The Lord said to my Lord, “Sit at My right hand, Till I make Your enemies Your footstool.” Psalm 110: 1
A Psalm of the Messiah
Psalm 110, a royal psalm, is one of the most directly messianic of all the psalm, it should be read in conjunction with other messianic psalms such as Ps. 2:24. Jesus Himself identified David as the writer of this psalm, as the title also indicates. Jesus’ interpretation of this psalm is crucial for unlocking the psalm’s meaning (Matt. 22:41-45; Mark 12:35-37; Luke 20:41-44; compare Peter’s exposition of the psalm in Acts 2:34-36). The interpretative key to the psalm lies in the identification of “my Lord” in v. 1. Jesus asserted that in v. 1, David was speaking of someone greater than himself. Since no ordinary son of David could be greater than him, “my Lord” of v. 1 refers to the coming Messiah, God’s Son. Hence this psalm describes a conversation between God the Father and God the Son (v. 1), in which the Father grants the Son royal and priestly honors. The structure of this brief psalm is as follows: (1) God’s command to the Son to sit at His right hand (v. 1); (2) God’s command to the Son to rule in the midst of His enemies (vv. 2, 3); (3) God’s appointment of the Son to be a priest forever (v. 4); (4) God’s description of the battle the Son must wage to win His kingdom (vv. 5-7).
The Messiah is exalted as Lord by the Lord (110:1) and His royal victory predicted (vv. 2-3). At the same time He is introduced as a priest, not of Aaron’s line but after “the order of Melchizedek” (v. 4). It is to Him, God’s King/Priest, that the Lord will give victory (vv. 5-7).
Key concepts. Messiah, King, Priest
41 While the Pharisees were gathered together, Jesus asked them, 42 saying, “What do you think about the Christ? Whose Son is He?” They said to Him, “The Son of David.” 43 He said to them, “How then does David in the Spirit call Him ‘Lord,’ saying: 44 ‘The Lord said to my Lord, “Sit at My right hand, Till I make Your enemies Your footstool” ‘? 45 “If David then calls Him ‘Lord,’ how is He his Son?” Matt. 22:41-45
For David did not ascend into the heavens, but he says himself: ‘The Lord said to my Lord, “Sit at My right hand, 35 Till I make Your enemies Your footstool.” ‘ 36 “Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly that God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Christ.” Acts 2:34-36
110:1 The Lord is the Hebrew name Yahweh and refers to God the Father. To my Lord: According to Jesus’ interpretation of the passage (Matt. 22:41-45; Mark 12:35-37; Luke 20:41-44), this is a reference to the Son of God in heaven in the presence of the Father. David himself confesses the Son to be his Lord, that is, his master or sovereign. At my right hand: This position of high honor beside the father was given to the Savior upon His resurrection and ascension (Acts 2:33-36; 1 Cor. 15:20-28; Col. 3:1; Heb. 1:13). The savior’s placing His feet on His foes depicts the utter defeat of the enemies of Christ. Paul too describes this complete victory of Jesus (1 Cor. 15:25, 26; Eph. 1:22, 23).
1 A Psalm of David. The Lord said to my Lord, “Sit at My right hand, Till I make Your enemies Your footstool.”
110:2, 3 Rule: The Father commands the Son to take His kingdom back from His enemies. The outcome of this final battle was determined long ago (47:3). Your people: The description in vv. 2,3 of the people who join the coming of King in His great battle accords well with that in Rev. 19:14. From the womb of the morning describes the volunteer army in their robust and fresh vigor; they are ready for holy battle.
The Lord shall send the rod of Your strength out of Zion. Rule in the midst of Your enemies! 3 Your people shall be volunteers In the day of Your power; In the beauties of holiness, from the womb of the morning, You have the dew of Your youth.
And the armies in heaven, clothed in fine linen, white and clean, followed Him on white horses. Rev. 19:14
110:4 priest: David himself had performed some priestly functions, especially when he led the worship surrounding the arrival of the ark of the covenant (2 Sam 6:12-19). He even exercised some authority over the priests by supervising the Levites (1 Chr. 23:1-6). But here David envisions God appointing the coming Messiah to be a priest (Heb. 7). This was a source of confusion about the Messiah. Some Dead Sea Scrolls give evidence that more than one Messiah was anticipated. According to Scripture, the Messiah would be a descendant of David (Is. 9:7), but this prophecy presents Him as a priest. This might seem to be a contradiction because true priests had to be descendants of Aaron. The solution to this problem is that the Messiah was a priest by divine declaration – not human descent. Melchizedek is first mentioned in Gen. 14:18-20. He was a true priest of the Most High God, unrelated to Abraham and who lived hundreds of years before Aaron. He became a prototype of the Messiah, whose priesthood was not based upon connection with the line of Aaron, but was by divine decree (Heb. 5:5-11; 6:20; 7:1-28).
4 The Lord has sworn And will not relent, “You are a priest forever According to the order of Melchizedek.”
Then Melchizedek king of Salem brought out bread and wine; he was the priest of God Most High. 19 And he blessed him and said: “Blessed be Abram of God Most High, Possessor of heaven and earth; 20 And blessed be God Most High, Who has delivered your enemies into your hand.” And he gave him a tithe of all. Genesis 14:18-20
110:5-7 The Savior King is in battle, and the Father is His shield at His right hand. God the Father assists the Son in the battle. Execute kings: The rule of the King will be absolute, dramatic, and forceful. Dead bodies: This image is elaborated in Rev. 19:19-21. He shall lift up the head: As the great Victor, the Son will hold His head high in triumph over all His enemies (3:3).
5 The Lord is at Your right hand; He shall execute kings in the day of His wrath. 6 He shall judge among the nations, He shall fill the places with dead bodies, He shall execute the heads of many countries. 7 He shall drink of the brook by the wayside; Therefore He shall lift up the head.
** Imagine going to church and Jesus is the pastor preaching? You get to have a pastor who is God and who genuinely loves you to death? And, the church members are like Him too? I would want to go to church every day. No more disappointments. The choir would be heavenly too.
110 1 A Psalm of David. The Lord said to my Lord, “Sit at My right hand, Till I make Your enemies Your footstool.” 2 The Lord shall send the rod of Your strength out of Zion. Rule in the midst of Your enemies! 3 Your people shall be volunteers In the day of Your power; In the beauties of holiness, from the womb of the morning, You have the dew of Your youth. 4 The Lord has sworn And will not relent, “You are a priest forever According to the order of Melchizedek.” 5 The Lord is at Your right hand; He shall execute kings in the day of His wrath. 6 He shall judge among the nations, He shall fill the places with dead bodies, He shall execute the heads of many countries. 7 He shall drink of the brook by the wayside; Therefore He shall lift up the head.