The Majestic Reign of the Messiah.
A psalm for Solomon, composed by Solomon; for he, under whose wise reign Israel reached the summit of its glory and power and was filled with the blessings of the Lord, sang this hymn in honor of the great King and His eternal glory and of the spiritual blessings of His dominion. V. 1. Give the King Thy judgments, O God, and Thy righteousness unto the King’s Son. The Messiah is King and the Son of a King. To Him God gives, equips Him with, His righteousness, with His judgments. Every decision of this King, everything that He says and does, is right and acceptable with God. V. 2. He shall judge Thy people with righteousness, that is, the congregation of Jehovah, and Thy poor, those truly poor in spirit, with judgment. Because the Messiah is clothed with the righteousness of God as His own, therefore He is also able to dispense righteousness to the citizens of His kingdom, to impart it to those who believe in Him. It is His judicial sentence by and through which He declares His people to be righteous, justifies them with the righteousness which is perfect, which is acceptable in the sight of God. This is the right which God’s people have before Him: their King declares them to be justified. The very ones who are poor and despised before the world, poor and humble also in the sight of God, are nevertheless honored by Him; they are partakers of His righteousness. So great and wonderful is this gift that the psalmist declares: v. 3. The mountains shall bring peace to the people, and the little hills, by righteousness, the blessings of God’s mercy flowing down upon the believers as it were, in streams. Righteousness is a gift coming down from above, bringing the peace of the heavenly Father with it and resulting in a calm satisfaction of mind, the believer being confident in the possession of the imputed righteousness. V. 4. He shall judge the poor of the people, those who feel their spiritual need; He shall save the children of the needy, those who depend upon Him alone, clinging to Him in true faith, accepting the righteousness imputed to them, and shall break in pieces the oppressor, crushing all those whose enmity oppresses His children. V. 5. They shall fear Thee as long as the sun and moon endure, throughout all generations, that is, the relation of the believers to their King is one of holy awe and reverence, by which they give Him the honor which is due Him, divine honor and glory. This is done before the sun, as long as the sun runs his course, and before the moon, as long as she stands in the sky, that is, to the end of time. V. 6. He shall come down like rain upon the mown grass, as showers that water the earth, literally, “like dewdrops, showers of rain on the earth,” the point of resemblance being in the gentle, restoring freshness of a profuse fall of dew, of copious showers. Although the King has been exalted to the right hand of glory, exalted over all creatures and reigning over His congregation, yet His advent may be celebrated continually, for He is ever present in the midst of His Church in His means of grace, with righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost, which are shed on us abundantly. V. 7. In His days, as the result of these rich spiritual blessings, shall the righteous flourish, blooming and thriving before Him in a life of sanctification flowing from faith, and abundance of peace so long as the moon endureth, literally, “until no longer the moon,” throughout the present dispensation of grace. Because we are now, in the acceptable time, living before Him in the life of faith and enjoying the power of His grace in its effect upon our hearts and lives, therefore there is peace between us and God. And even after the moon has ceased shining, after the earth and all it contains have been destroyed, yea, then more than ever, will the believers have fulness of peace; in the world to come we shall possess and enjoy in everlasting bliss the peace of God which passes all understanding. V. 8. He shall have dominion also from sea to sea, His royal power extending over the whole earth, and from the river unto the ends of the earth, His dominion is enlarged, His power is spread, to the utmost ends of the universe, Eph. 1, 20-23. V. 9. They that dwell in the wilderness, the barbarians, the enemies of Christ and His Church, shall bow before Him, submitting themselves to His almighty power, since they refused to yield to His grace, Phil. 2, 10. 11; Matt. 26, 64; and His enemies shall lick the dust, be brought into full subjection to Him, forced to acknowledge Him as their Victor and Sovereign, since they refused to accept Him as their Redeemer. V. 10. The kings of Tarshish, Tartessus in Spain, an important commercial center, with many princes of finance, and of the isles, of the coasts of Europe, named as far-distant points, shall bring presents, the mighty ones of the very ends of the earth being named as doing homage before the Lord; the kings of Sheba and Seba, that is, of Arabia Felix and of Meroe in Egypt, shall offer gifts, people from heathen countries bringing tribute to His honor and acknowledging His sovereignty. V. 11. Yea, all kings shall fall down before Him; all nations shall serve Him. The King, by virtue of His having paid the ransom of His blood for the redemption of the whole world, has a right to expect the allegiance of all men. They are to acknowledge Him as their Savior and Lord. The psalmist mentions just those countries in which the Christian Church flourished for centuries. Many heathen from this entire territory along the coasts of the Mediterranean, including also princes and mighty men, acknowledged Christ as their Lord. But these heathen, at the same time, represent the entire heathen world; for the Lord has His children in all nations, the believers being the true representatives of the nations in the sight of God. The poet now gives the reason why so many heathen would turn to God, to Jehovah-Messiah: v. 12. For He shall deliver the needy when he crieth; the poor also and him that hath no helper. He has compassion with the spiritual poverty and want, with our weakness and helplessness; He saves the needy by His grace. When our hearts have been crushed by the blows of the Law, when our souls are bowed down to the ground by the realization of our sinfulness, then He comforts us with the beauty of His Gospel. V. 13. He shall spare, have pity on, the poor and needy and shall save the souls of the needy, delivering them from the damnation which threatens them. V. 14. He shall redeem their soul from deceit and violence, the word here used being the standing term of the Old Testament for redemption and deliverance of every kind; and precious shall their blood be in His sight, valuing their lives so highly that He pays the high price of His own blood for their redemption. Moreover, it is true in general that God will not forsake His children, even if the enmity of the world reaches the point where the blood of the believers is shed on account of their testimony of the truth. In life and in death Christ is their Redeemer, and He will finally avenge the blood of His children. Since these conditions obtain, therefore the kingdom of Christ will surely spread and extend over many nations. V. 15. And He shall live, the Possessor and the Giver of life, and to Him shall be given of the gold of Sheba, of the wealth of Arabia Felix, this being taken to represent the gifts of men as they throng to do homage to the Messiah. Prayer also shall be made for Him continually, in a service of worship before Him, which shall continue throughout eternity; and daily shall He be praised, the righteous blessing His name for the rich gifts of His grace. And now, with a glance at Canaan in the glory of its earthly products, Solomon speaks of the kingdom of Christ in terms of this rich plenty. V. 16. There shall be an handful of corn in the earth upon the top of the mountains, that is, the spiritual offspring of the Messiah will be as abundant as the grain of the lowlands, which clothed even the hills to their very tops; the fruit thereof shall shake like Lebanon, as the proud and mighty cedars of Lebanon; and they of the city shall flourish like grass of the earth, literally, “and they shall thrive from out the city as the grass of the earth,” budding forth and bearing blossoms and fruit in rich and luscious abundance, for such are the conditions which obtain in Christ’s Kingdom of Grace. V. 17. His name shall endure forever, exist, maintain itself, throughout eternity; His name shall be continued as long as the sun, or, “before the sun will flourish, propagate, His name.” Wherever the Church is established, it grows from generation to generation through the power of His Word. It is for this reason that the name of the Messiah will last throughout eternity, the Church Militant merging into the Church Triumphant; as long as the sun continues in his course, His name will be proclaimed and bring forth fruit in abundance. And men shall be blessed in Him, blessing themselves in Him, calling themselves happy, fortunate, beyond description in the possession of His grace; all nations shall call Him blessed, praising the Lord Jehovah for all His wondrous deeds for the salvation of the world. In view of these unspeakably glorious facts which have been set forth briefly in his hymn, the inspired poet closes with a doxology: v. 18. Blessed be the Lord God, the God of Israel, who only doeth wondrous things, all glory and honor being given to Him alone; v. 19. and blessed be His glorious name, Himself with all His divine attributes, as He has revealed Himself to men in His Word, forever; and let the whole earth be filled with His glory. Amen, and Amen. As the Word of God had its course here in time, being proclaimed in every part of the earth, so the heavens will resound with the praises of His glory throughout eternity. This is most certainly true. The psalm closes with a note of the men who collected this second book of the psalter: v. 20. The prayers of David, the son of Jesse, are ended, this remark being apparently attached to an original collection of David’s hymns.