Psalm 2 begins abruptly with a picture of violent confusion. It opens asking "Why do the heathen rage, and the people imagine a vain thing? The kings of the earth set themselves and the rulers take counsel together, against the Lord and against His anointed saying: "Let us break their bands asunder and cast away their cords from us. He that sitteth in the heavens shall laugh: the Lord shall have them in derision. Then shall he speak to them in his wrath, and vex them in his sore displeasure." (v. 1-5)
2:1 Why do the heathen (Hebrew="goi"} The Gentiles and the people imagine a vain thing. They "set themselves" means that they take a stand. They "take counsel" or "sit together," denoting their unified deliberation. Bands and cords denote the restraints of the righteous government the heathen are opposing.
The rising of the confederate nations and their rulers who are in open rebellion against God and against His Anointed, shall be dashed to pieces. The rebellious attitude displayed by the kings of the earth is that of determined resistance against the King of Israel. From the Hebrew word mashiach we get the word Messiah. It signifies literally, an anointed one.
The apostle Paul, who was a Jewish apostle writes in Hebrews 1:5 quotes from Psalm 2:7, in speaking of the person of Yeshua haMashiach/Jesus Christ. This Psalm is about the King and fits the ministry of haMashiach/Christ perfectly. The prophetic promises of God's word remain fixed. These will unfold in their appointed season. Psalm 2 is a royal psalm. The subject of this psalm is the establishment of David upon his throne, in spite of the opposition of his enemies. It describes the ultimate victory of the God's anointed over His rebellious enemies, reaching beyond King David to the glorious reign of the One who can conquer every foe and fulfill every aspect of the eternal kingdom as promised to David in II Samuel 7:13, 16.
"He shall build a house for My name, and I will establish the throne of His Kingdom forever, and your house and your kingdom shall endure before Me forever: your throne shall be established forever." It is only when the Davidic family is viewed as centering in haMashiach/Christ, that the words can acquire their full truth."
In this Psalm the Lord's Anointed steps forward in response to the rebellion of His enemies, and speaks with the divine power and glory that is attributed only to Messiah in the writings of the prophets. It builds till it reaches it's focus in verse 11, "Worship the LORD with reverence, and rejoice with trembling."
There is no internal evidence in the Psalm itself to tell us who the author is. However, Acts 4:25 tells us that King David under the power of the Holy Spirit was the author of the Psalm.
THE VOICE OF THE SCOFFERS (2:1-3)
Man rebellion is against God. The rebellion is not merely against David. Or against any other government. The "Nations" and "peoples" here refer to Gentile nations in an "uproar" against the Lord God and His Anointed One. (v. 1). The Psalmist says, I hear a "noisy riot that seethes in antagonism" against God. People of various nationalities are in rebellion. They have a common bond of hatred against the Lord. They "take counsel" together as to how how they can overthrow God's will and purpose in the earth.
"Why are the nations in an uproar, And the peoples devising a vain thing? The kings of the earth take their stand, And the rulers take counsel together Against the LORD and against His Anointed" (Psalm 2:1, 2).
The foreign leaders "set themselves" and take their stand in opposition to God in verse two. They are emboldened by their alliance against God, for it provides for them a sense of false security. They raise their voices in unison to proclaim: "Let us tear their fetters apart, and cast away their cords form us!" (v. 3).
History records the rise and fall of those that have voiced their opposition to God, and imagined or devised a "vain thing," or plan. Their plot to overthrow God will never succeed. It will come to nought. Adam was the first to rebell against God in the Garden of Eden. "The heart is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked," declared the Prophet Jeremiah.
Before the Flood of Noah's Day, man's heart was only continuously full of rebellion and wickedness (Genesis 6:5). The people of the earth were so wicked God had to destroy mankind from off the face of the earth. Out of His grace He saved just 8 people alive, and that was Noah and his family. Following the flood, mankind continued to manifest their rebellion toward God (Genesis 11:4). They plotted together at the Tower of l, saying:
"Come, let us build for ourselves a city, and a tower whose top will reach into heaven, and let us make for ourselves a name; lest we be scattered abroad over the face of the whole earth."
God "came down" to see the city and the tower they'd constructed. He confused their language, and scattered them abroad over the face of the earth.
When the Israelites lived in Egypt, Pharaoh determined to thwart Godís purpose for the people of Israel. He used infanticide. God used a godly man and wife who rebelled against the evil plans of the Pharaoh, hid their infant son, and devised a plan to preserve him as a son of God. God used this man named Moses as a deliverer for His people. The angel passed over the homes of the Israelites on the night of the first Passover, but struck the homes of the Egyptians.
Yeshua/Jesus "came to His own and His own received Him not." In Matthew 21:33-42, we read this parable of Mashiach/Christ, that describes both the purpose of God's enemies rebellion in rejecting the Messiah whom God sent, and God's purpose. In Psalm 118:22 er read: "The stone which the builders rejected, this became the chief corner stone; this came about from the Lord, and it is marvelous in our eyes?"
GOD'S SOVEREIGN VOICE (12:4-6)
The Lord God is sovereign and He is in complete control. He that sitteth in the heavens shall laugh! The Lord "laughs" (v. 4) at their unbelief and powerless threats. He "scoffs" at their devices. He does not even moved to rise from His throne. "He who sits" in "the heavens" has His own plans. The One who sits on the Throne is Adonai, the Sovereign God, who alone is Lord of all. God will not always be patient. When the time is right His anger will blaze forth like lightening. "Anger" (vv. 5, 12) describes God's righteous indignation. Then will the enemies of the Lord experience . The words used of Godís displeasure against their rebellion is that "He will "terrify them in His fury." His own anger will flash forth, and He will overthrow them with His word. He will not be defeated.
Hear the word of the Lord, you who tremble at His word: (v. 6). "But as for Me, I have installed My King Upon Zion, My holy mountain." The anointed King is set firmly in place. Hebrews 1:3Ė5 speaks of that day. "And He is the radiance of His glory and the exact representation of His nature, and upholds all things by the word of His power. When He had made purification of sins, He sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high; having become as much better than the angels, as He has inherited a more excellent name than they. For to which of the angels did He ever say, "Thou art My Son, This day have I begotten Thee" And again, "I will be a Father to Him and He shall be a Son to Me." Zion" is the "hill of God's holiness." The Lord has established His King, fulfilling 2 Samuel 7:13, 16. He holds office by direct appointment of God. It is interesting that history makes no mention of a king of Israel being anointed on Zion. Zion is mentioned as the royal seat of the Anointed One. It is there He is installed, may reign there and rule from there.
THE VOICE OF THE SON AS SOVEREIGN (2:7-9)
The declaration of the Son of God (v. 7) The rule of Messiah as "David," is that of universal dominion over the entire world. These words find their fulfillment only when the Davidic lineage is seen with Messiah as the central theme, or focal point. The Lord's Anointed steps forth in all His splender, power and glory. Revelation 19:15 describes Messiah when He returns:
And from His mouth comes a sharp sword, so that with it He may smite the nations; and He will rule them with a rod of iron; and He treads the wine press of the fierce wrath of God, the Almighty. And on His robe and on His thigh He has a name written, "King of Kings and Lord of Lords."
"The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord, and of His Christ; and He will reign forever and ever." And the twenty-four elders, who sit on their thrones before God, fell on their faces and worshipped God, saying, "We give Thee thanks, O Lord God, the Almighty, who art and who wast, because Thou hast taken Thy great power and hast begun to reign. "And the nations were enraged, and Thy wrath came, and the time came for the to be judged, and the time to give their reward to Thy bond-servants the prophets and to the saints and to those who fear Thy name, the small and the great, and to destroy those who destroy the earth." (Revelation 11:15-18)
"The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of His Messiah; and He will reign forever and ever." Three times, the Gospel writers recorded the words from heaven, "This is My beloved Son in whom I am well pleased." The proof of that declaration is the resurrection of Yeshua/Christ from the . Hebrews 1:5). God has fulfilled this promise to our children in that He raised up Yeshua/Jesus, as it is also written in the second Psalm, "Thou art My Son: This day I have begotten Thee." "And as for the fact that He raised Him up from the , no more to return to decay, He has spoken in this way: "I will give you the sure mercies of David." "Therefore He also says in another Psalm, "Thou wilt not suffer thine Holy One to see corruption." (Acts 13:33-37).
The Apostle Paul, himself a Jewish scholar, said concerning Yeshua/Jesus in Romans 1:3-4:
Concerning His Son, who was born of a descendant of David according to the flesh, who was declared the Son of God with power by the resurrection from the , according to the Spirit of holiness, Yeshua haMashiach/Jesus Christ our Lord.
The writer to the Hebrews interpreted this great song of the Messiah with these words in Hebrews 1:5: For to which of the angels did He ever say, "Thou art My Son, This day have I begotten thee." And again, "I will be a Father to Him and He shall be a Son to Me."
This Psalm is cited more frequently in the New Tesetament than any other. The Apostles saw it as fulfilled in Jesus Christ and no other person. Yeshua/Jesus appears exactly as this Psalm presents Him. The Lord God reigns (vv. 8, 9) The LORD God has appointed the dominion of the world to His Son. "Ask of Me, and I will surely give the nations as Thine inheritance, And the very ends of the earth as Thy possession." He needs only to appropriate to Himself that which is allocated to Him. The omnipotent rod of iron He holds in His hand will utterly smash all opposition of the rebels. "Thou shalt break them with a rod of iron" (v. 9b). It is the Hebrew instrument of punitive power. There was no Old Testament king to whom God promised world dominion but David, and this is fulfilled only in the coming of Yeshua haMashiach/Jesus Christ.
At His Second Coming, Mashiach/Christ will manifest His sovereignty, and the entire would will see. He will return in judgment and will establish righteousness in the earth. Revelation 11:15-17; 19:11-16 describe for us these events. Moreover, He will return and reign as King of Kings. Calvin wrote: "The meaning is that the Father denies the Son nothing that bears upon the extension of His kingdom even unto the uttermost parts of the earth."
He came the first time as the Suffering Servant of God, but He will return as the sovereign God to reign in triumph on His enemies. Philippians 2:10, 11.
"Gird Thy sword on Thy thigh, O might One, in Thy splendor and Thy majesty! And in Thy majesty ride on victoriously, for the cause of truth and meekness and righteousness" (Psalm 45: 3, 4).
THE VOICE OF GOD'S SPIRIT IN THE LIPS OF THE PSALMIST (2:10-12)
There is urgency in these words of the Psalmist. Applications in this Psalm go beyond David or possibly Solomon. Verses 7, 8 and 12 can not possibly be fulfilled by an earthly king and must refer to the Messiah King, Jesus Christ. King David looks to one who is greater than himself. "Now." "Today is the day of salvation." He does not want anyone to suffer and would have everyone come to the King is obedient faith. "Show discernment" (v. 10). "Take warning" the highest form of wisdom. Turn from your self will and put your faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.
"Rejoice with trembling" (v. 11) is the exulting shouts of jubilation in worship. It is the idea of rapturous manifestation of joy at the happiness and honor of being permitted to be the servants of God. What is the response of your heart when you think of His coming? Do you begin to tremble with joy? Do you get excited about the prospect of His coming? Oh, Lord Jesus will I see you today? Come, Lord Jesus come! Be reconciled to the Sovereign by believing on the Son. "Do homage to the Son" is literally "kiss." Hebrews 10:12, 13; I Corinthians 15:25
"Blessed are they that put their trust in Him." That is the true kiss. It is the kiss of reconciliation. We were all by nature rebels of God. The message of the Gospel is the message of reconciliation. Cast down your weapons of rebellion. Trust Him, rely upon Him, depend upon Him; leave off depending upon yourself, and rely upon Jesus. Throw yourself flat down upon the finished work of haMashiach/Christ. "Believe on the Yeshua haMashiach/Lord Jesus Christ, and you shall be saved." Put your trust in Him. "Kiss the Son," and do it now. It is the kiss of allegiance and worship. There is also a warning of coming judgment in verse 12. The office of the Messiah is not only that of a Savior but also of divine Judge. Our God is also "a consuming fire." A quote from Revelation 6:16-17 helps us here.
and they said to the mountains and to the rocks, "Fall on us and hide us from the presence of Him who sits on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb; for the great day of their wrath has come; and who is able to stand?"
Kings, emperors, governors, of many nations have set themselves against God and His Anointed. In Rome where they persecuted the believers in Messiah, historians note 1 in 30 rulers of the Empire became blind. One lost his sanity following his wicked atrosities. One was slain by the hand of his own son, and one was drowned. One was strangled, one died in captivity. Another died of a disease his physicians were unable to cure. Two committed suicides, a third attempted it, but had to call for help to finish the task. Five were assassinated by their own people or servants, five others died the most miserable and excruciating s; several of them having an untold complication of diseases, eight were killed in battle, or after being taken prisoners.
However, there is a marvelous picture of people gathered from all over the world worshipping the Son of God in Revelation 7:9-12.
After these things I looked, and behold, a great multitude, which no one could count, from every nation and all tribes and peoples and tongues, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, and palm branches were in their hands; and they cry out with a loud voice, saying, "Salvation to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb." And all the angels were standing around the throne and around the elders and the four living creatures; and they fell on their faces before the throne and worshipped God, saying, "Amen, blessing and glory and wisdom and thanksgiving and honor and power and might, be to our God forever and ever. Amen."