "Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven" (Matthew 5:3). It is those who recognize their own weakness and need for God who find true favor in his sight.
In summary, Psalm 147:10-11 teaches us that God is not impressed by human strength or power, but by the attitude of the heart. He takes pleasure in those who fear him and hope in his loving kindness. These verses remind us that true worship and devotion come from a heart that trusts in God's mercy and grace, not from outward displays of strength or power.
Psalm 147:10-11. He doesn’t delight in the strength of the horse. He takes no pleasure in the legs of a man. Yahweh takes pleasure in those who fear him, in those who hope in his loving kindness.