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Psalm 24:8

Who is this King of glory? The LORD, strong and mighty, the LORD, mighty in battle!

The study of the kingship and rule of God over the earth can prove to be very fascinating and enlightening. The LORD our God is "the great King over all the earth." (Psalm 47:2) He is "the blessed and only Ruler - the King of kings and Lord of Lords." (1 Timothy 6:15) He is the King of glory and we are his people.

This Psalm is divided into three parts:

  1. Verses 1-2: The LORD - YAHWEH - is the supreme owner over all. He is the King!
  2. Verses 3-6: A description of those who may enter his presence. They have clean hands and pure hearts, etc.
    [Note that this passage does not mention how they got the clean hands and pure hearts. That is answered in a multitude of other places. It is God's power that makes it possible. The King of glory himself gets the ultimate credit! No wonder he is worthy of such worship and praise!]

  3. Verses 7-10: The entrance of the King of glory through the gates of Jerusalem (called "the hill of the LORD" in verse 3).

This Psalm may have had initial reference to the LORD's entrance into Zion, when David brought the ark into the city (2 Samuel 6). But its significance seems to be far greater. This Psalm has long been considered prophetic, pointing to what the New Testament calls the "New (or 'heavenly') Jerusalem." Just as in this Psalm, the King - elsewhere called "the King of kings and Lord of Lords" - rules over that glorious city. He is supreme owner over all, and those who will enter his presence are those with "clean hands and pure hearts."

This is such a glorious Psalm, that perhaps it would be better to read it in its entirety and to think about what it says, than to spend a lot of time making comments about it. It will suffice to point out that verse 8 describes God as the "mighty LORD" twice; and verse 10 describes him as the "LORD of hosts" - also translated as the "LORD almighty." (See comments about the word "almighty" in the Introduction.)


Psalm 24:1-10
A Psalm of David.

The earth is the LORD's and the fullness thereof,
          the world and those who dwell therein,
for he has founded it upon the seas
          and established it upon the rivers.

Who shall ascend the hill of the LORD?
          And who shall stand in his holy place?
He who has clean hands and a pure heart,
          who does not lift up his soul to what is false
          and does not swear deceitfully.
He will receive blessing from the LORD
          and righteousness from the God of his salvation.
Such is the generation of those who seek him,
          who seek the face of the God of Jacob.


Lift up your heads, O gates!
          And be lifted up, O ancient doors,
          that the King of glory may come in.
Who is this King of glory?
          The LORD, strong and mighty,
          the LORD, mighty in battle!
Lift up your heads, O gates!
          And lift them up, O ancient doors,
          that the King of glory may come in.
Who is this King of glory?
          The LORD of hosts,
          he is the King of glory!



What does this Psalm say about the King of glory? Do you qualify for entrance into his presence? Explain.

What does this passage tell us about "the mighty God"?

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Dennis Hinks © 1993, 2004
Scripture quoted from the English Standard Version. Detailed copyright information can be found on the title page.