he has done it!
This week -- our last week of classes for spring semester -- let me offer this brief reflection on the death and resurrection of our Lord Jesus, taken from Psalm 22, which was written a thousand years before Christ died upon the cross.
THE SUFFERING KING (Ps 22). A thousand years after David wrote this psalm of lament, his royal descendant, Jesus, spoke the first verse of it while he hung upon the Roman cross. Of course, that doesn't mean only that one verse, but rather the whole of the psalm, is about him. The suffering of the Messiah is plainly set forth, as it is also in Isaiah 53. David describes in detail what happened at the cross of Christ. At first reading of this psalm, we observe that David seems to be describing a rejection of his own kingship, and that is likely the context of its writing. But then we notice things that never happened to David... the dividing of clothing by lots, the pierced hands and feet, and the physical condition of his parched thirst, his bones, etc. He is suffering not for his unrighteousness, but for righteousness' sake, and is experiencing abandonment by God at the same time.
HE HAS DONE IT! (22:31). Psalm 22 ends in triumph (v 27-31). The suffering King will yet experience deliverance from God, and he (alive) will give praise to God in the midst of the congregation (v 22-26; cf Isa 53:10-11). Because of his suffering -- and God's vindication of him -- people from around the world (Gen 12:3) will turn to the Lord. He will rule the nations (v 28; cf Ps 2). Those who fear, or who are facing death (v 29) now have confidence (Heb 2:15). And the message (or gospel) of this suffering-now-triumphant King will be for the blessing of the generations to come (v 30-31). The peoples of the world will see that salvation is accomplished by God's righteousness (not ours) and that it is a finished and completed work: "he has done it" (v 31). And so, we hear Jesus proclaim, "It is finished!" (John 19:30). The psalm which begins with, "why have you forsaken me?" ends with "He has done it"!
What remains to be done? Only this: the ongoing proclamation of the gospel to all the nations, along with complete confidence in our all-sufficient Savior! We now live in the sure and certain hope of his return.