Psalm 87 – Skeptic's Annotated Bible answered

A response and reply to the notes on Psalm 87 in the Skeptic's Annotated Bible (SAB).

King James Version

SAB comment

My comment

1 His foundation is in the holy mountains.

2 The LORD loveth the gates of Zion more than all the dwellings of Jacob.

3 Glorious things are spoken of thee, O city of God. Selah.

4 I will make mention of Rahab and Babylon to them that know me: behold Philistia, and Tyre, with Ethiopia; this man was born there.

"I will make mention of Rahab"
Rahab is a sea-demon or dragon from ancient Jewish folklore.
The Rahab in this verse is not a reference to the Rahab of Jos. 2:1 (in the Hebrew the word is clearly different), but it is the name of a place, like Babylon in this verse is the name of a place. It is the poetical name for Egypt. The word occurs several times in the Bible. That Rahab means Egypt is very clear in the translation of Is. 30:7 in the American Standard Version:

For Egypt helpeth in vain, and to no purpose: therefore have I called her Rahab that sitteth still.

Or in the poetical translation of the NIV:

to Egypt, whose help is utterly useless.
Therefore I call her
Rahab the Do-Nothing.

The author of the SAB's reference to the meaning of mythical sea monster is probably because of Is. 51:9, but even there it is clear the text is about Egypt.

5 And of Zion it shall be said, This and that man was born in her: and the highest himself shall establish her.

6 The LORD shall count, when he writeth up the people, that this man was born there. Selah.

7 As well the singers as the players on instruments shall be there: all my springs are in thee.