How Do We Know Psalm 2 Really Is Prophesying of Jesus?
One Scripture interpretation tip is always good to remember. It says:
"The New Testament is in the Old concealed, the Old is in the New revealed."
The deeper one gets into Scripture, the more this boggles the mind. What this tells us is that YHWH spent millennia setting the stage for the Coming of Messiah, using multiple authors over that time to bring us The Paper Trail to beat all paper trails.
Or Papyrus Trails, if you prefer.
Now, to non-scholars like you and me, not all Messianic Scripture texts are as immediately identifiable as say, Psalm 22 or Psalm 110. Thankfully, scholars have already drafted a list of Messianic Psalms for us which we can easily find online. But we have much more than that which we can glean from the text itself and the rest of the Bible.
One quick hint is the phrase "the Lord and His Anointed One" in verse 2. The word "messiah" means "anointed one," and since Jesus was recognized as Messiah in the New Testament, we know we are on the right track. But we cannot stop there because the Bible uses the term "anointed one" for persons other than Jesus.
So when we can, we turn to our Number One Top Source for Bible interpretation: Jesus.
Jesus Himself was a central source for the Apostles and New Testament writers of Messianic prophecy.
We see this in Luke 24, where Jesus appears to two of His disciples on the day of His resurrection. It was 3 days after Jesus' crucifixion and death, and the two were still amazed and confounded, wondering about all the things that had taken place, despite the fact that Jesus had told them all in advance what was going to happen. Jesus said,
25 “... How unwise and slow you are to believe in your hearts all that the prophets have spoken!
26 Didn’t the Messiah have to suffer these things and enter into His glory?”
27 Then beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, He interpreted for them the things concerning Himself in all the Scriptures." Luke 24
Hours later, Jesus appears to all of the 11 Apostles and tells them,
44 “... These are My words that I spoke to you while I was still with you—that everything written about Me in the Law of Moses, the Prophets, and the Psalms must be fulfilled.” Luke 24
Let's remind ourselves of what Jesus told them in verse 44:
44 "... everything written about Me in the Law of Moses, the Prophets, and the Psalms must be fulfilled." Luke 24
It was the Greatest of all the Rabbis Yeshua ha Mashiach Who was their Bible Teacher on Messianic prophecy, and the Holy Spirit Himself Who afterwards took on the job of Tutor, to ensure that they wouldn't get it wrong.
And His one and only source for all of this information was the Old Testament. Everything that had just transpired over the previous 33 years of His life had been prophesied hundreds, sometimes more than a thousand years in advance.
That is why the apostles quote the Psalm in the Book of Acts, in reference to how the Romans, Gentiles and Jews had all rejected the Messiah:
24 When they heard this, they all raised their voices to God and said, “Master, You are the One who made the heaven, the earth, and the sea, and everything in them.
25 You said through the Holy Spirit, by the mouth of our father David Your servant:
Why did the Gentiles rage
and the peoples plot futile things?
26 The kings of the earth took their stand
and the rulers assembled together
against the Lord and against His Messiah.
27 “For, in fact, in this city both Herod and Pontius Pilate, with the Gentiles and the people of Israel, assembled together against Your holy Servant Jesus, whom You anointed...
And why Paul is able to quote Psalm 2 in reference to Jesus here:
33 "God has fulfilled this for us, their children, by raising up Jesus, as it is written in the second Psalm:
You are My Son;
today I have become Your Father." Acts 13:33
And finally, Jesus Himself quotes Psalm 2 as fulfilled in the very last Book of the Bible, the Book of Revelation:
27 "... and he will shepherd them with an iron scepter; he will shatter them like pottery— just as I have received this from My Father." Revelation 2:27
The Anointed One of Psalm 2
Jesus Teaches About His Coming Death