God Hath Anointed Thee Above Thy Companions
But of the Son He says, “Thy throne, O God, is forever and ever, and the righteous scepter is the scepter of His kingdom.”Thou hast loved righteousness and hated lawlessness; Therefore God, Thy God, hath anointed Thee With the oil of gladness above Thy companions.” Hebrews 1:8-9
The purpose of the book of Hebrews is to help the reader understand the things seen with the physical eye are temporal, the things seen with the eyes of the spirit, those are the eternal. To the logical mind then, the eternal things bear more weight and value than the temporal. Thus the superiority of Christ, and likewise, the church and the New Covenant, compared to angels, Moses, physical Israel, and the Old Covenant Law.
Here in the first chapter, the inspired writer of the Hebrew letter continues to fill in the faith picture of who Jesus Christ is through the brush strokes of contrast, utilized to highlight the superiority of Christ to the angelic host. Our text for this week is a quote from Psalms 45:6-7. “Thy throne, O God, is forever and ever; a scepter of uprightness is the scepter of Thy kingdom. Thou hast loved righteousness, and hated wickedness; therefore God, Thy God, has anointed Thee with the oil of joy above Thy fellows.”
Verses addressed to the Great King
Psalm 45 is not only a Messianic psalm, but a marriage song, a song of love at its essence. Since it prefigures the Christ, this psalm then has to do with Christ and His church.
The Bright One
The early verses in Psalm 45 describe the striking beauty and graceful words of this great King. The NASB rendering of “Thou art fairer than the sons of men” really doesn’t do justice to what the Hebrew is literally conveying. There is a reduplication of the same Hebrew word yaphah, which literally means “to be bright” (interesting, eh?) but is typically translated as “beautiful”. So rather than “fairer”, it should read “Thou art beautiful, more beautiful than the sons of men”. Considering that Isaiah let us know that in the flesh Jesus wasn’t anything special to look at (Isa. 53:2), this has to be a description of one looking upon Christ’s beauty from a spiritual perspective, the kind that would stun and amaze. Where would that occur? In the heavenly realm. Again, the tie in to the early context of Hebrews 1:1 up to and including our text for today synchronizes perfectly. To behold Christ’s beauty is to behold Him in glory. “Thou art bright, brighter than the sons of men.”
The Mighty One
The next few verses (vss 3-5) present a prefigure of Christ’s victory as the Mighty One, the Psalmist seeing the Great King girding on the sword, adorned in splendor and majesty, going forth conquering, riding victoriously, the instruments of His power being truth, humility and righteousness. His enemies fall before Him as His arrows pierce them. What do these prophetic utterances communicate other than an obvious allusion to Christ’s victory over death and the compelling power of the gospel as it’s proclaimed. The gospel pierced the hearts of those who had been His enemies and caused them to fall before Him as His first converts (Acts 2:37). There is similar terminology to that of the Psalmist found in the book of revelation regarding Christ riding victoriously (Rev. 19:16)
The Anointed One
We now arrive at our quoted text for today. It’s obvious the Psalmist speaks of the throne of God (Elohiym), that which truly “is forever and ever.” This eternal throne is located in heaven. The scepter He bears is one of righteousness. Unlike the large majority of earthly rulers, including those kings in Israel, this King will not mistreat His subjects or act wickedly towards them. He will use the ruling scepter to be their intercessor to right that which has been wronged. This God (son) will be anointed by His God (Father) above all his companions in the heavenly realm.
When was Christ ‘given’ the throne in heaven? When He had made purification of sins, then He sat at the right hand of the majesty on high (Heb. 1:3). Christ’s life and His substitutionary death on our behalf demonstrated His love for righteousness, as well as how He hated wickedness. All done willingly as a mediator of the Father’s eternal plan. On earth, Christ had been anointed with the Holy Spirit. However, His righteous service to the Father garnered the heavenly anointing, designating Him as the great eternal King in heaven. Definitely superior, amen? All this has been written and preserved, offering further scriptural proof to validate who Jesus Christ is, and His superiority to the angels. God has anointed Thee above Thy companions!
The Groom and His Bride
The remainder of Psalm 45 then presents the King in with His queen, with terminology symbolic of the proceedings of an ancient marriage. Psalm 45: 10-17 are for the church to read and understand how she is perceived by the eternal King. She is adorned in the most valuable of ancient gold, that of Ophir. She is one who has listened and inclined her ear (heard the gospel), left her people (came out of the world), bowed before her Lord, and now in her beauty is considered desirable by Him. This “daughter” will be all glorious within, be led to the King along with her virgin companions (the redeemed) who follow, brought to His palace (in heaven) and into His presence. Read the Psalm, it’ll help you to know who Jesus is, and who you are in Jesus. Amen.