- The Ashrei-Man Part I
- Psalms 1 and 2 are as one Psalm:
- When the Torah became “Living Torah”
- The Messiah is the Tree of Life
- The unbelieving will be driven away by the Spirit
- The unbelieving will be excluded from the Edat Tzaddikim
- The Way of Adonai
- In Pursuit of Happiness
- The opposites of Ashrei and Toveid
- The Ashrei-Man Part II
- The vain imagination of the World leaders
- The Plot
- The rebellion against the D’var HaShem and the Moral Law of Adonai
- The Divine Response
- Adonai laughs at the World leaders
- “I have installed My King!”
- HaBikkurim is the Coronation Day of the Ashrei-Man, the King of Righteousness
- All the nations, peoples, and families of the earth are his Inheritance
- A Rod of Iron will end the rebellion
- Be wise…
- Worship with reverence, rejoice with trembling
- Blessed (ashrei) are you who put your trust in the Messiah of Adonai
The Ashrei-Man Part I:
Ashrei אַשְֽׁרֵי is a ubiquitous term that cannot be defined outside of a specified context and probably can’t be adequately translated into English. The Greek word makarios μακάριος is used in the Septuagint to translate the term ashrei. Markarios is a good place to start in understanding the Hebrew term ashrei because the Spirit of the Holy One chose to disclose many of His teachings and revelatory mysteries of the Hebrew language of Shem into the Greek language of Yaphet (יֶפֶת ,יָפֶה-Yafet, Yefet). This means that Adonai (our G-d) decided to use the Greek language to “enlarge and beautify” His revelation of Himself in the Hebrew Tanakh (and HaBrit HaChadashah).
The Greek word makarios (μακάριος) is a passive term; whereas the Hebrew word Ashrei (אַשְֽׁרֵי) is an active term.
Makarios is a compound word made up out of the two words macro and makarizo; therefore, this word means to be both “enlarged” and “elongated.” In the context of the Messiah’s famous Sermon on the Mount the word makarios is a translation of the Hebrew word Ashrei אַשְֽׁרֵי. The context is the Messiah who is the Salt of Adonai (Grace Personified) and Light of the World (Wisdom Personified) is busy teaching and transforming his fallen, sinful, wicked, ungracious, and unwise Jewish (and Gentile) audience into how to become Abba Avinu’s Salt (Grace) and Light (Wisdom) in the World. The Messiah is “enlarging” and “elongating” his Jewish and Gentile talmadin to become like him—who is the exact visible image of the invisible G-d. The Messiah is ascribing (active) makarios upon his Jewish audience (passive) so that we can be enlarged to become an ashrei-person like him. Therefore, actively ashrei can be defined only one way:
The Ashrei-Man “is” the Messiah and no one else.
The ashrei-person is Ha-Mashiach Yeshua. This is the only possible meaning of the word אַשְֽׁרֵי in Psalm 1:1. However, one day with the help of the Spirit of the Holy One and His Messiah (our Redeemer) we too shall be like him. One day we too shall constantly sit, walk, and stand in the will of Adonai (our Father and our G-d).
On the other hand, absent the help of the Spirit and His Messiah none of us will ever become ashrei (אַשְֽׁרֵי) at all. Left to our own devices we are the Psalm 1 wicked ones, who “sit,” “walk” and “stand” against the Holy One and whose (imperfect, self-glorifying) works are but chaff to G-d.
However, with the help of the Spirit we too can one day become like the Ashrei-Man!
We believe the revelation of Psalm 1 and 2 was given to us so we could see the Messiah as the אַ֥שְֽׁרֵי־הָאִ֗ישׁ Ashrei-Man and then explore how we too can—by extension through him—be transformed and restored to the likeness of our (Perfect) Father in heaven.
Psalms 1 and 2 are as one Psalm:
אַשְֽׁרֵי־הָאִישׁ אֲשֶׁר לֹא הָלַךְ בַּעֲצַת רְשָׁעִים וּבְדֶרֶךְ חַטָּאִים לֹא עָמָד וּבְמֹושַׁב לֵצִים לֹא יָשָֽׁב׃
How blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked,
Nor stand in the path of sinners,
Nor sit in the seat of scoffers! (Psalm 1:1)
The Talmud (Berachot 10a) states that the first two Psalms were counted as one, and that David opened (and closed) his favorite psalms with the word אַשְֽׁרֵי:
Point #1. “The [first verse of Psalm 1 and the] last verse of Psalm 2 [end in אַשְֽׁרֵי], which shows that according to R. Jochanan Psalms 1 and 2 form one Psalm.”
Point #2. “Every chapter that was particularly dear to David he commenced with אַשְֽׁרֵי and terminated with אַשְֽׁרֵי. He began with אַשְֽׁרֵי, as it is written, אַשְֽׁרֵי is the man, and he terminated with אַשְֽׁרֵי, as it is written, אַשְֽׁרֵי are all they that take refuge in him.” In the Scriptures ashrei is translated as “the praises” (a plural noun), “praiseworthy” (a substantive adjective), or as “happy,” “blessed,” and “fortunate.”
Therefore Psalm 1 begins with אַ֥שְֽׁרֵי־הָאִ֗ישׁ (ashrei-ha’ish) and Psalm 2 ends with אַ֥שְֽׁרֵי כָּל־חֹ֥וסֵי בֹֽו (ashrei kol chosey vo). The Ashrei-Man (the Messiah) does not walk after the advice of the wicked. He does not stand in the path of sinners. He does not sit among the scorners.
The Ashrei-Man turns away from evil and always walks in a manner that is praiseworthy (brings glory and honor to G-d). This insight brings us to the question: how does the walk, stand, sit of the wicked contrast with the sit, walk, stand of the Messiah? In the Brit HaChadashah we observe the ‘sit, walk stand’ of the Messiah:
Sit, walk, stand #1. Sit. “But Adonai, being rich in mercy (chesed), because of His great love (ahavah) with which He loved us (ahav), even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Messiah (by chen-grace you have been saved), and raised us up with him, and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Mashiach Yeshua, so that in the ages to come He [Adonai Eloheinu] might show the surpassing riches of His grace (chen) in kindness (chesed) toward us in Mashiach Yeshua.”
Sit, walk, stand #2. Walk. “I implore you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling with which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, showing tolerance for one another in love (b’ahavah), being diligent to preserve the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace (shalom)… Therefore be imitators of Adonai (our Father and our G-d), as beloved children; and walk in love (His halakhot of ahavah), just as Mashiach also loved you and gave himself up for us, an offering and a sacrifice to Adonai (our Father and our G-d) as a fragrant aroma.”
Sit, walk, stand #3. Stand. “Finally, be strong in Adonai (our G-d) and in the strength of His might. Put on the full armor of Adonai (Eloheinu), so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil. For our (supernatural) struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places.”
אַ֥שְֽׁרֵי־הָאִ֗ישׁ (The Ashrei-Man) represents the Messiah of Adonai. He does not conform to the ways of wickedness that surrounds him.
בַּעֲצַת רְשָׁעִים (ba’atzat resha’im) – the counsel of the wicked. The etzah of the wicked has to do with the counsel of their intellect, emotions, and decisions that are evil. The wicked are only satisfied when they persuade others to walk in their evil ways (follow their הָלַךְ “halak,” i.e. halkha, halakhot) in order to: wrongfully affirm their wickedness as being righteous.
וּבְדֶרֶךְ חַטָּאִים (uvderekh chatta’im) – The word chet (sin) refers to “missing the mark.” One can sin unintentionally and thereby sin without consciously knowing it. Chet is different than rasha (“wickedness”). Rasha is a willful and deliberate rebellious act.
וּבְמוֹשַׁב לֵצִים (uvmoshav leitzim) – The scorner is leitz. The leitzim are cynics who have faith in nothing else but their own works and not the works of Adonai. They practice this false piety in a superficial effort to prove their own superiority over others. The leitzim are unteachable. They consider themselves much better than others. They are proud and arrogant and are branded as fools in Proverbs (cf. 1:22; 3:34; 10:23; 14:16; 21:24).
When the Torah became “Living Torah:”
כִּי אִם בְּתֹורַת ה’ חֶפְצֹו וּֽבְתֹורָתֹו יֶהְגֶּה יֹומָם וָלָֽיְלָה׃
But his delight is in the law of Adonai,
And in His law he meditates day and night. (Psalm 1:2)
ה’ בְּתֹורַת (be torat Adonai) – In the Torah of Adonai there is חֶפְצֹו chefetzo; there is pleasure or delight. Notice that the chefetz is third person, masculine, singular. The אַ֥שְֽׁרֵי־הָאִ֗ישׁ Ashrei-Man (Singular, the Messiah) finds pleasure in the Torah of Adonai. We don’t. The Torah condemns (us) all others. The Torah is Good. Messiah is Good. We are the wicked. We are all transgressors who have gone astray.
No one other than the Ashrei-Man has ever perfectly obeyed all of the laws of G-d.
Without our exercising faith in the saving grace of the the true and authentic Ashrei-Man (the Messiah) we are doomed to remain lawbreakers in the eyes of Adonai Eloheinu (our G-d). However, through our exercising faith in M’shicho (His Messiah) our sins shall be removed (like the chaff) by the wind (Spirit of the Holy One); so that we might remain as the fruited ones who are an extension of the procreative life that forever Indwells the Messiah—who now is the Vine of Yisra’el,
וּֽבְתֹורָתֹו (uvtorato) – Therefore the third person masculine singular וּֽבְתֹורָתֹו torato (His Torah) refers to the the Jewish Messiah (directly) and his followers (by association). This is a reference to the Unity (echad) enjoyed by HaAv (Adonai) and His only begotten Son and His only perfect (sinless) Student. At first the Messiah is connected to the torat Adonai, and then he (the Messiah) is even actually called “torato” – His Torah. The Messiah alone is the only person who rightfully is called torato – His Torah!
יֶהְגֶּה (yehegeh) – From hagah, to moan. This verb is used to describe the heated meditations of the Heart (Spirit) of the Messiah. From roots: הָגִיג (heated fervor of the mind Psalm 39:4; and a fervent cry Psalm 5:2) and הָגָה (growl, roar, low thunder Job 37:2; Isaiah 31:4).
יֹומָם וָלָיְלָה (yomam va’lailah) – Day and night. This is prophetically connected with the command of Adonai to the Messiah (Yeshua, cf. Joshua 1:8) to meditate on the Torah of Adonai sunrise to sunset, so that he will be His Torato – His Living Torah.
The Messiah is the Tree of Life:
וְֽהָיָה כְּעֵץ שָׁתוּל עַֽל־פַּלְגֵי מָיִם אֲשֶׁר פִּרְיֹו יִתֵּן בְּעִתֹּו וְעָלֵהוּ לֹֽא־יִבֹּול וְכֹל אֲשֶׁר־יַעֲשֶׂה יַצְלִֽיחַ׃
He will be like a tree firmly planted by streams of water,
Which yields its fruit in its season
And its leaf does not wither;
And in whatever he does, he prospers. (Psalm 1:3)
כְּעֵץ שָׁתוּל (ke’etz shatul) – The Messiah is like a replanted Tree (etz). The Ashri-Man אַ֥שְֽׁרֵי־הָאִ֗ישׁ was not “natul,” planted, with roots in this earth and world. He is the One who is originally come from heaven who is the Replanted Tree “ke’etz shatul.” He is the “replanted one” who has come from heaven to earth.
עַֽל־פַּלְגֵי מָיִם (al palgei mayim) – Peleg is a stream of water “divided” off from a larger body of water. Palegei mayim means a “channel,” “river” or “stream” of water. The Living Torat and Torato of the Spirit is often depicted in this way. Living Torah is the Torah of the Ruach Ha-Kodesh first living in the Messiah and now living in you and me. Static, stagnant water is depicted as the written Torah of Adonai alone, absent the Presence of the Living Spirit of Adonai. Without the Presence of the Spirit our works can only be “dead works” (as stagnant water). When our works are solely sourced in the Spirit then the water is depicted as “moving,” “energized” and “alive.” Therefore the Living Water of the Spirit is drawn out from the eternal life of the Ashrei-Man, who is D’var HaChayim (the Living Word; i.e. the “well” where all of the Living Water of Adonai is “drawn out” from).
פִּרְיוֹ יִתֵּן בְּעִתּוֹ (piryo yitten be’ito) – The Messiah will give (3ms Qal imperf. from “natan”) his fruit (3ms from “pri,” fruit) in its season (3ms from “eit,” time). The timing of the fruit-bearing of Messiah is Divinely appointed. It occurs “in” בְּ the “fullness of time.”
וְעָלֵהוּ לֹֽא־יִבֹּול (v’aleihu lo-yibbol) – The leaf of the Messiah (3ms from “aleh,” leaf) shall not wither (לֹֽא־יִבֹּול does not “navel,” “fail,” “fade away,” “fall down”). The leaf is the protection (covering) of the fruit. Therefore, the protection-covering of the Messiah for his followers will continuously be effective. It will never fail, fade away or fall down.
וְכֹל אֲשֶׁר־יַעֲשֶׂה יַצְלִֽיחַ (v’khol asher-ya’aseh yatzli’ach) – All that the Messiah does shall rush to “advance,” “prosper,” “make progress,” “succeed,” “be profitable” (and all that He does through us his authentic followers). Yatzli’ach is third person, masculine singular hiphil, imperfect of tzalach, to “prosper.” And He makes all that He does (וְכֹל “everything”) prosper.
The unbelieving will be driven away by the Spirit:
לֹא־כֵן הָרְשָׁעִים כִּי אִם־כַּמֹּץ אֲֽשֶׁר־תִּדְּפֶנּוּ רֽוּחַ׃
The wicked are not so,
But they are like chaff which the wind drives away. (Psalm 1:4)
לֹא־כֵן הָרְשָׁעִים (lo-khen ha-resha’im) – Not so the wicked. A contrast is being set up in the psalm.
כִּי אִם־כַּמֹּץ (ki im-kamotz) – motz (chaff) with the prefixive Kaf and Hey: but like the chaff, the most worthless part of the grain stalk.
אֲשֶׁר תִּדְּפֶנּוּ רוּחַ (asher-tedefenu ru’ach) – that the wind (ru’ach) drives away (3ms from nadaf, to drive away).
The unbelieving will be excluded from the Edat Tzaddikim:
עַל־כֵּן לֹא־יָקֻמוּ רְשָׁעִים בַּמִּשְׁפָּט וְחַטָּאִים בַּעֲדַת צַדִּיקִֽים׃
Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgment,
Nor sinners in the assembly of the righteous. (Psalm 1:5)
עַל־כֵּן (al-ken) – therefore; לֹא־יָקֻמוּ רְשָׁעִים בַּמִּשְׁפָּט (lo-yakumu resha’im bamishpat) – the wicked shall not stand in the judgment (3ms imperf. of kum, stand up, arise). The wicked ones shall not be vindicated in the judgment to come.
וְחַטָּאִים בַּעֲדַת צַדִּיקִים (v’chatta’im ba’adat tzaddikim) – nor the sinners in the “edah” (assembly) of the righteous (tzaddikim). The distinction between the resha’im (who will not stand at all) and the chatta’im (who are excluded from edat-tzaddikim).
Edah comes from the word “ed,” which means to “witness.” The people who constitute an edah possess a strong sense of collective identity. They have witnessed the same things. Together they live by a common purpose. The chatta’im are excluded from the assembly of the righteous because they have opted out of the shared faith of the community. They have not given witness to the Righteousness that comes only through faith in the testimony of the prophets and the witness of the Messiah.
The Way of Adonai:
כִּֽי־יֹודֵעַ ה’ דֶּרֶךְ צַדִּיקִים וְדֶרֶךְ רְשָׁעִים תֹּאבֵֽד׃
For Adonai knows (approves and has regard to) the way of the righteous,
But the way of the wicked will perish. (Psalm 1:6)
כִּֽי־יֹודֵעַ ה’ דֶּרֶךְ צַדִּיקִים (ki-yode’a Adonai derekh tzaddikim) – For Adonai knows the way (derech) of the tzaddikim. אַ֥שְֽׁרֵי־הָאִ֗ישׁ is yedeoni (a familiar one) to Adonai, from yada, to know.
וְדֶרֶךְ רְשָׁעִים תֹּאבֵד (v’derekh resha’im toveid) – The way of the wicked is doomed. תֹּאבֵֽד (toveid) is 3fs Qal from avad, meaning to doom or be destroyed. The word Abaddon (destruction, ruin) comes from this verb.
In Pursuit of Happiness:
Psalm one, אַשְֽׁרֵי, Hebrew אַשְֽׁרֵי has traditionally been translated blessed, and a number of modern English translations maintain this tradition. Others use the word happy; one translation strongly associates the meaning of ashrei (happiness) with the meaning of simcha (joy): “Oh, the joys (ashrei) of…” So there is a sense that “blessed” means “blissfully happy.”
But what does אַשְֽׁרֵי in the sense of happiness mean? We can define אַשְֽׁרֵי from its use in Psalms 1 & 2 and the book of Psalms as a whole. Our first insight into the meaning of blessed comes from the image of the Tree (verse three). This is a complex image, as those who are blessed are not simply trees, but:
They are like trees
Planted by streams of water,
Which yield their fruit in its season,
And their leaves never wither.
The psalmist creates at least three associations with this image.
Association #1. To be blessed (ashrei) is to be characterized by the Life of the Messiah. The Tree is alive, whereas its counterpoint (faith in self or others), chaff, is dead. This is associated with the fact that the Messiah is the “Tree of Life” (Proverbs 3:18; 11:30; 13:12; 15:4).
Association #2. To be blessed (ashrei) is to be assisted by the overcoming-endurance that can only come through faith in the Messiah. He is the Enduring One. Messiah is the Overcoming One, the Prince of Life (Sar haChayim). The Tree is planted and its leaves never wither, whereas it’s counterpoint, chaff, is withered by definition and also “scattered by the wind” (i.e. the Ruach Ha-Kodesh).
Association#3. To be blessed (ashrei) is to be associated with the good character (nature) of the Messiah. The Tree bears fruit, fulfilling the primary, meaningful purpose for its existence, whereas it’s counterpoint, chaff, is good for nothing.
The opposites of Ashrei and Toveid:
The word ashrei is the first word in the psalm, and it starts with aleph, the first letter in the Hebrew alphabet. The last word in the narrative is תֹּאבֵֽד (toveid, perish), and it starts with tav, the last letter of the Hebrew alphabet. Just as the first word and last word are at the opposite ends of the poem, and just as aleph and tav are at opposite ends of the alphabet, אַשְֽׁרֵי and תֹּאבֵֽד are opposites in meaning. The Ashrei-Man is good for everything and the wicked like chaff are good for nothing. The Ashrei-Man (the Messiah) facilitates life in abundance and the wicked (the false teachers and prophets), who are perishing, sow and reap only death and destruction. Therefore the wicked are characterized by אָבַד (abad) that which is perishing. Abad means “cease,” “vanish,” “fade away.” This meaning fits the context of Psalm 1—as chaff vanishes in the wind, the way of the wicked will vanish. In contrast to the way of the righteous, which results in “fruit,” the way of the wicked is fruitless (cf. the previous chapter on the Vinedresser, Vine & branches). Therefore, from Adonai’s eternal perspective the lives of the wicked go from nowhere to nowhere. The works of the wicked come to nothing. That אַשְֽׁרֵי is the opposite of ‘comes to nothing’ fits well with אַשְֽׁרֵי being compared to the Messiah our Tree of Life. Therefore, אַשְֽׁרֵי refers to our lives taking on eternal significance when we put our trust in him (who is the Living Torah of Adonai). And there is more… For we must now proceed to Psalm 2 which is a companion testimony to how the Ashrei-Man, the One who is rich in Adonai, is soon to become the ruler of all of the nations and the peoples of the world!
The Ashrei-Man Part II:
לָמָּה רָגְשׁוּ גֹויִם וּלְאֻמִּים יֶהְגּוּ־רִֽיק׃
Why are the Gentile nations in an uproar
And the peoples devising a vain thing? (Psalm 2:1)
לָמָּה רָגְשׁוּ גֹויִם (lamah rageshu goyim) – Why do the Gentile nations (goyim) rage? Rageshu is third person, common plural Qal, perfect of “ragash.” It is found only here in the Tanakh. The verb ragash means to conspire or to plot. Rageshu means to gather together as a collective force. One translation interprets this verse as, “Why do the nations gather and the peoples number their troops.” This depiction is similar to the ancient international gathering of migdal Bavel, the ancient Tower of Babel. History repeats itself. The vanity and independent spirit of the wicked is sufficiently delusional that this international assembly believes itself capable of defying and overruling the will of the Holy One. In contrast to the opening (2:1) is the closing of this prophetic narrative (2:12). Instead of foolishly opposing the (messianic) rule of Adonai on earth the wiser assembly of persons alluded to at the end of the psalm take refuge in G-d’s earthly rule through the refuge (high Tower) of His Son:
“How blessed are all who take refuge in him!”
Part II of the Ashrei-Man (Psalm 2), therefore, opens with the tumult of the old world order of the Tower of Babel (the rule of the wicked; lamah rageshu goyim) and closes with the blessedness of the new world order of the Messiah (the rule of the righteous; ashrei kol-chosei vo): “How blessed are all who take refuge in him.”
The vain imagination of the World leaders:
לָמָּה רָגְשׁוּ גֹויִם וּלְאֻמִּים יֶהְגּוּ־רִֽיק׃
Why are the Gentile nations in an uproar
And the peoples devising a vain thing? (Psalm 2:1)
וּלְאֻמִּ יםיֶהְגּוּ־רִֽיק (vl’umim yehegu-rik) – l’umim “the peoples” refers to the Gentile nations collectively. Hagah Qal imperfect 3rd person masculine plural. Means to “murmer,” “groan,” “speak” or even to “meditate.” רִֽיק rik refers to “vain,” “empty,” and “fruitless” thoughts. Why do the peoples meditate on vain, empty, and fruitless thoughts?
Contrast the vain, empty, and fruitless thoughts (yehegu) of the wicked (verse 2:1) with the fruitful meditation (yehegeh) of the Tzaddik (the Ashrei-Man, Messiah) that issues out of His pure heart.
יִתְיַצְּבוּ מַלְכֵי־אֶרֶץ וְרֹוזְנִים נֹֽוסְדוּ־יָחַד עַל־יְהוָה וְעַל־מְשִׁיחֹֽו׃
The kings of the earth take their stand
And the rulers take counsel together
Against Adonai and against His Messiah (Anointed One), saying, (Psalm 2:2)
יִתְיַצְּבוּ מַלְכֵי־אֶרֶץ (yityatzevu malkhei-eretz) – the kings of the earth take their stand. Yatzav (יָצַב) Hithpael, imperfect, 3rd person, masculine plural. This implies a forceful, intentional, aggressive stance against the chosen administration of Adonai by an international assembly of Gentile leaders.
וְרֹוזְנִים נֹֽוסְדוּ־יָחַד (v’rozenim nosedu-yachad) – The rozenim are princes, national leaders who are bound together (united, יָחַד) in a common cause. Nosedu from yacad (יָסַד), to fix or seat themselves close together, niphal perfect, 3rd person, common plural.
עַל־יְהוָה וְעַל־מְשִׁיחֹֽו (al-Adonai v’al-meshicho) – To understand this psalm we must first realize that on one level it applies to King David. The yatsav (stand) of the Gentile rulers against Adonai and His anointed is rooted in the time of David’s reign. Vassal nations, such as the Ammonites and Syrians, sought to rebel against David (cf. 2 Samuel 10).
But David is not just any ordinary king. He is also a supernatural seer, a prophet. In King David’s circumstances he was able to supernaturally see far into the distant future. He could actually see the resistance that the meshico would face. The term meshicho, His “anointed one,” actually refers to Ha-Mashiach Ben David, the greater Son of David. Just as on a very small scale David knew there was an assembly of Gentile kings who were assembling to rebel against him, so David knew that one day all of the Gentile nations of the world would assemble together to stand against Adonai and His greater Son, the Messiah, Melekh Yisrael v’ Melekh HaGoyim.
The World leaders rebel against the D’var HaShem and the Moral Law of Adonai:
נְֽנַתְּקָה אֶת־מֹֽוסְרֹותֵימֹו וְנַשְׁלִיכָה מִמֶּנּוּ עֲבֹתֵֽימֹו׃
“Let us tear their fetters apart
And cast away their cords from us!” (Psalm 2:3)
נְֽנַתְּקָה אֶת־מֹֽוסְרֹותֵימֹו (nenatekah et-moseroteimo) – Natak (נָתַק) Piel, imperfect, 1st person, common plural; to tear up, to pull up. The word picture here is taken from fastening a yoke on oxen with bands (fetters that confine and restrain). The word “moseroteimo” (bands), from מוֹסֵר therefore, refers to the restraints imposed by the authority of Adonai. The bands of the yoke signify the subjection of the nations to the authority and will of Adonai and His Anointed One. The Messiah uses this same agricultural picture of subjection when He says:
“Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and
Humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.”
The idea here is that it is the purpose of Adonai to establish His peaceful and disciplined rule over all of the earth and in response, it is equally the purpose of the Gentile national leaders that this should never happen.
וְנַשְׁלִיכָה מִמֶּנּוּ עֲבֹתֵֽימֹו (v’nashlikha mimenu avoteimo) – Shalak (שָׁלַךְ) Hiphil, imperfect, 1st person, common plural; to cast away, to tear up. And cast away their cords from us – The same idea as above but under another form. This phrase refers to that which would bind the Gentile nations and their leaders to the service of Adonai. The word avoteimo translated “their cords,” from עֲבֹת is a stronger word than the word moseroteimo used for ‘their bands.’ It means properly what is interlaced or twisted, and refers to how ropes are made. The words “let us cast away” indicates that the Gentile leaders actually believe that “together” they can completely keep the rule of Adonai from existing in any significant form here on earth. Apparently it is especially important to these leaders that they cast off the greater dominion of the rule of the Messiah. “Avoteimo” (the Divinely inspired cords) are heavy ropes that are braided tightly. The casting off of the additional duties that are imposed upon the international leaders by the righteous teachings and rulership of Mashiach is the principal goal of these united Gentile nations. The heavy ropes that are prophetically in view here also speak of the presence of the reestablished modern nation of Israel. The united Gentile nations and their leaders are seen devising a comprehensive evil scheme to oppose the Messiah, His teachings, His rule, His chosen nation Israel, and His chosen people (AmIsrael). Apparently these Gentile leaders sincerely believe that they would be better off both without the presence of the teachings of the Messiah (and His rule on earth) and the existence of the nation and people of Israel. (The nation and people of Israel are appointed by Adonai to be the future center of His administration of messianic rule here on earth.) It is the Word of Adonai, the teachings of the Messiah and the Moral Law that is written into each person’s own individual conscience that is being torn away and cast off. The international rebellion prophetically in view here is an attempt to overthrow the entire moral order that Adonai has already established on earth; and that is one day (I pray soon) destined to bring about the return of the Messiah. When the Messiah returns from heaven to earth to quell the rebellion of humankind, sad to say the general condition of the world-wide population will be one of moral decadence and degeneracy. It is written: But realize this, that in the last days difficult times will come. For men will be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, revilers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy, unloving, irreconcilable, malicious gossips, without self-control, brutal, haters of good, treacherous, reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of Adonai, holding to a form of godliness (false piety), although they have denied its power (the workings of the Spirit of Holiness); Avoid such men as these. For among them are those who are always learning and (yet they are) never able to come to the knowledge of the truth. Just as Jannes and Jambres opposed Moses, so these men also oppose the truth, men of depraved mind (both vain secular and religious imaginations), rejected in regard to the faith (of our fathers, the prophets, and the Messiah). But they (the false philosophers and teachers) will not make further progress; for (in time) their folly will (one day) be obvious to all (of the family of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob), just as Jannes’s and Jambres’s folly was also. For evil men and impostors will proceed from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived. You, however, continue in the things you have learned and become convinced of, knowing from whom you have learned them, and that from childhood you have known the sacred writings (the Tanakh and the Brit Chadashah) which are able to give you the wisdom that leads to salvation through faith which is in the Messiah Yeshua. All Scripture (the written Law, not the oral law) is inspired by Adonai and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; so that the man of Adonai may be adequate, equipped for every good work.
Adonai laughs at the world leaders:
יֹושֵׁב בַּשָּׁמַיִם יִשְׂחָק אֲדֹנָי יִלְעַג־לָֽמֹו׃
He who sits in the heavens laughs,
Adonai scoffs at them. (Psalm 2:4)
יֹושֵׁב בַּשָּׁמַיִם יִשְׂחָק (yoshev ba-shamayim yischak) – Yashav (יָשַׁב) Qal participle, masculine, singular absolute; to sit, to dwell. Sachak (שָׂחַק) Qal imperfect, 3rd person, masculine, singular; to laugh (usually in contempt, in an insulting way). He that sits in heaven will laugh. Sitting is an ancient symbol of royal authority and power. Adonai (our G-d) sits securely on His throne in heaven as these unbelievably foolish Gentile national leaders take their stand against Him.
אֲדֹנָי יִלְעַג־לָֽמֹו (Adonai yilag-lamo) – La’ag (לָעַג) Qal imperfect, 3rd person, masculine, singular; to mock, to deride. Adonai will mock (at) them in an insulting manner that indicates His deep contempt for how poorly these arrogant and haughty leaders are behaving.
The Divine Response:
אָז יְדַבֵּר אֵלֵימֹו בְאַפֹּו וּֽבַחֲרֹונֹו יְבַהֲלֵֽמֹו׃
Then He will speak to them in His anger
And terrify them in His fury, saying, (Psalm 2:5)
אָז יְדַבֵּר אֵלֵימֹו בְאַפֹּו (az yedaber eleymo v’apo) – Then (suddenly) He will speak to them in His anger (from anef, to be angry). Dabar (דָּבַר) Piel imperfect, 3rd person, masculine singular; to speak, to promise. Man is not the only one who has a soul. Adonai has a soul. This includes His own unique emotional life. Avinu Shebashamayim (our heavenly Father) feels and wants. He exists as a vulnerable being. He can be hurt. He can be provoked to anger (Jeremiah 15:1; Isaiah 1:14). Abba Avinu also can be pleased, for He delights in our righteous conduct (Isaiah 42:1). Anef (the root of אַפֹּו) therefore, is a negative term that describes the forceful, violent, breathing of air from the lungs to the nostrils and back. This violent movement of air is a visual depiction of an interpersonal and intrapersonal storm. In His longsuffering and patience the Holy One whispers, then He raises His Voice, then He shouts and when He shouts it is too late! Nevertheless, Adonai has disclosed that He much more prefers to express Himself in compassion, grace and mercy than anger. By nature Adonai is quick to be gracious and slow to be angry.
וּֽבַחֲרֹונֹו יְבַהֲלֵֽמֹו (u’vacharono yavachalemo) – Adonai (our Father and our G-d) is provoked to rage (fury). The word charon (חָרוֹן) translated “fury” originates from the root charah (חָרָה). This means the anger of Adonai Avinu at this point is burning hot. His anger is now “fierce,” “furious,” and “full of wrath.” Therefore, He is at the point of terrifying the national leaders who have treated Him and His Anointed One with continuous disrespect and disdain. In His wrath He will greatly dismay and terrify His enemies. Bahal (בָּהַל) Piel imperfect, 3rd person, masculine singular, with suffix 3rd person masculine plural; to dismay, to terrify.
“I have installed My King!”
וַאֲנִי נָסַכְתִּי מַלְכִּי עַל־צִיֹּון הַר־קָדְשִֽׁי׃
“But as for Me, I have installed My King
Upon Zion, My holy mountain.” (Psalm 2:6)
וַאֲנִי נָסַכְתִּי מַלְכִּי (va’ani nasakhti malki) – But I (Adonai) Myself have installed My King. Nacak (נָסַךְ) Qal perfect, 1st person, common singular; to pour out, to cast metal images, to anoint (a king). Based on the Holy One’s contempt for the world leaders and their evil plan He declares to them, “I have installed My King!”
עַל־צִיֹּון הַר־קָדְשִֽׁי (al-tziyon har-kodshi) – Where has the Holy One installed His King? Adonai has installed His King in the very last place in the world the international leaders want it, “upon Zion.” Adonai proclaims “I Myself have installed My King on My Holy Mountain” (הַר־קָדְשִֽׁי). Zion represents the reign of Adonai on earth. The holy mountain of Adonai is a symbol of His earthly rule and reign. In spite of the determination of the rebellious world leaders Adonai is still their Sovereign One (Hamvorakh). His will will be done. Exactly as He wants. With or without the consent of the Gentile world leaders.
HaBikkurim is the Coronation Day of the Ashrei-Man, the King of Righteousness:
אֲסַפְּרָה אֶֽל חֹק ה’ אָמַר אֵלַי בְּנִי אַתָּה אֲנִי הַיֹּום יְלִדְתִּֽיךָ׃
“I will surely tell of the decree of Adonai:
He said to Me, ‘You are My Son,
Today I have begotten you.” (Psalm 2:7)
אֲסַפְּרָה אֶֽל חֹק ה’ אָמַר אֵלַי (asaprah el chok Adonai amar elai) – Safar (סָפַר) Piel imperfect, 1st person common, cohortative in both form and meaning; to recount, to decree. I will recount (safar) to you the decree (chok) that Adonai spoke (amar) to me. Amar (אָמַר) Qal perfect, 3rd person masculine singular, homonym; to say, to answer, to command.
בְּנִי אַתָּה אֲנִי הַיֹּום יְלִדְתִּֽיךָ (b’ni atah Ani haiyom yelidtikha) – You are My son, this day I have begotten you. Yalad (יָלַד) Qal perfect, 1st person common, singular suffix 2nd person masculine singular. The Son mentioned here is not plural. He is masculine singular. Therefore, this prophetic word is not applied to Israel as the b’ni birkhori, the firstborn son of Adonai, but rather the singular Son in view here is the Messiah. The decree of Adonai regarding the Coronation Day of the Messiah, as the Prophet-Priest-King of all the nations and families of the world, was on the first day of HaBikkurim. On the day of His resurrection the Messiah was declared by Adonai to be the promised Malki-Tzedek (King of Righteousness). It is written in Psalm 110:
Adonai says to my Lord:
“Sit at My right hand
Until I make Your enemies a footstool for Your feet.”
Adonai will stretch forth Your strong scepter from Zion, saying,
“Rule in the midst of Your enemies.”
Your people will volunteer freely in the day of Your power;
In holy array, from the womb of the dawn,
Your youth are to You as the dew.
Adonai has sworn and will not change His mind,
“You are a priest forever
According to the order of Malki-Tzedek.”
Adonai is at Your right hand;
He will shatter kings in the day of His wrath.
He will judge among the nations,
He will fill them with corpses,
He will shatter the chief men over a broad country.
He will drink from the brook by the wayside;
Therefore He will lift up His head.
All the nations, peoples, and families of the earth are his Inheritance:
שְׁאַל מִמֶּנִּי וְאֶתְּנָה גֹויִם נַחֲלָתֶךָ וַאֲחֻזָּתְךָ אַפְסֵי־אָֽרֶץ׃
‘Ask of Me, and I will surely give the Gentile nations (Goyim) as your inheritance,
And the very ends of the earth as your possession. (Psalm 2:8)
שְׁאַל מִמֶּנִּי (she’al mimeni) – “Ask of Me.” Sha’al (שָׁאַל ) Qal imperative, masculine singular; to seek, to ask, to ask for, to ask for (borrow) as a favor.
וְאֶתְּנָה גֹויִם נַחֲלָתֶךָ (v’etenah goyim nachlatekha) – And “I will give” the Gentiles (peoples and nations) as your inheritance. Nathan (נָתַן) Qal imperfect, 1st person, common singular, cohortative in both form and meaning.
וַאֲחֻזָּתְךָ אַפְסֵי־אָֽרֶץ (va’achuzatekha afsey-eretz) – And your inheritance (possession) shall be the ends of the earth. Acchuzzah (אֲחֻזָּה), noun feminine singular; “possession,” “property,” “inheritance.” Afsey (from אֶפֶס), adverb, means to the limits, to the end (to the ends of all of the earth, אַפְסֵי־אָֽרֶץ). Therefore, the entirety of the nations, peoples, and families of the earth are promised to the Ashrei-Man, the Malki-Tzedek, the greater Son of David.
A Rod of Iron will end the rebellion:
תְּרֹעֵם בְּשֵׁבֶט בַּרְזֶל כִּכְלִי יֹוצֵר תְּנַפְּצֵֽם׃
‘You shall break them with a rod of iron,
You shall shatter them like earthenware.’” (Psalm 2:9)
תְּרֹעֵם (tero’em) – Ra’a’ (רָעַע) Qal imperfect, 2nd person masculine singular, suffix 3rd person masculine plural; to break, (fig.) to make good for nothing.
בְּשֵׁבֶט בַּרְזֶל (b’shevet barzel) – The rod (shevet) of iron signifies that after the world leaders and their supporters refuse to voluntarily accept the rule of Adonai here on earth, in a peaceful manner, they are then involuntarily subjugated in a harsh manner.
כִּכְלִי יֹוצֵר תְּנַפְּצֵֽם (kikhli yotzer tenapetzem) – Nafatz (נָפַץ) Piel imperfect, 2nd person masculine singular, suffix 3rd person masculine plural; to dash to pieces; to shatter. The forced subjugation of the rebellious forces and peoples of the world is expressed in a severe manner. The Holy One firmly establishes His rule upon earth after He shatters to pieces the rebellious leaders and all the people who support them. This image of the rod of iron breaking the earthenware to pieces parallels the Egyptian execration custom where the Pharaoh uses His scepter to smash votive jars (earthenware, pottery) as an illustration of what will ultimately happen to those cities and nations that dare resist his rule. Therefore, the two Hebrew verbs in this verse, ra’a’ (to break) and nafatz (to dash to pieces, to shatter) describe the violent, devastating final defeat of all of the rebellious forces assembled against Adonai. This verse describes the putting down of the world-wide rebellion as the official point-in-time when the international (governmental) messianic rule of Adonai will officially begin here on earth.
וְעַתָּה מְלָכִים הַשְׂכִּילוּ הִוָּסְרוּ שֹׁפְטֵי אָֽרֶץ׃
Now therefore, O kings, show discernment;
Take warning, O judges of the earth. (Psalm 2:10)
וְעַתָּה (v’ata) – “And now…” After Melekh HaGoyim (the King of the Nations) has thoroughly informed the international community of how He views their plans to completely remove themselves from the yoke of His Moral Law and break away entirely from the constraints (the Divinely inspired cords) of His Word; that is the sacred d’varim (words) of Moses, the prophets, the Messiah, and the Messiah’s shaliachim (Greek: His Hebrew apostles; lit. “sent ones”). “After” the above information is provided it is time “now” for Adonai to inform the international leaders of His official Divine response to all of their ill-conceived and rebellious plans. Therefore, Adonai now graciously declares His counsel to the international leaders, along with His final warning regarding what will happen if the leaders do not respond affirmatively to His directives and His most generous offer of reconciliation (promised later in verse 12).
מְלָכִים הַשְׂכִּילוּ (melakhim haskilu) – “O leaders, show discernment.” The international leaders are advised to obtain understanding and act wisely; in a manner that will cause them to prosper instead of being harmed. Shakal (שָׂכַל) Hiphil imperative, masculine plural, homonym; to gain insight, to pay close attention, to act wisely, to cause to prosper, to have success.
הִוָּסְרוּ שֹׁפְטֵי אָֽרֶץ (hivasru shoftei aretz) – the “judges.” The shafet (שָׁפַט) refers back to the rozenim (רֹוזְנִים), the leaders who possess the judicial power to interpret the laws of their people and the power to order that their decisions be enforced. These “judges” (the shoftim) are advised to obtain discipline. Musar from Yasar (יָסַר) Niphal imperative, masculine plural, homonym; to chasten, to instruct. This Divine appeal is a sincere effort to inspire the wayward leaders to repent of their wicked plans and mercifully return to the benevolent rule of Adonai.
Worship with reverence, rejoice with trembling:
עִבְדוּ אֶת־ה’ בְּיִרְאָה וְגִילוּ בִּרְעָדָֽה׃
Worship Adonai with reverence
And rejoice with trembling. (Psalm 2:11)
ה’עִבְדוּ אֶת־ (ivdu et-Adonai b’yirah) – Serve Adonai in awe. Avad (עָבַד) Qal imperative masculine plural; to serve as subjects (of Adonai); therefore, accept the rule of the Holy One through His appointed King of Kings (Melekh HaMelakhim), the Messiah. To serve in “awe” (יִרְאָה). This means to render moral reverence (from יָרֵא), the kind of respectful submission and obedient service to Mashiach that is required by Adonai.
בְּיִרְאָה וְגִילוּ בִּרְעָדָֽה (v’gilu bir’adah) – Rejoice (גִּיל) with trembling (רַעַד). This Hebrew phrase that is being applied to the Gentile leaders, nations and peoples is indicative of the kind of righteous worship-attitude that is to be exhibited by the Yehudim (Jews) during the observance of our high holy days that occur in the fall from Rosh HaShanah to Sukkot.
This directive to rejoice with trembling specifies the necessary worshipful attitude that is needed for a Jew to be pronounced righteous on the high holy days of Rosh HaShanah, Yom Kippur (early) and Yom Kippur (late); thereby qualifying us to enter into the most joyous celebration of all: entrance into the messianic age, the Golden Age of Israel and the Commonwealth of Israel; which is celebrated in the international harvest feast of Sukkot, the Festival of Booths (cf. Messiah in the fall festivals of Rosh HaShanah, Yom Teruah, Yom Kippur, Sukkot, Shemini Atzeret & Simchat Torah). In view of all that HaAv (the Father) has declared to the leaders, nations and peoples of the world, regarding His rule of the world through His Son, the Messiah, the world populace would be “wise” to abandon their vain and delusional plans of rebellion. And become united with Israel in the worship of Adonai (during the festivals; especially the fall festival of Sukkot), under the banner of the international rule of His Son, Ha-Mashiach. A proper repentance-response for the world population and their wayward leaders is for all to ”worship with reverence” and “rejoice with trembling” before the Most High (El-Elyon) and His Son, the Messiah. Therefore, it is imperative that the Gentile leaders and nations first embrace faith in Adonai through exercising full trust in His appointed ruler, the Son (Bar, lit. the Pure One), the Messiah. Then those who do so (believing Gentiles as well as Jews) may know the joy (rejoicing) of entering into the Messianic Age! The leaders of the world are to live a life of humility and submission. Not a life-style of self-centered (arrogance) and rebellion. The peoples of the world are to live a Divinely-centered (humble) life of reverence and exultation. Not a life of destruction under the oppressive-chaotic rule of wicked men. The “exultation” of the people will be due to the high degree of safety, security, and joyousness that all of the people of the world will experience once they are made to live peaceably under the watchful care and guardianship of the Messiah (i.e. the end-time fulfillment of the prophetic observance of Sukkot). This solemn Divine declaration is a demonstration of Adonai’s chesed. His strong feelings of loving-kindness to the nations is why He is offering the world-wide population and their leaders more time to decide if they will repent and find “refuge” in the benevolent rule of the Messiah (cf. next verse, verse 12) or face the terrifying judgment of the One Who is The Judge of the Living and the Dead (Shofet haChayim v’hametim)!
Blessed (ashrei) are you who put your trust in the Messiah of Adonai:
נַשְּׁקוּ־בַר פֶּן־יֶאֱנַף וְתֹאבְדוּ דֶרֶךְ כִּֽי־יִבְעַר כִּמְעַט אַפֹּו אַשְׁרֵי כָּל־חֹוסֵי בֹֽו׃
Do homage to the Son, that He not become angry, and you perish in the way,
For His wrath may soon be kindled. How blessed are all who take refuge in him! (Psalm 2:12)
נַשְּׁקוּ־בַר (nasheku-var) – Nashak (נָשַׁק) Piel imperative masculine plural; to kiss. Bar (בַּר) noun common masculine singular; meaning both purity and son.Traditional rabbinical commentators translate this as “embrace purity,” translating the word var (bar) as ‘purity’ (in Hebrew) rather than as son (Aramaic). We believe there is some legitimacy to this translation because we do believe there is a possible Hebrew-Aramaic double meaning here. We are to do homage to the “Pure One,” the Messiah, who is the One and only Son who has lived all of His life in perfect purity (i.e. in perfect righteousness, “without ever sinning”). This means the secreted (sod, deep-hidden Hebrew meaning) of the word here is that we must embrace the purity of Adonai that can only come to us (the Hebrew family) through our exercising true faith in His Chosen One, the Messiah. However, it is obvious that the primary universal meaning of the word Bar (בַּר) is “Son.” Bar is the Aramaic term for son and it is primarily a Gentile pagan world-view that is being addressed here in Adonai’s very strong admonition.
Therefore, the “My Son” (Beni in verse 7) who becomes crowned the King of Righteousness on the coronation day of His great triumph over sin and death (i.e. HaBikkurim) is presented *first in Hebrew and secondly is re-introduced in Aramaic.
*Regarding the special prophetic meanings of the terms ‘first’ and ‘second’ cf. our document the “Messiah in Purim“).
This dual international reference to the Son (in both of the semitic languages of Hebrew and Aramaic) is undertandable since the Messiah is declared forever to be the universal King of Righteousness (cf. Psalm 110). Therefore, the Messiah is Melekh Yisrael v’ Melekh HaGoyim. He is the resurrected-glorified High Priest and King of Israel and of all of the Gentile nations and peoples of the world! The alternating warning and invitation to blessedness is centered on the sovereignty of the universal king who is the Son (Ben-Bar) of Adonai. The poetic riddle is: We are only able to worship Adonai in purity if we first do homage to the Son, who is our Redeemer (HaGo’el) and our Sovereign Righteous One (Tzaddik).
פֶּן־יֶאֱנַף (pen-ye’enaf) – lest He become wrathful. ‘Anaph (אָנַףּ) Qal imperfect 3rd person masculine singular; to be angry, literally to breath hard from the nose, to be enraged. HaAv (the Father) and the Son are One. Therefore, the wrath to come is sourced in both; however, the wrath of the Father is expressed visibly through the just administration of the Son.
וְתֹאבְדוּ דֶרֶךְ (v’tovedu derekh) – and you perish (see Psalm 1:6) from the way. Avad (אָבַד) Qal imperfect, 2nd person, masculine plural; to perish. If the opposition persists in continusously wandering away from Adonai and deliberately opposing Him destruction will follow. If the leaders of the Gentile nations persist in resisting and not submitting to the will of Adonai and His chosen King, then the resurrected-glorified Hebrew Messiah, the King of Kings (Melekh HaMelakhim), will destroy them. The Messiah is the Supreme Ruler of all (Hamvorakh). He will inevitably rule (from the throne of David) over the entire world population, with or without the consent of the angry Gentile opposition.
כִּֽי־יִבְעַר כִּמְעַט אַפֹּו (ki-yiv’ar kim’at apo) – i.e., suddenly. Va’ar (בָּעַר) Qal imperfect, 3rd person, masculine singular; to burn, to consume (the “wrath” of Adonai). The absolute urgency of the submission is indicated by the suddenness of the execution of His wrath.
אַשְׁרֵי כָּל־חֹוסֵי בֹֽו (ashrei kol-chosei vo) – “blessed” or “happy.” The happiness of those who trust in Adonai will be evident on Yom Adonai – the Day of Adonai. The final promise of Part II of the Ashrei-Man is that those who take refuge in him (the Son) will be delivered from the wrath to come. The Second Coming of the Messiah will mean wrath to all who continue to rebel against the rule of Adonai, but exceedingly great joy, safety and security (refuge) for all who in full faith submit to Adonai’s plan to rule the world through His chosen king, David’s greater Son, the Messiah!