An interesting collection of readings this morning – 1 Chronicles 16 followed by Psalms 1, 2, 15, 22, 23, 24, 47, and 68.
In 1 Chronicles 16, the ark is brought into the tent that David made for it. David appoints Levites before the ark to invoke, thank, and praise the Lord. Then a song of thanksgiving was sung to the Lord. The song is all about praising and thanking God for his work, miracles and judgments in all the earth. “Declare his glory among the nations,” says the song. “He is to be feared above all gods. For all the gods of the peoples are worthless idols.” It makes me think of Jesus taking his place on the throne as He is praised by His people, declaring His glory everywhere on the earth. He alone is Lord of heaven and earth.
What stood out to me this morning was how the collection of psalms ties in with 1 Chronicles 16, giving a richer picture of the Jesus taking his throne.
Psalm 1 says that the one who delights in the law of his Lord and meditates on it day and night, which is like saying the one who delights in and continually thinks about the entire teaching of Jesus, is blessed. That one is like a tree planted by a river. That one is continually fed by the life of Jesus.
Psalm 2 asks why the nations and peoples rage and plot a vain thing. The kings, men that rule on the earth, set themselves against this Lord, Jesus. The rulers, the heavenly powers and principalities, take counsel together against this Lord, Jesus. Together the nations, peoples, kings, and rulers plot to dethrone this Lord, Jesus. But God laughs. He tells the kings to be wise and the rulers to be warned so that they will serve the Lord with fear.
Psalm 15 asks who will dwell on the Lord’s holy hill. Who can dwell in his kingdom? The answer – the one who walks blameslessly, does what is right and speaks truth in his heart. In other words, the one who loves and does no violence, evil, or wickedness and the one who believes and speaks not the lie but the truth. This is because lies and murder are marks of Satan’s kingdom (John 8). But the kingdom of this Lord, Jesus, is marked by love and truth.
Psalm 22 tells of how this Lord took his throne. Written 1,000 years or so before Christ’s crucifixion, the psalm beautifully prophesies Christ’s crucifixion before that form of death was even known. Near the end, the psalm says, “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.” The kings of earth the and the rulers of heaven have been dethroned. Jesus is the real king of heaven and earth.
Psalm 23 declares how this Lord will provide for his people, even in the face of death.
Psalm 24 starts, “The earth is the Lord’s and the fullness thereof, the world and those who dwell therein.” It all belongs to this Lord, Jesus, that has ascended to his throne. Again, the one who shall enter the kingdom is the one who has clean hands (loves and does no violence) and a pure heart (believes the truth and not the lie).
Psalm 47 says of this Lord, Jesus, he “is to be feared, a great king over all the earth…for God is the king of all the earth…God reigns over the nations.” Jesus is Lord and God. So praise him!
Psalm 68 speaks of the power, provision, deliverance, and salvation of this Lord, Jesus. “O kingdoms of the earth, sing to God; sing praises to the Lord.”
The true king of all the heavens and all the earth, Jesus, has taken his place on his throne. His kingdom is here. We are to praise and worship him alone.
No longer are we to worship the kings of the earth and their nations or the rulers (powers and principalities) of heaven and their dominions. No longer do we worship flags and anthems. You only have to look at the reactions to a certain man’s recent actions to see that flags and anthems are most definitely objects of worship in the nations of the earth.
We worship Jesus!