Missiology Through Scripture – Psalm 2:7-10

“I will tell of the decree: The Lord said to me, ‘You are my Son; today I have begotten you. Ask of me, and I will make the nations your heritage, and the ends of the earth your possession. You shall break them with a rod of iron and dash them in pieces like a potter’s vessel.’ Now therefore, O kings, be wise; be warned, O rulers of the earth.” – Psalm 2:7-10

The authorship of this royal psalm is attributed to David in Acts 4:25. King David recalls what was said by the Lord at his coronation (2 Sam 7:8-16). The words, “You are my son” are paraphrased in Mat 3:17 and referenced in Acts 13:33 and Heb 1:5 and 5:5. This is a psalm which has both kingly and messianic implications.

God, the divine King, is contrasted with the sinful kings of the world. The great and perfect King and the self-serving rulers of the earth are not seen as enemies but are working together for the souls of the nations. This is not a threat levied on kingdoms. The Savior will use the sovereigns and their resources to reach every tribe. Bonaventure stated of this passage, “A superior is a guide for the flock committed to his care, and if he errs, the flock is confused and led astray. As the eye is the light of the body, so the shepherd is the light of the flock entrusted to him.”[1] The week kings will serve the Good Shepherd, so he calls his elect to himself.

The nations already belong to Christ. It is a forgone and foretold reality. Jesus, in his perfect time, will call his elect from every nation to himself. It is therefor prudent, suggest this psalm, for the potentates to submit to the will of the Master. There are no closed countries which are out of reach of the gospel. The Lord will reach his people in every nation. As fulltime servants of the gospel we are to proceed with confidence knowing the will of the Lord is certain and when he appoints, every king will submit. Missionaries should never doubt the call to the nations but rejoice in the will of the Lord. The nations and the governments over them will bow to him.


[1] Saint Bonaventure, The Virtues of a Religious Superior (De Sex Alis Seraphim), trans. Sabinus Mollitor (St. Louis, MO; London: B. Herder, 1921), 65–66.

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