Introduction: Psalm 45 is a royal psalm that describes the joy from the marriage of an unidentified king to his bride. This Psalm foreshadowed future marriage in heaven between Jesus, the King of Kings, and His bride, the Church. Here, Jesus reveals that He offers His Church: (1) love, (2) grace, (3) justice, (4) redemption, (5) fellowship, (6) honor, and (7) joy.
First, the psalmist professed his love for the king. Jesus, the King of Kings, loves the Church, and He desires your love in return. Second, the psalmist declared that the king is filled with grace. Out of love, Jesus also offers His abundant grace as a blessing for His Church. Third, the psalmist proclaimed that the king will rule with fairness and justice. Jesus will forever be a just and fair ruler over His Church. Fourth, the psalmist declared that the king’s bride will be transformed at his side with beautiful gold. At great cost, Jesus has also redeemed and transformed His bride, the Church. Fifth, the psalmist declared that the king craves his bride. Out of love, Jesus also desires the fellowship with His bride, the Church. Sixth, the psalmist stated that the king’s bride would receive great honor. Jesus will bring honor to His Church in heaven. Finally, the psalmist declared that great joy would exist following the king’s marriage to his bride. Through His marriage, Jesus will also bring His Church eternal joy in heaven.
1. Love: Jesus Loves The Church, and He Desires Your Love in Return. Ps. 45:1.
The palmist professed his love for the king. The psalmist began his Psalm as a love letter for the king: “For the music director; according to the Shoshannim. A Maskil of the sons of Korah. A Song of Love. 1 My heart is moved with a good theme; I address my verses to the King; My tongue is the pen of a ready writer.” (Ps. 45:1). Although this was a Psalm for a king and his wife, it foreshadowed the love that Jesus, the King of Kings, and His bride would have for each other: “For this reason a man shall leave his father and his mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh. This mystery is great; but I am speaking with reference to Christ and the church.” (Eph. 5:31-32).
Jesus is the Messiah and heir to God’s Covenant with David. The psalmist praised an unidentified “King” in connection with a royal wedding (Ps. 45:1). Most Jews assumed that this referenced a wedding for either David or Solomon. But, in the very next verse, the psalmist stated: “God has blessed You forever.” (Ps. 45:2). This would not apply to any human king. God previously promised David an eternal dynasty: “Your house and your kingdom shall endure before Me forever; your throne shall be established forever.”’ (2 Sam. 7:16). After the Jews went into exile, they no longer had a king who believed in Yahweh. But Daniel repeated this promise in reference to the Jews’ future Messiah and King: “But the saints of the Highest One will receive the kingdom and take possession of the kingdom forever, for all ages to come.’” (Dan. 7:18). Jesus was born into the line of David (Matt. 1:1). He came to fulfill God’s covenant with David as the eternal King of Kings: “He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High; and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David; and He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of His kingdom there will be no end.” (Lk. 1:33; Rev. 19:16). If you have faith, you can also give thanks that you will one day live under His loving reign.
David praised God for His love for mankind. Because of mankind’s sinful nature, David previously professed astonishment that God would have any interest in mankind: “4 What is man that You think of him, and a son of man that You are concerned about him?” (Ps. 8:4). “LORD, what is man, that You look after him? Or a son of man, that You think of him?” (Ps. 144:3). During his time of unexplainable suffering, Job also questioned whether God does in fact love mankind: “What is man that You exalt him, and that You are concerned about him,” (Job 7:17). The author of the book of Hebrews later asked the same question to draw the opposite conclusion - - God does love mankind more than we can understand: “But someone has testified somewhere, saying, ‘What is man, that you think of him? Or a son of man, that you are concerned about Him?”’ (Heb. 2:6). The fact that He would send His only begotten son to die for us is proof of His love (Jo. 3:16). God’s unfathomable love for mankind was the answer to David’s question. Out of love, the King has come to die on the cross to redeem His bride - - any believer in Jesus.
Jesus wants your love the way a groom loves his bride. The psalms also describe the love relationship that a person should have for God: “For the music director. A Maskil of the sons of Korah. As the deer pants for the water brooks, so my soul pants for You, God.” (Ps. 42:1). “A Psalm of David, when he was in the wilderness of Judah. God, You are my God; I shall be watching for You; my soul thirsts for You, my flesh yearns for You, In a dry and exhausted land where there is no water.” (Ps. 63:1). “My soul longed and even yearned for the courtyards of the LORD; my heart and my flesh sing for joy to the living God.” (Ps. 84:2). Your heart should also love and long for a relationship with Jesus.
2. Grace: Out of Love, Jesus Offers Abundant Grace For His Church. Ps. 45:2.
The palmist celebrated the king’s favor and grace. The psalmist declared the king to be both handsome and filled with words of grace: “2 You are the most handsome of the sons of mankind; grace is poured upon Your lips; therefore God has blessed You forever.” (Ps. 45:2). In his initial form, the Messiah would be despised, with nothing special in His appearance: “. . . He has no stately form or majesty that we would look at Him, nor an appearance that we would take pleasure in Him.” (Is. 53:3). But in His divine form, the Messiah would become: “the most handsome of the sons of mankind.” (Ps. 45:2).
Jesus’ Word was filled with grace. The psalmist stated that Messiah had “grace is poured upon Your lips;” (Ps. 45:2). “The Lord GOD has given Me the tongue of disciples, so that I may know how to sustain the weary one with a word. He awakens Me morning by morning, He awakens My ear to listen as a disciple.” (Is. 50:4). Jesus fulfilled this prophesy with His gracious words: “Now He began to say to them, ‘Today this Scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing.’ And all the people were speaking well of Him, and admiring the gracious words which were coming from His lips; and yet they were saying, ‘Is this not Joseph’s son?’” (Lk. 4:21-22). Jesus’ Word is filled with the promise of His grace for all who believe in Him as Lord and Savior.
Out of grace, Jesus offers to fully share His eternal blessings with His bride. In reference to the eternal King, the psalmist stated that Yahweh had “blessed You forever.” (Ps. 45:2). Out of grace, our King of Kings wants to share His blessings. Believers are “fellow heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him so that we may also be glorified with Him.” (Ro. 8:17). Through Jesus, you can “obtain an inheritance which is imperishable, undefiled, and will not fade away, reserved in heaven for you,” (1 Pet. 1:4). “And [Jesus] said to him, ‘Truly I say to you, today you will be with Me in Paradise.”’ (Lk. 23:43). Paul “was caught up into Paradise and heard inexpressible words, which a man is not permitted to speak.” (2 Cor. 12:4). “To the one who overcomes, I will grant to eat from the tree of life, which is in the Paradise of God.’” (Rev. 2:7b). “The one who overcomes will inherit these things, and I will be his God and he will be My son.” (Rev. 21:7). The Holy Spirit provides a down payment on your inheritance when you accept Jesus (Eph. 1:14). Are you sharing Jesus’ good news?
Out of grace, Jesus offers eternal salvation where you can dwell with Him. Jesus gave His life so that all who have faith in Him might live with Him forever in heaven as His beloved bride: “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” (Ro. 5:8). “I am the good shepherd; the good shepherd lays down His life for the sheep.” (Jo. 10:11). “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.” (Jo. 3:16). His blood is the symbol and proof of His covenant. “And He said to them, ‘This is My blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many.’” (Mk. 14:24; Lk. 22:20; 1 Cor. 11:25; Jer. 31:31). What Jesus offers is also free (Ro. 6:26). His gracious offer only requires your faith that He died on the cross for your sins.
Out of grace, Jesus will also reward your faith on Earth and in heaven. In addition to the reward of eternal life, Jesus also promises to bless you in many other ways. He promises to bless you with the Holy Spirit as a down payment on your salvation (Eph. 1:14; 2 Cor. 1:22). And, in addition to blessings on Earth through the Spirit, He promises five kinds of crowns in heaven. First, those who persevere in the face of trials will receive a crown of life: “Blessed is a man who perseveres under trial; for once he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him.” (Ja. 1:12; ; Rev. 2:10). Second, those who live a pure life while waiting for His return will receive a crown of righteousness: “in the future there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day; and not only to me, but also to all who have loved His appearing.” (2 Tim. 4:8). Third, those who exercise self-control will receive an “incorruptible crown” (1 Cor. 9:25-27). Fourth, elders, pastors, teachers, leaders, and shepherds of God’s flock will also receive “a crown of glory” (1 Pet. 5:4). Finally, those who help lead others to Christ will receive a “crown of rejoicing” (1 Thess. 2:19). Jesus also promised various conditional blessings in the beatitudes (Matt. 5:1-12). He also promised “rewards” for those who store up their treasures in heaven (Matt. 6:20). These are among the examples of blessings that are unrelated to your salvation. Other kinds of rewards on Earth include a prolonged life (Dt. 5:32-33). Have you given thanks for your undeserved rewards?
Praise Jesus for His indescribable, gracious gifts. Paul urged believers to thank Jesus for His indescribable gift: “Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift!” (2 Cor. 9:15). Are you giving thanks for the many indescribable gifts in your life?
Jesus’ grace includes compassion for His bride. Because Jesus loves His bride, He is filled with compassion when she suffers: “Therefore the LORD longs to be gracious to you, and therefore He waits on high to have compassion on you. For the LORD is a God of justice; how blessed are all those who long for Him.” (Is. 30:18). “Thus says the LORD, ‘ . . . I am the LORD who exercises lovingkindness, justice and righteousness on earth; for I delight in these things,’ declares the LORD.” (Jer. 9:23-24). Thus, whenever you are suffering, you can turn to the King of Kings to give you comfort.
3. Justice: Jesus Will Be a Just and Fair Ruler Over His Church. Ps. 45:3-6.
The palmist praised the king for his justice. The psalmist declared that the king would rule with justice: “3 Strap Your sword on Your thigh, Mighty One, in Your splendor and majesty! 4 And in Your majesty ride on victoriously, for the cause of truth, humility, and righteousness; let Your right hand teach You awesome things. 5 Your arrows are sharp; the peoples fall under You; Your arrows are in the heart of the King’s enemies.” 6 Your throne, God, is forever and ever; the scepter of Your kingdom is a scepter of justice.” (Ps. 45:3-6). The king would first “ride on victoriously, for the cause of truth, humility,” (Ps. 45:4). Jesus fulfilled this by appearing as a lowly servant and then dying on the cross: “Although He was a Son, He learned obedience from the things which He suffered.” (Heb. 5:8). But He will return as a mighty warrior with His second coming.
Jesus is the King of Kings, and He will reign forever. Jesus is the King of Kings (1 Tim. 6:15; Rev. 1:5; 17:14; 19:16). He sits on an eternal throne (Rev. 3:21). “But as for Me, I have installed My King Upon Zion, My holy mountain.” (Ps. 2:6). He will reign forever: “But the LORD sits as King forever; He has established His throne for judgment,” (Ps. 9:7). “The LORD is King forever and ever; nations have perished from His land.” (Ps. 10:16). “Your throne is established from of old; You are from eternity.” (Ps. 93:2). “But You, LORD, remain forever, and Your name remains to all generations.” (Ps. 102:12). “Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and Your dominion endures throughout all generations. The LORD is faithful in His words, and holy in all His works.” (Ps. 145:13). “The LORD shall reign forever and ever.” (Ex. 15:18). “You, LORD, rule forever; Your throne is from generation to generation.” (Lam. 5:19). “I issue a decree that in all the realm of my kingdom people are to tremble and fear before the God of Daniel; for He is the living God and enduring forever, and His kingdom is one which will not be destroyed, and His dominion will be forever.” (Dan 6:26).
Jesus rules as King with a scepter of justice. The author of Hebrews quotes from Psalm 45:5-7 to reveal that Jesus rules with a scepter of divine justice: “But regarding the Son He says, ‘Your throne, God, is forever and ever, and the scepter of righteousness is the scepter of His Kingdom.’ You have loved righteousness and hated lawlessness; therefore God, Your God, has anointed you with the oil of joy above your companions.” (Heb. 1:8-9). “The LORD will stretch out Your strong scepter from Zion, saying, “Rule in the midst of Your enemies.’” (Ps. 110:2). “For the LORD is righteous; He loves justice. The upright will see His face.” (Ps. 11:7). “He loves righteousness and justice; the earth is full of the goodness of the LORD.” (Ps. 33:5). “The strength of the King loves justice; You have established order; You have executed justice and righteousness in Jacob.” (Ps. 99:4). As a just King, He will fairly judge all sin. But He offers unearned grace as a free gift to any who approach Him in faith: “For the wages of sin is death, but the gracious gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Rom. 6:23).
Jesus’ Word is His mighty sword. The psalmist stated that Messiah would “Strap Your sword on Your thigh,” (Ps. 45:3). This likely describes His triumphant second coming where He will judge the nations and defeat evil (Rev. 19:11-16). He also was and is our promised armor of God: “Put on the full armor of God, so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil. . . And take the . . . the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.” (Eph. 6:11, 17). His sword is His Word: “For the word of God is living and active, and sharper than any two-edged sword, even penetrating as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart.” (Heb. 4:12). And He wields His sword merely by speaking: “He has made My mouth like a sharp sword, in the shadow of His hand He has concealed Me; and He has also made Me a sharpened arrow, He has hidden Me in His quiver.” (Is. 42:2). “In His right hand He held seven stars, and out of His mouth came a sharp two-edged sword; and His face was like the sun shining in its strength.” (Rev. 1:16).
Jesus’ Word will crush His enemies who reject His grace. The psalmist stated that Messiah’s “arrows are in the heart of the King’s enemies.” (Ps. 45:5). Balaam previously prophesized: “God brings him out of Egypt, He is for him like the horns of the wild ox. He will devour the nations who are his adversaries, and will crush their bones, and smash them with his arrows.” (Nu. 24:8). Through Moses, God also prophesied: “I will add misfortunes to them; I will use up My arrows on them.” (Dt. 32:23). This again speaks to the enemies of Jesus who will one day be crushed after they reject Him.
Jesus’ justice includes mercy. We can also give thanks that Jesus’ perfect justice includes mercy: “The LORD has taken away His judgments against you, He has cleared away your enemies. The King of Israel, the LORD, is in your midst; You will no longer fear disaster.” (Zeph. 3:15). His mercy is available through faith in Him (Jo. 3:16).
4. Redemption: Jesus Will Redeem and Transform His Church. Ps. 45:7-9.
The palmist revealed the beautiful transformed bride. The psalmist described the king as a blessed man who would transform his bride with gold: “7 You have loved righteousness and hated wickedness; therefore God, Your God, has anointed You with the oil of joy above Your companions. 8 All Your garments are fragrant with myrrh, aloes, and cassia; from ivory palaces stringed instruments have made You joyful. 9 Kings’ daughters are among Your noble women; at Your right hand stands the queen in gold from Ophir.” (Ps. 45:7-9). In what must be understood to be an Old Testament reference to the Triune God, God “anointed” “with the oil” of the Spirit over the Messiah (Ps. 45:7.) Jesus fulfilled this prophecy: ‘“The Spirit of the LORD is upon Me, because He anointed Me to bring good news to the poor . . .” (Lk. 4:18). The queen at the king’s right hand represents His bride the Church: “and He will put the sheep on His right, . . .” (Matt. 25:33).
Jesus desires to redeem and marry His Church in heaven. Here, the psalmist describes the King of Kings in His majesty with His wife redeemed with gold at His right side. Throughout the Bible, there is a running motif of God attempting to be joined spiritually with His people in the manner a bride and a groom marry at a wedding. After receiving the Ten Commandments, Moses had the 70 elders and the people make a public vow to accept it: ‘“All the words which the Lord has spoken we will do!”’ (Ex. 24:3). When the people spoke “we do,” they were agreeing to enter into a wedding contract (consisting of the Ten Commandments) with God. In Jewish culture, a couple enters into the wedding contract before they dwell together. God tells us that He was betrothed to Israel (Jer. 2:2). He was faithful to His bride (Ps. 18:25). But a wedding contract must be signed by a friend of the bride and a friend of the groom. Moses was a friend of the bride, Israel. But God did not allow him to sign the contract. Instead, Moses later broke the Ten Commandments (Ex. 32:19). The sin that caused the people to break the wedding contract was spiritual adultery and idolatry. Rather than accepting their bridegroom and waiting on Him, they made for themselves a new bridegroom out of a golden calf (Ex. 32:24). Adultery is a sin that justifies divorce (Matt. 5:32). But God still implored the unfaithful Jews to return to their husband: ‘“Return faithless people,’ declares the Lord, ‘for I am your husband.’” (Jer. 3:14). Jesus will one day complete His marriage with His Church (Rev. 19:7-14). The bridegroom and the bride will then be able to dwell together (Rev. 20:4). This psalm praises the redemption of Jesus’ bride.
Jesus redeemed His bride at a great price. The King redeemed His queen with “gold from Ophir.” (Ps. 45:9). This phrase symbolized that the King paid a heavy price to redeem His bride: “I will make mortal man scarcer than pure gold and mankind than the gold of Ophir.” (Is. 13:12). “And they went to Ophir and received 420 talents of gold from there, and brought it to King Solomon.” (1 Kgs. 9:28). God has always longed to redeem His bride. Even before the written Word existed, Job professed faith in his Redeemer in heaven: “Yet as for me, I know that my Redeemer lives, and at the last, He will take His stand on the earth.” (Job 19:25). David later praised God, “my Redeemer”. (Ps. 19:14). Isaiah also called God his Redeemer: “This is what the LORD says, He who is your Redeemer,. . .,” (Is. 44:24). Jeremiah also praised his Redeemer: “Their Redeemer is strong, the LORD of armies is His name; . . .” (Jer. 50:34). Jesus came to fulfill this promise and redeem His Church: “Christ redeemed us from the curse of the Law, . . .” (Gal. 3:13). “I have wiped out your wrongdoings like a thick cloud and your sins like a heavy mist. Return to Me, for I have redeemed you.” (Is. 44:22). Jesus paid a heavy price at the cross to redeem you. How are you thanking Him?
Out of love, Jesus will also transform His bride. Like the queen here who was transformed into an image of great beauty, Jesus offers every believer a new beginning: “Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come.” (2 Cor. 5:17). “Do not be amazed that I said to you, ‘You must be born again.”’ (Jo. 3:7). As a new creation, Jesus provides every believer the opportunity to live a transformed life: “Moreover, I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; and I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh.” (Ezek. 36:26; Jer. 24:7). As a new creation, you are called upon to walk a transformed life: “And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.” (Ro. 12:2). “and have put on the new self who is being renewed to a true knowledge according to the image of the One who created him--” (Col. 3:10). “Therefore we have been buried with Him through baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life.” (Ro. 6:4). Are you living a transformed life as a new creation?
Jesus will also transform His bride in heaven. Jesus will also transform believers with a glorious new body in heaven: “For we know that if our earthly tent which is our house is torn down, we have a building from God, a house not made by hands, eternal in the heavens.” (2 Cor. 5:1). Are you thanking Jesus for the many blessings that await you?
5. Fellowship: Out of Love, Jesus Seeks Fellowship With His Church. Ps. 45:10-11.
The palmist promised that the king will crave the beauty of his bride. The psalmist urged the bride to purify herself from her past worldly traditions so that the king would crave her beauty: “10 Listen, daughter, look and incline your ear: forget your people and your father’s house; 11 then the King will crave your beauty. Because He is your Lord, bow down to Him.” (Ps. 45:10-11). This is similar to the love that king would have for his bride in the Song of Solomon: “Draw me after you and let’s run together! The king has brought me into his chambers. We will rejoice in you and be joyful; we will praise your love more than wine. Rightly do they love you.” (Song of Solomon 1:4).
Jesus wants His bride to remain pure for Him. The psalmist told the bride to “forget your people and your father’s house;” (Ps. 45:10). This meant that the king’s bride must reject the worldly ways that she came from. “But Jesus said to him, ‘No one, after putting his hand to the plow and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God.”’ (Lk. 9:62). Because Jesus paid a heavy price for His Church, He expects His bride to stay pure for Him: “For you have been bought for a price: therefore glorify God in your body.” (1 Cor. 6:20). “Therefore I urge you, brothers and sisters, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship.” (Ro. 12:1). The beauty that Jesus seeks is the inward beauty of a transformed life: “Your adornment must not be merely the external—braiding the hair, wearing gold jewelry, or putting on apparel; but it should be the hidden person of the heart, with the imperishable quality of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is precious in the sight of God.” (1 Pet. 3:3-4). Out of gratitude for the terrible price that Jesus paid on the cross, are you staying pure for Him?
Because He loves us, Jesus craves the fellowship of His bride. In reference to His redeemed bride, the psalmist said that the “King will crave your beauty.” (Ps. 45:11). Jesus longs to be in fellowship with His bride, the Church: “I am my beloved’s, and his desire is for me.” (Song of Solomon 7:10). “I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me.” (Gal. 2:20). Are responding to Jesus’ desire for fellowship by seeking to draw closer to Him?
Submit to your King and future groom in heaven. This is no ordinary man. Thus, the psalmist proclaimed: “Because He is your Lord, bow down to Him.” (Ps. 45:11). One day, every person will bow before the King of Kings: “All the prosperous of the earth will eat and worship, all those who go down to the dust will kneel before Him, even he who cannot keep his soul alive.” (Ps. 22:29). “And may all kings bow down before him, all nations serve him.” (Ps. 72:11). “[S]o that at the name of Jesus every knee will bow, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth,” (Phil. 2:10; Ro. 14:11). “And every created thing which is in heaven and on the earth and under the earth and on the sea, and all things in them, I heard saying, ‘To Him who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb, be blessing and honor and glory and dominion forever and ever.’” (Rev. 5:13). Are you submitting to Jesus as your King and letting Him guide your decisions?
6. Honor: Out of Love, Jesus Will Bring Honor to His Church in Heaven. Ps. 45:12-14.
The palmist declared the king would bring great honor to his bride. The psalmist promised that the king’s bride would receive honor: “12 The daughter of Tyre will come with a gift; the wealthy among the people will seek your favor. 13 The King’s daughter is all glorious within; her clothing is interwoven with gold. 14 She will be brought to the King in colorful garments; the virgins, her companions who follow her, will be brought to You.” (Ps. 45:12-14). The reference to the daughters of Tyre referenced guests who came from as far away as modern Lebanon to honor the queen.
Jesus’ bride will receive great honored. As Jesus’ bride, you will also be honored: “Being joined to the anointed King in marriage means many benefits for this royal daughter. She receives gifts from the nations, and is set in such a high place that even the rich seek her favor. Normally others seek the favor of the rich; the anointed King has set her in an even higher place . . . Because she is joined to the anointed King in a relationship of committed love, great benefits come to the royal daughter. She is all glorious, and not because of herself but because of her connection with the King. We can’t help but read this with application to how Jesus sees His bride, and how she is in objective truth: all glorious. We see the Church and notice many flaws; Jesus looks at His blood-bought people and says, ‘all glorious.”’ (David Guzik on Ps. 45).2
Humble yourself before the King of Kings, and He will honor you. In order to receive honor through Jesus, you must first humble yourself before Him: “Whoever exalts himself shall be humbled; and whoever humbles himself shall be exalted.” (Matt. 23:12; Lk. 14:11; 18:14). “He has brought down rulers from their thrones, and has exalted those who were humble.” (Lk. 1:52). “A man’s pride will bring him low, but a humble spirit will obtain honor.” (Prov. 29:23). “‘God is opposed to the proud, but gives grace to the humble.”’ (Jam. 4:6(b)). “Humble yourselves in the presence of the Lord, and He will exalt you.” (Ja. 4:10). “Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you at the proper time,” (1 Pet. 5:6). Are you staying humble so that Jesus can later exalt you in heaven?
7. Joy: Through His Marriage, Jesus Will Bring His Church Eternal Joy. Ps. 45:15-17.
The palmist revealed that the royal wedding would bring great joy. Finally, the psalmist declared the joy of the royal wedding that future descendants would celebrate forever: “15 They will be brought with joy and rejoicing; they will enter into the King’s palace. 16 In place of your fathers will be your sons; You shall make them princes in all the earth. 17 I will make Your name known among all generations; therefore the peoples will praise You forever and ever.” (Ps. 45:15-17). This celebration foreshadowed Jesus’ redemption of His Church and their joyful marriage for all eternity: “Psalm 45 anticipates a king whose coming will resolve the emotional and spiritual pain of individual Israelites and the nation’s faithful remnant (Ps. 42-44), who will fulfill the blessings of Abraham by conquering the seed of the serpent and overcoming all who curse God and His people, thereby blessing all the families of the earth and rolling back the words of judgment God spoke in response to sin (Gen. 3:14-19; 5:29; 12:1-3). This King will be the seed promised David (2 Sam. 7:13-14). His reign will be as glorious as His gentile bride will be beautiful. He will conquer the world and fill it with the aroma of His glorious humility and joy of His reign.” (James M. Hamilton Jr., Evangelical Bible Theology Commentary Psalms (Vol. I: Psalms 1-72) (Lexham Academic 2021) p. 472).
Jesus offers you joy through the Spirit. As a down payment on the future marriage, Jesus offers you an abundant life when you seek His fellowship: “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.” (Jo. 10:10). The abundant life that He offers includes the peace and joy that only the Holy Spirit can provide: “the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.” (Ro. 14:17). “[I]n Your presence is fullness of joy;” (Ps. 16:11; 21:6). Joy is also a fruit of the Spirit (Gal. 5:22; Ro. 14:17; 15:13). Living your faith and walking with Jesus also involves sharing the joy of the Spirit: “ . . . I rejoice and share my joy with you.” (Phil. 2:17(b)). “Make my joy complete by being of the same mind, maintaining the same love, united in spirit, intent on one purpose.” (Phil. 2:2). When you suffer pain, do you seek out the joy that His offers through the Spirit?
Jesus also offers you eternal joy in heaven. The joy that the Holy Spirit offers you on Earth is also a down-payment of the joy that awaits you in heaven: “And the redeemed of the LORD will return and come to Zion with joyful shouting, and everlasting joy will be on their heads. They will obtain gladness and joy, and sorrow and sighing will flee away.” (Is. 35:10). “Your sun will no longer set, nor will your moon wane; for you will have the LORD as an everlasting light, and the days of your mourning will be over.” (Is. 60:2). “So that I may tell of all Your praises, that in the gates of the daughter of Zion I may rejoice in Your salvation.” (Ps. 9:14). “But I have trusted in Your faithfulness; my heart shall rejoice in Your salvation.” (Ps. 13:5). “For You make him most blessed forever; You make him joyful with the joy of Your presence.” (Ps. 21:6). “So my soul shall rejoice in the LORD; it shall rejoice in His salvation.” (Ps. 35:9). Paul described the joy of heaven as something beyond what humans have seen or experienced (1 Cor. 2:9). In heaven, you can also look forward to an eternity of rejoicing: “Then I looked, and I heard the voices of many angels around the throne and the living creatures and the elders; and the number of them was myriads of myriads, and thousands of thousands,” (Rev. 5:11). Are you sharing the good news with the broken-hearted?
Praise Jesus for making your eternal joy with Him possible. As our example, David wrote many psalms to praise God: “I will rejoice and be jubilant in You; I will sing praise to Your name, O Most High.” (Ps. 9:2). “But rejoice, all who take refuge in You, sing for joy forever! And may You shelter them, that those who love Your name may rejoice in You.” (Ps. 5:11). “My lips will shout for joy when I sing praises to You; and my soul, which You have redeemed.” (Ps. 71:23). “I rejoice at Your word, like one who finds great plunder.” (Ps. 119:162). “But rejoice, all who take refuge in You, sing for joy forever! . . .” (Ps. 5:11). “All the kings of the earth will give thanks to You, LORD, when they have heard the words of Your mouth.” (Ps. 138:4). The next time you worship, stop and think about all that Jesus has done for you and the joy that awaits you.