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Psalms 110:1-2

Context
Psalm 110 1 

A psalm of David.

110:1 Here is the Lord’s proclamation 2  to my lord: 3 

“Sit down at my right hand 4  until I make your enemies your footstool!” 5 

110:2 The Lord 6  extends 7  your dominion 8  from Zion.

Rule in the midst of your enemies!

1 sn Psalm 110. In this royal psalm the psalmist announces God’s oracle to the Davidic king. The first part of the oracle appears in v. 1, the second in v. 4. In vv. 2-3 the psalmist addresses the king, while in vv. 5-7 he appears to address God.

2 tn The word נְאֻם (nÿum) is used frequently in the OT of a formal divine announcement through a prophet.

3 sn My lord. In the psalm’s original context the speaker is an unidentified prophetic voice in the royal court. In the course of time the psalm is applied to each successive king in the dynasty and ultimately to the ideal Davidic king. NT references to the psalm understand David to be speaking about his “lord,” the Messiah. (See Matt 22:43-45; Mark 12:36-37; Luke 20:42-44; Acts 2:34-35).

4 tn To sit at the “right hand” of the king was an honor (see 1 Kgs 2:19). In Ugaritic myth (CTA 4 v. 108-10) the artisan god Kothar-and Khasis is described as sitting at the right hand of the storm god Baal. See G. R. Driver, Canaanite Myths and Legends, 61-62.

sn The Lord’s invitation to the Davidic king to sit down at his right hand reflects the king’s position as the Lord’s vice-regent.

5 sn When the Lord made his covenant with David, he promised to subdue the king’s enemies (see 2 Sam 7:9-11; Ps 89:22-23).

6 tn Since the Lord is mentioned in the third person (note the use of the first person in v. 1), it is likely that these are the psalmist’s words to the king, not a continuation of the oracle per se.

7 tn The prefixed verbal form is understood here as descriptive-dramatic or as generalizing, though it could be taken as future.

8 tn Heb “your strong scepter,” symbolic of the king’s royal authority and dominion.



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