Psalm 110:1-2 The LORD says to my lord: "Sit at my right hand, till I make your enemies your footstool." The LORD sends forth from Zion your mighty scepter. Rule in the midst of your foes!
There is an old joke that begins, Whoís on first? It should be a very straightforward answer, you either give the players name, or number, that is if there is someone on first. In some ways our text is like that joke, there should be a straightforward answer to the question of whoís who. The problem comes about because the term Lord has more than one meaning. God is Lord, the King is Lord, and those who are the kings deputies are also lords. All this is even more of a problem, because as a Psalm of David, King of Israel, who his Lord is, and his realtionship with that Lord is very much at issue. Jesus infact used this text to ask the question of the scribes how the Christ could be the Son of David, when David called him Lord?
You see, sons generally are not able to be Lord of the father, or grandfather. Sons would have a duty to honor and obey them, which would make the fathers always ruling over the sons. There is a way things are supposed to be. Things are supposed to have simple answers.
But this text is not just Godís Word to David, rather, it is Godís word to us all. And that is why it may appear confusing. Because it may be that when we read this text, we feel that it has absolutely no application to our lives. In fact, it might appear just about as important as the question, whoís on first? [which is not much of a question when baseball season is over.]
But just as Godís word is not for private interpretation, so when God speaks, his promise might have a fulfillment once in history, or it might be fulfilled once, and then again, and perhaps yet again, until it reached its final fulfillment.
Did David need his Lord to crush his enemies? Yes. Did Saul also need this help? Yes. Did Jesus, according to his human nature, need this help? Yes, for we often we see Jesus praying, and turning to his Lord and father for help, that Godís will might be done. Now one might say that Jesus was the final fulfillment of this Word of God. But we would be stopping short. For there is yet one more person who needs the help of their Lord to overcome their enemies, and that person is you and I. Just as God helped David, and Solomon and Jesus, so also God will help us; thatís the promise, the promise that God give us when he calls us by faith to become his dear children.
These are words for us, God invites us to sit at his right hand until our enemies have been conquered. And well we know our enemies, though they go by many names, the world, the flesh and the devil seem to summarize all those who might be against us. And those are no small enemies. Indeed, by ourselves all hope would be lost, for we would soon be overcome. And thatís why this is such a promise, for God invites us to be with him until they are conquered. Until they are conquered, God keeps us safe in his presence where our enemies cannot harm us. What a wonderful promise! As the Scriptures says, if God is for us, who can be against us? Who can lay a charge against Godís elect? And in Christ, by grace through faith that is just what we are.
But there is more. Not only are we invited into the presence of God until the victory is won, God sends forth the mighty scepter to crush conquer and subdue all our enemies. God sends his Son Jesus to win for us the victory over all our enemies. And that of course is all about what Advent is about, waiting for the coming of this promised deliverer.
Sure he came 2000 years ago according to history. But this is not just history, it is also about how he comes to us, to be our savior, and to set us free, from all entanglements, from every snare, from every trouble, from all evil Ė he is the 1 deliverer.
You see there is one more thing, something we often forget. Sure we know that Jesus forgives our sins. And we know that Jesus gives us peace with God. And we know that he gives us eternal life. But sometimes we forget, that when called us to faith, when God called us to follow our Savior Ė God was also calling us to rule with him in Godís everlasting kingdom. Donít you remember how the scriptures indicate that we will be the ones who will judge the angels?
And that is why the text is so hard. We may remember that we are like David, as we sin. We may remember that we are like David in that we need a Savior. But sometimes it completely slips our minds, that as the children of God, we will also rule with Christ in His everlasting Kingdom.