My wife and I are reading through the Psalms in our evening reading and occasionally a nugget of the Psalms jumps out of the page. Don’t you love it when, after years of reading the “Old Book” passages become alive, reinforcing old teachings or simply warming your heart.
This is the book of Psalms, and it is rich.
I pray I can communicate a portion of the blessing we receive from this wonderful book.
Your throne, O God, is forever and ever. The scepter of your kingdom is a scepter of uprightness;
you have loved righteousness and hated wickedness. Therefore God, your God, has anointed you with the oil of gladness beyond your companions;
your robes are all fragrant with myrrh and aloes and cassia. From ivory palaces stringed instruments make you glad;
daughters of kings are among your ladies of honor; at your right hand stands the queen in gold of Ophir.
Earlier, in our previous posts, we have stated their are implications that this King in not the common, run of the mill King that ascended the throne of Israel, and then descended into shame and eventually death. This King was gracious, and received blessing for ever! We have seen where the passage describes this King as meek, and the battle not as expected.
In our next passage, the Psalmist blurts it out. He can’t hold it back. It is boiling over, the identity of this King cannot be retrained any further. Any why should it be, for this King is the ultimate King, a King that is a King over all other Kings.
The author of Hebrews sees this passage as descriptive of the Lord Jesus, and His identification as God.
Hebrews 1:8 But of the Son he says, “Your throne, O God, is forever and ever, the scepter of uprightness is the scepter of your kingdom.
The Son is God, and His throne is forever and ever. This is the cornerstone of Christianity, the foundation of our faith, the center and circumference of all we understand. The eternal God, in the person of Jesus Christ is the ruling King.
The psalmist continues his description of the King, describing His scepter as a scepter of righteousness. As monarchies are a fading method of government in our modern societies, it may serve us well to understand the accoutrements of the King.
For a King, three outward forms of recognition are commonly associated with his royal identity.
The passage speaks of the Kings throne, and this is the only fixed item of the three. The King would go to the throne, ascend the throne, and the throne was for no other. Since the psalmist describes this throne as the throne of God, and remembering the eternal nature of God, this ascension could not be speaking of the Father God and His ascending, since that would imply a time of His not being King. This ascension, in my understanding, is of the God-man Jesus Christ, after His resurrection, after the period with His disciples, when He visibly rose to the heavens in bodily form, to reign over the Kingdom of God.
Our passage also describe the scepter of the King and this item is not as familiar to our modern way of thinking. What did a scepter represent? First off, the scepter is typically a staff held by the monarch during his time on the throne, and represents the Kings authority, or sovereignty. His authority to make decisions that will without any formal recourse will be implemented simply on the desire of the King.
A common misconception is that sovereignty is synonymous with control, and I have yet to find this association in the Word. Authority of a King is not lessened by his granting a measure of freedom to His subjects. As a matter of consideration, a wise and benevolent King would grant a measure of freedom to his subjects in order to express their allegiance or rebellion. Complete and absolute control of a “king” over his subject’s every decision would mimic a dictatorship, and not a healthy kingdom.
The scepter represented the Kings authority, and provided the King a symbol, or a tool, to exhibit His decision to an audience. His internal ruminations of all aspects required to be considered in the making of a wise and righteous decision could be communicated to his audience by the use of his scepter. The scepter did not posses the authority, but only represented it
Of course a crown identifies the ruler as the head of the nation, in combination with the throne and scepter. The crown is often associated with a coronation ceremony, mixing the crown and the anointing of the King together, and represents a symbol of achievement, or attainment for the one crowned.
Our King wore a crown, and it brought blood to His brow. The crown of thorns the guards impaled on our Saviors head, was a wretched attempt by the Romans to mock His claim of authority. The mockery He endured
Yet it wasn’t just mockery that this one (of many) evil acts was intended to inflict on our Lord.
Many identify this crown of thorns as being woven from a plant called Euphorbia. If this is the correct plant, it has a toxic sap that irritates the skin and eyes, causing painful inflammation. Considering the massive suffering He would undergo in the next hours, with the whipping and the eventual crucifixion, this initial effort of humiliation brought with it an associated physical pain.
Each aspect of His suffering carried with it multiple areas of attack, including the physical, emotional, volitional and spiritual arenas of His life. In every arena of possible suffering, He experienced depths of pain, loneliness, shame and abandonment that I can not imagine, or comprehend.
Sometimes it is good to dwell on one aspect of His suffering for us, for the entire passion is unfathomable. Take a few minutes considering the Messiah’s crown of thorns.
He is the King, yet He suffered prior to His glory.
Thanks again for coming to visit. I hope you found something of interest in this post and would appreciate a comment, to begin a discussion.