God’s Kingdom Purpose Triumphs
GOD has a purpose. The nations have a purpose. These purposes differ greatly because, in God’s words, “as the heavens are higher than the earth, so my ways are higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.” Just so much better is God’s good purpose for mankind.—Isa. 55:9.
This working at cross-purposes is described by the psalmist, who wrote: “Why have the nations been in tumult and the national groups themselves kept muttering an empty thing?” Their purpose is empty, futile, doomed to failure, yet they keep pursuing it. They cannot bring peace and harmony to the earth. Nevertheless, they carry their actions so far as to oppose God’s rulership, for, says the psalmist: “The kings of earth take their stand and high officials themselves have massed together as one against Jehovah and against his anointed one.”—Ps. 2:1, 2.
This anointed one is Jesus Christ, God’s king. The apostles applied Psalm 2:1, 2 to Jesus. (Acts 4:24-27) The nations could acknowledge him, but they feel that they would not like to come under the requirements and limitations that Jehovah and his appointed king will bring, and so they say: “Let us tear their bands apart and cast their cords away from us!”—Ps. 2:3.
Do these efforts of the nations to go ahead with their own sovereignty and form of rule worry God? He says: “The very One sitting in the heavens will laugh; Jehovah himself will hold them in derision.” He goes ahead with his purpose as though these rulers were nothing. However, he is not pleased with their attitude, for, at the time that they make efforts to counteract his purpose, “he will speak to them in his anger [as the sound of a terrible roll of thunder] and in his hot displeasure [as a great lightning stroke] he will disturb them.” What he declares greatly upsets them: “I, even I, have installed my king upon Zion, my holy mountain.” The throne over earth is already occupied by God’s own appointed king, his choice. There is no room for another.—Ps. 2:4-6.
Then the King Jesus Christ himself speaks: “Let me refer to the decree of Jehovah [God had already made with his Son a covenant for the Kingdom]; he has said to me: ‘You are my son; I, today, I have become your father.’” The King, then, is God’s own Son, the one holding the position closest to Him, his tried and loyal, reliable One. The King then refers to his title to the kingship, for God has said to him: “Ask of me, that I may give nations as your inheritance and the ends of the earth as your own possession.” He has the inheritance as the one whom God has made firstborn; all he has to do is request it, which he does because of his great desire to carry out God’s will toward the earth.—Ps. 2:7, 8.
GOD’S DECREE AGAINST THE NATIONS
So, then, what is the position of the nations today, together with all their armaments of war? God’s decree to the King will be carried out by him: “You will break them with an iron scepter, as though a potter’s vessel you will dash them to pieces.” The scepters of ancient kings were made of wood, ivory or other materials. Some were made of iron, as this one was. The imagery here shows the ease with which Christ the King will destroy the nations beyond recovery.—Ps. 2:9.
Do the national rulers necessarily have to experience a shattering to their destruction? No, for the psalmist appeals to them: “And now, O kings, exercise insight; let yourselves be corrected, O judges of the earth.” They are called on to take heed, consider the emptiness of their plans, as contrasted with what God’s kingdom will do for the benefit of the people, and correct their course.—Ps. 2:10.
The kings of earth are admonished to “serve Jehovah with fear and be joyful with trembling.” If they would take this action, they could, instead of being in tumult, rejoice at the prospects that the King sets before them. But they would need to abandon all haughtiness and pride, which they have in the past demonstrated in their rulership. And they would have to do it now, before it is too late. It would be necessary for them to exercise insight regarding the great superiority of God’s sovereignty and the irresistibleness of Jehovah and his Messiah.—Ps. 2:11.
A MERCIFUL INVITATION
The rulers are therefore advised that, instead of massing together in opposition, they should “kiss the son, that He [God] may not become incensed and you may not perish from the way.” (Ps. 2:12) Jehovah the great Sovereign should be heeded when he makes a decree. When he set his Son upon the throne, the rulers of the earth should have quit “muttering an empty thing.” They should have acknowledged the King immediately, rendering him complete obedience.
Those who refuse to recognize the authority of the King that God has chosen actually insult the Most High. They deny his universal sovereignty and his ability and authority to choose the king that is the best ruler for mankind. Such ones will find that Jehovah’s fury will overtake them suddenly, when they are pursuing the way to carry out their own devices, “for his anger flares up easily,” or, is quick to blaze, irresistibly. Certainly this is a fair warning and one that they should accept gratefully, for it means life to them to heed it.—Ps. 2:12a.
There is still time, then, for those who have been going along tacitly with the plans of the nations—even for those who may have opposed the kingdom of God’s appointed One—to find safety. In the danger that impends, these can flee to Jehovah, for he willingly provides refuge under the kingdom of his Son, before this kingdom smashes the opposing nations.
How can this place of refuge be reached, and what does it mean for the one seeking shelter in it? The psalmist concludes: “Happy are all those taking refuge in him [Jehovah].” (Ps. 2:12b) This protection is not hard to find. But how is it to be found? A person must first see the need for something better than what the worldly nations have to offer. Then, he must sincerely look into the Bible to find out how his life can be conformed to God’s way. This does not mean living an abnormal life in any way.
Those who study the Bible, where God’s guidance is found, can live a more satisfying life. Following the Bible’s counsel gives them happier family relations, freedom from many of the fears and worries that beset the world today, and a knowledge and confidence that they are pleasing the Creator. No one other than the universal Sovereign can give a guarantee of “the life now and that which is to come [after his anger clears the earth of those who oppose what is right by rejecting his rule].” (1 Tim. 4:8) As the Creator, who knows what is best for the people, he will accomplish his purpose to bless them with peace, lasting security and contentment under the kingdom of his Son. (Matt. 6:33) Truly, it is high time to “exercise insight,” yes, to “kiss the Son,” before Jehovah God, in his anger, consumes earth’s rulers and their kingdoms.