2. Vindication from God. What will such a person find when he or she comes to God? The answer is in the second part of the worshiper's qualifications, and it is twofold. First, she will find “blessing from the LORD." Second, he will find "vindication from God his Savior" (v. 5).

Who may come to such a great king to pay homage? This is no mere earthly monarch, whose presence would be awe-inspiring enough, but rather the thrice holy God. Who dares come into his holy presence? The answer to this question is in verses 3-6, and it is both wonderfully complete and profound. It falls into two parts.

I have pointed out in dealing with earlier psalms that it is not always easy to tell which psalms are Messianic, that is, which psalms actually prophecy something about the Messiah to come. This is because they are often couched in images based on natural situations or events. For example, they may speak of a king. But we wonder: Are we to think of the king as King David (or one of the human descendants of King David), or is this rather a veiled reference to the King of kings, that is, to Jesus? Since it is not always easy to tell which is the case, we have to be cautious when we draw Christian allusions or teachings from these essentially Jewish poems.

I do not know if Psalm 24 has a setting in any event we know of from the Old Testament. But if there is an historical setting, I suppose it is the occasion on which David brought the Ark of the Covenant to Jerusalem from its temporary resting place in the house of Obed-Edom the Gittite (2 Sam. 6). In symbolism, the God of Israel was understood to dwell between the outstretched wings of the two cherubim mounted on the lid of the Ark. So when the Ark was brought to Jerusalem for the first time, it would have been appropriate to have composed a hymn such as Psalm 24 for the occasion. The title of Psalm 24 identifies it as a psalm “Of David.” So David may have composed it himself for the ceremony.

But if Jesus has done what is needed for our salvation, and that our good works do not in any way contribute to it, someone might ask, "What, then, is left for us to do?” Nothing, except to believe in God's word and trust Jesus. Jesus himself said this. When some of the Galileans asked him on the occasion of his multiplication of the loaves and fish, “What must we do to do the works God requires?" Jesus replied, "The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent” (John 6:28, 29).