A scene from The Canterbury Psalter (12th century)

Psalm 110 Charts

Here are a couple of visual aids I routinely use when teaching from Psalm 110.

The first is a simple diagram to help readers pick out the three characters identified in verse 1:

It’s as much a diagram of Matthew 22:44 as it is of Psalm 110:1 itself. That is, it captures Jesus’ explanation of the oracle.

Does the diagram make you want to make some changes? Want another crown? Less cartoony rendering? Want that glory centered up? More accurate linear perspective on the throne? Great! Help yourself. I don’t make diagrams bad on purpose, but I do consider a diagram to be successful if it makes its point and also draws the viewer in with so much investment that they want to fiddle with it and make it better. As long as the diagram isn’t false, and stops short of being extremely annoying, I think a little imperfection adds value.

The second diagram is a visualization of the fifteen most prominent NT allusions to Psalm 110:1. By one scholarly count (D. Hay, Glory at the Right Hand: Psalm 110 in Early Christianity (Nashville: Abingdon Press, 1973)), there are thirty-three NT references to Psalm 110:1. That’s a maximal view of what counts as a reference (echo, allusion, distinctive phrasing that manifests a subliminal shaping of diction and grammar under the pressure of familiarity with cherished patterns of usage, etc.). But this verse is by far the most frequently cited Old Testament verse in the New Testament.

The bottom half of the diagram (cut off in this jpg) only adds the way the oracle about Melchizedek in verse 4 is invoked in Hebrews. Here’s a pdf in case you want to see the whole thing or download for teaching.

About This Blog

Fred Sanders is a theologian who tried to specialize in the doctrine of the Trinity, but found that everything in Christian life and thought is connected to the triune God.

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