Psalm 22

My loves, and others, I woke up much earlier than expected this morning.  After putting some thought into the day, I was inspired by my king to speak a blessing upon a friend.  I thought to myself, "What verse will I be compelled to share, today?  I will choose a random verse, perhaps a psalm, and from there I will find the appropriate blessing."  So, I opened my bible and casually turned it to 'The Book of Psalms'.  When I made it to the book, I stopped.  I looked to see which chapter I had stopped on and found myself intrigued by what I had come across.  Psalm 22.

(Please open your bible, or the link to ESV Bible.  I will not quote the entire chapter, but I will share bits of it, as I was excited that my day would start with this particular passage.)

The first line (Psalm 22:1 ESV) cried out to me, "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?"  Immediately, I thought of Jesus, in His crucifixion, crying out these very words not long before breathing His last breath.  (That is Mark 15:34.)  As I am young in my understanding of the Word, I had not yet put the two together, that even in the midst of His crucifixion, Jesus was crying out the words of David, his earthly ancestor, speaking the Word, teaching, referencing to a psalm which details His current circumstance, and glorifying God.  I was profoundly touched, and in awe.  He who was called Son of David, and mocked as 'King of the Jews'  (detailed in Mark 15:25-26), spoke the words of David as He fulfilled the prophecy.  I am going to share with you a couple verses that stuck out as I read through Psalm 22.

Through Psalm 22:1-2, David details his suffering, and feeling unheard by his calls.  Nevertheless, He details his memory of God's past deeds for His people in Psalm 22:3-5.  Faith is greatly empowered by memory.  How easily we can forget what God has done for us in the past.  David highlights the previous grace and protection our God has bestowed upon us.

But I am a worm and not a man,
scorned by mankind and despised by the people.
All who see me mock me;
they make mouths at me; they wag their heads;
“He trusts in the LORD; let him deliver him;
let him rescue him, for he delights in him!”
(Psalm 22:6-8 ESV)

And those who passed by derided him, wagging their heads and saying, “Aha! You who would destroy the temple and rebuild it in three days, save yourself, and come down from the cross!”
(Mark 15:29-30 ESV)

“He saved others; he cannot save himself. He is the King of Israel; let him come down now from the cross, and we will believe in him. He trusts in God; let God deliver him now, if he desires him. For he said, ‘I am the Son of God.’” And the robbers who were crucified with him also reviled him in the same way.
(Matthew 27:42-44 ESV)

Jesus said the scripture would be fulfilled (John 13:18), and it is honestly truly astonishing how many references in the Old Testament there are to the occurrences that took place in His time.  Line by line, in the last hours, His own critics proved His divinity.  I also think how unintentionally David prophesied the death of His descendant, but God was working through Him, and inspiring Him, during his praise of God.  This was an absolutely perfect and intentional series of events from Abraham to Moses to David to Jesus.  Anyway, back to Psalm...

I'm going to be skipping a few lines.

Psalm 22:14 ("I am poured out like water") made me think of Jesus offering the living water to the Samaritan woman (John 4:13).  In His final hours, His self-sacrifice can be viewed as a pouring out of that living water to all that would accept Him.  Extend your cup, that it may be filled and overflowed!  Furthermore, in His last supper (specifically, Matthew 26:27-28), Jesus took a cup of wine and said, "Drink of it, all of you, for this is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins."  Extend your cup, my friends.

Onward, we go.

For dogs encompass me;
a company of evildoers encircles me;
they have pierced my hands and feet—
I can count all my bones—
they stare and gloat over me;
they divide my garments among them,
and for my clothing they cast lots.
(Psalm 22:16-18 ESV)

This easily speaks to the surroundings of Jesus during His crucifixion.  He was surrounded by ungodly men, His critics.  His hands and feet were in fact pierced when He was mounted on the 'stauros'.  They stared and gloated at Him, and in fact divided his garments (Matthew 27:35).  This is a direct account of what happened to Jesus.

If you read this Psalm with your heart, and experience the moment, this psalm is more Jesus's than David's.  There He was on the stage of the world, for all His critics to see, and He championed the salvation of mankind.  In the midst of suffering, having lived the prophecy, I can see Jesus asking God to deliver His soul from the sword and precious life from the power of the dog.

Finally.

From you comes my praise in the great congregation;
my vows I will perform before those who fear him.
The afflicted shall eat and be satisfied;
those who seek him shall praise the LORD!
May your hearts live forever!

All the ends of the earth shall remember
and turn to the LORD,
and all the families of the nations
shall worship before you.
For kingship belongs to the LORD,
and he rules over the nations.

All the prosperous of the earth eat and worship;
before him shall bow all who go down to the dust,
even the one who could not keep himself alive.
Posterity shall serve him;
it shall be told of the Lord to the coming generation;
they shall come and proclaim his righteousness to a people yet unborn,
that he has done it.
(Psalm 22:25-31 ESV)

In enjoy this final glorification and praise of God.  Psalm 22:26 reminds me of the Beatitudes (Matthew 5:2-12).  The final verses gives me a feeling of the conclusion of all things, in Revelations, when the last remnants of evil will be washed from the Earth, brought to justice, and the righteous will praise God in the Kingdom.

In reference to the series I'm working on, take note of Psalm 22:28.  For kingship belongs to the LORD, and He rules over the nations.

So then let us then close our eyes, pray to the Lord our God, and Jesus, raise our cups that they may be filled with the living water, His blood, and pay homage to the king.

May you be compelled by the Lord to seek Him out, have your cup filled, and live eternal life in His glory.  Amen.

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