First Baptist Church, Cobden IL
Wednesday, February 20, 2019
200 South Walker St. Cobden, IL 62920
 
 

 

Dear Church Family,

 

     I have been spending some time this morning thinking through Psalm 110 per my doctoral supervisor’s suggestion and I wanted to share some of the encouraging truths that have stirred my soul once again.  

     First of all, it’s hard to overemphasize the significance of this Psalm and particularly verse 1 which is the most quoted verse from the OT in the NT. Some 23 times this Psalm is directly quoted or alluded to in some way. Two of the more popular places in the NT that use this text specifically are Luke 20:41ff and Acts 2:34ff. In the Luke text Jesus is confronting the Sadducees error about the resurrection and raises the question of Whom David is writing about in in verse 1. We will be encouraged about the answer to Jesus question in a moment but the other text in Acts 2 where Peter affirms that the passage in Psalm 110:1 is ultimately fulfilled in the Person of Jesus Christ and his resurrection and ascension.

      Looking again at Jesus question to the Sadducees there abides an understanding in the Jewish mind that Jesus builds on and that is that the Messiah (deliverer) would be a human king of the lineage of David’s throne. Jesus said that that is what they (Sadducees) were saying. Jesus agreed with this biblical assumption. That biblical truth is made clear in the Davidic covenant found in 2 Samuel 7. However, Jesus appealing back to Psalm 110:1 says that David writes that the LORD says to my Lord, come sit at my right hand until I make your enemies your footstool. David’s use of the phrase “my Lord” demands the subservience of the great King David to this coming Messiah. Ligon Duncan said that the principle in the Jewish mindset is that “the originator (David) is greater than the Successor (Jesus)”. But here the paradigm has been flipped. This coming messiah designated as the Son of David is also at the same time David’s Lord. How could that be, asked Jesus? This question could only be answered and this tension could only be resolved if in fact that the Messiah would be both human and divine. 350 years later the church would articulate in the Nicene Creed the theological truth about Jesus nature this way, “truly God and truly Man”. However, Jesus left them hanging with this question stuck in their minds.

    Next, we see Peter’s use of this OT passage in his sermon on the day of Pentecost. Peter uses this sermon in conjunction with another OT text found in Psalm 16:10. Psalm 16:10 is the promise that the Messiah would somehow not be left in Hades (the abode of the dead) but that his body would be rescued from the grave. Also, in Ps. 16 the prophecy is that the Messiah’s body would not experience decay. We know that Jesus was raised in glorified body and according to Paul in 1Corinthians 15 he is the first fruits of the promise of the resurrection and glorification of body. Peter next in his sermon adds the text in Psalm 110 of Jesus ascension and session (seating) at the right hand of the Father. Peter finishes this sermon with what could be compared in our culture to a “mic drop” moment when he describing Jesus he says that He is, “both Lord and Messiah”. The word Lord (kurious) in Peter’s sermon is same word translated “adoni” in the OT passage of Ps. 110:1. Kurious or Adoni is the divine reality of Jesus, while “Messiah” or “Son of David” is the human reality of Jesus. Truly God and alone able to satisfy the eternal justice of God yet Truly man and able to stand as the substitute in the place of men. This is the fulfillment of the eternal promise of redemption and restoration and here it is unfolded from this Psalm of David.

    One final thought in conclusion. Luke records (in the same passage discussed above) that Jesus answered the resurrection denying Sadducees with such clarity, authority and biblical precision that they dared to never ask Him anything again. So, while they were forever finished being humiliated from questioning Jesus, He had one last question. How can David’s Lord at he same time be his son? While they were afraid to answer, Jesus left them to ponder. He would answer this question and it would be in short time (less than a week), however He would answer this question without words. Jesus answered the question He left stewing in the hearts and minds of the Sadducees with His own death, burial and resurrection. Yes Sadducees, there is a Resurrection and it is more than an event one day, It is a Person today and His name is Jesus, Who is truly God and Truly Man. In Him is life eternal. Jesus asked Martha in the death of her brother Lazarus, “Do you believe he will live again?” She responded, “yes in the day of the resurrection.” Jesus responded back, “I am the resurrection and the Life he who believes in Me will live even if he dies” Jesus resurrection and life is the guarantee of Ours! While Psalm 110 speaks of Jesus session at the right hand it assumes the death burial and resurrection and victory of Jesus our Savior.

Just Thinking  

God Bless You, 

Pastor Ed