Posted by: arieliondotcom | October 15, 2013

Love Song (Psalm 45)

Love Letter to the LORD (Psalm 45)

As a man, I’m uncomfortable with thinking of myself as “the Bride of Christ.” I’ve never tried it but I imagine I’d look silly in a wedding dress and high heels. But being the Bride of Christ is a serious business. In fact, GOD calls His people His Bride throughout the Bible and compares our ignoring Him and choosing others over Him to adultery. This is the reason why He allowed Israel to be taken into captivity like a man throwing an adulterous wife out of the house. But He always took her back. This is why He allows divorce for adultery but doesn’t require it if the person being cheated on is willing to forgive and the person who commits adultery never does it again.

Psalm 45 is a love song. Its tune was “Lilies” and it was a slow, sweet song like the songs of mourning before it but this time about the sweetness of love. We can easily imagine it being sung about King Solomon. It even mentions the daughters of Tyre being brought to the King as brides and we know Solomon had an alliance to Tyre as his father David had though not as well.

But there are several problems with seeing this psalm as being about Solomon or about any earthly king. First is that if we agree with Jewish scholars that the reference to the Sons of Korah means those sons of the man Korah who rebelled against Moses this was written long before Solomon or any king or Israel had even taken the Promised Land.

But even if we think the references are to descendants of that man in the times of the kings, or another Korah altogether, there is the problem of the subject of the song suddenly switching from being the king in verse 1 to GOD as king in verse 6. But it gets worse because verse 7 says GOD made the GOD of verse 6 king.

The traditional Jewish interpretation is to jump the rails completely and say the ones being praised are faithful teachers of the Scriptures. But that leaves those problem texts unanswered.

It would be a stretch, but it is possible to interpret the word for God (elohim) in the context of verse 6 as “godly ones” or “holy ones.” So you might be able to stretch the entire psalm to be talking about the king, whether as prophecy or praise.

However it could also be read as a poetic prophecy about the Messiah, Whom we know as JESUS. In fact, JESUS refers to another psalm with the same kind of word play as between verses 6 & 7 as a reference to Himself as Messiah and GOD.

When we look at it this way the poem becomes clearer.

The writer says he can’t contain himself; he must tell someone about how wonderful his king is. The word for love is not romantic love but the Beloved, the one loved for who they are. The LORD refers to His people as His Beloved and those who belong to Him hold Him as theirs.

And now we get into the Messianic language. This isn’t JESUS as He first appeared on earth Whom the Bible says wasn’t very attractive so looks alone would cause others to follow Him. He had no handsome appearance or charisma. Remember, in the Garden of Gethsemene the soldiers had to have Judas point Him out because He looked like just one of the crowd. But when He returns in Glory His radiance will shine. This is the Messiah JESUS of Revelation coming to conquer the enemies of His Fathet, Himself and His people.

Now we see verses 6 and 7 make sense as GOD the Father sets JESUS, GOD the Son, on the throne to enjoy the splendor due Him.

The references to women bring us back to Revelation and the parables of JESUS. We can see the queen as being the Church, the woman of Revelation harassed by the dragon (Satan). And we know the virgins are symbolic, as they were in the parable of the virgins, of those disciples and would-be disciples who are on their way to a relationship with Christ and who know Him already and have prepared for His arrival.

Rather than mourning those they left behind, Believers who follow Christ will rejoice in others who have come to know JESUS for themselves through the testimony and actions of those Believers (their Spiritual sons, the princes of verse 16).

Whether JESUS Himself, or His followers because of Him, the King and all who are His will be renowned forever and ever because of what GOD has done. And as we see this is part of Scripture which will never pass away, we know already this is true.

Whether written for an earthly king or not, Psalm 45 is ultimately a lovesong to Messiah, JESUS Christ. And from the ultimate Author, GOD the Holy Spirit, to all who long for their Beloved King’s return.

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