6“As for me, I have set my King
on Zion, my holy hill.”
7I will tell of the decree:
The Lord said to me, “You are my Son;
today I have begotten you.
8Ask of me, and I will make the nations your heritage,
and the ends of the earth your possession.
9You shall break them with a rod of iron
and dash them in pieces like a potter’s vessel.”
10Now therefore, O kings, be wise;
be warned, O rulers of the earth.
11Serve the Lord with fear,
and rejoice with trembling.
12Kiss the Son,
lest he be angry, and you perish in the way,
for his wrath is quickly kindled.
Blessed are all who take refuge in him.
A New King
Scholars believe Psalm 2 was used during the coronation ceremony for the kings reigning in Jerusalem, and you can see why. The theme of the Psalm is about the Lord’s Anointed one reigning and doing so with the Lord’s favor.
Imagine being in Jerusalem as a new king is about to be crowned. The best musicians are playing. The people of Jerusalem all crowded around and you’re being pressed on every side because everyone wants to get a good look at the new king. The air is thick with anticipation and excitement. The hopes of all Judah rest on the shoulders of this man who is being crowned as the king.
Suddenly the music stops and there’s a moment of complete silence. The silence lasts only moments, but it feels like ages. Finally, the silence is broken as the choir begins to sing Psalm 2. The words echo in your ears…I have set my King on Zion, my holy hill…
Your hopes begin to rise that this king will be different, that this king won’t be corrupt like the last one and the one before that. You begin to hope, but then you stop yourself. Why should this king be any different? He will surely let you down, just as the previous kings had done.
This week we celebrate Transfiguration Sunday and on this day the words of Psalm 2 are heard as a new King is upon a hill. That this King is different than those kings who had come before Him is obvious. No other king before had shined with the glory of God. And while previous kings had heard the words of Psalm 2 declaring, “You are my Son; today I have begotten you,” they had all known that these words were only true in the sense of being adopted as sons of God. However, of this new King, this true King, God the Father Himself declared from heaven, “This is my beloved Son!”
At that moment, I highly doubt Peter, James, and John had any questions about Jesus being a very different king. I suspect they thought that while all of the previous kings had let the people down, this King would not.
However, after what was literally a mountain top experience, it wasn’t long before Peter, James, and John had their doubts.
The Psalmist wrote, “You shall break them with a rod of iron and dash them in pieces like a potter’s vessel.” But after the King was arrested, it seemed as if Jesus was the one being beaten with a rod of iron and dashed to pieces. Could this King really be the one the Psalmist was anticipating? Could He really be the King of kings?
The disciples should have had their answer already in the Transfiguration event. Jesus had revealed His glory to them. No doubt, He was different! No doubt, He would be victorious!
But the final confirmation would come when the King, who appeared defeated, rose up on Easter morning. Was this King different? No doubt! Not even death could defeat Him!
So as you hear/read/pray Psalm 2 today, remember all of those coronations in Jerusalem. Remember how those kings inevitably disappointed. But remember also that the One about whom Psalm 2 is truly speaking, King Jesus, is a very different King.
This King is worthy of all of your trust.
This King will never betray you.
This King cannot be defeated by even the fiercest of enemies.
Blessed are all who take refuge in Him.