Summary: The Psalm of Crucifixion - (PowerPoint slides to accompany this talk are available on request – email:


(A). Prayer and Suffering (vs 1-21):

(1). He was abandoned by the Lord (vs 1-5)

(2). He was despised by the people (vs 6-11)

(3). He was condemned by the law (vs 12-21)

(B). Victory and Praise (vs 22-31):

(1). The great assembly (vs 22-25)

(2). The glorious kingdom (vs 26-29)

(3). The generations to come (vs 30-31)


Psalms 22, 23, and 24 are a group of psalms written by King David.

• It has often been pointed out that these three Psalms (22, 23 & 24) form a trilogy;

• The cross (Psalm 22), the crook (Psalm 23), and the crown (Psalm 24),

• Yet these three Psalms (22, 23 & 24) form a trilogy;

• They fit together and complement one another because;

• They cover the past, the present, and the future.

• They speak of Christ as the Sufferer in Psalm 22,

• Christ as the Shepherd in Psalm 23,

• And Christ as the Sovereign in Psalm 24.

• They fit together each and work together as a threesome;

• To know Christ as Shepherd,

• We must first meet him first at the cross as our saviour.

• And to know his continued care & guidance in our lives;

• We must make him sovereign, the king, the ruler of our lives!


• The Psalm divides into two parts;

• The dividing point is verse 21,

• Everything previous in verses 1-21 is prayer and suffering;

• Everything after this verse 22-31 is a song of victory and praise.

• This is a Messianic Psalm, that is a Psalm concerning the Messiah, Jesus Christ;

• Although it was written originally to describe the writers own personal circumstances.

• It has a deeper, far greater meaning.

• Through this Psalm we will see the cross of Christ in new and more amazing ways!

• As this Psalm touches on the physical, emotional and spiritual sufferings of Christ.

• And although crucifixion would not be around in this part of the world for hundreds of years;

• Because crucifixion came to this region with the invasion of the Roman army.

• This Psalm clearly pictures a crucified saviour.

Quote John Stott:

“…the sufferer’s agony in Psalm 22:14-17 – his disjointed bones, his thirst and his pierced hands and feet – is a remarkable description of the horrors of crucifixion’.

The writers of the New Testament quote this Psalm in connection with Jesus Christ:


• In Mark chapter 15 verse 34;

• Jesus actually quoted verse 1 when he was on the cross;

And at three in the afternoon Jesus cried out in a loud voice, “Eloi, Eloi, lema sabachthani?” (which means “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”).


• In Matthew chapter 27 verses 39-44, Mark chapter 15 verses 31-32;

• And Luke chapter 23 verse 35:

• We see verses 7-8 of this Psalm being fulfilled.

• As Jesus is mocked and ridiculed by the priests.


• And in John chapter 19 verses 23-24:

• We see how Jesus was further humiliated by the confiscation of his clothing;

• As Roman soldiers sat at the foot of the cross gambling to see who would have them!


• Bible scholars say there are between 14 and 33 (depending on who you believe);

• Items describing death by crucifixion in this Psalm.

• So next time you read it see how many you can find.


• The title, the superscription of the Psalm:

• Often it sets the tone of the Psalm or the scene of what is to follow.

• “For the director of music. To the tune of ‘The Doe of the Morning’. A psalm of David”.


First: notice who it is written to.

• It is addressed to ‘the director of music’;

• That is the chief musician.

• This Psalm is written for the very best,

• It is the highest praise that is going to be sung by the highest of all Jewish musicians.

Second: Notice the animal that is mentioned.

• The animal mentioned is, ‘a doe’, a hind; a female deer.

• Just like this graceful, majestic, beautiful creature.

• The victim in the Psalm will be like an innocent deer;

• That will be surrounded by wild beasts and savagely torn apart.

As I mentioned earlier the Psalm divides into two parts;

• Verses 1-21 is prayer and suffering;

• Verses 22-31 is a song of victory and praise.

• As we scan over each part;

• I want you to notice that each part naturally divides into three sub-sections;

(A). Prayer and Suffering (vs 1-21).

• In this section David the writer share with us three burdens, three problems;

• That caused him to call out and ask God to help him;

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