Psalm 22 - Part 4 (series: Lessons on Psalms)

by John Lowe
(Woodruff, S.C.)

The thief on the cross said, “. . . Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom” (Luke 23:42). Christ says, “I’ll pay My vows”—“. . . Today shalt thou be with Me in paradise” (Luke 23:43). The redeemed shall be there to praise, and the thief also, because He was taking him with him that very day. Although he was a man unfit to even live down here, according to Rome’s standard, the Lord Jesus makes him fit for heaven by His death on the cross.

27 All the ends of the world shall remember and turn unto the LORD: and all the kindreds of the nations shall worship before thee.

The psalmist’s song of thanksgiving has not exhausted his poetic rapture. Though he has not yet experienced deliverance that he confidently hoped for is so great a thing that it will awaken distant peoples, pagan nations, even the dead, yes, and those still unborn, who shall pass on to succeeding generations the story of what God has done for him.

28 For the kingdom is the LORD'S: and he is the governor among the nations.

The psalmist invites those present to remember that Yahweh is, in fact, Lord of all the earth, so that they would tell people everywhere to remember that fact. Nor should we forget that the nations at the end of the earth were all Gentiles and not the chosen people of God.

29 All they that be fat upon earth shall eat and worship: all they that go down to the dust shall bow before him: and none can keep alive his own soul.

Scholars have had to agree that there are at least two interpretations of this verse:
a. Even all those who already sleep in the dust of death (that is, in the underworld, according to the thought of the day) will bow the knee to Him, though they have not been able to give themselves life.
b. All those who do not believe except in their own powers, who are too proud to bend before God, even these shall be saved.

Both the prosperous and the poor will submit to Him and find their satisfaction in His grace alone. Orthodox Jews close their religious services by quoting Zechariah 14:9—“And the LORD shall be king over all the earth: in that day shall there be one LORD, and his name one.”

30 A seed shall serve him; it shall be accounted to the Lord for a generation.

The word “seed” means that David is speaking here of generations to come. The blessings of the atonement and the kingdom will not be temporary but perpetual, from one generation to another. Three generations are listed here: a seed (Isa. 53:10{13]), a second generation and a people that shall be born. This reminds us of 2 Tim. 2:2: “And the things that thou hast heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also.” But the emphasis isn’t on what God’s children has done, but on the fact that the Lord did it all: “he hath done this!” (v. 31). “IT IS FINISHED” is what Jesus cried from the cross (John 19:30).


There is a seventh word; it is the last.

31 They shall come, and shall declare his righteousness unto a people that shall be born, that he hath done this.

“Unto a people that shall be born” includes you, my friend.

They shall declare His righteousness—not your righteousness, for God says it is filthy rags in His sight. How will they declare His righteousness? “That he hath done this.” Some would translate it, “It is finished,” the last word He spoke on the cross. And when He said it, it was only one word—“Tetelestai! Finished. Your redemption is a completed package, and He presents it to you wrapped up with everything in it. He doesn’t want you to being your do-it-yourself kit along. He does not need that. When He died on the cross, He provided a righteousness that would satisfy a holy God. All He asks of you is that you receive this passage, this gift of God, which is eternal life in Christ Jesus.

If you reject it, God must treat you as He treated His Son when He cried, “. . . My God, My God, why hast thou forsaken Me?” (Mark 15:34). I am not here to argue about the temperature of hell: it will be hell for any man forsaken by God. Jesus Christ went through it so that you might never have to utter that cry.

Psalm 22 reveals the heart of our Savior as He was made a sin offering in our behalf. He completed the transaction in triumph. He offers to us a finished redemption. We will never be worthy of it; we cannot earn it; we cannot buy it—we must receive it as a gift. Over two thousand years ago the Lord Jesus Christ did all that was needed to save us.

It is done. Tetelestai. FINISHED!


{1] (Isa. 53:10) Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in his hand.

{2] (Isaiah 52:14) As many were astonished at thee; his visage was so marred more than any man, and his form more than the sons of men:

{3] (Jer. 50:19) And I will bring Israel again to his habitation, and he shall feed on Carmel and Bashan, and his soul shall be satisfied upon mount Ephraim and Gilead.

{4] (Ps. 2:1-3) Why do the heathen rage, and the people imagine a vain thing? The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together, against the LORD, and against his anointed, saying, Let us break their bands asunder, and cast away their cords from us.

{5] (Acts 2:30) Therefore being a prophet, and knowing that God had sworn with an oath to him, that of the fruit of his loins, according to the flesh, he would raise up Christ to sit on his throne;

{6] (Rom. 13:4) For he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil.

{7] (Heb. 5:7) Who in the days of his flesh, when he had offered up prayers and supplications with strong crying and tears unto him that was able to save him from death, and was heard in that he feared;

{8] (Eph. 2:11) Wherefore remember, that ye being in time past Gentiles in the flesh, who are called Uncircumcision by that which is called the Circumcision in the flesh made by hands;

{9] (Gal. 3:26-29) For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus. And if ye be Christ's, then are ye Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise.

{10] (Rom. 4:24-25) But for us also, to whom it shall be imputed, if we believe on him that raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead; Who was delivered for our offences, and was raised again for our justification.

{11] (Isa. 25:6-9) And in this mountain shall the LORD of hosts make unto all people a feast of fat things, a feast of wines on the lees, of fat things full of marrow, of wines on the lees well refined. And he will destroy in this mountain the face of the covering cast over all people, and the veil that is spread over all nations. He will swallow up death in victory; and the Lord GOD will wipe away tears from off all faces; and the rebuke of his people shall he take away from off all the earth: for the LORD hath spoken it. And it shall be said in that day, Lo, this is our God; we have waited for him, and he will save us: this is the LORD; we have waited for him, we will be glad and rejoice in his salvation.

{12] (Lev. 7:15) And the flesh of the sacrifice of his peace offerings for thanksgiving shall be eaten the same day that it is offered; he shall not leave any of it until the morning.

{13] (Isa. 53:10) Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in his hand.

{14] (Mark 15:34) And at the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani? which is, being interpreted, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?

{15] (Job 3:24-26) For my sighing cometh before I eat, and my roarings are poured out like the waters. For the thing which I greatly feared is come upon me, and that which I was afraid of is come unto me. I was not in safety, neither had I rest, neither was I quiet; yet trouble came.

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