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THE KING OF ZION
LESSON II., APRIL 10, PSALM 2:1-12
Golden Text—”Blessed are all they that put their trust in him.”—Psa. 2:12
In considering this psalm it is well to remember that King David, its author, was a typical character, a type of Christ. Those of David’s time and he himself, also, no doubt understood his words to refer to his own conflicts with surrounding nations and their kings, and although some of the expressions are quite too strong to fit the typical king and kingdom, and could fit only their antitypes, this no doubt was considered poetic license. From a higher standpoint, however, guided by the holy spirit and the words of the apostles, the Gospel Church can see in this psalm a prophecy of our Lord Christ Jesus at his first advent, and still further of the entire Christ (anointed) including the Church which is the body of Christ, and their final exaltation as the Millennial Kingdom.
While the application of this prophecy, by some in the early Church, to the time of the first advent, and the events connected with our Lord’s crucifixion (Acts 4:25-27), is not corroborated by the testimony of any of the inspired apostles, it is not without justification in the circumstances they relate. But notwithstanding this partial application, the fulness of the import belongs to the time of the second advent, as do almost all the prophecies which relate to Christ’s Kingdom and glory. The object of his first advent was to give himself a ransom for all, and thus legally to prepare the way for the selection of some of the redeemed, his Church, to be his bride and joint heir, and also to prepare the way for restoring the race (whosoever wills) to all that was lost in Adam. The second advent, and the Kingdom of God then to be established, are to accomplish all that was made possible by the work of the first
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advent. The time for the fulfilment of this psalm in its fullest, completest sense is just at hand. See Millennial Dawn, Vol. II.
Verse 1. “Why do the nations rage and the peoples devise vain schemes?” This we understand to refer to the commotion and discontent already prevailing throughout the civilized world and daily increasing. As a result of the dissatisfaction, how many are the vain and impracticable schemes and theories being devised for relief—Communism, Socialism, Nihilism, Anarchism. But these can not bring the relief needed and desired. God’s remedy is the only one that will cure present social, political and financial ailments and sores.
Verse 2. “The kings of the earth entrench themselves, and the rulers [Religious, financial and political] take counsel together against Jehovah and against his Anointed.” Ah! yes; we can see this fulfilling on every hand. The kings of Europe are banded together against Socialistic influences; and they set or establish their power over the people by various combinations. The lesser rulers, the money-princes and religious-princes, are also busy; and Unions, Combinations, Trusts and Syndicates are the order of the day, not only in financial, but beginningly in religious matters.
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But little do any of these imagine that they are preparing to resist the establishment of the Kingdom of Jehovah in the hands of his Anointed Son. Nevertheless, this is just what they are doing. The time is at hand for the fall of present systems and for the establishment of God’s long promised Kingdom which will enforce his will on earth even as it is done in heaven. So far from knowing that they are setting themselves to oppose God’s will, they are so blinded that they call their own poor tottering thrones God’s kingdoms. But in vain do they worship him in lip and form while their hearts are far from him. His will is not in all their thoughts.
Verse 3. “Let us break their bands and cast away their cords from us.” The translators of the common version got the impression that these words represented the sentiments of the kings and rulers; but not so: they are the expression of Jehovah and his Anointed, relative to the kings and rulers who have banded themselves together to oppose the execution of God’s plan, because it includes the fall of their power. God will break all their bands—their combinations and trusts of every sort—and will cast off the cords, by which they still attempt to claim God’s favor, protection and Word as upholding their kingdoms, rights, authorities, etc. See Isa. 8:9-13.
Verses 4 and 5. “He that sitteth in the heavens shall laugh: [i.e.] the Lord shall have them [as well as their wonderful banding together] in derision. Then shall he speak unto them in his wrath and trouble them in his sore displeasure.”
For eighteen centuries the civilized world has heard the words of the Great King, instructing that all righteousness consists in loving God with all the heart, mind, being and strength, and in loving our neighbor as ourself; and that he that exalteth himself shall be abased, while he that humbleth himself shall be exalted. But his instructions have been unheeded except by the very few: pride and love of money and power have ruled. Now the time has come to speak the same truths in a different manner—so loudly and so forcibly that they will never be forgotten. And the great time of trouble just approaching, such as was not since there was a nation, will be merely the reiteration of the Lord’s message, once given in tender tones, but unheeded.
Verse 6. “Yet [meanwhile] I [Jehovah] have established my King upon Zion, my holy mountain [kingdom].” Thus briefly does God announce what his work will be in connection with the overthrow of human systems and governments. He will establish Christ’s Millennial Kingdom, and he shall take unto himself his great power and reign.—Rev. 11:17,18.
Verses 7-9. Here, evidently, the speaker is our Lord Jesus. The words represent the lesson that he will first make plain to the world—that it is by the Father’s divine decree that he takes possession. “I will make known the decree: Jehovah hath said unto me, ‘Thou art my Son; this day have I begotten thee.” The fulfilment of this was when our Lord Jesus, as the man Christ at thirty years, consecrated himself wholly to the will and plan of God, even unto death. There the sacrifice was really made which was “finished” three and a half years after at Calvary: and there, too, he was begotten of the spirit to the divine nature, to which he was fully born three and a half years later, when he was made a quickening spirit, by a resurrection to the perfection of the divine nature—”highly exalted.”—Phil. 2:8-10.
Next comes the enthronement of the Son in his Millennial Kingdom. He at his first advent “bought us with his own precious blood,” and consequently he has only to “ask” for that which he redeemed to get it. He would have asked for it at once, but for another feature of the plan—the selection first, from among the purchased race, of a bride and joint-heir in his kingdom. This selection will be complete at his second advent, and then he will be ready to deal with the world, the nations, and then he will ask and receive from the Father all the power and authority necessary. “Ask of me, and I will give thee the nations for thine inheritance, and the earth to its uttermost parts for thy possession.”
While the object of the kingdom will be to establish peace on earth and good will toward men, it will not be peacefully introduced. The beginning of Messiah’s reign will mean the greatest revolution the world has ever seen. (Dan. 12:1; Matt. 24:21.) Kings and princes will hold on to power and advantage to the last, and as a result all will be dashed in pieces.
Verses 10-12. After telling of the fulness of the authority given to him, and that it must be enforced, even though such a revolution be necessary to introduce it, the great King of Glory shows his willingness to be merciful, and points out that, if the trouble comes thus upon men, it will be because of their neglect to come into harmony with him. But the kings and rulers of earth will not hear nor heed the exhortation, and this is clearly indicated in prophecy. They will not hear the voice of the antitypical Elijah Class—the Church in the flesh (See Millennial Dawn, Vol. II., Chap. viii.)—and hence the earth will be smitten with the great disaster so clearly foretold in Scripture.—Mal. 4:6.
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These verses 8-12 were freely quoted and applied by the popes to their systems during the dark ages of Papacy’s triumph—that was the counterfeit Antichrist’s millennium. See Millennial Dawn, Vol. II., Chap. ix.
“Blessed are all they that put their trust in him [Christ].” These words stand as an offset to the promise of great trouble and overthrow for such as oppose the new and rightful King of earth. It includes the Church primarily—the real, the believing, the consecrated Church. When men’s hearts begin to fail them for fear of those things coming upon the earth—when the powers of the heavens [the nominal churches] shall be shaken, these are instructed to look up and lift up their heads, because their redemption draweth nigh. At the same time that destruction comes to the one class, redemption and glory comes to the other. Compare Isa. 35:4; 63:4.
Yea, beloved, can not all we who see the sign (indication) of the presence of the Son of Man now say, “Happy are all they that put their trust in him.”
— March 15, 1892 —