Psalm 22 (NIV) set to 6 Sucks Sex music for the album Sick Twisted Loving Jesus. The 22nd psalm is one of many ascribed to King David, who lived in the 10th Century BCE, and traditionally would have been sung to music. The Bible contains colorful accounts of David’s life and times in 3 two-part books, Samuel, Kings and Chronicles, and he is portrayed by many other biblical authors and figures as Israel’s greatest king and a man ‘after God’s own heart‘.
Listen free on SoundCloud
Purchase album or tracks at CD Baby
David is commonly remembered today as a charismatic leader who believed and obeyed God, bringing Northern Israel and Southern Judah together under a united monarchy, and establishing a golden age of prosperity and expanding borders, despite facing deep personal failings, and conflict with other nations and his own, as well as within his own family.
Archaelogy and critical Biblical scholarship have established that David was a real person, but he appears to have been only the southern tribal chieftain who composed psalms and took over Jerusulem, a small city at the time, never actually unifying the peoples of the land as the nation of Israel, which then split again following the death of his son Solomon. The accounts of David’s life and kingdom, though they may have basis in the records of his court, were embellished and mythologized as a Golden Age by later writers. If this is the case, this psalm is even more remarkable as prophecy.
It is not known for sure that Psalm 22 was written by David, but scholars agree it was written long before Jesus lived – the Septuagint translation into Greek was complete by 100 BCE. According to two Gospel accounts, Mark and Matthew, Jesus quoted Psalm 22’s opening lines on the cross: “My god, my god, why have you forsaken me?”
The first two thirds of the psalm are someone’s account of suffering, of being mocked and tortured to death. The last third is a glorious account of being alive in celebration with loved ones, praising God and bestowing blessings upon the people of the world.
I’m not the first person to notice the eerie parallels between Psalm 22 and the New Testament accounts of Christ’s crucifixion. The voice in the psalm; if it’s the Holy Spirit speaking through the psalmist, this is Christ describing his crucifixion, resurrection, ascension and gracious gift of salvation to all, about a thousand years before Jesus was born.
It’s likely these prophetic details weren’t lost on the Gospel writers who recorded them. For instance: Jesus quoting the psalmist’s lament to God; his hands and feet being pierced (see Wiki also); mocking by enemies who say, “He trusts in the Lord; let the Lord rescue him”; his garments being divided and lots cast for his clothing; his thirst, suffering, death by broken heart, and resurrection; in the choice of words and context created, revealing his status as man, deity, prophet, priest and king; the proclamation of his name, and the gift of salvation and eternal life to all the people in the world.
Note also the similarities to the Suffering Servant of Isaiah 52-53, with a significant difference – the theme of substitutionary atonement is stated and restated a dozen times in Isaiah, but in Psalm 22 it’s merely implicit, seen by knowing Jesus and considering this account in the context of his purpose.