Knowing that Jesus read Psalms made me wonder just how much the Psalms were expressions of his own thoughts, written down in advance of him becoming human.
Like Psalm 22:1, for instance, which quotes Jesus’ words on the cross: “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” So here’s an exact example of Psalms detailing Jesus’ words in advance, that one day he would recall to express what is probably the most heart rending thought we have too, when it seems God isn’t listening, or that he doesn’t care about us when people are scoffing at us for obeying and trusting him.
Jesus was mocked for that too, verse 8: “He trusts in the Lord, so let’s see the Lord rescue him,” the very words thrown at him as he hung on the cross. And it hurt. Just as it hurt when family and friends mocked those who trusted in their God-given immune system to see them through the pandemic.
Many people said they felt isolated and alone during the pandemic, because nobody in their circle was even willing to reason or listen to any other point of view, including their doctors. And Jesus lived through the same dystopian nightmare, where even his disciples deserted him, as did most of his fellow Jews. Only a few understood him and stayed with him.
So Jesus knew what feeling forsaken was like, by both God and people. But he also knew he’d be forsaken, because he had it written here in Psalm 22. Did it ease the hurt? No, he still felt it, because he was human, and being forsaken hurts when you’re human. Like a teenager rejected by his peers.
Is there any solution in Psalm 22, then? Yes, and Jesus had that written down too. We will learn, as he did, that in times of desperate loneliness and abandonment, God “never let us down, never looked the other way when we were being kicked around. He never wandered off to do his own thing, he was right there, listening,” verse 24 (The Message).
Expect to go through the same experience he did, then. Because, like Jesus, we have this Psalm written for us in advance for our lives too.
And it includes the part in verse 27, that those who made life miserable for us will one day “come to their senses.” They’ll come round and when they do, they will “proclaim God’s righteousness,” verse 31, as they too realize – that for all their bluster, pride and nastiness, God didn’t forsake them either.