Read 2 Samuel 2, Ezekiel 42, and Psalms 108-110.
This devotional is about Psalm 110.
This is a brief Psalm with mighty implications. It began with a superscript that says, “Of David. A psalm.” “Of David” could mean, “about David,” “by David,” or “for David” but it must mean “by David” for two reasons:
- The same wording, of David, in Hebrew is used before other Psalms, like Psalm 3: “A psalm of David. When he fled from his son Absalom.” The clear meaning of that heading is that David wrote Psalm 3. The same wording here indicates that David wrote Psalm 110 as well.
- Jesus quoted Psalm 110:1 in Matthew 22:43-45 and clearly specified David as the author: “He said to them, ‘How is it then that David, speaking by the Spirit, calls him “Lord”? For he says, ‘”The LORD said to my Lord: Sit at my right hand until I put your enemies under your feet.'” If then David calls him “Lord,” how can he be his son?'”
So, David wrote Psalm 110. That is important because of what Psalm 110:1 says which is, “YHWH (translated “the LORD”) said unto my lord.” If someone else, not David, wrote Psalm 110, then the meaning is, “YHWY said unto my Lord, David….”
But, since David wrote Psalm 110, who is his “lord”? Who was David writing about when he wrote, “YHWH said to my lord”?
Jesus explained that the Psalm should be read this way: “YHWH said unto David’s lord….” But who is lord over King David except for God himself?
That question suggests the important answer. Although the doctrine that we call the Trinity had not been revealed yet, David recognized that there was a coming king–Messiah–who would be distinct from YHWH in some sense but yet would still be Lord over David.
This Psalm describes Jesus in his current state: sitting at God the Father’s right hand until YHWH makes his “enemies a footstool for” his “feet” (v. 1).
At that point, YHWH will “extend your mighty scepter from Zion, saying, ‘Rule in the midst of your enemies!'” (v. 2). Christ will “crush kings on the day of his wrath” (v. 5b), and “will judge nations” (v. 6a).
These are God’s promises to David’s greatest son, the Lord Jesus Christ. He is already sovereign over all creation (Col 1:15-20). He is now serving as “a priest forever in the order of Melchizedek” (v. 4, Hebrews 5:6, 10, 6:20, etc.). That’s what Jesus is doing now. In the future, at the time of God the Father’s choosing, Christ will become the human king on earth over all the earth. This is when the kingdom age–what we call the Millennium and beyond–will be fully established.
Until then, Christ has called us to be citizens of his kingdom by grace. When we proclaim the gospel, we are calling people out of their sins, yes, but also out from under serving the kings of this world to pledge allegiance to Jesus, the coming king.
Over 1000 years before Christ came, David was writing about him and about events that are still future to us. He did this “by the Spirit” (Matt 22:43).
God’s word has revealed what God is doing in the world (v. 1) and what he will do when the time comes (vv. 2-7). This is what we are waiting for. Are we living like were waiting for it?