The Exodus Book of Psalms--Part 9
Apr 09, 2010
As I mentioned in Part 8 of this series (2 weeks ago), Psalm 59 is a Passover psalm. More specifically, it refers prophetically to the Second Passover. So it distinguishes between the believers and the unbelievers. In terms of the Law of the Second Passover, these people are either clean or unclean. If "clean," they keep the first Passover; if not, they keep the Second.
The reason for the Passover focus is because it deals with the last chapter of Exodus, where the people set up the Tabernacle on the first day of the first month and then dedicated it for 12 days, ending on the 13th. Then came Passover.
Exodus 35-39 just give us the details about the tabernacle and how it was to be built. The psalms skip over this and focus directly on that first Passover of Israel in the wilderness, one year after they had left Egypt.
Psalm 40:2 and 17 say,
(2) On the first day of the first month you shall set up the tabernacle of the tent of meeting. . . . (17) Now it came about in the first month of the second year, on the first day of the month, that the tabernacle was erected.
The dedication of the tabernacle itself is detailed in Numbers 7, where each of the 12 tribal princes participated in a dedication ceremony on a different day consecutively. These ceremonies were concluded on the 13th day of the first month, and the next day they prepared the lambs for Passover.
As I have explained previously, the Second Passover is a second time of justification by faith for those who missed the first Passover (during their life time). It speaks prophetically of the Great White Throne, where all the dead stand before God, where every knee will bow and every tongue confess that He is Lord. No one will be an unbeliever at that point, yet because they did not believe in their life time, they will have to undergo the same type of training that we have experienced in our own lives. This is the "lake of fire" in Rev. 20:14. It is the baptism of the Holy Spirit, the baptism of FIRE that is designed to kill the flesh and purify our hearts.
But there is another aspect to this Second Passover that Psalm 59 reveals. It is the Second Deliverance from "Egypt." Even as the first Passover saw Israel delivered from the House of Bondage in Egypt, so also the Second Passover speaks of a greater Deliverance. Hence, Psalm 59 refers to Israel's second Passover--that is, the one coming a year after their deliverance from Egypt.
The term "second Passover" has many layers of meaning, depending on what we mean by the FIRST Passover. It is all relative. Here are some applications:
1. Israel left Egypt on their first Passover. They set up the Tabernacle a year later on their second Passover on the 14th day of the first month.
2. Israel was given a Second feast day Passover on 2/14 for those who could not keep the regular Passover on 1/14.
We can view these Passovers in terms of justification by faith, either in this life time or at the Great White Throne later; or we can focus upon the DELIVERANCE aspect of Passover. When we focus on deliverance, we can apply it in more than one way:
1. Israel delivered from the House of Bondage by Moses.
2. The world delivered from the House of Bondage (sin) by Christ at the cross.
Another layer of meaning is this:
1. Israel delivered from the House of Bondage by Moses.
2. The world delivered from Egypt/Babylon/Nineveh in our own time.
For those of us who have already been justified by faith, this latter application is more relevant, since we have been praying for deliverance from Babylon in recent years. Isaiah has much to say about this deliverance, and he mentions "Egypt" prophetically as well. Isaiah 10:26 says that this deliverance will be patterned after the story of Gideon and the story of Moses:
"And the Lord of hosts will arouse a scourge against him like the slaughter of Midian at the rock of Oreb; and his staff will be over the sea, and He will lift it up the way He did in Egypt."
This time, of course, "Egypt" is not the literal nation, but a latter-day symbol of the modern oppressors, called "Mystery Babylon" in the book of Revelation. The great oppressing "city" is also Sodom, Egypt, and even old Jerusalem (Rev. 11:8). Isaiah 11:15 also says,
"And the Lord will utterly destroy the tongue of the Sea of Egypt; and He will wave His hand over the River with His scorching wind; and He will strike it into seven streams, and make men walk over dry shod.
Even so, this second deliverance will also have a positive effect upon the "Egyptians" themselves. Isaiah 19:22-25 tells us,
(22) And the Lord will strike Egypt, striking but HEALING; so they will return to the Lord, and He will respond to them and will HEAL THEM. . . . (24) In that day Israel will be the third party with Egypt and Assyria, a blessing in the midst of the earth, (25) whom the Lord of hosts has blessed saying, "Blessed is EGYPT, MY PEOPLE, and Assyria the work of My hands, and Israel My inheritance."
Hence, this is a greater deliverance, not only of Israel but of "Egypt" and "Assyria," who represent the House of Bondage and oppression of the current world system that we usually call "Babylon."
God intends to destroy their governments in order to set all men free in the glorious liberty of the Sons of God.
This is the result of the Second Passover, and it is typified by Israel's Passover in the second year after their deliverance from Egypt. This is when the tabernacle of God is established in the earth as typified by the event under Moses in Exodus 40.
This is why Psalm 59 celebrates the Second Passover as part of the revelation of Exodus 40.
This psalm speaks of God's judgment upon the nations in order to accomplish this great deliverance of the earth from its oppression under the world systems of men. David himself wrote it on the occasion of his victory over his enemies. So the introduction of the psalm says,
"Michtam of David, to teach: when he struggled with Aram-naharaim and with Aram-zobah, and Joab returned, and smote twelve thousand of Edom in the Valley of Salt."
Once we understand how this event in David's life relates to Exodus 40 and the Second Passover, and once we see how it relates to the great deliverance, not only at the Cross but also the deliverance of the earth from its oppressors in our own time; then Psalm 60 can be read with new eyes and new understanding.
The first few verses tell us that this oppression has been caused by Israel's sin, which in turn caused God to reject them.
(1) O God, Thou hast rejected us; Thou hast broken us; Thou hast been angry; O restore us.
In verse 3 we see that "Thy people experience hardship," and God gave them "wine" to make them stagger as though drunk. This is a common theme in Jeremiah, where we read in Jer. 25:15-17 that all nations would drink of the cup of wine from the hand of God.
(17) Then I took the cup from the Lord's hand and made all the nations drink, to whom the Lord sent me; (18) Jerusalem and the cities of Judah . . . .
Other nations are then listed along with Judah.
The rest of Psalm 60 shows that God will deliver His people while judging the nations:
(8) Moab is My washbowl; over Edom I shall throw My shoe; shout aloud, O Philistia, because of Me!
Verses 11 and 12 make it clear that "deliverance by man is in vain . . . it is He who will tread down our adversaries."
This cannot be accomplished by human strength or by force of arms.
This is the ninth part of a series titled "The Exodus Book of Psalms." To view all parts, click the link below.
Dr. Stephen Jones