Psalm 24

Written by on June 5, 2023

The Psalm is titled A Psalm of David. Scholars think this Psalm may have been written upon the entrance of the Ark of the Covenant into Jerusalem during the reign of David (2 Samuel 6). The intention is to lead the people above the pomp of external ceremonies to a Holy life and faith in Christ. The Psalm concerns the kingdom of Jesus Christ, His providential kingdom, by which he rules the world in verses 1 and 2, the kingdom of grace, by which he rules in His church; concerning the subjects of that kingdom, their character and charter in verses 3 to 6 and the king of that kingdom and a summon to all to give him admission in verses 7 to 10.

The earth is the Lord’s, and all its fullness, the world and those who dwell therein. For he founded it upon the seas and established it upon the waters. Psalm 24:1-2

The opening verses of the Psalm assert the earth belongs to the Lord because he created it. God is so big and powerful that he put together the whole earth. Genesis 1 outlays the story that the eternal God spoke and made light and everything else in the world as we know it. He molded man into his image from dust. The earth is the Lord, including us and everything we own and love. We belong to God, and on the day he returns, he is not coming as an invader trying to conquer, but he will come as a king coming to take up his place.

Who may ascend into the hill of the Lord? Or who may stand in His holy place? He who has clean hands and a pure heart, who has not lifted up his soul to an idol, nor sworn deceitfully. He shall receive blessing from the Lord, and righteousness from the God of his salvation. This is Jacob, the generation of those who seek him, who seek his face. Selah. Psalm 24: 3-6

Though God made the whole majestic earth, there is a place in Him and in His presence that goes beyond just enjoying his creation. His holy place is a place of revelation and love in His being. It is a place of glory where true peace, perfection, and extravagant love exists. Entering into God’s sphere requires one to leave something at the altar, one also comes out with something sacred that is a blessing from the Lord. The first half, Verses 3 & 4, is about the law and what is required of us when entering God’s presence. The second half, verses 5 & 6, is about the promise bestowed on us when entering God’s presence. In the Old Testament, during the days of the Tabernacles, the people would go through the outer courts, sacrifice their offerings, wash in the lavers and the pools of water, and come into the presence of God. In the New Testament, through Christ’s death on the cross, he became our sacrifice, our ritual lamb, and our cleansing water. When we received His blood and put our faith on the cross, our hands become clean, our hearts become pure, and we turn our faces from the idols of this world to the one true God. We receive blessings and the righteousness of God through the sacrifice of the slain son of God.

Lift up your heads, O you gates! And be lifted up you everlasting doors! And the King of Glory shall come in. Who is this King of Glory? The Lord strong and mighty, the Lord mighty in battle. Lift up your heads, O you gates! Lift up, you everlasting doors! And the King of Glory shall come in. Who is this King of Glory? The Lord of hosts, He is the King of Glory. Selah Psalm 24: 7-10

To confess the Lord as king is to deny all other claims to sovereignty. It means that I am not the ruler of my own life that Christ is. Twice the psalmist asks the people to lift their heads to acknowledge the entrance of one who is noble, more supreme, and gracious than self. To raise one’s head at God’s entry is acknowledging God as God. The lifting of everlasting doors is to open ourselves to God and his Lordship in our life regardless of how heavy the doors of our hearts may be. God requires us to open up to him. He promises that he shall come in. They might seem heavy or impossible at times to lift, but God is mightier, fearsome in battle, and the Lord of hosts. As we seek him by making ourselves available to His presence and receiving the power of His blood, the gate of our hardened and stony hearts springs open, and we find freedom. He comes rushing in, overtaking our rejections, sin patterns, and numb hearts.

Selah means to stop and think about it. We take a break in His presence. We stand in his glory that is unmatched. Our responsibility in coming into the presence of God is simply this: we have to acknowledge the truth of who we are without Christ, receive the cleansing power of the blood, and walk boldly into the throne of grace and his presence.

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