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The Wrong Path and Its Consequences

The Bible Study Hour / James Boice
The Truth Network Radio
September 7, 2021 8:00 am

The Wrong Path and Its Consequences

The Bible Study Hour / James Boice

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September 7, 2021 8:00 am

Lying, cheating, lust, envy. Sin takes different forms, but it can all be traced back to one, common cause- the rejection of Christ’s kingship. Today on The Bible Study Hour, we’ll study Psalm chapter 2 - a complex passage with a mysterious purpose. Join us as Dr. Boice explains how we each have an important role to play in proclaiming Christ as King.

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Lying, cheating, lust, envy, sin takes on different forms, but it can be all trace back to one common cause, the rejection of Christ's kingship today on the Bible study our will study Psalms chapter 2 a complex passage with a mysterious purpose. Let's listen in as Dr. James Boyce explains how we each have an important role to play in proclaiming Christ as King wrote to the Bible study our radio and Internet broadcast with Dr. James Boyce preparing you to think and act biblically for those who reject God's authority wrath and judgment awaits the second Psalm is a clear warning for us all is a great debate among scholars concerning Psalm two as to whether it's really messianic. Messianic Psalm is one that refers explicitly to Jesus Christ. In other words, it's a prophecy of the Lord Jesus what he would do are number of Psalms in the Psalter that would fit that category.

22nd Psalm is 1/4110 in Solon, but the debate rages among scholars, many of whom, particularly in our day, including early evangelical scholars do not consider the Psalms to be explicitly messianic, though sometimes say well they have messianic overtones or they can be read that way they really weren't written about Jesus is a very complicated question when were going to be looking at in greater detail as we go through the Psalms and, more examples of allegedly messianic Psalms. Let me say at the beginning that any Psalm in the Psalter as messianic as this one.

Psalm speaks of God establishing his son upon his holy hill on Mount Zion, and it speaks of the subjection of the princes rulers nations of the world to him and to his authority as a declaration by God, as well as the apparently explicit allusions to Jesus Christ that made this song so popular with the New Testament writers Psalms you know are referred to indirectly quoted directly many times in the New Testament and the Psalm as a whole, more than any other is for example referred to early on in the book of acts. The apostles Peter and John have just been delivered by God from their incarceration by the Sanhedrin may return the early church of the early Christians break out in praise to God. Along these lines, quoting several verses from the song sovereign Lord.

They said you made the heavens and the earth. See everything in them you spoke by the Holy Spirit through the mouth of your servant, our father David and here's where the quote begins.

Why do the nations rage and the peoples plot in vain. The kings of the earth take their stand and the rulers gather together against the Lord and against his anointed one man in the next versus late explain exactly how they understand that prophecy understand it of the rebellion of the leaders of the day against Jesus Christ. They say Herod and Pontius Pilate, with the Gentiles and the people of Israel conspired against Jesus. That's the way the early Christians took it behind us in the in Hebrews Hebrews verse seven is quoted twice, once in the first chapter which of the angels that God ever say you are my son, today I have become your father again in the fifth chapter quotes the same verse, God said to them, you are my son, today I have become your father onto is quoted or referred to many times in the book of Revelation.

Look at these examples, Jesus Christ, the ruler of the kings of the earth. Revelation 154. He will rule them with an iron scepter them to pieces like pottery. Revelation 227 or she gave birth to a son, a male child, who will rule all the nations with an iron scepter. Revelation 12 five other less specific references St. Augustine I mentioned last time always saw Psalms as being about Jesus and he had a Latin phrase that describes the relationship of Jesus Christ to them. Goes like this is taken top, or sophomore means himself the singer of the songs I specifically and exactly true of this one because of all the Psalms in some sense or another, spoken by the Lord Jesus Christ, given by inspiration by the Holy Spirit. Here is one in which he himself actually speaks because we find them saying in the central portion of the song referring to God the father.

He said to me you are my son, today I have become your father I'll it's all very interesting. We have to approach Psalm that way we say one other thing, by way of introduction or some evidence, both in early Jewish sources, as well as in Christian sources, but at one point the first and the second Psalm were considered as one literary unit that is is one song for the Jewish sources go, there is a Jewish tradition from the Talmud, Rabbi Joe Heinen is quoted in the top of the saying this every chapter that was particularly dear to David. He commenced with happy and he terminated with happy our word for that is blessed.

He began with happy as it is written. Happy is the man and he terminated with happy, as is written happy are all they take refuge in him. The first of that rabbis allusions or to Psalm one verse one Blessed is the bandit is not walk in the counsel of the wicked in the second of his references of the last verse, verse 12 of Psalm two. Blessed are all who take refuge in him. So, since this Rabbi said. David began all of the chapters that he particularly liked with the word blessed and ends with Blessed and since he quotes from the beginning of Psalm one.

The ending of Psalm until you have an indication that in the early tradition.

These two were considered as one introductory solvent of the entire solar. Interestingly, we have the same thing in the New Testament so we have Christian evidence for it as well will find it in your new Testaments because it's been translated in a different way to conform with our numbering, but in the 13th chapter of the book of acts in verse 33, the seventh verse of Psalm two is quoted, but it is referred to as coming from Psalm one of the translators have changed the reference so it doesn't say that it's from Psalm one it says rather that it's from Psalm two. I suppose that's right because they simply conformed it to our numbering of the Psalms in the way that was originally written in reference to solvent. It was actually called Psalm one and therefore you have an indication in the early church in those days. These two were considered as a unit. I suppose person say at that point. Why is that important than saving. Dawson has any bearing whatsoever, but I think it does. In this respect.

If you take Psalm one and Psalm two together. Understanding that they are to be considered together or not is to separate, independent, unrelated Psalms, then what is developed in Psalm one is obviously continued in some form.

Psalm two Psalm one is about to waste away of the wicked in the way of the righteous. The way of the wicked or ungodly is now enfolded in the second Psalm only x-rays, as it were, to a higher pitch first long you have the man who walks in the way of the wicked sinners and markers described here.

Most people in unison raised the positions of power. The rulers of the world are uniting against God and his Christ. This is the wrong path. Carried to its full and in it we see the consequences and then take the other side of it that righteous man of Psalm one which I suggested in our study toward the end of Psalm one is fulfilled perfectly in Jesus Christ. Well, Psalm until we find that that is exactly the one who it is because it is that righteous one, the one who nothing to do with sinners, but was utterly upright whose delight was in the law of the Lord who sought to fulfill. It did fulfill it to the letter.

During his lifetime. That is the one who was established by God upon his holy hill inside now it's very easy Psalm analyzed.

If you look at next you find in the new international version that falls into four separate paragraphs or sections of nearly equal length. Each of these has a different speaker wall that develops different theme and yet there is a sequence in the first of these narrator is speaking in the point of view is that of the world's nations and rulers of this world section of verses 1 to 3 next section, God the father speaking though his words are introduced by the narrator as well.

You have his point of view is over against the rebellious words of the nation.

That section is verses four through 6/3 section contains the words of the Lord Jesus Christ almost exclusively his words is verses seven through nine. And finally, the narrator comes in again with words of warning and admonition that wraps up Psalm verses 10 to 12 let's take it one at a time and much of the classical scholarship.

The concerns Psalms scholarship by such distinguished and influential scholars as Herman Gunkel, German Bullwinkle Scandinavian mother German name. These are the Psalm is regarded as a royal Psalm or as it is sometimes called a coronation song. The scholars mean by that is that the Psalm was slot intended to be messianic though we may choose to read it that way mostly early church obviously did that.

It was originally written of King David, or a descendent of King David was a kind of Psalm that would be composed and sung on the occasion of one of these kings coronation sometime so it's argue that was a ceremony that was repeated annually or periodically and so what is said here is really of an earthly monarch asked the question, however, I think it's an important one is rebellion described in this Psalm the rebellion of the rulers of this world, against the Lord's anointed really a rebellion against King David or one of his successors. The argument on behalf of the malic scholarly opinion is of two kinds, and it's generally like this in one hand, they say we find Psalms like this coronation poems or hymns and other ancient literature follow the same format the same sort of thing is said those forms were obviously written for earthly monarch slot, wine, messiahs, and if that is true.

Well obviously that's what it was used for in Jewish circles as well say I question that I find there kind of myopia that sometimes often like scholars dollars could be magnificent in their examination of details and their extremely helpful in that, but sometimes as we say they miss the forest for the trees is quite possible. Indeed, I think that's exactly what is happened in this case to examine a song like this and compare it minutely with great scholarly position with the literature you find in other cultures and say, in consequence, you're dealing with exactly the same thing and missed the fact that it is quite possible the data form that exists and is used in another way and use it for another purpose entirely see just because Hume of this nature would be a coronation him for a Babylonian monarch. For example, an earthly king doesn't say anything about the way Jewish writer would use the same form in the context of Jewish religion, Jewish writer wanted to write him in praise of the Messiah and his eternal rule that would be more natural than to borrow the first form of a coronation him from one of these other cultures very fact that you borrow the form doesn't mean that the content or the object of that hymn is the same at all. So that doesn't hold second argument carries a bit more weight and that is that the details of the Psalm correspond to the Oracle that was brought to King David by Nathan the prophet we have that in the second book of Samuel the seventh chapter, verses eight through 16. Nathan comes to David with an Oracle from God to tell them that God is establishing his throne is going to bless him and then he's going to establish his throne forever and that one is going to sit upon. It is going to rule forever and ever. Well, does that mean therefore if there are parallels between this that this hymn is written to David because the Oracle was given to David again. I don't think that follows the begin with. If you study it carefully and find that they parallels's are not all that exact prior to Bobby's references. What is perhaps even more significant when you study the Oracle that Nathan brought David you find that it falls into two parts of the first part that refers to David and that contains language that is quite appropriate for an earthly king.

The second part speaks of this eternal rule will never be overthrown really does not refer to an earthly monarch that has to be referring to a divine Messiah which, in my reading of the chapter David himself recognized because immediately after that of David's response. He says the Lord. That is just not natural to a man.

In other words, he knew that something was being promised here that was greater than human origin or ability and so he referred it to a divine Messiah as well. It is significant that the greatest parallels between the Oracle to David by Nathan in the second Psalm in the second portion of the Oracle rather than the first. I would argue you say that the proper way to understand this is to realize that it is truly a rebellion of the rulers of this earth and deep humanity in general against the Lord and against his anointed is very important because if we approach it merely as an ancient him having to do with an ancient King really doesn't have much bearing upon our situation today to extract from it. We have to say well it referred to an ancient King but there are principles where perhaps we can use today.

Maybe in a secondary sense. We can apply it to Jesus approach it in that way, but you really miss the force of what this is about what this is describing is how men and women shake their fist in the face of God says I am the king and I have established my king Jesus, he's going to rule I have given him the kingdoms of this earth for his possession. Men and women shake their fist in God's face and say we will not have this man to rule over us is the nature of the human heart Charles Haddon Spurgeon, a Baptist preacher had it right when he said we have in these first three verses a description of the hatred of human nature against the Christ of God world doesn't think of itself. That way you don't understand the world in which we live until you recognize that at his heart. Our world is dead set against the rule of God is what sin is sin is saying to God I will not have you ruled in my life.

I'm going to do it my way and so that's what Psalm describes very appropriate Psalm like that that would appear at the very beginning of the Psalter to alert us what we are like what the nations are like, and oneness in order that we might proceed in a different way entirely. Now that's the first stanza the second by God the father speaks in the question being dealt with here is the reaction of the Almighty to the rebellion of the nations here.

These rulers, these kings of the earth were shaking their fist in God's face saying let's break their chains and stroll off the reign of God in his anointed, throw off their fetters and God responds. Interesting how he responds. God doesn't even get up from his throne. See what's going on doesn't look over the ramparts of heaven behind the gray bull laxity set up to see how powerful these rebellious nations are hard to analyze the strike to see whether he has sufficient arms invited his disposal to resist this onslaught against the sovereignty and the wedding of the sword he just sits there and he laugh.

He laughs the folly of human beings would do such a thing.

It is not a nice laugh is the only place in the Bible as far as I know it says that God laughs is not a nice laugh. It's a laugh scorn which is made very clear in the second half of the verse parallelism. Remember the one explains the other one enthroned in heaven laughs is laugh is a laugh of scorn because it says the Lord scoffs at them and he rebukes them in his anger when he does is announce a decree in his decree is this a fact I have established my king in Zion. God is not threatened by a rebellion, God is not disturbed by our sin on says I am God will I do is what will prevail.

I have established my king, King Jesus and King Jesus will rule really very foolish thing for men and women to think they can fight against the Almighty people tried one late period of history in which that was practiced was hidden.

The early church for the Roman emperors all their might, tried to unite against God. One of them was the Emperor Diocletian. He lived from 245 to 313 A.D. is a great flow of Christianity had struck a metal coin in his honor bearing his image, in which on one side it said the name of Christianity is being extinguished is by Diocletian is very powerful as a monarchy extended the Empire westward in Spain and there in Spain in the far reaches of the Empire.

We set up a monument there still around date or two of them and the monuments have on them. An inscription that reads like this Diocletian Jovian Max Meehan Herculaneum Cesar is a gusty for having extended the Roman Empire in the East and the West and for having extinguished the name of Christians who brought the Republic to ruin yellow and has the same long name and it says for having everywhere abolished the superstition of Christ power.

Having extended the worship of the gods. You know the story. Diocletian did not abolish Christianity as a matter of fact, that very time Christianity was becoming stronger than ever and Jesus Christ the King was extending his rule in the world is Janet.

He was destined ultimately to overthrow even the thrones of the Caesars one of the writers of the Psalms. William Plummer is an interesting little summary of the history of this period of the Roman Empire is worth reading me share it with you quoting him exactly 30 Roman emperors, governors of provinces and others in high office or distinguish themselves by their zeal and bitterness in persecuting the early Christians. One became speedily deranged. After some atrocious cruelty. One was slain by his own son. One became blind the eyes of one started out of his head.

One was drowned when was strangled.

One died in the miserable captivity one fell dead in a manner that will not air recital. One died of so loathsome a disease of several of his physicians were put to death because they couldn't abide the stench that filled his room to committed suicide third attempted it had to call for help to finish the work. Five were assassinated by their own people or servants. Five others died.

The most complex located miserable of death. Several of them died from an untold complication of diseases, eight were killed in battle or after having been taken prisoners.

One of them was Julia who was known as Julian the apostate, and that days of his prosperity. He is said to appointed his dagger to heaven, defying the son of God whom he commonly called scorn. The Galilean when he was wounded in battle saw that it was all over with him.

He gathered up his clotted blood and threw it into the air, exclaiming thou hast conquered, O thou Galilean, so it is so is the fate of so will be the fate of all who set themselves against the Lord and his anointed down.

The third section of the song.

The Lord himself speaks, he says, I will proclaim the decree of the Lord said to me or my son, today I have become your father scholar to look upon this as a coronation Saul that is is a him referring only to an earthly ruler regard. This is something that was said of the Jewish kings on the occasion of their coronation certain way in a certain sense a bad day they were adopted by God, became his son earthly representative things wrong that a course aside from the fact that that is never said he did and alluded to, or suggested in any way. In the Old Testament that anything like that ever happened during the drama that aside from that very basic observation is that that is not the way these words are used in the rest of the Bible you know the words. You are my son, because they occur several times in the New Testament always of the Lord Jesus Christ twice during his lifetime. There was a voice from heaven, which God spoke and identified them in precisely this way by this quotation. When was on the occasion of his baptism, John the Baptist was there baptized Jesus, a voice came from heaven saying this is my beloved son in whom I am well pleased. And again, on the occasion of the Transfiguration.

Peter and John were there.

They said foolish things. Cloud came secured Lord from their side and then the voice from the cloud came saying this is my beloved son in whom I am well pleased to hear the him other words, New Testament's own interpretation of these words is to relate them to Jesus and in the same way that x-rays today have become your father. This is quoted by the apostle Paul in the sermon that we have in acts 13 section I referred to earlier. Here he says today I have become your father, and he prefers it to the resurrection. In other words when he says today is not referring to in theology is called the eternal generation of the sun that is the nature of the Trinity going back to eternity past, but he's referring to the resurrection and the sense that as it says in Colossians C became on that day, the firstborn from the dead is what it seems to be referring to, but in any case, it is all Jesus like you to notice something about verses 8 9/10 of those verses. Ask of me and I will make the nations your inheritance, the ends of the earth your possession you will rule them with an iron scepter. You will dash them to pieces like pottery that is in the future tense is it you look back to verse six, you find it is in the past and God says I have installed my King on Zion, my holy hill.

What is that mean what's an example here in the Psalms of the same thing we find in Hebrews where the author of Hebrews, referring to another Psalm the eighth Psalm referring to that rule of Christ where it says all things are put under him says, but as yet we see not all things put under him. God is established in Zion. He is the King of Kings and Lord of lords, but we live in a period of history in which the nations are still in rebellion resisting his rule and shaking their fists in God's face. What that means possibly apply it practically is that we have the great responsibility of taking that message of the rule of Christ and extending it into the world. This is the missionary challenge is what were told to do or where to go where to all nations were to go do so in the authority of Jesus Christ and somebody gave us the great commission is that all authority is committed on the me. Therefore go and is going to all nations proclaim my name teaching people.

Everything I have taught you baptizing those were converted in the name of the father and the son of the Holy Spirit in remembering that I am with you always, even on the ends of the earth that does the Lord speaking and that is what we have to do.

Arianne sighed in his study of this law has an interesting comment. He said every time I go into missionary meeting were many missionary meetings in his day money that he attended. We have somewhat less of them today, but for many of that day is every time I go into missionary meeting or missionary service. I think there should be written on the wall and great big letters. This verse ask of me and I will make the nations your inheritance, the ends of the earth your possession is what he was saying is this is the will of God that Jesus should reign our responsibility is to take that message and to proclaim him until people of every tribe and every nation hear the name of Jesus, and bow down. That's a challenge that you need to hear we live in a time in which the gospel is gone forth powerfully. We have had long long. In the missionary movement and people of gone widely throughout the world, but there are many many tribal groups, many nations, many people many cities, many communities, many tribes where the name of Jesus Christ is not known challenge process to take that name of Jesus to them to proclaim him. What a joy that is to say we live in an age when and if we follow the guidance of the world we live in ourselves we say look here to enjoy it. Let's just take it as a Thompson away waste our lives in things and will pass away when challenge. What a joy it is to hear that. Take the challenge of the gospel. The name of Christ. Other people see them by the power of the Holy Spirit come to believe in Jesus as their Savior and so passed from death to life and into that realm where and what we would call millions and millions of years from now they will be with him in glory, singing praises to the Lord, what your life counts on to something that really matters. That's the way to do it when we come to the very last section we have here at the end. Well, we have the words of the narrator again. But you know I'm inclined to think since the narrator himself is not identified that Perry on-site might be right. What he says.

Here we hear from the third person of the Trinity. This is the Holy Spirit speaking and he says all while the clients beautiful urgent lovely sound. It is see how it goes. The beginning of the song the nations are waging against God so angry they can even hold their voices down. They actually are shouting among themselves.

The angry are they that God would try to impose his rule on them.

Second section, God is laughing at them and scorned in the third section, Jesus Christ is speaking here at the end, the Holy Spirit applies it quietly and says to the Kings why is cadence. Be warned rulers of the earth. Serve the Lord with fear. Rejoice with trembling. Kiss the son he means in humble submission, lest he be angry and you be destroyed in your way. His wrath can flare up in a moment. I'm glad this is a day of grace. That's the tone, the Holy Spirit takes wrath of God is going to flareup greatly in the final day. All of the wickedness and ungodliness of men will be judged. The Scriptures teach that from beginning to end. It is not a pleasant thought is taught. This is a day of grace Holy Spirit is not shouting in this day Holy Spirit, not even threatening Holy Spirit is warning Holy Spirit warns us Holy Spirit, says therefore you Kings.

Be wise. The question is, are we wise we wise with spiritual wisdom. We say things they really are.

Do we respond to an appeal Holy Spirit says be warns you rulers of the earth are we warned warned against highways and byways are contrary to God and his Christ, we are ever going our own way were sitting with impunity, indulging the flash for flaunting his laws warns, says the spirit in order that what we might serve the Lord with fear. That is, with reverence and rejoice yes in our salvation, but nevertheless with trembling above all, we might kiss the son, and submission. One place I came across a bit of whimsical survives the kind of things you often found the Puritan preachers in which they asked the question how and where are we to kiss them for me to kiss his cheek. Judas kissed his cheek. We to kiss the hem of his garment.

Yes, maybe that perhaps would kiss his hand if we do that the Puritan preacher recognizes that hand is reached out toward us that it bears the Prince of the nails as he suffered and died in our place. That's the one were to submit two months to tyrants that we could be that monster harsh overlord know there has been plenty of Aladdin history to submit to that blessed Lord Jesus Christ who died for you suffering the punishment of your sin, you might be delivered from it didn't come as a free man or woman into the kingdom of his grace. That's why the Solomons as it does blessed are all who take refuge in him where you find refuge from the wrath of Almighty God is only one place you find refuge of the cross of Jesus Christ spray father were thankful that the Lord Jesus Christ himself has provided us with that refuge. We thank you that he is the king but is also the Savior is the Lord, but he is also the shepherd who has sought and found his own master father that in this hour by that same power which she has reached out to save others. He might draw more and that the gospel match they might find their refuge in him and bow in humble adoration.

He deserves it all. He is the Savior. He is the blessed Jesus and he has been set upon his Hill in Zion. Father blessed. The song was the study to our hearts. Jesus, thank you for listening to this message from the Bible study our listener supported ministry of the alliance of confessing Evangelicals. The alliance is a coalition of pastors, scholars and churchmen who hold to the historic creeds and confessions of the reformed faith and who proclaim biblical doctrine in order to foster a reformed awakening in today's church.

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