Psalm 45

Psalm 45: a song of Jesus

Psalm 45
For the director of music. To the tune of "Lilies." 
Of the Sons of Korah. A maskil. A wedding song.
(1) My heart is stirred by a noble theme as I recite my verses for the king; my tongue is the pen of a skillful writer.
(2) You are the most excellent of men and your lips have been anointed with grace, since God has blessed you forever.
(3) Gird your sword on your side, you mighty one; clothe yourself with splendor and majesty.
(4) In your majesty ride forth victoriously in the cause of truth, humility and justice; let your right hand achieve awesome deeds.
(5) Let your sharp arrows pierce the hearts of the king's enemies; let the nations fall beneath your feet.
(6) Your throne, O God, will last forever and ever; a scepter of justice will be the scepter of your kingdom.
(7) You love righteousness and hate wickedness; therefore God, your God, has set you above your companions by anointing you with the oil of joy.
(8) All your robes are fragrant with myrrh and aloes and cassia; from palaces adorned with ivory the music of the strings makes you glad.
(9) Daughters of kings are among your honored women; at your right hand is the royal bride in gold of Ophir.
(10) Listen, daughter, and pay careful attention: Forget your people and your father's house.
(11) Let the king be enthralled by your beauty; honor him, for he is your lord.
(12) The city of Tyre will come with a gift, people of wealth will seek your favor.
(13) All glorious is the princess within her chamber; her gown is interwoven with gold.
(14) In embroidered garments she is led to the king; her virgin companions follow her- those brought to be with her.
(15) Led in with joy and gladness, they enter the palace of the king.
(16) Your sons will take the place of your fathers; you will make them princes throughout the land.
(17) I will perpetuate your memory through all generations; therefore the nations will praise you for ever and ever.

The title of this psalm in the ESV: Your Throne, O God, Is Forever. To the choirmaster: according to the Lilies. A Maskil of the Sons of Korah; a love song.

Upon first reading, the song reads like one of king Solomon’s love songs. While this is very much a long song, it is not a song about a specific man or woman. It is possible the song was written for a specific king’s wedding (some older commentaries suggest Solomon’s wedding to Pharoah’s daughter or maybe even David’s wedding to Saul’s daughter, Michal), but it’s placement in the Psalter cannot be ignored. God wanted this poem listed and remembered amongst His Book of Psalms. Prayers and songs.

In fact, the song is so important that it has a title with five parts. To God, this is a special song. Hopefully, after we read it a few times, we can catch a glimpse of why.

Some here see Solomon and Pharoah’s daughter only- they are short sighted; others see both Solomon and Christ- they are cross-eyed; well focused spiritual eyes see here Jesus only . . .

Chares Spurgeon, English preacher, 1834-1892
Beautiful words stir my heart. I will recite a lovely poem about the king, for my tongue is like the pen of a skillful poet.
Psalm 45:1 NLT

My heart overflows with a pleasing theme; I address my verses to the king; my tongue is like the pen of a ready scribe.
Psalm 45:1 ESV

First of all, the author of this song is claiming, from the very begining of his poem, a special inspiration. His heart overflows with a pleasing theme, beautiful words are stirred within him. This is divine inspiration. These words are words that God put into the author’s heart to write with his hand, and the author knew it.

Secondly this is Messianic Psalm. Although there is a man and a woman discussed, we will come to understand that this is Jesus and His bride, the church.

You are the most handsome of the sons of men; grace is poured upon your lips; therefore God has blessed you forever. Gird your sword on your thigh, O mighty one, in your splendor and majesty! In your majesty ride out victoriously for the cause of truth and meekness and righteousness; let your right hand teach you awesome deeds! Your arrows are sharp in the heart of the king's enemies; the people fall under you.
Psalm 45:2-5 ESV

The words here do not describe a mere man. This is Jesus.

For he grew up before him like a young plant, and like a root out of dry ground; he had no form or majesty that we should look at him, and no beauty that we should desire him. He was despised and rejected by men, a man or sorrows and acquainted with grief; and as one from whom men hide their faces he was despised, and we esteemed him not.
Isaiah 53:2-3

The beauty of Christ’s character extended into His words and the healing touch of His hands, to His grace and His love freely given. He was and is our strength and might, splendor and majesty. His character was that of truth, humility, and righteousness. And wow, did His right hand perform some awesome deeds. His arrows still pierce our hearts. And people fall to their knees before Him.

This is no mere mortal man. It is very clearly Jesus Christ.

Our precious Christ can never be made too much of. Heaven itself is but just good enough for him. All the pomp that angels and archangels, and thrones, and dominions, and principalities, and powers can pour at his feet is too little for him.

Charles Spurgeon, English preacher, 1834-1892
Your throne, O God, is forever and ever. The scepter of your kingdom is a scepter of uprightness; you have loved righteousness and hated wickedness. Therefore God, your God, has anointed you with the oil of gladness beyond your companions.
Psalm 45:6-7 ESV

While some commentators make a case that Psalm 45 is a wedding song for a specific Davidic king in history, one wonders what they might make of these two verses? How can they not see the prophetic Messiah here?

The author of Hebrews makes this even clearer for us . . . God’s word is amazing!

Long ago, at many times and in many ways, God spoke to our fathers by the prophets, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed the heir of all things, through whom also he created the world. He is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature, and he upholds the universe by the word of his power. After making purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high, having become as much superior to angels as the name he has inherited is more excellent than theirs. For to which of the angels did God ever say, "You are my Son, today I have begotten you?" Or again, "I will be to him a father, and he shall be to me a son"?

And again, when he brings the firs born into the world, he says, "Let all God's angels worship him."

Of the angels he says, "He makes his angels wings, and his ministers a flame of fire."

But of the Son he says, "Your throne, O God, is forever and ever, the scepter of uprightness is the scepter of your kingdom. You have loved righteousness and hated wickedness; therefore God, your God, has anointed you with the oil of gladness beyond your companions."
Hebrews 1

Some things in the Bible can be confusing, and sometimes we just won’t know who or what God is referring to until He chooses to reveal it. But then other times, He makes it clear through prophecies or through other later authors.

God is so pleased in His Son, that He anointed Him with the oil of gladness! He has a scepter of righteousness!

Sceptor: an ornamented staff carried by rulers on ceremonial occasions as a symbol of sovereignty. (

Righteousness: the quality of being morally right or justifiable, acting according to divine or moral law. (

Throughout the Bible, God tells us that He will give His Son free reign as conqueror. That some day Jesus will return as the mighty warrior. But Psalm 45 gives a different picture of a Father and a Son. God, the Father, is pleased with His Son, so much so, that He blessed Him with a ruling staff of Truth and Justice and anoints Him with gladness.

Jesus is glad (happy, pleased, cheerful, joyful)!

your robes are fragrant with myrrh and aloes and cassia. From ivory palaces stringed instruments make you glad; daughters of kings are among your ladies of honor; at your right hand stands the queen in gold of Ophir.
Psalm 45:8-9 ESV

These verses, this psalm, show us again that God loves beautiful things. Jesus’s palace will be the most spectacular sight we have ever seen, and He will be the sweetest smelling valiant warrior we could ever imagine.

The King is seen with rapture, he girds himself as a warrior, robs himself as a monarch, mounts his chariots, darts his arrows, and conquers his foes. Then he ascends his throne with his scepter in his hand, fills the palace hall with perfume brought from his secret chambers, his retinue stand around him, and, fairest of all, his bride is at his right hand, with daughters of subject princes as her attendants.

Charles Spurgeon, English preacher, 1834-1892

Who is the King’s queen? This is certainly not one of Solomon’s wives, nor could it be David’s wife, Michal, who makes fun of him for when he worships his God. This is the Messiah we’re talking about; therefore, the beloved bride is His Holy Church.

Then the angel said to me, "Write this: Blessed are those who are invited to the wedding supper of the Lamb!" And he added, "These are the true words of God."
Revelation 19:9

One of the seven angels who had the seven bowls full of the seven last plagues came and said to me, "Come, I will show you the bride, the wife of the Lamb." And he carried me away in the Spirit to a mountain great and high, and showed me the Holy City, Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God.
Revelation 21:9-10

Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing of water through the word, and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless.
Ephesians 5:25-27

Christ sits at the right hand of the Father. The church is at the right hand of Jesus.

Hear, O daughter, and consider, and incline your ear: forget your people and your father's house, and the king will desire your beauty. Since he is your lord, bow to him. The people of Tyre will seek your favor with gifts, the riches of the people.
Psalm 45:10-12 ESV

The queen referred to in this psalm is unknown, there may have been one originally who inspired the writing of these words. But as we study this particular psalm, we must see the deeper meaning is clearly that of the Messiah and His bride. Since we are certain that Jesus never married and the Bible is clear that He was dedicated and faithful and committed to His followers as a husband is (or should be) to his wife, then these verses speak of Christ and the church.

Interestingly, some see the last parts of this verse, the “People of Tyre,” as the inclusion and belonging of the gentile nations/people in the holy church. Remember this is the Old Testament and although we see Jesus written all over these pages, ancient Jews did not. They knew the Messiah was coming, but we see the painting of God’s plan with clearer eyes.

All glorious is the princess in her chamber, with robes interwoven with gold. In many colored robes she is led to the king, with her virgin companions following behind her. With joy and gladness they are led along as they enter the palace of the king.
Psalm 45:13-15 ESV

The bride is glorious within. This is what Jesus has done for us. He has made the Church, His Bride, spectacular (magnificent, marvelous, wonderful, illustrious, renowned, celebrated) from within. The Church is not perfect, but Jesus’s sacrifice has made her so.

This is such a good reminder that God looks at our hearts. What is on the outside is not important, He sees our hearts.

Truth and wisdom in the hidden parts are what the Lord regards; mere skin deep beauty is nothing in His eyes. The Church is of royal extraction, of imperial dignity, for she is a king’s daughter; and she has been purified and renewed in nature; for she is glorious within.

Charles Spurgeon, English preacher, 1834-1892

Although some see a mere royal wedding ceremony, this is the celebration of the Church going home. She will be dressed in the finest ever made, and she will enter heaven with joy and gladness.

Joy becomes a marriage feast. What joy will that be which will be seen at the feasts of paradise when all the redeemed shall be brought home.

Charles Spurgeon, English preacher, 1834-1892
In place of your fathers shall be your sons; you will make them princes in all the earth. I will cause your name to be remembered in all generations; therefore nations will praise you forever and ever.
Psalm 45:16-17 ESV

The legacy of the King will be passed down from generation to generations. All of his sons and daughters will be princes and princesses in His kingdom.

Although we could see a specific king in history or a royal wedding song here, this is also undoubtedly a Messianic Psalm. A song of Jesus and the homecoming of His people in heaven.

Then Jesus said in the Gospel of Luke:

And there will be strange signs in the sun, moon, and stars. And here on earth the nations will be in turmoil, perplexed by the roaring seas and strange tides. People will be terrified at what they see coming upon the earth, for the powers in the heavens will be shaken. Then everyone will see the Son of Man coming on a cloud with power and great glory. So when all these things begin to happen, stand and look up, for your salvation is near!
Luke 21:25-28 NLT

Father in heaven, thank you for this beautiful royal wedding/ Messianic psalm. Thank you for revealing the Truth in your word to us and helping us to understand more each and every time we open it. You truly are a good father. Help these words and your promises to sink into our hearts today and infuse us with strength to stand and look up. We love you. Amen.

Heidi xoxo

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