May 15, 2015

Tom Lowe




Title: A Song of Loves


Theme: The coming of Christ to establish His kingdom on this earth.




Psalm 45 (KJV)


1 My heart is inditing a good matter: I speak of the things which I have made touching the king: my tongue is the pen of a ready writer.

2 Thou art fairer than the children of men: grace is poured into thy lips: therefore God hath blessed thee for ever.

3 Gird thy sword upon thy thigh, O most mighty, with thy glory and thy majesty.

4 And in thy majesty ride prosperously because of truth and meekness and righteousness; and thy right hand shall teach thee terrible things.

5 Thine arrows are sharp in the heart of the king's enemies; whereby the people fall under thee.

6 Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: the sceptre of thy kingdom is a right sceptre.

Thou lovest righteousness, and hatest wickedness: therefore God, thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows.

8 All thy garments smell of myrrh, and aloes, and cassia, out of the ivory palaces, whereby they have made thee glad.

9 Kings' daughters were among thy honourable women: upon thy right hand did stand the queen in gold of Ophir.

10 Hearken, O daughter, and consider, and incline thine ear; forget also thine own people, and thy father's house;

11 So shall the king greatly desire thy beauty: for he is thy Lord; and worship thou him.

12 And the daughter of Tyre shall be there with a gift; even the rich among the people shall intreat thy favour.

13 The king's daughter is all glorious within: her clothing is of wrought gold.

14 She shall be brought unto the king in raiment of needlework: the virgins her companions that follow her shall be brought unto thee.

15 With gladness and rejoicing shall they be brought: they shall enter into the king's palace.

16 Instead of thy fathers shall be thy children, whom thou mayest make princes in all the earth.

17 I will make thy name to be remembered in all generations: therefore shall the people praise thee for ever and ever.






This is a messianic psalm and that is how it is quoted in the Epistle to the Hebrews (1:8-9[1]).  This is another maschil[2] psalm, that is, for instruction, written by the sons of Korah, and is inscribed “To the chief Musician upon Shoshannim” (Shoshannim identifies the tune to which it was to be sung),” which means “lilies” (the name of the tune). It is a picture of Christ as the Messiah—He is the Lily of the Valley as well as the Rose of Sharon.  In translating this, the Targumim[3] adds, “Thy beauty, O King Messiah, is greater than that of the children of men.”


We do not know who wrote Psalm 45 nor exactly why it was written.  Several men have been suggested for the writer: Solomon, David, Hezekiah, Isaiah, Ahab and some unknown poet laureate of Judah.  It may have been written to commemorate Solomon’s marriage.  Another king, Hezekiah, also may have been the author, and for the same reason.  It is believed that he married the daughter of his best friend, Isaiah.  So the marriage psalm was written by one of these men.  It pictures a royal wedding.  We read of at least two such in the Old Testament, one at 1 Samuel 18:27 and another at 1 Kings 16:31.  This poem is therefore a love song, as every wedding hymn should be.  The Holy Spirit placed it in our Bibles as a memorial to Israel’s brief but brilliant golden age, the harbinger of a better golden age to come.  There are some who call this simply a love song, but it is much, much, more than that.  If this were merely a secular love song, why would it be given to the chief musician to be used in the worship of the Lord at His sanctuary?  That would be blasphemy.  This psalm shows us how to love Him who first loved us.


The union between Christ and his people is often described in imagery similar to that found in this psalm (2 Corinthians 11:2; Ephesians 5:23).  Let us pray for the time when the universe shall ring with this marriage-song; when the hour of the marriage of the Lamb shall have come, and heathen nations partake of the joy—“Let us rejoice and be glad and give him glory! For the wedding of the Lamb has come, and his bride has made herself ready” (Revelation 19:7).  Whatever may have been the historical use of this psalm, the ultimate message is about Jesus Christ and His bride, the Church (Ephesians 5:23[4]; Revelation 19:6-21; 22:17).


This very wonderful psalm speaks of the second coming of Christ.  This changes the tenor of the Psalms from the cry of a people in the anguish of tribulation to the glorious triumph of their coming King, as it is described in Revelation, chapter 19.  Our Lord Jesus Christ spoke of it also (Matthew 24:29-30[5]), and it is the hope of the world.






The psalm is a picture of the royal splendor of the King of kings, now seated in glory on His Father’s throne.  What a magnificent King He is!  If we could indeed:


Join all the glorious names

Of wisdom, love, and power,

And that mortals ever knew

That angels ever bore . . .


we should have to confess that no name, no noun, no adjective in any of earth’s sixty-five hundred languages and dialects can do adequate justice to Him.  The psalmist himself seems to sense this.



1 My heart is inditing a good matter: I speak of the things which I have made touching the king: my tongue is the pen of a ready writer.


The psalmist immediately strikes the dominant note of the psalm—wonder that such a King would reach out loving arms to the likes of us.  The psalmist’s amazement gushes out like water from an inner spring.


“My heart is inditing” means “my heart is bursting forth with” or “my heart is overflowing with.” But there is something he must say and wishes he could tell it, because his tongue moves faster than his pen.  That is true of many of us.  Have you ever found your heart so full that you cannot get the words out fast enough?  Have you ever been excited about something and have tried to put it in a letter to a friend or one of your children, and when you read it over you see how inadequate it is and wish you could tell it instead of write it?  That’s how I feel sometimes, when I try to express to my children, who live hundreds of miles away, how much I miss them and love them. 


He is letting them know that what he is about to utter is not vain, or rash, or foolish, or false words, but such as proceeded from his very heart; His most serious thoughts and pleasant affections.


“I speak of the things which I have made touching the king” is correctly understood as, “I address my verses to the king” (RSV).  The expression “which I have made” should be understood as “which I by Divine inspiration have composed.”


“Touching the king,” as used here, means “to the king.” The King described in this psalm is both God (v. 6) and man (v. 2), and that can only be Jesus.


My tongue is the pen of a ready writer” indicates “a skillful scribe,” fluent and accurate.  He intimates that he was only the pen or instrument in uttering this song, and that it had another and a higher creator, namely, the Spirit of God by whose hand this pen was guided and managed.



2 Thou art fairer than the children of men: grace is poured into thy lips: therefore God hath blessed thee for ever.


This is a lovely psalm which is occupied with the Person of Christ.  Paul mentioned that: “But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord” (2 Corinthians 3:18).  My friend, we need to behold Him more. In this psalm we are seeing Him, not as a Savior, but as a King.  He is the first among ten thousand, the altogether lovely One.


“Thou art fairer” describes the bridegroom or king and refers to the inward and glorious qualities of His mind or soul, such as wisdom and righteousness and meekness, which are the particulars which this beauty declares. His Majesty’s grace expressed itself in every aspect of His character, His conduct, and His conversation.  The grace which was poured into his life was poured out of His lips.



“Than the children of men”; or rather, “than all other men”; which is more rightly true of Christ, but not of Solomon; whom many have excelled, if not in wisdom, yet in holiness and righteousness, which is the best part of this beauty, and the most celebrated in this song.


There is a possibility that this great psalm was written by the Prophet Isaiah.  Our thoughts go back to Isaiah’s great prophesy of the coming and crucifixion of Christ (Isaiah 53): “And when we shall see the Him, there is no beauty in Him that we should desire Him.” No beauty!  Indeed, what beauty does the average unsaved man see in Jesus?  None!  When Jesus came to earth He laid aside the glory He had with the Father before the worlds began.  When He stepped out of eternity into time he was robed in human flesh.  Jesus endured the cross “for the joy that was set before him” (Hebrews 12:2), which was the joy of presenting His bride to the Father in glory (Judges 24; John 17:24). 


“Grace is poured into his lips”—that is emphasized, but there will also be condemnation and judgment.  I think we ought to be realistic, not idealistic.  He will have to come in power and wrath against a world that is in rebellion against Him.


His speech is marked by “grace,” (graciousness, sweetness); He is “blessed by “God” . . . “for ever,” because of His personal excellence. He is “mighty,” with “glory” and “majesty.” God has abundantly poured into his mind and tongue the gift of speaking with admirable grace, that is, most wisely and eloquently.  He is convinced that the king stands uniquely under the blessing of God.  These were free gifts of God, and were the effects, and not the causes, of God’s blessing him.  In the Bible “forever” can mean “as long as you live” (Exodus 21:6), but here it means “for eternity.” Jesus is “King forever” (29:10).


Verses 3-5:Christ’s essential and eternal glory was veiled when He walked upon the earth.  He had not come to dazzle and frighten men.  One glimpse of that glory blinded Saul of Tarsus.  That glory, laid aside while He journeyed through life, He wears now as a robe of shimmering light, out there beyond the stars.


The psalmist tells us three things about the Lord’s glory:

  1. Glorious in His Magnificence (45:3)
  2. Glorious in His ministry (45:4a)
  3. Glorious in His Might (45:4b-5)


The church of Jesus Christ doesn’t use human weapons to accomplish His will, but instead uses the sword of the Spirit, the Word of God (Hebrews 4:12[6]; Ephesians 6:17; Revelation 1:16 and 19: 15).



3 Gird thy sword upon thy thigh, O most mighty, with thy glory and thy majesty.


This is a picture of Christ coming forward, not as Savior, but as the King and warrior at His second coming, when He will be “mighty, with thy glory and thy majesty.” Israel expected Messiah to come to earth with a “sword.”  The first time He came to earth He came without a sword.  You will recall that when Jesus was arrested, one of His disciples drew his sword and cut off the ear of the servant of the high priest.  And Jesus said, “. . .  Put up again thy sword into his place: for all they that take the sword shall perish with the sword” (Matthew 26:52).  In our day they are looking for the Messiah who will bring peace, without a sword, but Psalm 2:9 says of the Lord, “And thou shall break them with a rod of iron; thou shalt dash them to pieces like a potter’s vessel.” Psalm 2 speaks of Christ’s coming to earth the second time.  In fact, it is quoted several times in the Book of Revelation in respect to His second coming.  When he returns, He is going to find the world in rebellion.  The Antichrist will be in power.  He will be persecuting God’s people, both the remnant of Israel and that great company of Gentiles who turned to God.


This psalm is preeminently a wedding march, but not that of a carpenter; it is the wedding of a King, and a warrior King at that.  For if the theme of the psalm is a wedding, the background of the psalm is a war with two major engagements.  The first was fought at Golgotha and secured the bride’s person for the King; the second engagement will be fought at Megiddo and will secure the brides property.  The first engagement took place on a skull-shaped hill near Jerusalem.  There the armed might of the world together with the principalities and powers of hell were arrayed against Him.  The next engagement will take place when the armies of the world mass in might at Megiddo in a vain attempt to prevent His return.


English kings were presented with the great sword of state; now Jesus has a great sword of state carried on His thigh.  It is the sword first seen in the Garden of Eden in the hand of a flaming cherub.  That flashing sword turned this way and that to keep fallen men away from the tree of life.  We see that sword again at Calvary as foreseen by the prophet Zechariah: “Awake, O sword, against my shepherd, Smite the shepherd, and the sheep shall be scattered.” The great sword of state that flames at Eden’s gate was to be sheathed in the Savior’s heart and quenched in His blood.  We see that sword again at Megiddo, for when the Lord comes He will use it to sweep His foes into a lost eternity.  He wears that sword now, upon His thigh.  To Him has been given the real charge: with this sword “do justice, stop the growth of iniquity, restore the things that are gone to decay, punish and reform, and confirm what is in good order.” With this sword He will establish an empire which will last 1000 years.  He will use it to usher in the millennial age and to enforce His rule “from the river to the ends of the earth.” He is glorious in His majesty! 



4 And in thy majesty ride prosperously because of truth and meekness and righteousness; and thy right hand shall teach thee terrible things.


Verses 3-5 celebrate the King’s capacity as a warrior.  Since the king was a mighty man of valor, the psalmist called on him to demonstrate his valor by riding forth to champion “truth and meekness and righteousness.”  Because the king was just, he prospered.  As nations fell before him, his victories would be magnificent. The supreme responsibility of a monarch is to go out before his people and fight their battles (1 Samuel 8:20).  The king’s prowess as a future warrior is imagined as he stands armed in glittering armor with his weapons in hand, ready to fight on behalf of his people for honor and right.  His strong “right hand” will attack the enemy with sharpened arrows (v. 5) and their morale will fail.


Every incoming government promises the electorate to get rid of corruption, clean up drug traffic, make the streets safe—and every one fails.  Jesus alone will establish an administration based on honesty, humility, and holiness.  The millennial age will be the golden age of government—an absolute dictatorship with all power in the nail-scared, capable hands of Jesus! 


“Ride prosperously,” that is, march on speedily (which is signified by riding) and successfully against thine enemies.


Notice, the Lord is riding to victory (“prosperously” or triumphantly), and here are the three planks of His platform: “truth and meekness and righteousness.”  Do you know of any candidate today who uses these three planks in his platform?  The candidates don’t sound meek to me, and I wonder about the truth of their statements, and righteousness—well, the whole motive is to get elected, not to do right.  How this poor nation needs a candidate who will speak truth, who exhibits a little meekness, and who goes all-out for righteousness.  These are eternal principles of our Lord’s kingdom.  No president, leader, dictator, or king has ever come to power on this platform in the history of this world.  This King is different.  The character of Christ is truth; His words are truth—yet men call Him a liar.  But all men are liars, not Christ.  You won’t hear the truth today in the halls of Congress, or in the markets of trade, or on Wall Street, or in our industrial complexes, or on our college campuses, or read it in the newspaper, or hear it on TV or radio—because all news is slanted.  Unfortunately you can’t even hear the truth in many of our churches.  But our Lord is coming to power on the platform of truth and humility.  Someone has said, “If you wish to astonish the whole world, tell the truth.” That is the way our Lord is coming to power—it will be startling.


“Thy right hand shall teach thee terrible things” becomes clearer when read from the Amplified Bible; “Let You’re right hand guide You to tremendous things.”  “Terrible things” means awe-inspiring things.  You shall do great and glorious exploits, which shall be grave and terrible to your enemies, as the next verse explains it, and this is not by a great force of soldiers, and the assistance of others, but by your own power (compare Isaiah 63:3); which does by no means suggest Solomon, for he was a man of peace and did not engage in any aggressive actions against his enemies.  And if he had considered doing anything aggressive at that time, he could not do it by his own right hand, but would need the help of his soldiers.  But this does point to the Messiah, and to Him only.


There is a reason why Jesus will be so hard on sin during the millennial age, why He will rule with a “rod of iron,” why the slightest infraction of the laws of the kingdom will be instantly punished.  The reason is there, in His right hand, which teaches Him terrible things.


In that right hand is to be placed a “rod of iron” (Psalm 2).  That right hand teaches Him how far God will go to rid the universe of sin.  He will use a rod of iron—symbol of inflexible power.  The almighty power He holds in His hands has not yet been used to the full in dealing with sin, but it will be.  After the millennial reign He will use it to explode the universe, leaving the lost shaking and naked at the great white throne.  Then He will use it to create a new Heaven and a new earth forever free from sin. 



5 Thine arrows are sharp in the heart of the king's enemies; whereby the people fall under thee.


This is a portrait of the King coming to earth as a conquering Warrior.  “Thine arrows” is the same as the arrows of verse 3, meaning the instruments by which he conquers his enemies, which is nothing other than His Word, which is sharp and powerful and pierces the hearts of men (Hebrews 4:12[5]).  His word first wounds sinners, and then heals them, and which is for the fall as well as for the rising of many.


“The people fall under thee” either because they have been slain by thine arrows, or they lay prostate at thy feet, which is the position of conquered persons (Psalm 18:38; 20:8).  Again, this cannot be applied to Solomon, because his reign was short, and stained with many and great inequities.




Verses 6-8: The psalmist describes four things about the government of the Lord Jesus Christ:

  1. A Permanent Government (45:6)
  2. A Perfect Government (45:7a)
  3. A Pleasant Government (45:7b)
  4. A Prosperous Government (45:8)




6 Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: the sceptre of thy kingdom is a right sceptre.


Not only is the king a warrior; he must also rule and judge.  He is going to rule in righteousness—His “throne” is eternal and His “scepter” is righteousness. “Thy throne, O God” is interpreted as “You’re divine throne” in the Revise Standard Version.  The Messianic application in Hebrews 1:8-9[6] makes this an unqualified statement of the deity of Christ—one of the clearest proofs in the entire Bible.  The royal throne stands for established authority of government, with a continuity which embraces not only the past but centuries to come.  Those who deny the deity of Christ refuse to accept the translation “Thy throne, O God,” because they want to make the psalm only Jewish history and not Messianic prophecy.  But when they quote this verse in the Hebrews passage, it becomes “You’re throne, O God, is for ever and ever.” So it is not only true that Christ’s throne is divine, but also that He Himself is God.


The “scepter” stands for the personal authority of the reigning monarch.  He alone can carry it.  It is a straight staff and in its very form suggests the ideal uprightness of the legitimate ruler who “hates the evil, and loves the good, and establishes justice in the gate.” “A right scepter” would be just and fair rule.  Regarding His return to earth, the Lord Jesus Himself said, “When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory” (Matthew 25:31, KJV).  Not until then will we have peace on this earth.  That is the need of the world.  When Betsy Ross made the first American flag, George Washington expressed the wish that it would wave for a thousand years.  We celebrated our two hundredth anniversary, and already we are losing our just and fair rule, and growing old as a nation.  But the government of God is eternal.  Christ’s kingdom will last “forever.” After His reign of one thousand years on earth, His earthly kingdom will merge into “the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ” (2 Peter 1:11).



7 Thou lovest righteousness, and hatest wickedness: therefore God, thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows.


Because He loves “righteousness” and hates “wickedness,” He is “anointed  . . .  with the oil of gladness” more than any other.  The “Anointed” One is Messiah, of which Christ is the Greek form.  It is not a name, but it is His official title.  The first time He came, He came as Prophet—the messenger and message of God—which refers to the past.  In our day He is our Great High Priest at the right hand of God; that is His present ministry.  But His second coming will be as King, the Messiah.  This is for the future.  The “oil of gladness” represents the eternal joy that belongs to the happy bride and Bridegroom (Isaiah 61:3).


When the founding fathers of the United States of American came across the western seas and sighted these shores, they determined to build a nation based on a love of righteousness and a hatred of wickedness.  How miserably it has all failed!  In the name of freedom and civil liberty the worst possible vices are now condoned, even encouraged.  Pornography has become a billion dollar business, the crime syndicates rules City Hall, lewdness and unbridled lust appear unblushing and unashamed.  Not so the government of Jesus; it will be a perfect government.


God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness.” It is unfortunate that we tend to think of Him as a Man of Sorrows.  I believe that He was the most joyous person on this earth when He was here.  Here is the secret of perpetual joy—“the oil of gladness.”  The anointing makes the King gloriously happy to do God’s perfect will.  We shall share in His joy to the extent we enter into Christ’s spirit, a joy such as unbelievers cannot know.  There have been many gloomy kings, sad kings, bad Kings, and even some mad kings, but few glad Kings.  David came as close as any with his hymnbook and his harps, but many of David’s great songs are drenched with tears.  Jesus will be a happy king—“anointed with the oil of gladness above His fellows!”  His reign will fill the world with sunshine and song. 


“Above thy fellows” means God has exalted thee above all them that were ever anointed for priests, or prophets, or kings; or above all believers, who also have received this same anointing (1 John 2:20, 27) and are made priests and Kings unto God (Revelation 1:6[7]).  Jesus is the King-Priest “after the order of Melchizedek” (Hebrews 7-9).  One day, His people will reign with Him and share His Glory (Revelation 5:10[8]; 20:6).


In Old Testament times kings were “anointed”; David was hailed while still a youth as “the Lord’s anointed” (1 Samuel 16:6; and see Psalm 2:2). Priests were anointed before they could execute their office (Leviticus 4:5).  At Isaiah 45:1 the pagan King Cyrus of Persia is called His anointed (or Messiah!) Because God had chosen him to set free His people Israel, then in exile in Babylon, from servitude to a foreign power.  So there we read, “I call you by your name, I surname you, though you do not know me” (Isaiah 45:4).


That this is a messianic psalm referring to our Lord Jesus Christ is fully attested by the quotation of these two verses in the Epistle to the Hebrews: “But unto the Son he saith, Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: a scepter of righteousness is the scepter of thy kingdom. Thou hast loved righteousness, and hated iniquity; therefore God, even thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows” (Hebrews 1:8-9).  The critic who attempts to apply this psalm to Solomon or some unknown king fails to note that He is addressed has God.  It is not conceivable that Solomon or any other king would be addressed as God.  The entire first chapter of Hebrews presents our Lord Jesus in His exultation, being the expressed image of God, far superior to angels, and seated at God’s right hand.



8 All thy garments smell of myrrh, and aloes, and cassia, out of the ivory palaces, whereby they have made thee glad.


His “garments” are fragrant as He comes from “the ivory palaces” (It was not because the palaces were entirely made of ivory, but because they were adorned or covered here and there with it.).  Solomon, at the apex of his prosperity and power, had a great throne of ivory.  Who can tell what it cost in that day and age to trap and kill the elephants to yield ivory enough to make a throne.  Jesus has an ivory palace; He has more than that, He has “ivory palaces!”  When He reigns all men will be rich, they will be increased in goods, and will have need of nothing.  The world will echo His own words: “A greater than Solomon is here.”


He came to this earth that our joy might be full.  And it was for “the joy that was set before Him” that He endured the cross.  O, how we as believers need to rejoice!  The tribe of Judah, which means “praise,” led the children of Israel in the wilderness march; yet they complained, they whined, they sang the desert blues when they should have been praising God.  This is the same thing the church is doing in our day.  My friend, believers should be praising God—not complaining!  At Christmas time we sing the psalm, “Joy to the world!  The Lord is come; let earth receive her King.” That is not a Christmas hymn at all; it refers to Christ’s second coming and should not be relegated to a seasonal section of our hymn book.


“Myrrh, and aloes, and cassia” were all sources of fragrant perfumes in ancient times.  This may denote those glorious and sweet-smelling virtues, which, as they were treasured up inwardly in Christ’s heart, they manifested themselves outwardly and visibly, and give forth a gratifying smell in the whole course of His life and actions (2 Corinthians 2:14-15[9]).


“Whereby they have made thee glad” is literally, “Stringed instruments have gladdened thee.” The king has been made the happiest of men on this his wedding day. In keeping with the customs proper to the occasion, his garments were saturated with the fragrance of ointments and perfumes. “All thy garments smell of myrrh, and aloes, and cassia”: literally, “all your robes (royal garb) are myrrh and aloes,” i.e., the garments seem to be fabrics of perfumery (heavily perfumed fabrics). Cassia” is derived from the bark of laurus cassia of South Arabia; “aloes,” from the bark of an Indian tree.  From within the palace with its panels and furniture inlaid with ivory, stringed instruments send forth music to delight the king as the bridal procession reaches him.




Verses 9-17: In the first half of this psalm we are introduced to His Royal Majesty; now we are introduced to Her Royal Majesty.  The Jews, of course, saw in this psalm a picture of Jehovah and Israel; they had no concept of the Church.  But the Holy Spirit did; the Church lives concealed in this psalm as surely as it lies concealed in a score of other Old Testament Scriptures.



9 Kings' daughters were among thy honourable women: upon thy right hand did stand the queen in gold of Ophir.


The church is not mentioned by name in the Old Testament, but I believe you see it in type or in figures of speech.  I think most of the bride’s in the Old Testament are pictures of Christ and His bride, the Church.  Examples of this are Eve, Rebekah, and Ruth.  Who is the queen in this verse?  I believe she is a picture of the Church, although she is not specifically identified, and Christ will lift her to the throne.  His retinue is composed of princesses, and his “queen” is arrayed “in gold of Ophir.”


It is true that some translators resist the temptation to identify the “queen” with the church, since the church is not the subject of Old Testament revelation (Ephesians 3:5-9; Colossians 1:26).  They believe that the queen is the redeemed remnant of the nation of Israel (Ezekiel 16:10-14) and that the attendants may represent Gentile nations won to Christ through Israel’s testimony. I disagree, but I mention it out of the desire to be fair to opposing views.


Probably every one reading this has been to a wedding or knows what goes on at one.  There is a certain procedure which is followed at most weddings, but that’s not the way it will be done at the King’s!  At His wedding it is the King who will command all the attention, and rightly so.  He is the King of kings and Lord of lords, Creator and Sustain of the universe, our Savior and our God.


Here, in Psalm 45, the entrance of the bride is hardly noted at all.  The psalmist is still talking about the King and His entourage; “King’s daughters were among thy honourable women.  Upon thy right hand did stand the queen in gold and ophir.”


Well, we don’t know who the king is, nor do we know whether the queen is Hephzibah or the daughter of Pharaoh, but we really do not have to know, because the important thing is what she symbolizes—the church (All born again believers in Jesus Christ).  This queen has no past; all she has is a future!  That should make us shout for joy, for God blots out our past.  Our guilty past is all over and done away with when we come to Christ.  All we have is a future, a future as bright and blessed as the very throne of God.


 “Ophir” was a noted source of gold, in south Arabia or east Africa (1 Kings 9:26-28; Job 22:24); although its exact location is not known, it was the best gold obtainable.


The King’s daughters are believers; many persons of royal and princely classes did embrace the faith as was prophesied (Isaiah 49:7[10]; 40:10, 11).


“Upon thy right hand” refers to the most honorable place next to the king’s (1 Kings 2:19; Matthew 26:64).


“Did stand,” depicts the posture of a servant.  By standing she shows that she is a queen, and also his subject to serve and obey him.


“The queen” is clothed “in gold of Ophir”; the richest garments made of the choicest gold. 





Verses 10-11:The psalmist notes three things about the calling of the queen:

  1. She Is to Want Her Lord (45:10)
  2. She Is to Win Her Lord (45:11a)
  3. She Is to Worship Her Lord (45:11b)



10 Hearken, O daughter, and consider, and incline thine ear; forget also thine own people, and thy father's house;


The king (or some unidentified voice) addresses her with “O daughter,” which seems strange, unless you know why he did it.  He did it partly to show his respect and affection to her, and partly because she is supposed to be young and beautiful; and therefore the king speaks like an elder and greater person, and as her spiritual father and counselor.


The royal bride is called upon to “forget her own people” and her “father’s house,” that is, he advised her to make a clean break with her old home and country.  We are to leave the world.  We are not to love the world.  We have been saved out of it.  We are to cling to the Lord.  If the King is willing to blot out her past, she must break with it too. There can be no going back.  From now on all her affections must be joined to her new-found Lord. 


These words seem to infer, and quietly to foretell, that not only the superstitious inventions and traditions of men, but even the legal worship appointed by Moses, and delivered to them from their parents successfully for many generations, should be relinquished by the believing Jews and abolished by Christ’s coming.  Today, many people believe that they are saved by keeping the Ten Commandments, by doing good deeds, and by having their membership in a certain denomination.  That’s not salvation, that’s false profession.  True salvation involves heart commitment to Christ.  We must want our Lord.  Belonging to Christ means a complete break with the old way of life and a new way of life centered in Him! 



11 So shall the king greatly desire thy beauty: for he is thy Lord; and worship thou him.


“So shall the king greatly desire thy beauty.” “The king” will “desire” her “beauty” and she will “worship him.”  Today, the church of Jesus Christ is spotted by the world and looking old and wrinkled because of inner decay, but one day it shall be a glorious bride, spotless, blameless, and without spot or wrinkle (Ephesians 5:27). But the church is to be made beautiful.  All sin will be removed.  What a prospect this is!


The bride’s beauty may not be beauty of countenance; it is most certainly beauty of character.  The King greatly desires to see beauty in us.


One of the most beautiful weddings in the Word was that of Ruth to Boaz, that mighty man of strength, prince of the house of Judah.  In many ways Ruth was undesirable.  She was poor; worse, she was a pagan; worse still, she was a foreigner; and worst of all, she was a “Moabite.”  No self-respecting Hebrew, wishing to keep his pedigree pure in view of the coming of Christ, would wish to tarnish his genealogy with a Moabite wife and contaminate his sons with Moabite blood.  But Boaz did.  He looked at Ruth, loved her, greatly desired her beauty, and tells us the reason why.  She had beauty of character: “All the city of my people doth know that thou art a virtuous woman.”


What Ruth was to Boaz, so we are to be to Christ: “So shall the king greatly desire thy beauty.” We are to win our Lord.  We often think of Christ winning us, and so He has, but Jesus said: “He that hath My commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth Me . . .  and I will love Him, and will manifest myself to Him” (John 14:21).


“For he is thy Lord; and worship thou him.” The words “Worship thou him” implies that her Husband was no mere man, but God also, and therefore might be adored without any violation of that known and immutable precept of worshipping God only.


We think of that Bethany home where Jesus was loved and received and where, so often, He retired from the pressures of life to relax with Lazarus and his sisters.  One day He dropped in and brought twelve great, strapping, hungry men with Him.  Martha instantly dashed for the kitchen, we can picture her there, getting hot under the collar.  There was meat to cook, bread to make, sauce to mix, goats to milk, the table to set—and where was Mary?  She was setting in the garden, under the trees, surrounded by the men, and gazing in rapt adoration at Jesus.  Our Martha went to the Savior, pointed at her sister, and said “Bid her therefore that she help me!” Jesus replied: “Martha, Martha, but one thing is needful [we don’t need hors d’oeuvres and juice and salad and meat and three kinds of vegetables and condiments and rolls and two kinds of desert].  Mary hath chosen that better part which shall not be taken away from her.” Service is all very well, but worship is better.  So says our psalm: “For He is thy Lord; and worship thou Him”


Our love for Christ must be so great that all other loves are hatred by comparison.  The beauty of wholeheartedness is pleasing to Him.  Since He is Lord, He deserves all that we are and Have.



12 And the daughter of Tyre shall be there with a gift; even the rich among the people shall intreat thy favour.


Many will bring gifts and will seek after her favor.  Here it becomes apparent that the princes becomes a type of the Church.  “The daughter of Tyre” has led some commentators to the highly improbable identification of the king with Ahab, and his bride with Jezebel!  Tyre, the noted center for trade in the ancient world, is to be the source of the gifts brought to honor Israel’s King and his bride.


The king has in mind the city of his bride, “Tyre,” and that’s why he called her the “daughter of Tyre.” He is commenting on the citizens of “Tyre” when he says, “even the rich among the people shall intreat thy favour.” They were a very rich and proud, self-conceited and stiff-necked people; their merchants are princes (Isaiah 23:8).  They may in a particular manner represent all those great and proud princes and stubborn people of the Gentile world, which should be subdued to Christ by the preaching of the gospel. 


This bride sets as a queen.  She is elevated, not buy her own merit or worth but solely because she is connected to the King.  She is wedded to One who sits enthroned.  Thus we read “And the daughter of Tyre shall be there with a gift; even the rich among the people shall entreat thy favor.”


That is how it should be.  The world should be beating a path to our door.  But it isn’t and there has to be a reason.  The Lord has not called us to meddle in politics; He has called us to the knowledge that we have the ear of the King, and the King listens to us.  If we would only avail ourselves of the position we have next to the King, the world would soon take notice of who really wields power.  Like Tyre, it would beat a path to our door.


We can picture Satan drawing his war lords around him, and pointing out to them the various ages of time.  He explains his strategy for ruling the world, and draws a circle around one of the ages.  “There,” we can hear him say, “lies a sleeping giant.  Let it sleep.” We can picture him circling the age of the Church.



13 The king's daughter is all glorious within: her clothing is of wrought gold.


“The King’s daughter,” i.e. the spouse; so called, either because she was the daughter of one King, and the wife of another; or because the spouse or wife is sometimes called the husband’s daughter; partly because she is supposed to be younger than he; and partly because of that respect and subjection which she owed to him, and that fatherly care and affection which he owed to her (2 Samuel 12:3[11]; Jeremiah 3:4).


“The king's daughter is all glorious within” is probably to be understood as, “All glorious is the king’s daughter within” (the palace). There is also the idea that the reference is to the interior of the royal residence, and not the beauty of the “king’s daughter.”  And it may also be an allusion to the hidden beauties of Christian character? 


The RSV provides us with both the more likely and the more theologically correct reading of verse 13.  It refers to the gold-woven wedding dress the princes is wearing, declaring that it will be a reflection of her real self, because she was, by God’s grace, “all glorious within.”  Till this day a young bride is dressed in white as a symbol of her purity, that is to say, that she is a virgin being brought forward by her virgin companions (as here) into the presence (in church) of her husband to be.  It is because she is a pure girl, then, that her ladies-in-waiting lead her in with joy and gladness.  Throughout this psalm, the Church is represented by the bride,


“Her clothing” is made of wrought gold, and her inward perfections do not rest within her, but break forth into virtuous and honorable actions, with which she is adorned in the view of the world.  This goes well with the style of the Holy Scriptures, where the saints are often said to be clothed with virtues and virtuous actions (Psalm 132:9; 1 Peter 5).


In the Bible, clothing is used symbolically to describe righteousness and character.  This is especially true of linen.  There is white linen, the righteousness of Christ, and white linen the righteousness of saints.  There is the righteousness that is brought to us.  When we come to Christ He arrays us in the wedding garment of salvation, takes away that ruin of rags we wore in our unconverted days, and makes us fit for the high halls of Heaven.


But there is more to it than that; there is the righteousness that is wrought in us.  The Holy Spirit goes to work on us to make us like Jesus—that’s the raiment of needlework, the embroidery, so to speak, the beautification of our lives and characters by the working of the Spirit of God in us. 



14 She shall be brought unto the king in raiment of needlework: the virgins her companions that follow her shall be brought unto thee.


“She shall be brought unto the king in raiment of needlework” alludes to the custom of conducting the bride to the bridegroom’s house.  In ancient times, a Jewish bridegroom went to the bride’s house to claim her and then took her to his own home, and Jesus will do that when He returns to claim His church (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18[12]). 


“In raiment of needlework”suggests that she is clothed in beautiful garments and accompanied by her bridesmaids (“her companions”), who cater to her every desire.  In verse 9 they are called “honorable women,” and here they are called “virgins,” because of their spiritual purity and charity, (2 Corinthians 11:2).


The Holy Spirit wants us to get on with our “needlework.”  He wants us to beautify our character.  We have been provided with a spotless, seamless robe of righteousness.  It is our privilege and responsibility to beautify it by growing in grace and by increasing in the knowledge of God “The king’s daughter is all glorious within; her clothing is of wrought gold.  She shall be brought unto the king in a raiment of needlework.” How are we getting along with our needlework?  How will we look on that great day when we shall be brought to the King before all the assembled host of heaven? 


“The virgins her companions that follow her shall be brought unto thee.” The bride is not the only one to be in the kingdom.  There will be many others.  The saints of all the ages will be there.  Many shall come from the east and the west and shall set down in the kingdom with the patriarchs of Israel.  The Old Testament saints will be there; the tribulation saints will be there; those born in the millennial age will be there.  These are “the virgins her companions.” They will follow in her train.



15 With gladness and rejoicing shall they be brought: they shall enter into the king's palace.


“Gladness and rejoicing” mark the entrance of the wedding party “into the king’s palace,” which is typical of the joy of the “marriage of the Lamb”: “Let us rejoice and be glad and give him glory! For the wedding of the Lamb has come, and his bride has made herself ready” (Revelation 19:7, NIV).






16 Instead of thy fathers shall be thy children, whom thou mayest make princes in all the earth.


The concluding verses picture the blessedness of the royal union.  God the Father is speaking to Christ the King.


The future belongs to the “children” of the king and his bride.  And therefore this verse and psalm cannot be assigned to Solomon, and his marriage with Pharaoh’s daughter, because he had no children by her, and only a very few by all his wives and concubines; and his children were so far from exceeding their parents in the size of their kingdoms, or being made “princes in all the earth,” as it says here.  They enjoyed only a small part of their father’s kingdom, and those small parts came with many tribulations, and only for a short time.  But this was truly and fully accomplished in Christ, who instead of His fathers of the Jewish nation, from whom He descended, and by whom he was forsaken and rejected, had a numerous posterity of Gentile Christians in all the nations of the earth, which here and in other places are called princes and kings, because of their great power with God and with men, because they brought a very great part of the world to faith in Christ.


“Instead of thy fathers shall be thy children, whom thou mayest make princes in all the earth.” That, dear reader, is the great function of the bride.  She is to bring many sons into glory.  The Church has one great career on earth—to be fruitful for Christ, to bring men and women to the Savior.  This is the age for producing sons; the next age is the age for making them “princes in all the earth.”  Her majesty’s career is to provide the king with those with whom He can share His kingdom, His throne, and His crown.  What a magnificent career!  “Instead of thy fathers shall be thy children.”



17 I will make thy name to be remembered in all generations: therefore shall the people praise thee for ever and ever.


“His name shall “be remembered in all generations” and be the object of “praise . . . for ever and ever—words which are most fitting when applied to King Messiah.


This verse speaks of the millennial kingdom. But the kingdom goes on into eternity after the Lord has made a few adjustments, which includes Satan being loosed for a time and then his being cast into the lake of fire and brimstone.  This is a glorious psalm, and when it is put in proper perspective, it has great meaning for us today.


As he began the Psalm with the celebration of the King’s praises, so now he ends with the same, but he adds this one significant condition, that this wedding song should not only serve for the present celebration, as others of that kind do, but that it should be remembered and sung in all successive generations; which clearly shows that it was not composed for such a trivial and fleeting occasion as that of Salomon’s marriage with Pharaoh’s daughter, which was soon forgotten, and the Israelites had little cause to remember it with any satisfaction.  But instead, it was composed for that great and glorious and everlasting marriage between Christ and his Church, of which this is most correctly and literally substantiated.


“Forever and ever!”  The ages will run their course, and behold, fresh from the hand of God there will spring a new Heaven and a new earth.  Angels and archangels will be there, thrones and dominions will be there, cherubim and seraphim, and the four and 20 elders will be there.  Saints from all the ages of time will be there.  Prophets, priests, and kings will be there—all glorified, magnificent, and beautiful beyond words to describe.


But high and lifted up, set apart from all the orders and ranks of creation and redemption, will be the Church.  She will be seated with Christ upon His throne.  She will be admired, praised, and talked about throughout GOD’S vast new empires in space.  The queen!  In gold of Ophir!  Her name will be remembered and praised throughout all generations, world without end “forever and ever.”  The Church will be there!  WE WILL BE THERE!





Special Notes and Scripture


[1] (Hebrews 1:8-9, NIV) “Your throne, O God, will last for ever and ever; a scepter of justice will be the scepter of your kingdom. You have loved righteousness and hated wickedness; therefore God, your God, has set you above your companions by anointing you with the oil of joy.”

[2] Maschil denotes a song enforcing some lesson of wisdom or piety, a didactic song.

[3] Targumim (singular: "targum", Hebrew: תרגום‎), were spoken paraphrases, explanations, and expansions of the Jewish scriptures that a Rabbi would give in the common language of the listeners, which during the time of this practice was commonly, but not exclusively, Aramaic.

[4] (Ephesians 5:23, NIV) “For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior.”

[5] (Matthew 24:29-30, NIV) “Immediately after the distress of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from the sky, and the heavenly bodies will be shaken. Then will appear the sign of the Son of Man in heaven. And then all the peoples of the earth will mourn when they see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven, with power and great glory.

[6] (Hebrews 4:12, NIV) “For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.”

[7] (Revelation 1:6, NIV) “and has made us to be a kingdom and priests to serve his God and Father—to him be glory and power for ever and ever! Amen.”

[8] (Revelation 5:10, NIV) “You have made them to be a kingdom and priests to serve our God, and they will reign[a] on the earth.”

[9] (2 Corinthians 2:14-15, NIV) “But thanks be to God, who always leads us as captives in Christ’s triumphal procession and uses us to spread the aroma of the knowledge of him everywhere. For we are to God the pleasing aroma of Christ among those who are being saved and those who are perishing.

[10] (Isaiah 49:7, NIV) “This is what the Lord says—the Redeemer and Holy One of Israel—to him who was despised and abhorred by the nation, to the servant of rulers: ‘Kings will see you and stand up, princes will see and bow down, because of the Lord, who is faithful, the Holy One of Israel, who has chosen you.’”

[11] (2 Samuel 12:3, NIV) “but the poor man had nothing except one little ewe lamb he had bought. He raised it, and it grew up with him and his children. It shared his food, drank from his cup and even slept in his arms. It was like a daughter to him.”

[12] (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18, NIV) “Brothers and sisters, we do not want you to be uninformed about those who sleep in death, so that you do not grieve like the rest of mankind, who have no hope. For we believe that Jesus died and rose again, and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him. According to the Lord’s word, we tell you that we who are still alive, who are left until the coming of the Lord, will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep. For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever. Therefore encourage one another with these words.”