Kiss the Son

Kiss the Son

a brief study of Psalm 1, adapted from PCC Prayer Meeting Exhortation on 5 May 2006
 

Psalm 2 is all about the only begotten Son of God, the Lord Jesus Christ. Hardly anyone in the history of the Church has any doubts that this is the case.

This psalm can be divided naturally into 4 stanzas.

The 1st stanza is from verses 1-3, and speaks of how the world rages against the Messiah. We may entitle this stanza: "The World’s Raging".

In the 2nd stanza from verses 4-6, we read of God’s response to their raging. We may entitle this stanza, "The Father’s Laugh".

The 3rd stanza is from verses 7-9, where we see the Messiah’s response. We call this "The Son’s Rejoinder".

Finally, in the 4th stanza from verse 10 to the end, we read of a charge to the proud and mighty. This charge is issued by the Lord to the world through the church. So we can call it the "Church’s call".

1. The World’s Raging

1 Why do the heathen rage, and the people imagine a vain thing? 2 The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together, against the LORD, and against his anointed, saying, 3 Let us break their bands asunder, and cast away their cords from us.

Christ is the anointed of the LORD. The Hebrew word for ‘anointed’ is "j'yvim;" from which we get the transliteration Messiah. The word ‘Christ’ comes from the Greek word "cristo~" which means ‘anointed one.’

The heathen, the people of the world and their leaders are raging against God and His Son, the Messiah. How are they raging?

They are raging whenever they speak as if God does not exist or God does not care.

They are raging whenever they call evil good and good evil.

They are raging when immorality and wickedness is paraded as entertainment.

They are raging when man engages in murder and terrorism and unjust wars.

They are raging when employers exploit employees by making them work overtime without compensation.

They are raging when charities cheat the money of their contributors.

They are raging when workers go on strike and refuse to work in order to get better pay.

They are raging when children stomp their feet and demand that their parents do their bidding.

They are raging when governments implement religious laws contrary to the Word of God.

They are raging when the government and the society oppose the work of the Gospel.

Why? Why are they said to be raging? And why are they raging? They are said to be raging because they are doing things that are contrary to the Messiah. They do not care for Him and they do not want His rule.

They want to break away from Him. Like Adam our first father, they thought that freedom and enjoyment is found in living according to their own desires and standards.

So they rage against the Anointed of God. They want to break free from Him. They imagine that to be in Him is bondage. But despite what they say, Christ and His Gospel is as no more bondage to man than wings are to birds.

What will be God’s response? His response will be to laugh.

2. The Father’s Laugh

The world is throwing its tantrum. In a certain way it looks funny. It is like a little caterpillar raving and ranting against a giant. What will the giant do? What will the Creator of the heaven and earth do?

4 He that sitteth in the heavens shall laugh: the Lord shall have them in derision. 5 Then shall he speak unto them in his wrath, and vex them in his sore displeasure. 6 Yet have I set my king upon my holy hill of Zion.

God will laugh!

Were it not for the fact that the world is raging against the thrice holy God, the Creator of the heaven and earth, their raging would indeed be funny to behold.

But the world is raging against their Creator to whom they owe respect and honour. Like a little spoilt brat they are throwing their tantrum thinking that the Father will not do anything.

Therefore God would visit them with His wrath! He will put down their rebellion. He will punish the world for their raging and rebellion. One word from Him, and the world would be forever silent.

But God is merciful and longsuffering. "6 Yet have I set my king upon my holy hill of Zion" He says. Instead of destroying the world, He sets up His Son as the King upon the Holy Hill of Zion. That is: He has appointed Christ as King and Ruler over His church. The holy hill of Zion is the church.

God withholds His wrath, not willing that any of those appointed to salvation should perish. He is calling upon the world to repent and to return to Him.

He is calling them not with the sword or with threatening, but with the Gospel of peace of the Lord Jesus Christ.

Christ is on His holy Hill, ruling His people by His grace; in order that His people as a city set upon a hill may beckon the world to abandon its raging, to come seek a peace that will endure unto all eternity.

What does Christ say?

3. The Son’s Rejoinder

7 I will declare the decree: the LORD hath said unto me, Thou art my Son; this day have I begotten thee.

These are the words of Christ speaking about what the Father said unto Him. "Thou art my Son; this day have I begotten thee" says the Father to the Son. Now, take note that the Father does not say: This day have I begotten thee, therefore thou art my son. He says, "Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee". Christ is the eternally begotten Son of God, but there is a sense in which He was begotten in time. In particular, this verse seems to speak of His being begotten in time.

What does He mean? Thankfully we have an inspired commentary on this verse from the lips of the apostle Paul in Acts 13:30—

"30 But God raised him from the dead: 31 And he was seen many days of them which came up with him from Galilee to Jerusalem, who are his witnesses unto the people. 32 And we declare unto you glad tidings, how that the promise which was made unto the fathers, 33 God hath fulfilled the same unto us their children, in that he hath raised up Jesus again; as it is also written in the second psalm, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee" (Acts 13:30-33)

In other words, when the Father says to the Lord, "Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee," He is speaking metaphorically about His resurrection from the dead.

The resurrection is like a new birth.

Christ Jesus is seated on the throne on the holy hill of Zion because He laid His life down for His church. Indeed, He rose again from the dead and He is seated at the right hand of the throne of God. The writer of Hebrews speak of how Christ having laid down His life to purge our sin, is seated at the right hand of the majesty on high and upholding all things by the word of His power (Heb 1:1-3).

And Christ has the promise of His Father to have whatever He prays for. And that all the world will be brought in subjection to Him:

8 Ask of me, and I shall give thee the heathen for thine inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth for thy possession. 9 Thou shalt break them with a rod of iron; thou shalt dash them in pieces like a potter’s vessel.

Whatever the Son asks the Father, He will give. If He would not ask the Father to withhold His hand of wrath today, the world will perish.

The fact is: Christ is in control. The only reason why the world is still raging is because Christ is interceding on behalf of His elect. Christ laid His life down for us. He is ruling the world for our good and for the glory of God.

Well, beloved brethren, when we look at the world in turmoil and we see the heathen and even professing believers rage against God, it is easy for us to become discouraged. It is easy for us to become disillusioned.

What is the solution to such discouragement? The solution is to think about Christ. It is to remember that He is on the throne, having laid down His life for us. He is in control, and one day every knee will bow and every tongue will confess that Jesus is Lord. In that day, every wrong will be righted, every injustice dealt with and every tear wiped away. Christ is on the throne. He has promised that this will be the case.

What shall we do with this knowledge? Shall we not exhort one another? Shall we not call the world to bow down before the Lord?

4. The Church’s Call

10 Be wise now therefore, O ye kings: be instructed, ye judges of the earth. 11 Serve the LORD with fear, and rejoice with trembling. 12 Kiss the Son, lest he be angry, and ye perish from the way, when his wrath is kindled but a little. Blessed are all they that put their trust in him.

Here is a call to the kings and judges; to the mighty and proud of the world. When we sing the psalms we not only exhort and encourage one another. We are calling upon all who hear us with the Word of God.

The world is foolishly raging against the Lord. We who know better must not remain silent. We must call the world to repentance. One of the ways we must do so is by singing the Word of God.

We must call the world to be wise. We must call the world to serve the Lord. And not just serve the Lord, but serve Him with a filial fear.

And we must call the world to rejoice in the Lord. And not just rejoice, but rejoice with trembling. We must serve the Lord and rejoice in Him for who He is.

We must call the world to kiss the Son; to embrace Him as their King and Saviour.

We must warn the world that though Christ will receive all who come unto Him in contrition, His patience has a limit. There will come a day when His anger will burn against all who remain unrepentant. The day is called in the book of revelation, The Day of the wrath of the Lamb.

Let us therefore warn the world. Let us call for repentance.

But let us encourage all to trust in Christ: "Blessed are all they that put their trust in him."

Conclusion

True happiness is not found in the freedom of the world. The freedom of the world is the freedom of a fish swimming in the toxic water of a polluted river. The fish is dying slowly.

True happiness can only be found in Christ. Let us trust the Lord. Let us call the world to trust in Him. And let us apply the call to ourselves. We must submit to His rule with love mingled with fear. He is our King and Saviour. Amen.

— JJ Lim
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