blog meditation Psalms

Meditation Psalm 45a

For the director of music. To the tune of ‘Lilies’. Of the Sons of Korah. A maskil. A wedding song.

My heart is stirred by a noble theme
    as I recite my verses for the king;
    my tongue is the pen of a skilful writer.

You are the most excellent of men
    and your lips have been anointed with grace,
    since God has blessed you for ever.

Gird your sword on your side, you mighty one;
    clothe yourself with splendour and majesty.
In your majesty ride forth victoriously
    in the cause of truth, humility and justice;
    let your right hand achieve awesome deeds.
Let your sharp arrows pierce the hearts of the king’s enemies;
    let the nations fall beneath your feet.
Your throne, O God, will last for ever and ever;
    a sceptre of justice will be the sceptre of your kingdom.
You love righteousness and hate wickedness;
    therefore God, your God, has set you above your companions
    by anointing you with the oil of joy.
All your robes are fragrant with myrrh and aloes and cassia;
    from palaces adorned with ivory
    the music of the strings makes you glad.
Daughters of kings are among your honoured women;
    at your right hand is the royal bride in gold of Ophir.

(Ps. 45:1-9 NIV)

This is a royal Psalm celebrating the marriage of one of the Davidic kings. The ultimate significance and fulfilment of the Psalm is in Jesus Christ and the marriage supper of the Lamb. The Lord Jesus Christ is the Son of David.

But about the Son he says,

‘Your throne, O God, will last for ever and ever;
    a sceptre of justice will be the sceptre of your kingdom.

(Heb. 1:8 NIV)

The Psalmist’s heart is moved by a noble theme. He is writing under inspiration of God and he has taken to heart the theme as he composes the prayer or song. CS Lewis says of Christ. ‘The birth of Christ is the arrival of the great warrior and the great King. Also of the Lover, the Bridegroom, whose beauty surpasses that of man. But not only the Bridegroom as the lover, the desired; the Bridegroom also makes fruitful, the Father of children still to be begotten and born.’

It is a pleasure to examine the genius of any artist, but here the Psalmist excels above any mere artist, because he is an artist as a skilful writer but inspired by the Holy Spirit. His song is the overflow of the heart in praise of the king. Praising the Lord Jesus Christ is a noble theme and all of us have the tongue of a skilful writer, because the noble theme we sing is the new song that God has placed in our mouths. Remember the artisans in Exodus 31, who already had from birth the God- given gift of craftsmanship. This was taken to a whole new level as they were filled by the Spirit of God, and specially endowed with gifts to help create the furnishings for the tabernacle. The Psalmist is given the theme of the song and the ability to compose the song, and his penmanship is taken to a whole new level by the Spirit of God.

In the original context as it applied to the earthly king there is a degree of hyperbole and a constructive use of superlatives used to exalt the king. Of course as we would anticipate the fulfilment by Christ all the superlatives from all the languages in the world would be exhausted if an attempt was made to capture the glory and grandeur of the Lord Jesus Christ.

The difficulty with writing about the Psalms is that there is a degree of deconstruction as you must move from poetry to prose and something of the art gets lost. This is true of any poetry but more so when it is inspired poetry. The Son of Man is the most excellent among men. Our mind is taken to the Song of Songs:


Like an apple tree among the trees of the forest
    is my beloved among the young men.
I delight to sit in his shade,
    and his fruit is sweet to my taste.
Let him lead me to the banquet hall,
    and let his banner over me be love.
Strengthen me with raisins,
    refresh me with apples,
    for I am faint with love.
His left arm is under my head,
    and his right arm embraces me.
Daughters of Jerusalem, I charge you
    by the gazelles and by the does of the field:
do not arouse or awaken love
    until it so desires.

Listen! My beloved!
    Look! Here he comes,
leaping across the mountains,
    bounding over the hills.
My beloved is like a gazelle or a young stag.
    Look! There he stands behind our wall,
gazing through the windows,
    peering through the lattice.
My beloved spoke and said to me,
    ‘Arise, my darling,
    my beautiful one, come with me.
See! The winter is past;
    the rains are over and gone.
Flowers appear on the earth;
    the season of singing has come,
the cooing of doves
    is heard in our land.
The fig-tree forms its early fruit;
    the blossoming vines spread their fragrance.
Arise, come, my darling;
    my beautiful one, come with me.’

(Cant. 2:3-13 NIV)

The king’s speech is anointed with grace because God has blessed him. The sons of David would be required to lead the people into battle. The Lord Jesus Christ came to fight a spiritual battle. At the beginning of His earthly ministry, there was a battle of 40 days in the wilderness against Satan. At the end of the end of His earthly ministry, it was upon the cross where the battle against sin, death and Satan was fought.

The success that the king would have was due to his concern for what was important to the Lord and His covenant people. The king was a champion of truth, humility and righteousness, the very key virtues that the King of kings employs as He builds the Kingdom of God. The Lord Jesus will come and subdue all nations.

The throne of David was assured by covenant that it would be an eternal throne. No earthly king could ever see that fulfilled for themselves, and therefore the only possible fulfilment of this promise is by the Lord Jesus Christ coming to rule and reign upon the throne. He will rule His kingdom with justice. Righteousness will be evident throughout the kingdom, and the hated wickedness will be destroyed and banished from the Kingdom of God forever.

The basis of the exceptional character of the king is related to the divine anointing. The Psalmist is initially speaking directly to the king but slips seamlessly into speaking directly to the warrior God. He calls upon God to give victory to the king against his enemies. The Psalm is quoted in Hebrews to refer specifically to the Lord Jesus Christ.

But about the Son he says,

‘Your throne, O God, will last for ever and ever;
    a sceptre of justice will be the sceptre of your kingdom.
You have loved righteousness and hated wickedness;
    therefore God, your God, has set you above your companions
    by anointing you with the oil of joy.’

(Heb. 1:8-9 NIV)

The purpose of the king and the purpose of God are seen to be inseparable. That should be the same for every Christian. Our purpose should be inseparable from God’s purpose. This is why we pray, ‘Your Kingdom come, Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.’

The king’s garments are anointed with oils. The royal daughters attended the royal bride and she was prepared for the bridegroom. The church is the bride of Christ and will one day be presented to Christ as a pure and spotless bride. The preparations are already underway as the Lord’s people are called out of every nation as Christ continues to build the church.

Our Heavenly Father, what a theme You have given us to sing, a new song of praise to the Lamb who was slain. Lord let this theme be forever on our lips and in our hearts. Help us not to allow the cares of this life spoil or takeaway the joy of our salvation. Be pleased to sustain us by Your unfailing love for Christ our Saviour’s sake, in whose name we pray. Amen.