Let’s look at Psalm 110 this morning.
We all long for justice in this world. It is part of the human condition. We recognize when there is injustice, we desire justice when we have been wronged, and we all recognize sin in the world. This isn’t just a Christian thing, it is a human thing.
The tension is where we seek out justice. Today, in our culture, we tend to expect government to be the arbiter of justice. We want “the perfect president” who will fight for the injustices we think are most important. The same has been true throughout history. The Israelites, for example, wanted a king to rule over them like the other nations; to fight for their causes, to uphold the law, to rule over them. Even though God was supposed to be their one true king.
This psalm is what is known as a Messianic Psalm, meaning that it points distinctively to the Messiah who was to come, rule over the Israelites, fight injustice against their enemies, and be king over them. This psalm is actually quoted more in the New Testament, in reference to Jesus, than any other Psalm in all the psalter. It points us to the Messiah who was to reign as king, and priest over the Israelites.
The first verse begins with the the LORD (Yahweh), telling the Lord (Adoni) to sit at His right hand. the right hand of a king is a position of authority and this is the LORD telling the Messiah to come and sit in a place of rulership and authority. Verses 2-3 speak about the way in which the messiah will rule, with a “mighty scepter in the midst of his enemies.”
Verse 4 then is particularly special because it tells us that the Messiah will rule, “after the order of Melchizedek.” Melchizedek led as both priest and king during the rule of Abraham. He was a spokesperson for God, as well as a leader of the people. But as we know, the people of Israel soon wanted a king to rule over them like the rest of the nations, even though God was supposed to be their king. So they chose Saul who was a terrible king. God gave them what they wanted, which was less than who God was. So, now they had a priest who went into the presence of God to intercede on their behalf and they had a king who ruled and fought for the injustices of the people.
I know this is a lot to read and to take in, but I don’t want you to miss the beauty of this text! What God was doing through the author of this Psalm is showing us that a savior was coming who was going to be both king and priest! Which meant that the Messiah will reign perfectly in justice and will also be the intercessor, connecting perfectly with God!
Because this text is quoted so often about Jesus, when He died on the cross, we know that the veil in the temple was torn in two, which symbolized that we no longer need a priest to confess our sins because Jesus bore our sins on the cross. We can now, through faith in Jesus, offer up a prayer and Jesus is the one who takes it to the father on our behalf! Jesus doesn’t offer sacrifices for our sins like the priests did. No, Jesus was the sacrifice for our sins! Not only that, in Revelation, we see Jesus sitting at the right hand of the father, ruling in justice and we know that he will one day return and judge both the living and the dead and those who have trusted Jesus as their Lord and savior will be saved!
You see, our hearts long for justice and righteous leadership, so we seek for it in our governmental leaders, pastors, or wherever, but we will only ever have one PERFECT king and one PERFECT savior and that is Jesus Christ! Look at the text and see the beauty of God’s PERFECT plan to not only save us from our sins, free us from our sins, but also PERFECTLY rules over us in justice! Do not put your faith in earthly rulers! They will always let you down! They will always be terrible “kings” but put your faith in the Living God who is perfect and just! Read the book of Hebrews and marvel at how all of this ties together, specifically in Hebrews 4-7.