In the first half of Psalm 24 we saw how David was probably taking the Ark of the Covenant up the temple mount and spoke on who could dwell with God forever. In the second half the ark is being placed within the Tabernacle. The imagery is the door of the Tabernacle opening to receive the Ark, God’s physical presence on earth. Like many passages in the Old Testament, this is merely a shadow or type of the true reality Psalm 24 is speaking of, the ascension of Christ to God’s right hand.
The command to open
Our first clue that this is about more than the earthly Tabernacle is the phrase “everlasting doors.” This can literally be translated as doors that are always, without end, or time out of mind. In other words, this is not referencing the tent flaps of the Tabernacle. It is referencing a gate that is older than time itself. Someone comes to this gate and commands it to be lifted. The imagery here is of the portcullis of a castle. It does not swing open; instead it is lifted up to allow entry. The One Who approaches the gate does not ask for entry; He demands it. He speaks with authority. He commands those within to open for Him so that He may enter.
Who makes this command?
The Speaker identifies Himself as the King of Glory. The imagery here is that the King of heaven has returned to His throne and demands that the gates of heaven be opened for Him to enter what is rightfully His own.
From within the gates the question is asked, “Who is this King of Glory?” As we look back to the original writing, we can see David describe this scene and those around him ask for a description of the King. This is not a question asked out of ignorance; no, it is a question asked to give David the opportunity to tell them more of the glory of the King. The angelic beings in this psalm ask this to give Jesus an opportunity to tell more of His glory.
The King’s answer
The answer that Jesus gives declares that He is Yahweh. There is no doubt; this conquering King is God Himself. He then declares His strength and might. These terms describe His power and valiance as a warrior. He reiterates that He is Yahweh Who is victorious in battle. The imagery here is that God Himself, Jesus Christ, has left heaven and come to earth. He has conquered His enemy and won the victory. He now returns and demands that heaven open so that He might take His rightful place at the Father’s right hand.
The echo of praise
As the gates open it is as if the choirs of heaven began to repeat what they have heard. They continue to proclaim Jesus and His victory as He takes His place next to the Father. He is Lord of armies, or Lord Sabaoth. He is the glorious King. David closes with Selah, instructing us to pause and meditate on these things.
Many professing Christians have lost sight of the power, majesty, and glory of Jesus Christ. This psalm gives us the vision of our victorious Savior that we desperately need. This vision is the antidote to fear and timidity. This vision of Christ propels us into bold proclamation of the Gospel. We do not serve a defeated Savior. We serve a victorious King! All heaven and earth bow to His will. His commands will be obeyed in heaven and on earth. His victory is certain and has already been won.
Will you repent of your fear and worry?
Will you trust in the power of the risen Christ and not the arm of flesh?
Will you bow the knee to Christ today?
Will you proclaim the power and majesty of Christ?