The Riches OF GRACE
“hath appeared to all men.” Titus 2:11
Robert W. Reed
The Messianic Psalms
“And he said unto them, These are the words which I spake unto you, while I was yet with you, that all things must be fulfilled, which were written in the law of Moses, and in the prophets, and in the psalms, concerning me.”
+ Christ in the Psalms +
These Psalms are called Messianic Psalms because they are quoted in the New Testament in direct reference to the Lord Jesus Christ. The Psalms, also called The Psalter, speaks of Christ more than any other book in the Old Testament. The Psalms are a collection of one hundred-fifty prayers and praise to the Lord and placed in the canon of scripture to be read and sung by God’s people. They portray Christ fully as the divine Messiah. In the Psalter, Jesus Christ is the central figure, and we have a complete picture of His ministry. It records His coming, incarnation, death, sufferings, resurrection, ascension, meditorial offices, (Prophet, Priest, King) life, character, glory and kingdom. The Psalter is rich in that the theme is the King and His kingdom, Amen.
“Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me.” John 5:39
The following article will consist of an outline of the Messianic Psalms. The person and work of Christ is fully presented in the Psalms as we shall see. Here are ten Psalms that contain truths about the Messiah. One could compile a biography of Jesus Christ with the amount of information given in the Psalms alone. The author of the book of Hebrews used the book of Psalms to confirm the Messiah. To prove the superiority of Christ over all things, the writer uses the Book of Psalms as his source of authority and the Psalms are quoted six times in the first chapter. About one half of the quotes in the entire book of Hebrews are from the Psalms. In the New Testament, the Psalms are quoted more frequently than any other Old Testament book, being about forty percent. The Psalms are quoted by Jesus himself more than any other Old Testament book. There are over one hundred references in the New Testament pertaining to Christ from the Psalms.
Now consider the individual Psalms in reference to Messiah. There are basically two groups of Messianic Psalms. First, those which apply only to Christ and no one else, directly related, and exclusively Messianic. Secondly, those which apply to David but ultimately looks forward to Christ, David only being a type of Christ.
Psalms 2 (Messiah’s Sonship)
This Psalm is quoted several times in the New Testament, in direct reference to Jesus Christ, the one who fulfills the passage (Acts 4:23-26, 13:33, Hebrews 1:5, 5:5, Revelation 2:27, 12:5, 19:15). Christ alone can lay claim to this particular Psalm. It has reference to the depraved state of humanity and it’s involvement in the crucifixion. Jesus is clearly the anointed one (vs. 6) and begotten of the Father (vs. 7) and must be accepted as Saviour or suffer the wrath of God (vs. 12).
Psalms 8 (Messiah’s Dominion)
This Psalm basically refers to the dominion over the earth given to man by God (Genesis 1:26) even though at present it is marred by sin. This Psalm is referred to in Hebrews 2:6-8 in relation to Jesus Christ. It is through Christ that all things will be restored.
Psalms 16 (Messiah’s Resurrection)
This Psalm in verse 9-11 is quoted by Peter in Acts 2:25-28 and by Paul in Acts 13:35-36 and can only apply to Jesus Christ. David, the author of the Psalm, died and saw corruption as far as his flesh is concerned. This Psalm guarantees not only David’s resurrection,, but the resurrection of every Christian.
Psalms 22 (Messiah’s Sufferings)
This Psalm is a prophetic description of the crucifixion of God’s Son. It gives graphic details of the suffering that Jesus Christ went through on the cross. The first verse gives us words spoken by our Savior from Calvary’s cross. Other verses in this chapter describe His mockings (vs. 7-8), the piercing of His hands and feet (vs. 16) and His garments being parted (vs. 18). This Psalm was written over one thousand years before it was fulfilled.
Psalms 40 (Messiah’s Obedience)
This Psalm is Messianic because of its application in Hebrews 10:5-10. It is prophetic of Christ's voluntary sacrifice. The opening of the ear in verse 6 is symbolic of the dedication of an indentured servant to his master (Exodus 21:6) and is translated in Hebrews 10:5 as, “A body hast thou prepared me.” Jesus Christ willingly became a bond servant (Philemon 2:2-8). The Lord took pleasure (delight) in His mission.
Psalm 41 (Messiah’s Denial)
The prophecy of Psalms 41:9 was fulfilled by Judas Iscariot at the Last Supper, “Yea, mine own familiar friend, in whom I trusted, which did eat of my bread, hath lifted up his heel against me.” The New Testament reference is in John 13:18, “I speak not of you all: I know whom I have chosen: but that the scripture may be fulfilled, He that eateth bread with me hath lifted up his heel against me.” These scripture clearly confirm that this Psalm is Messianic.
Psalm 45 (Messiah’s Divinity)
This Messianic Psalm is a picture of the King of earth, vs. 6-7, “Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: the sceptre of thy kingdom is a right sceptre. Thou lovest righteousness, and hatest wickedness: therefore God, thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows.” The King is addressed here as God and is quoted in Hebrews 1:8 confirming that Messiah is God Himself, “But unto the Son he saith, Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: a sceptre of righteousness is the sceptre of thy kingdom.” In Hebrews 1:8-9, we see that one person of the Godhead (Father) speaking to another person of the Godhead (Son).
Psalm 68 (Messiah’s Ascension)
This Psalm reveals Messiah as having ascended back into heaven after His resurrection in vs. 17-19. The verses are quoted in the New Testament in Ephesians 4:8-9 in reference to Jesus Christ, “Wherefore he saith, When he ascended up on high, he led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men .(Now that he ascended, what is it but that he also descended first into the lower parts of the earth?” The Lord proclaimed liberty to the captives and carried them with Him to paradise. The captives refer to all those who had died with faith that a redeemer would come to deliver them The Messiah rescued those who had been captured by the enemy.
Psalms 110 (Messiah’s Exaltation)
This Psalm is used by New Testament writer to preach Christ more than any other single passage in the bible (Matthew 22:44, Mark 12:36, Luke 20:43, Acts 2:34, 35, Hebrews 1:13, 5:6, 7:17-21). The entire Psalm is Messianic, revealing His royal priesthood in His exalted position at the right hand of the Father. Peter quotes Psalms 110:1 in Acts 2:34 to prove that Jesus had taken His rightful place at the right hand of the Father in Heaven and is now Lord and Christ, “For David is not ascended into the heavens: but he saith himself, The LORD said unto my Lord, Sit thou on my right hand.” In Matthew 22:44, Jesus Himself uses the Psalm in His dealing with the Pharisees and Scribes to prove His deity, saying that He was both David’s Son and David’s Lord.
Psalm 118 (Messiah, the Chief Cornerstone)
This Psalm in vs. 22-26 speaks of Messiah as the Chief Cornerstone that was rejected by many but honored by the Lord and His people. The Apostle Peter in Matthew 21:42, connects the meaning of this Psalm to Jesus Christ, “Jesus saith unto them, Did ye never read in the scriptures, The stone which the builders rejected, the same is become the head of the corner: this is the Lord's doing, and it is marvellous in our eyes?” Other New Testament references to this Psalm are Mark 12:10, Luke 20:17, Acts 4:11, and I Peter 2:7. In Matthew 26:30, this Psalm was probably Jesus’ farewell hymn with His disciples as they finished the Passover. Our Saviour was on His way to Gethsemane and Calvary.
Praise God For These Messianic Psalms, Amen.
"Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.” Acts 16:31
Victory Baptist Church
Pastor Robert W. Reed
14473 Bellingrath Road
P.O. Box 257
Coden, Alabama 36523