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Welcome to the 52 Greatest Chapters Study. I’m so glad you’ve joined us today. In fact this study, which I did this morning is probably the most exciting of all, because Psalm 22 is all about our Lord Jesus Christ’s death, burial, resurrection, and also our celebration every time we gather as a church around the table of Christ’s resurrection, through communion as we together celebrate our risen Savior. In your Bible, Psalm 22. I’m going to let you see the handouts that I give to all of the face-to-face people. I have 10 small groups that are going through, at various stages, this study. Those that are face-to-face groups, I have little handouts. Those handouts aren’t available anywhere except on the screen. In fact, let me show you the Psalm 22 handout.
This is the passage we’re studying today, Psalm 22. I’ve entitled it, the most amazing prophecy of Christ’s crucifixion. You’re going to see in just a moment, Psalm 22 is just unbelievable, the prophetic precision.
This is the greatest chapters of the Bible. We’re on week 13. Welcome to week 13 and let’s get right into the scriptures. What I always do at every Bible Study, this morning at 5:45am when I started studying this right here in our home, I took my Bible and I said Lord, I invite you to open my eyes. Let me just do that with you. Let’s bow together.
Father in Heaven, I pray that you would open our eyes to behold wonderful things from Your word, from Your law, from your truth, from this book the Bible. In the name of Jesus we ask that, Amen.
The 52 Chapter Study that we’re doing together. You remember in every video, some of you are just joining us, I’ll repeat this and those of you that have heard it, I’ll just remind you again. This is my notebook, this is basically what I’m studying, all the notes I’ve taken. This down here is my Bible, Psalm 22 that I studied this morning. You notice that I have all these notes. Psalm 22 is part of a trilogy. Psalm 22, Psalm 23 right here, and Psalm 24 right here. These three Psalms, written by David, are actually chronological. The past, Christ’s death. The present, Christ living as the good shepherd. The future, Christ’s return. We’re going to see that in just a minute.
We take those elements, our notebook and our Bible, and we have, do you remember this? The study Bible. I wanted to tell some of you because I’m getting notes, your comments, and other notes, this is the MacArthur Study Bible. These are Bible tabs. This costs, I don’t know, this says on its price tag, $3.99 from a Christian bookstore. There aren’t Christian bookstores readily available as much anymore, you could get it on Amazon. It’s just called Bible tabs. They go along the edges of your study Bible so that Genesis will be right here and then Exodus, Leviticus, and they go down. Usually, you make two or three rows of them so that you can easily open to the book of the Bible that we’re studying. I would commend to you, as you study along with us, that when you get your MacArthur Study Bible, invest an extra $3/ $4 in getting those tabs. Then, the systematic theology that I’ve talked to you about in the introduction as well as every time we use it.
Let’s go through Psalm 22. Psalm 22 has several lessons. I’m going to start with what I wrote in mine. We’re on week 13, Psalm 22. I have that at the top. Then you notice, I have my title. That’s what we always do in our study. Christ, the cross, and communion. Then, the lessons I found. Number one is that Psalms 22, 23, and 24 are a trio of songs by David that reflect Jesus Christ as the good shepherd, giving “His life for the sheep,” that’s Psalm 22, it parallels John 10. The Great Shepherd living for His sheep, that’s Psalm 23, paralleling Hebrews 13. The Chief Shepherd returning for His sheep.
Let me give you a handout. Go over here to look at our handouts. What I always remind the students is, the Bible has 66 books. That’s why it’s so big. There are 39 in the Old Testament, 27 in the New, that’s how we get 66. Those 66 books have 1,189 chapters. There are 929 in the Old Testament, 260 in the New Testament, that’s how we get the 1,189 chapters. This study that I’m taking you through, this year long Greatest Chapters, looks at 52 of the 1,189 chapters. There are 1,189, we only study 52 chapters and passages that contain the essence of everything contained in all of God’s word. In other words, these 52 give a complete theology, they have all of the attributes of God. Plus, they give you an overview of everything that’s contained in the Bible. It’s a summary of the Bible.
In the next handout I want to show you where we are. We’re right here in week 13, Jesus on the cross. Genesis 1, 3, 6, 12, these are all the previous weeks. Some of you are so concerned about catching up. Did you know, you don’t have to do this study? Look up from your materials right now and your Bible. Studying the Bible, any part that you’re in, will give you a treasure, a life-changing treasure. You don’t need to worry about going back to lesson one. It’s good to do this systematically, but some of you are joining on week 13. I bet some of you, it’s the very first time you’ve watched this and you’re saying oh no. What I’m trying to say is, you can join at any point. If some of you want to just start at week 13, I would heartily encourage you to do that and just go forward with us through all the other studies.
Look back at your handout. We’re right here on week 13. Week 13 is Psalm 22. Psalm 22 is part of what, look on the handout, what I call a trilogy. David wrote Psalms 22, 23, 24. It’s Jesus on the cross, as the good shepherd, and as the coming King.
Everything that I want you to see, that we’re going to go through, is all on this one handout. Here you go, you might want to take a screenshot of it, those of you that liked to have the handouts. Today, Psalm 22. Psalm 22 talks about the good shepherd. John 10:11 says, “the good shepherd gives His life for the sheep.” It’s all about the death of Jesus Christ. Psalm 22, Christ’s death as the good shepherd. John 10 says, He “gives his life.” It focuses on Jesus as my savior. The one who gave Himself for me on the cross. It’s a past event to us, although it was a future event, it was a prophecy. It’s really about the grace of God that brings salvation.
Next week, when we’re in week 14, remember week 14 is the great shepherd. The great shepherd is the One who ever lives. It says in Hebrews 13, He’s the one who ever lives for us. He is my shepherd. Remember, it’s the crook of His staff by which He guides us. It’s very much the present Christian life, which we’re going to see in our study, He’s guiding us. Then Psalm 24, which will be week 15, He’s the chief shepherd in glory. Peter says He’s coming to reward us. He’s my king. He offers a crown. This is a future event, the coming of Christ. It’s all about living for the glory of God. This handout I’ll come to in just a moment, but let’s go into the scripture lest I overwhelm you with all these handouts and notes.
Look down here at Psalm 22 with me. As we look at Psalm 22, we’re trying to get lessons. The first lesson that we got, that I already shared with you, is the fact that Jesus is revealed in Psalm 22, Psalm 23, and Psalm 24. In Psalm 22 it starts right out, look at verse 1 here, “My God, My God, why have You forsaken me?” That is exactly reminding us of the words of Jesus in Matthew 27 and Mark 15. That’s how Jesus cries from the cross and what I wrote in my lessons over here. This morning, by the way, all this I wrote this morning. David’s severe trials are a picture of the coming death of Christ on the cross.
Now look up from your notes, let me share something with you. Psalm 22 is a song written by David, under the inspiration of God’s Spirit, that primarily, the very first thing that everybody that heard that psalm, and thousands of people heard David sing that song when he was the sweet shepherd, and Psalmist, and king of Israel, what they heard was David talking about his own struggles in life. This is called a Messianic psalm. What that means is, it’s a psalm David wrote about his life that actually looks way beyond his life. In the background that you see behind me, all those books? Primarily you’re looking, in this video, at me. But actually, if you look beyond me, do you see all those books? That’s like the near and far view that scripture has. Many, many scriptures have a near view, David suffering, but some have a prophetic or far view. That’s what a Messianic psalm is. It’s David recording his sufferings, that God guided… Remember what inspiration means? The scriptures use the word pheromenoi, which means to be moved along like my pen. My hand is guiding my pen. God guided the writers of scriptures. Paul says, He breathed out through them so that their words were His words. Peter says, pheromenoi, He guided them. By the way, that word is used in Greek for the wind blowing a sailboat. The writers were the sailboat, God was the wind directing them to write exactly what He wanted. That’s what divine inspiration is. That’s why, when we’re studying this book it’s the book we can trust, because it’s inspired. We hear from God when we read this book. When I read this, God is talking and I’m listening.
- When I pray, I’m talking and God’s listening.
- When I read, God is speaking to me and I’m listening.
As we listen look what it says in verse 1, right down here in your Bibles, “My God, My God, why have you forsaken me?” What I wrote in my notes, in David’s severe trials he felt forsaken and are a picture of the coming death of Christ on the cross. In verse 2 I wrote, He cries in Gethsemane, and the three hours of darkness on the cross. That’s why it says, “I cry in the daytime, but You do not hear; and in the night season, and am not silent.” All of these are what happened to Christ, but they’re portrayed by David’s life. Down here, you notice the priest mocking Him in verse 12. The spiritual warfare dimension is in verse 14. The horrors of the crucifixion, and His thirst, and pierced by nails, and casting lot for His clothing, all of those things. If you notice there, their beautifully there.
It says in, if you look at verse 12 it says, “Many bulls have surrounded Me; strong bulls of Bashan…” Bashan, by the way, if you look up from your Bible, is in the northern part of Israel. It’s actually northeast of Jerusalem and it was a place where they raised these giant cattle herds, like black Angus, Longhorn cattle. Also, it’s the place of the stone circles like Stonehenge and all types of Baal worship, Asherah poles. It was a very pagan area up there where the seven nations of the Canaanites had been resettled, after they were driven out of the land… the ones that weren’t killed in the book of Joshua. In fact, remember the prodigal son that went from his dad’s home to feed pigs? It was up there on the far side of the Sea of Galilee, this is where Bashan is, up there, northeast of Israel. It’s a place of demons. If you look down at your Bible it says in verse 12, “Many bulls had surrounded Me; strong bulls of Bashan…” Look up, David was saying that about him. He was saying, I have human people who are oppressing me that are inspired to do that, they’re impelled to do that by demons. That’s what this whole Bashan thing is.
Think for a minute, do you know what’s going on, on the cross? It wasn’t just Roman soldiers, and priests, and Sadducees, and all these people, these Jewish people that were condemning Christ. Behind, the far view like my books behind me, where the demons, Satan mocking Christ. He was bruising Christ’s heel. Remember it says, the serpent would be bruising. Satan was so involved in the cross and verse 12, right there in your Bible, is an example of that.
Keep going to verse 14. “I am poured out like water,” speaks of the spear piercing Christ and His water and blood coming out. “All my bones are out of joint,” that’s the stretching of His body on that cross. “My strength,” verse 15, “is dried up like a potsherd,” this is Jesus. Remember in John 19:28 He said, “I thirst!” “My tongue clings to My jaws.” Back to verse 16, it says, “Dogs have surrounded Me.” Do you remember all those people, the crowds that were mocking?
Then look at this, the end of verse 16, “They pierced My hands and My feet.” Look up from your Bible. David said that his struggles, living on the run, all of his enemies, all of those who chased him, King Saul, everything he went through, he said it was just cutting him. Like piercing his hands and feet, him climbing on rocks, him walking on the sharp rocks, him through the thistles. We know that God’s intent was much larger than that. The far view is a prophecy. Look back at verse 16, “They pierced My hands and My feet,” Jesus was crucified, hands and feet. “I can count all My bones. They look and stare at Me. They divide My garments among them, and for My clothing they cast lots.” Look up, there’s no record of this happening in David’s life. He told us all this horrible stuff happened to him, but we do know that’s a prophecy of Jesus Christ. As he hung on the cross, the Roman soldiers were gambling at the foot of the cross. They didn’t want to tear his outer garments, so they cast lots. That is a prophecy, one of many.
Let’s go back to our handout. Your handout shows the verse numbers. You might want to take a screenshot of this now, so you don’t lose it. Did Jesus bare the sins of the world? Psalm 22. The alternating light and darkness, as He cries in the light and dark. He’s ridiculed in verses 7 and 8. No help comes to Him, verses 11 and 12. His bones are out of joint. All of these are in Psalm 22 from David. All these things David said, all these things are in Psalm 22. Look at this, every one of them are paralleling. Do you see that? The weakness and thirst in verse 15 is exactly as Jesus saying in John 19:28, “I thirst!” That’s one word in Greek dipsaō. When Jesus said my hands and feet are pierced, Matthew 27 and John 19 says that the Romans crucified Him with the spikes and the hammers, no bones were broken, people staring at Him. Every one of these elements of the Messianic psalm are pointing at prophetic events that are fulfilled in the scripture. I hope you realize this, is you look up from your handout, this is the most powerful prophetic song about the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Unbelievable.
There’s more, look down in your Bibles. “But You, O LORD,” verse 19, “…be not far from Me.” Do you remember when Jesus said, “into thy hands I commend my spirit (KJV).” Look at verse 22, this is the excitement, “I will declare Your name to My brethren; in the midst of the assembly I will praise You. You who fear the LORD, praise Him! All you descendants of Jacob, glorify Him.”
Look at verse 27, “All the ends of the world shall remember and turn to the LORD, and all the families of the nations shall worship before You.” Look up from your Bibles, do you know what verse 27 and 28 is talking about? It’s talking about something that happened in David’s life. Yes, that’s the primary interpretation, that’s what David was talking about. But what’s the far view? This is probably the very best part of the whole 22nd Psalm. Did you know, verse 27 is saying the Gospel would go global. Do you understand that the Jews had no idea. They thought that they had the temple, they had the true God, they had the Oracles, the written word of God. They had no idea that God’s plan is what He promised way back when we studied the life of Abraham. Do you remember that God said, through you, “all the nations of the Earth would be blessed.” How? Right here, look at verse 27. “All the ends of the world shall remember and turn to the LORD.” This is the message of Jesus Christ going global. Look at what it says, “all the families of the nations,” verse 27, “shall worship before You. For the kingdom is the LORD’s, and He rules over the nations.”
Verse 29, “Those who go down to the dust shall bow before Him, even he who cannot keep himself alive.” This is talking about resurrection, hope. Every time you read the 22nd Psalm it’s resurrection, hope. When do you most remember the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ? Easter Sunday. How often are we supposed to remember it? More often than that. That’s why the early Church used gather for the celebration of the Lord’s supper almost every week. They want it to remember the Gospel went global. They wanted to remember that Jesus died the horrific death on the cross, which is what Psalm 22 is all about, but that He didn’t stay there. He was taken from the cross, buried, and after three days rose again. That’s what we celebrated communion. The death, burial, resurrection of Christ and the Gospel going global.
Back down to your notes. Number one in my notes, that Psalm 22, 23, and 24 are a trio. Then I said, number two, that David’s severe trials are a picture of Christ on the cross. Now, look at number three. David’s hope of God’s care is a picture of communion. That’s what I showed you in verses 27 and 28. The Gospel is going global verse 26. Look at verse 29, it’s the declaration. We are helpless and needy. This is resurrection, hope. Everyone who cannot keep himself alive, all of us are not self existent like God. Look up from your Bibles, only God is self existent. He doesn’t need to sleep. He doesn’t need to eat. Doesn’t need to rest. He doesn’t need to exercise. He doesn’t need anything to exist. Only God is self existent. All the rest of us and everything else in the universe is winding down, but everything connected to God will last forever.
Think about this, if you don’t remember anything else from Psalm 22, verse 29 says we can’t keep ourselves alive. Your only hope is Jesus. If you’re watching this video, if somehow like the 12 year old boy I just got a note from, it was a sweetest note. He said, when I woke up this morning after gaming, you came up in my YouTube chain. (I don’t even know what a YouTube chain is. I don’t know anything about gaming) A 12 year old boy called on the name of the Lord after watching our most popular video about the seven signs of Christ’s return. It scared him, that he wasn’t ready to meet God. He knew he couldn’t keep himself alive. At 12, he knows his mortality. He said to me, in his gamer typing, he said, I asked Jesus to clean me and to give me endless life. Have you ever asked Jesus? Have you ever called on the name of the Lord? It says in the Bible, “Whoever calls on the name of the LORD shall be saved.” We believe we need salvation. We believe Christ is our only hope. We receive the free gift. If you were going to give me this pen all you would do is, you’d hold it out to me. I would reach out and take it. Then, I’d say thank you. That’s how simple salvation is.
One last thing, look down at your notes. This last element right here is the prayer. I’m going to conclude this time by reading this. I want you to know, I wrote this prayer this morning after titling Psalm 22, after finding these lessons, after going through everything you see on your handouts, that I’ve already shown you. I wrote this prayer, and you just listen. I’m just going to bow my head and offer this prayer for each of you to the Lord.
Lord, your servant David trusted in you through horrible struggles, in Psalm 22. You call him the man after Your own heart. That’s what I want to be today. I’ll never be in the future what I’m not becoming today. Thank you, Lord Jesus, for being my good shepherd. You gave yourself for me, just like Paul testified in Galatians 2:20. You suffered for my sin. You bled for my cleansing. You were buried to take my sins forever away. You rose and I proclaim to all that I’m forgiven. You are the self existent one and I feed on You as my bread of life. You have done this, and I praise you. In Jesus name I come to you, Amen.
Thank you for joining us on week 13. Do you see why I’m so excited? I think this might be the best week of all. As you’re going through this, you can get your guide that is available both on our website, discoverthebook.org as well as on Facebook. Get this list of the 52 Greatest Chapters. Get this little guide to how to do this process of titling the chapter, finding the lessons, writing the prayer. Get a notebook, and just like I did at 5:45am this morning, actually write week 13, title it, find some lessons, offer a prayer to God, supplement it with a Study Bible to understand many of those details I shared with you, you can read right here. If you don’t know the books of the Bible, get some of these tabs. I would encourage you also, write in your Bible. I know I have an electronic Bible right here. You know what? My electronic Bible, when it runs out of battery, it’s like a brick. This book works when there’s no Wi-Fi, no internet, no batteries. Plus, looking all that scrawling on there. Every time I mark my Bible it makes a connection between that event and a neural path in my brain, that the instant I go back and see the color I remember when I had that bright orange pen. I remember when the stains that are on this page, that you can’t see, happened. I was outside reading in the rain, it started raining and it stained my Bible. That’s how phenomenally God wired our brain. I love electronics, but there’s nothing like marking in your Bible and making these discoveries.
I hope you’ll come back for week 14. God bless you as you eat the word of God. One of my favorite verses, Jeremiah 15:16, “Thy words were found,” in the Bible, “and I did eat them.” That’s what we’re doing by studying. “And thy word was to me the joy and rejoicing of my heart.” Do you want to change totally like the little 12 year old gamer I told you about? Get into the word. He fills you with supernatural joy. Why? The end of verse 16 of Jeremiah 15, because “I am called by Your name.” That’s what Psalm 22 is about. That’s what I invite you to spend this whole week tracking down in the word of God.
God bless you. Have a great week in the Lord.