FREE THEME – Psalms
This week we are looking at seven different types of psalms. Yesterday we looked at a wisdom psalm. Today we are looking at a royal psalm.
The Psalms were written at a time and in a culture where kings ruled. Israel was governed by either David or his heir. David was hand chosen by God to be God’s anointed king. They literally poured oil over the king’s head and face to symbolize being anointed by God to rule. This anointed one was literally the Messiah or messianic/anointed king. When God set David apart as king God promised him that his heir would rule over God’s people forever. This rule would begin at Jerusalem or Zion but would extend ultimately over all the earth.
Psalm 110 is a promise that the anointed king would rule, that God would give him victory over God’s enemies.
Vs. 4 makes a curious statement- this king will also be a priest, but not the typical priest. In Israel, to serve as priest in the temple one had to be a descendant of the tribe of Levi. But David and his family were descendants from the tribe of Judah, which was the ruling tribe. This descendant of David would be a different kind of priest. Just as Melchizedek was a priest in the time of Abraham, long before Levi was ever born, this kind of priesthood was a greater kind of priest than the Levitical priest.
All of this finally makes sense when we understand how Jesus fits into the picture. Jesus is the fulfillment of this psalm. He is an heir of David, he will rule as King, he is also a priest but not in the temple of Jerusalem. As a priest he offers up his own body as a sacrifice to God. He doesn’t enter the holy of holies in the Temple of Jerusalem, he ascends to the heavens and enters into the immediate presence of God, where he continues to serve as our priest, until the day comes when he returns to the earth to rule over all the earth following the final battle when the kingdoms and kings of the earth will all bow before Christ as King of Kings and Lord of Lords. This royal psalm points us to Jesus.
Everyone wants to be on the winning side. This reminds us that if we choose to follow Jesus and give our lives to Jesus, we will be on the winning side at the last battle.
Of David. A psalm.
1 The Lord says to my lord:
“Sit at my right hand
until I make your enemies
a footstool for your feet.”
2 The Lord will extend your mighty scepter from Zion, saying,
“Rule in the midst of your enemies!”
3 Your troops will be willing
on your day of battle.
Arrayed in holy splendor,
your young men will come to you
like dew from the morning’s womb.
4 The Lord has sworn
and will not change his mind:
“You are a priest forever,
in the order of Melchizedek.”
5 The Lord is at your right hand;
he will crush kings on the day of his wrath.
6 He will judge the nations, heaping up the dead
and crushing the rulers of the whole earth.
7 He will drink from a brook along the way,
and so he will lift his head high.