Sunday, June 12, 2022

Put Your Trust in the Son (Psalm 1 and 2)

Like two great pillars adorning the entranceway to God’s temple, Psalms 1 and 2 grace the portals of the Psalter. Both of these pillars pronounce a blessing on everyone who enters these portals by faith to worship the true God. Psalm 1 declares God’s blessing on the person who delights in His law. Psalm 2 reaches its climax by blessing the person who trusts in God’s Messiah, for apart from the Redeemer the law can only condemn.

This second psalm raises a poetic testimony to the fact that God graciously has provided a savior for men in the person of His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ. Over and over the New Testament returns to the description of the Son of God in Psalm 2 to make men understand the preeminence that belongs to Jesus Christ, He is the Son who has been sent to rule over men for their good.

Yet Psalm 2 begins by asking an astonished “Why?”

“Why do the nations rage, And the people plot a vain thing? The kings of the earth set themselves, And the rulers take counsel together, Against the Lord and against His Anointed …” (vv. 1–2).

What’s the point of this vain revolt? What do the nations expect to gain from their rebellion against the rule of the one true God and His appointed Messiah? It’s all in vain.

This plotting is not confined to isolated cases of certain hard-headed individuals. Entire nations and peoples, kings and potentates take their stand together. Men conspire with one another in their determination not to submit to the rule of God’s Messiah. When governmental powers aggressively assault their weaker nation-neighbors, they are rebelling against the Lord and His Christ. When universities show favoritism toward atheistic teaching and provide a safe harbor for depraved morals, they are rebelling against the Lord and His Christ. Unitedly the nations, peoples, kings, and potentates of the earth agree: “Let us break their bonds in pieces and cast away their cords from us” (Psalm 2:3).

These people slander God and His Messiah by caricaturing their rule as oppressive enslavement. But Christianity is no more a bondage to men than wings are to birds. If men will subject their wills to Christ, they will enter the full enjoyment of the “glorious liberty of the sons of God” (Rom. 8:21).

Often the Christian feels intimidated by these powerful conglomerations. Be assured that He does not sit idly by. As the messianic King appointed to rule this world, Jesus Christ asserts the uniqueness of His divine Sonship:

“I will declare the decree: The LORD has said to Me, ‘You are My Son, Today I have begotten You’ ” (Psalm 2:7).

This reference to the birth of the Son of God speaks figuratively of His resurrection, when He triumphed over all the powers of earth and heaven that had set themselves against Him (Acts 13:32f.). By that event Jesus Christ overturned the wickedness of religious and political powers that had crucified Him. From His condition of humiliation, He rose to a position of power over all authorities. Today He sits exalted at God’s right hand, exercising His lordship over the affairs of this world.

When opposition arises against you as you attempt to live your life in obedience to God’s law and God’s Messiah, remind yourself of the exalted Sonship of Jesus Christ your Savior. Think of Him in His position of power and glory. Remember that even now He rules at God’s right hand. According to the unchangeable, unchallengeable decree of the Lord, He governs the nations of the world. When you are threatened by powers beyond your control, trust this One who is your Savior to overrule the nations today as He has in the past.

So what should the mighty of the earth do? The charge from Scripture is quite explicit. They should act NOW!

“Now therefore, be wise, O kings; Be instructed, you judges of the earth. Serve the LORD with fear, And rejoice with trembling. Kiss the Son, lest He be angry, And you perish in the way, When His wrath is kindled but a little. Blessed are all those who put their trust in Him” (Psalm 2:10–12).

In every age these words speak directly to prominent figures who hold positions of responsibility. Right now kings and judges of the earth must act wisely. The righteous indignation of Jesus Christ burns against those who abuse their power and oppose His sovereignty.

Make concrete application of this clear word from God to yourself as well. Kiss the Son of God as an act of whole-hearted submission to His sovereign will. Receive with joy the appointments of God’s sovereign Son, or you will perish in the way. Hear the Good News that Messiah has come into the world to bring blessing to sinners, and commit your life to Him. Enjoy by faith the privileges and the blessings of those who willingly submit to the sovereignty of God’s Son. As the psalmist says, “Blessed are all those who put their trust in Him” (Psalm 2:12).