Thursday, February 4, 2016


This is oft quoted in the New Testament as prophetic of Christ's passion.  Indeed, much of the Psalm is nothing but prophetic of Christ's sufferings and redemption.  But I also found in Adam Clarke a fascinating reference to unicorns!  Not pretty prancing ones either.  Hmm.  We'll get to that...There is also a jewel I'd never before seen.  I'll share it in a bit.  Here are some of the verses that are used in Matthew: 

Psalm 21:1
"My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?
Far from my deliverance are the words of my groaning.
(more literally, 'why are thou so far from helping me,
from the words of my roaring?')"
(Matthew 27:46)
There goes that image of Christ dying quietly on the cross.  He may have been a lamb when they led Him away, but He was a man on the cross in torture.  Then there was the abuse of the mocking...

Psalm 22:7-8
"All who see me sneer at me (mock me);
They separate with the lip ('make mouths at me');
They wag the head saying,
'Commit yourself to the Lord;
let Him deliver him;
Let Him rescue him,
because He delights in him.'"
"All they that see me laugh me to scorn:
they shoot out the lip, 'they shake the head,
saying 'He trusted on the Lord that he would deliver him,
let him deliver him,
seeing he delighted in him."

Matthew 27:39-44
"And those passing by were hurling  (blaspheming) abuse at Him, wagging their heads, and saying 'You who are going to destroy the temple and rebuild it in three days, save Yourself!  If You are the Son of God, come down from the cross.'  In the same way the chief priests also, along with the scribes and elders, were mocking Him, and saying, 'He saved others; He cannot save Himself.  He is the King of Israel; let Him now come down from the cross, and we shall believe in Him.  He trust in God; Let Him deliver Him now, if He takes pleasure in Him; for He said, 'I am the son of God.'  And the robbers also who had been crucified with Him were casting the same insult at Him."
Psalm 22:16
"They pierced my hands and my feet.
I can count all my bones."

Psalm 22:14-15
"I am poured out like water,
And all my bones are out of joint;
My heart is like wax;
It is melted within me (my inward parts).
My strength is dried up like a potsherd,
And my tongue cleaves to my jaws;
And Thou dost lay me in the dust of death."

"This may refer to the violent extension of His body when the whole of its weight hung upon the nails which attached His hands to the transvers beam of the Cross.  The body being thus extended, the principal bones became prominent, and easily discernible." (Adam Clarke) 
The actor who played Christ in the movie, "The Passion of the Christ," very nearly died, was rushed by ambulance, and hospitalized after shooting the scene where he hung on the cross.  It was brutal even without the nails in his hands and feet.  But oh how he drew near to the Lord Jesus because of it!

John 19:28-30
"After this, Jesus, knowing that all things had already been accomplished, in order that the Scripture might be fulfilled, said 'I am thirsty.'  A jar full of sour wine was stranding there; so they put a sponge full of the sour wine upon a branch of hyssop,
and brought t up to His mouth.
When Jesus therefore had received the sour wine, He said, 
'It is finished!'  And He bowed His head, and gave up His spirit." 
"And when they had come to a place called Golgotha,
which means Place of a Skull,
they gave Him wine to drink mixed with gall;
and after tasting it, He was unwilling to drink.
And when they had crucified Him,
they divided up His garments among themselves,
casting lots."
Matthew 27:33-35

Then there were the gamblers.  It is doubted that this was David's experience, but purely prophetic as were the above verses.  They stared upon His nakedness and shame, with his garments being divided up at the foot of the cross, the perfect Lamb of God.  In the Garden, man was naked without shame until sin entered into the world.  Now Jesus bore it all upon the cross.
Psalm 22:17-18
"The look, stare at me;
They divide my garments among them,
And for my clothing they cast lots."
John 19:23-25
"The soldiers therefore, when they had crucified Jesus,
took His outer garments and made four parts,
a part to every soldier and also the tunic;
now the tunic was seamless, woven in one piece. 
They said therefore to one another,
'Let us not tear it, but cast lots for it,
to decide whose it shall be'; that the Scripture might be fulfilled, '
'They divided My outer garments among them,
and for My clothing they cast lots.'"  Therefore the soldiers did these things."
Okay, here's the jewel...

PSALM 22:20
"Deliver my soul from the sword."
Okay, at first glance it is a cry David could have made.  It is a cry Jesus could have made upon the cross when they pierced His side.  But going back to the original language is stunningly beautiful...

"save me alive or raise me again." 
Here's the precious part, the word 'soul' here means
'My darling,' 'My only one.'

The only human being that was ever produced since the creation, even by the power of God itself, without the agency of man.  Adam the first was created out of the dust of the earth;--that was his mother (dust).  God was the Framer.  Adam the second was produced in the womb of the virgin: that was his mother.  But that which was conceived in her was by the power of the Holy Ghost, hence the man Christ Jesus is the ONLY Son of God; God is His Father and He is His ONLY ONE.  (Adam Clarke)  It is exquisite suffering that God's Son, the One He called His Darling, His only one, God had to turn away from.  But not forever for indeed, he did raise Him again.  Think upon these verses in the Psalm now...

This is the Graff Diamond.  He paid $43 million for it. 
Our Jewel is priceless.  This is mere pittance in comparison.

Psalm 22:8-11 
"Yet Thou art He who didst bring me forth from the womb;
Thou didst make me trust when upon my mother's breasts.
(Yea, for nursing moms, including Mary)
Upon Thee I was cast from birth (womb);
Thou hast been my God from my mother's womb.
Be not far from me, for trouble is near;
For there is none to help."
Abba, Daddy, "Help!"
His Father had to turn away, but
His mother was at the foot of the cross watching His agony.

Okay, I promised you unicorns.  Adam Clarke brought them up, I didn't.  What do you see in your imagination when you think of unicorns?  Well, these were violent, attacking, goring unicorns.  Scary, huh!  

Psalm 22:21
"Save me from the lion's mouth;
And from the horns of the wild oxen..."
Well, I guess from more literal translations, is 'from the UNICORNS!'  The lion probably refers to the Jews, and us Gentiles get to be the unicorns.  Actually, it was a Roman soldier who welded the sword that pierced Christ's side, not a Jew, but a Gentile. 

"There is no quadruped or land animal with one horn only, except the rhinoceros: but there is a marine animal, the narwall...a species of whale, that has a very fine curled ivory horn, which projects from its snout.  One in my own museum measures seven feet four inches, and is very beautiful.  Some of these animals have struck their horn through the side of a ship: and with it they easily transfix the whale, or any such animal.  The old Psalter says, 'The unicorn es ane of the prudest best that es, so that he wil dye for dedeyn if he be haldyn ogayne his wil.'"  (Adam Clarke) I wish I could completely understand that Old English.  It might give us a clue.  (Isn't it interesting that this Bible commentator from the 1700's had his own museum!If he could have found a unicorn, he'd probably would have had one mounted there.)

Did Jesus know something we didn't know?  Did unicorns once roam the earth and He thought back to them?  They wouldn't have hurt a flea before the flood, but after that animals got testy and killed and ate each other.  Perhaps that's why unicorns went into extinction but the beasts such as the rhino and the narwall are alive and well.  Which one do you think was the one the Psalmist referred to, actually Christ referred to?  It was the picture of one suffering on the cross knowing full well He was going to be pierced with a sword, so instead, he imagined the beasts that once He had played with in Creation turning on Him, piercing Him.  It's fantastical!

Hmm.  Did they know something back them that we don't?

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