by Mike Ratliff
41 Now while the Pharisees were gathered together, Jesus asked them a question, 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, “Then how does David in the Spirit call Him ‘Lord,’ saying,
44 ‘THE LORD SAID TO MY LORD,
“SIT AT MY RIGHT HAND,
UNTIL I PUT YOUR ENEMIES BENEATH YOUR FEET”’?
45 Therefore, if David calls Him ‘Lord,’ how is He his son?” 46 And no one was able to answer Him a word, nor did anyone dare from that day on to ask Him another question. Matthew 22:41-46 (LSB)
Many Psalms, written a thousand years before Christ’s birth, contain many references to Him that are wholly inapplicable to any other person in history. Even many references to David surpass him in scope, strength and duration – often pointing to a Son of David who would reign eternally. Let us look at one of these Psalms that our Lord cited in Matthew 22:41-46, which is Psalm 110. Our Lord tells us that this Psalm speaks of Him. In it we will see that it also very succinctly shows us the result of our Lord’s incarnation, ministry, death, resurrection, and ascension in what has been called the ‘Church Age.’ It also shows us what will transpire when He returns at the end of this age.
1 Yahweh says to my Lord:
“Sit at My right hand
Until I put Your enemies as a footstool for Your feet.” (Psalm 110:1LSB)
If your translation of v1 of Psalm 110 starts with “The LORD” please understand that it is translating the Hebrew word יהוה or yehôvâh, while the LSB translate that word as “Yahweh.” This is the Covenant name of God most prominently known in connection with His relationship with the nation of Israel. On the other hand, the word ‘Lord’ is the Hebrew word אדן אדון or ‘âdôn ‘âdôn. This word means, “proprietor, master, lord, Lord when referring to God, owner, ruler, commander.” What did David mean when he wrote this? Well, he was inspired by the Holy Spirit to prophesy what we are preparing to study here. This message is from יהוה to David’s אדן אדון. Who is David’s Lord? This is a prophecy of the coming messiah and this identifies Him as not just a man or a descendant of David, but one of divine origin. This is speaking of our Lord Jesus Christ. When did he sit at the right hand of God?
1 Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, laying aside every weight and the sin which so easily entangles us, let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, 2 fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Hebrews 12:1-2 (LSB)
He endured the Cross. He died and was resurrected. After he ascended to the Father 10 days prior to Pentecost, He was seated at the right hand of the throne of God. Therefore, what we learn in Psalm 110:1 is that the first part of this psalm refers to that period of time between His victory at the Cross and that period when He will leave the right had of the throne of God to fulfill His Kingdom.
2 Yahweh will stretch forth Your strong scepter from Zion, saying,
“Have dominion in the midst of Your enemies.” Psalms 110:2 (LSB)
Even though our Lord is at the right hand of the throne of God, this does not mean He is not ruling and reigning right now. All who belong to Him are part of His Kingdom and He is on the throne. He is reigning while His Kingdom is in midst of His enemies. The Church is in this world, but is not part of it. The world system is the enemy of the Christian and our Lord. These enemies are not yet our Lord’s ‘footstool.’ In fact, the suffering Church suffers because of them.
3 Your people will offer themselves freely in the day of Your power;
In the splendor of holiness, from the womb of the dawn,
The dew of Your youthfulness will be Yours.Psalms 110:3 (LSB)
Those whom God saves are changed forever. They are new creations that learn to offer themselves as living sacrifices, which is their reasonable worship (Romans 12:1). Through this, they also learn to continually become transformed by the renewing of their minds. This is speaking of Christians maturing and bearing the fruit of the spirit as they grow in Christlikeness. This is what we are to do during this period between our Lord’s first and second coming. Through this, we become victorious over the flesh and the world.
4 Yahweh has sworn and will not change His mind,
“You are a priest forever
According to the order of Melchizedek.” Psalms 110:4 (LSB)
When the time came for our Lord to be born of a virgin, grow up, minister, and become the suffering servant bearing the sins of His people on the Cross, it was because God ordained it and it was going to take effect regardless of who opposed it. This is another wonderful example of the Sovereignty of God. What He ordains takes place and no one can stay His hand. Who is Melchizedek and what has he have to do with our Lord Jesus Christ, the Messiah? Melchizedek was “king of Salem,” which means “king of peace.” He was also a “priest of God Most High” (Genesis 14:18-20). Abraham tithed to him after he had defeated several kings in a battle to rescue his nephew Lot. During this age, the Messiah is both a priest and king after the order or like Melchizedek. Our Lord Jesus Christ is both our King and our High Priest (Hebrews 5).
We have reached the end of the portion of Psalm 110 that deals with this age. Now let us look at the part that deals with what must take place at the end of this age that will usher in the age to come.
5 The Lord is at Your right hand;
He will crush kings in the day of His anger.
6 He will render justice among the nations,
He will fill them with corpses,
He will crush the head that is over the wide earth.
7 He will drink from the brook by the wayside;
Therefore He will lift up His head.Psalms 110:5-7 (LSB)
When our Lord returns at the end of this age He will not appear as the suffering servant who had no place to lay His head. No, when He returns, He will be the Warrior King who will be victorious over His enemies. He will make His enemies his ‘footstool.’ The defeat of Satan at the Cross will be completely consummated at our Lord’s return. The key word for how utter this victory will be is found in the word ‘crush” from v6. This is the Hebrew word מחץ or mâchats. This word means, “to splt, cleave; to crush; to wound severely; to strike. The term carries the connotation of annihilation.” This word describes a blow that results in complete and total victory with the enemy crushed at the victor’s feet. We find this word picture written out for us very clearly in Judges 5.
24 “Most blessed of women is Jael,
The wife of Heber the Kenite;
Most blessed is she of women in the tent.
25 He asked for water, and she gave him milk;
In a mighty bowl she brought him curds.
26 She sent forth her hand for the tent peg,
And her right hand for the workmen’s hammer.
Then she beat Sisera; she smashed his head,
And she crushed and pierced his temple.
27 Between her feet he bowed, he fell, he lay;
Between her feet he bowed, he fell;
Where he bowed, there he fell violently devastated. Judges 5:24-27 (LSB)
The word ‘crushed’ above is מחץ. Sisera was a wicked oppressor of the Israelites during the period of the Judges. He was running for his life and begged to be hid by Jael. She told him to turn aside to hide. Then as he rested, she took a tent peg and a mallet and drove the peg through his head into the ground. His death, his crushing was complete and sudden. This is how our Lord’s victory will be when he crushes His enemies when He returns. Sin, death, Satan, his demons, and all those who are Satan’s seed will be crushed suddenly and completely.
11 Then I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse, and He who sits on it is called Faithful and True, and in righteousness He judges and wages war. 12 His eyes are a flame of fire, and on His head are many diadems; having a name written on Him which no one knows except Himself, 13 and being clothed with a garment dipped in blood, His name is also called The Word of God. 14 And the armies which are in heaven, clothed in fine linen, white and clean, were following Him on white horses. 15 And from His mouth comes a sharp sword, so that with it He may STRIKE DOWN THE NATIONS, and He will RULE THEM WITH A ROD OF IRON; and HE TREADS THE WINE PRESS OF THE WRATH OF THE RAGE OF GOD, the Almighty. 16 And He has on His garment and on His thigh a name written, “KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS.”
17 Then I saw an angel standing in the sun, and he cried out with a loud voice, saying to all the birds which fly in midheaven, “Come, assemble for the great supper of God, 18 so that you may eat the flesh of kings and the flesh of commanders and the flesh of strong men and the flesh of horses and of those who sit on them and the flesh of all men, both free men and slaves, and small and great.”
19 Then I saw the beast and the kings of the earth and their armies assembled to make war with Him who sits on the horse and with His army.
20 And the beast was seized, and with him the false prophet who did the signs in his presence, by which he deceived those who had received the mark of the beast and those who worshiped his image. These two were thrown alive into the lake of fire which burns with brimstone. 21 And the rest were killed with the sword which came from the mouth of Him who sits on the horse, and all the birds were filled with their flesh. Revelation 19:11-21 (LSB)
This battle will be short and sweet. Our Lord will return as the Victorious Warrior King, His enemies will be made his ‘footstool’, and those who are known by Him will be with Him forever in the New Heaven and the New Earth. Oh, does he know you? Do you know Him as Lord and Saviour? If so, you will be with Him as He crushes His enemies! If you are not then you will be among those who will be crushed.
Soli Deo Gloria!