What does Psalm 22:3 mean?
ESV: Yet you are holy, enthroned on the praises of Israel.
NIV: Yet you are enthroned as the Holy One; you are the one Israel praises.
NASB: Yet You are holy, You who are enthroned upon the praises of Israel.
CSB: But you are holy, enthroned on the praises of Israel.
NLT: Yet you are holy, enthroned on the praises of Israel.
KJV: But thou art holy, O thou that inhabitest the praises of Israel.
NKJV: But You are holy, Enthroned in the praises of Israel.
Verse Commentary:
Despite the angst of what appears to be unanswered prayer (Psalm 22:1–2), this psalm takes an immediate step back into faith. Although David wonders why God did not answer him, he knows God is holy and is enthroned on the praises of His people. This is the essence of biblical faith: trust, based on prior experience, proven in the face of uncertainty or struggle (Hebrews 11:13–16).

Asking God, even in frustration, is not the same as defying Him. Other Old Testament passages, such as Habakkuk 1:2–4 and Psalm 44:23–24 express similar emotions. Instead of accusing God, David takes the high ground. He recognizes there is no unrighteousness with God. God never commits a wrong deed. Nor does He act capriciously. He is completely separate from evil and totally deserving of praise.

When Isaiah entered the temple after the death of Israel's King Uzziah, he caught a glimpse of Israel's eternal King, the Lord. He saw the Lord high and lifted up and heard the cherubim call, "Holy, holy, holy is the LORD of hosts; the whole earth is full of his glory!" (Isaiah 6:3). Psalm 99:2–3 calls upon everyone to praise the Lord who is holy. These verses say, "The LORD is great in Zion; he is exalted over all the peoples. Let them praise your great your great and awesome name! Holy is he!" When trouble strikes and the heavens are silent, instead of wallowing in self-pity, we should praise the Lord.
Verse Context:
Psalm 22:1–21 depicts David's questioning of God's silence and estrangement from him in his desperate situation. The structure of this prayer, and the images it evokes, are prophecies of Messiah's sufferings. Isaiah 53:3–8 likewise predicts these experiences and explains that Messiah endured them for us sinners. Matthew 27:46 reports that Jesus quoted Psalm 22:1 when he was suffering on the cross. First Peter 2:24 –25 refers to the sufferings of Jesus the Messiah and calls Jesus ''the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls.''
Chapter Summary:
This psalm may be divided into two parts. The first part, verses 1–21, contains an urgent prayer, in which the suppliant questions a holy God's distance from him in his time of suffering. It also contains a graphic description of the Messiah's suffering. Messiah's suffering included humiliation, the taunts of unbelievers, a distressful sense of loneliness, and intense physical pain. The second part of the psalm continues a prayer to be delivered, and includes a glimpse of resurrection and exaltation. The psalm praises God and announces a future time when God will receive worldwide acclaim and worship.
Chapter Context:
This psalm of David should be understood in association with Psalms 23 and 24. Psalm 22 describes the sufferings of the Good Shepherd, Jesus, for His sheep. Psalm 23 describes His care for His sheep. Psalm 24 describes His return in glory to reward His sheep. Psalm 22 includes prophetic sayings which Jesus uttered from the cross. It also predicts the afflictions he endured there (Matthew 27:27–56; Luke 22:63–65; 23:18–49). Isaiah 53 also prophesies the sufferings that Jesus suffered on the cross.
Book Summary:
The book of Psalms is composed of individual songs, hymns, or poems, each of which is a ''Psalm'' in and of itself. These works contain a wide variety of themes. Some Psalms focus on praising and worshipping God. Others cry out in anguish over the pain of life. Still other Psalms look forward to the coming of the Messiah. While some Psalms are related, each has its own historical and biblical context.
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