“Kiss the Son, lest He be angry and you perish in the way.” -Psalm 2:12
A kiss of another can signify many different things; after all, Judas betrayed Jesus with a kiss. Kisses can be deceitful. On the other hand, they can and usually do communicate affection. They can express passion and surrender. In Scripture, these kisses are accompanied with passionate embraces, depicting a great and transforming love between two persons.
So what is the meaning of the Psalmist when he says demonstratively, “Kiss the Son?” What is he telling us by emphatically saying, “Kiss the Son, lest He be angry and you perish in the way?” The former appears to be a command and the latter a punishment for refraining from doing so; a quickly kindled wrath when there is no kiss, a secure refuge from danger when the kiss happens.
The context makes the point that this kiss is a serious kiss because the consequences of not kissing are so severe. This is a kiss of total commitment and also overwhelming love. It is a kiss of fearing and serving the One kissed. It is a kiss of rejoicing mixed with trembling – an interesting stir of emotions which convey the all-encompassing nature of this kiss.
Kissing connotes nearness: face to face, lips to lips, with an embrace. If not coming from a deceitful heart and lips, this is a kiss of love, joy, and surrender. This is what it says about such union with the Son. This union means refuge in Him. No kiss means perishing. Very serious consequences accrue to the one who will not “kiss the Son!”
Perhaps this stirs up in you a feeling of shrinking back from such a stark proposition. Kiss the Son or..! Shouldn’t there be an accompanying and overwhelming compassion which draws you willingly into His arms so naturally, with no twinge of retreat, no concern of either-or, just, “I want this kiss, this union, regardless of anything else.” This is just the way it is with His amazing grace!
The “cold” and clear facts of the matter are that you cannot come to the Father except through the Son. If you choose not to come through the Son, you do not come at all. If anything is clear in a full reading of Scripture, it is this: Jesus is the only way to the Father! Genuine kissing of the Son means life. Denial and rejection of Him lead to only one result: death! If this is the case, would you want Scripture to dance around this truth, providing many paths to heaven? This is the nature of human opinion. This is what prevaricating humanity has come up with: many paths. However, the genuine truth is different. There is only The Way!
What is noteworthy, to say the least, is that a relationship with Jesus is expressed in a kiss – the most comprehensive kiss in all history where you are concerned, the most transformative kiss ever made. You can call it “the eternal kiss!” But it is a kiss: love, surrender, refuge, safety, romance, and trust all are found in it. Your prayer and desire, as it is expressed allegorically in The Song of Solomon, is “let Him kiss me with the kisses of His mouth.” There really is no more intimate, meaningful, and all-comprehending relationship to have than what you may enjoy with the Son.
Psalm 2 reveals anger, rage, hatred, derision, and all kinds of evil machinations, but the Psalm ends with a kiss. It reaches a wonderful conclusion when you yourself kiss the Son. This kiss is the expression of His love for you and your reciprocal love for Him. Do not draw back from this kiss which you, through faith, must avidly and continuously pursue. You pursue it in making your relationship with Jesus a living one. As Jude reminds us, “Keep yourselves in the love of God waiting for the mercy of the Lord Jesus Christ that leads to eternal life.”
“When all your mercies, O my God, my rising soul surveys, transported with the view, I’m lost in wonder, love, and praise.
When worn with sickness, oft have You with health renewed my face, and in sins and sorrows sunk, revived my soul with grace.
Through all eternity to You a joyful song I’ll raise for O, eternity’s too short to utter all your praise.”
(First, third, and sixth verses of Joseph Addison’s hymn, “When All Your Mercies, O My God,” 1712)
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