41 The Pharisees were gathered together. Jesus asked them, 42 “What do you think about the Christ? Whose son is he?” “The son of David,” they replied. 43 He said to them, “Then why does David call him ‘Lord’? The Holy Spirit spoke through David himself. David said, 44 “‘The Lord said to my Lord, “Sit at my right hand until I put your enemies under your control.”’ (Psalm 110:1) 45 So if David calls him ‘Lord,’ how can he be David’s son?” 46 No one could answer him with a single word. From that day on, no one dared to ask him any more questions.
The Pharisees all knew that the messiah would be descended from king David, from Gods promise in the Davidic covenant. They accepted that David was a prophet of God and that he spoke of the messiah in many of his psalms. Then Jesus brings up the tricky bit of Ps 110 where David writes: the LORD (God) said to my Lord (the messiah Jesus), sit at my right side, until I make your enemies into a footstool for you.
The logic in Jesus question is unrefutable; the spirit of God led David to write those words, and David would not refer to himself or his own son or descendent as ‘Lord’. Jesus is therefore implying that the messiah would not be a physical descendent of David. We know this to be true, remembering that Joseph was Jesus’ legal father but God was His true father. David rightfully calls Jesus his Lord.
This argument is used again by Peter in Acts 2:29-36. V. 36 says ‘that God has made Jesus both Lord and Christ’.
I am reminded that Jesus is fully God and fully man. Messiah as foretold in the prophets, and Son of God as revealed in His life and ministry. I still don’t understand this concept but Jesus own logic here helps me to understand the question of Jesus being David’s descendent but then also being conceived of the Holy Spirit. Even the Pharisees could not argue with this.
Heavenly Father thank you for giving us the messiah you promised; not the one we expected, but someone so much greater. Your ways are so much wiser than I can comprehend, but please give me an understanding so I can pass on this good news in a way others can grasp.
Written by Dimity Milne