M Wilcock in his commentary suggests that “Psalm 1 and probably Psalm 2 … [are] the inspired introduction to the whole book [of Psalms].” He continues, “Psalm 1 sings of the choice between two ways that each of us has to make; Psalm 2 unveils the cosmic confrontation which that choice reflects.” He continues, “…the private world of the first psalm opens up into the public world of the second; the personal is followed by the cosmic; in airport terminology, one is ‘domestic’ and the other ‘international’. Psalm 1 talks the everyday language of wisdom books…while Psalm 2, raising its eyes to world affairs beyond the control of ordinary people, speaks as the books of the prophets do of a great God in control behind the scenes.” (see references # 5).
One of the places we visited on our recent trip was Mount Buffalo situated in the alpine region of Victoria. Its height is 1723 metres and the view from the lookout is pretty spectacular.
Psalm 2 reminds me a little of this experience of being above (in the ‘heavenlies’) and looking down to where we normally live and observe life from (on the earth). Things look very different from this higher perspective!
So, in the context of this psalm, there is a “rebellion” taking place amongst the nations of the earth. There is “ranting and raving” and “foolish plots” as well as “scheming and conferring” going on. In our days we are very aware of all these things happening, in the Middle East as well as in other regions of the world. This ‘rebellion’, or so it is said, is against what the instigators may call “rogue governments” or “infidels”, but here in this psalm the rebellion is seen to be “against the Lord Most High…against God and his Anointed King”. (Psalm 2:1-3)
On one hand, it’s hard to believe. What are these leaders of the nations thinking? Have they even considered who they are rebelling against and the implications of their futile activity? Well, certainly there is One who knows how crazy it all is and he laughs! Verse 4 says, “God–Enthroned merely laughs at them [at their arrogance], amused at their puny plans, mocking their madness!” (Psalm 2: 4 The Passion Translation)
I don’t know about you, but the thought of God laughing in derision at man’s arrogance is a bit disconcerting!
But on the other hand, we are not surprised by this arrogance. We see it every day, not only on an international scale, but sadly, at times, in our own lives. Maybe not a public “ranting and raving” against God, but more in a quiet ignoring of him and his ways, suggesting we can actually do life by ourselves. Despite what we profess to believe, it is all too easy to live as if there really is no God and his Anointed King. Sure, we acknowledge him on Sunday morning, but having done that, during the week it is all too easy to go on with ‘life as usual’.
If this sounds in the least bit familiar, then maybe we need some time out to reflect on Psalms 1 and 2 and allow God to do a spiritual health check on us. To raise us up to a higher place to enable us to see things as they really are in this world. How things are between his Anointed King and you. Then to teach us a submission and dependence upon him that brings us to the place of where we really “Serve and worship the awe-inspiring God. Recognize his greatness and bow before him, trembling with reverence in his presence.” (Psalm 2:11 The Passion Translation)
Father, too often in our lives we are earthbound in the way we see things. Help us to see the big picture of your sovereignty and our lives from your perspective. Help us then to respond in awe and worship, serving you, King Jesus, wholeheartedly. Amen.