The first time I ever heard Psalms 22 preached on was by a pastor I sat under who would later help us to start our church. Dr. Jordan was a fiery preacher and great expositor of the Word. This psalm has since become a favorite as it speaks to a subject that if we don’t value now, we will: the crucifixion of Jesus Christ ! I know the ladies sometimes get a little squeamish hearing about the details of the sufferings at the cross but even they are helpful in understanding the great lengths to which He secured our salvation not to mention the great love !!
There are two major divisions in the psalm:  His Suffering, vss.1-21 &  His Saving, vss.22-31. It starts with Christ’s crying out to the Father, “My God, my God, WHY has Thou forsaken Me?” Seems odd for the all-knowing Son of God to ask WHY at first glance but the WHY (always an effective word tool for the Lord) causes us to closely examine the reason for such an atrocity as our Lord dying and being rejected on the cross. Why? Our sin !! Why? His Love !!!!! Next time you ever “feel” unloved remember YOU AREN’T !!
In vs.6 He begins to list how He felt on that cross “I am a worm, and no man; a reproach of men, and despised of the people”. Treated as sub-human by the insulting crowd, they had no clue they were actually fulfilling prophecy then by their nasty remarks. God is infinitely wise and incredibly gracious. He knew precisely how they’d treat Him centuried before they were even born and He did not retaliate but focused on the great mission of saving sinners. Remember these truths the next time you are “dissed” in any way !
“I am poured out like water, and all My bones are out of joint; My heart is like wax; it is melted in the midst of My bowels” (vs14). Reaching down deep into His emotions to show us how He felt with the nails through His body and His breathing labored, He was dehydrated in the midday heat of Palestine – what a HE Man !! Remember this when you are tempted to quit what you know God wants you to do !
His final prayer is prophesied in vss.19-21 and in vs.21 He says, “Save Me from the lion’s mouth: for Thou hast heard me from the horns of the unicorns.” Obviously the KJV translators could’ve done better here, there aren’t unicorns ! The Hebrew states “wild oxen” but the verse paints a picture of the Sufferer impaled as on an altar as THE ultimate sacrifice for sin. Next time you are suffering, remember that will end because of a greater suffering for YOU !!
Finally, a dramatic shift occurs in vs.22 as the tone of the speaker is different. He is no longer suffering nor alone but with others in a different and better place. There’s only one explanation: the Resurrection ! And those joining Him in this are His brethren: “I will declare thy name unto My brethren: in the midst of the congregation will I praise Thee.” Have you truly been saved? If so, you too will experience the resurrection of this old body for a new and glorious one. And as this great psalm winds down, it ends with a very interesting phrase, verse 31 says: “They shall come, and shall declare His righteousness unto a people that shall be born, that He hath done this.” The Hebrew literally renders it “It is finished” !! Sound familiar? It’s what Jesus would victoriously proclaim before He drew His final breath at Calvary thus completing the work of salvation ! It’s the exclamation point for both Him and us who are born again !!!!!!! There’s nothing left to do – it’s a done deal, case closed. You don’t need to be bogged down by guilt anymore, the sin debt has been taken away and effectively dealt with. And, what other motivation do we need to do what He wants us to do now than the love of God for each of us. Remember that today as you go about your tasks !