Psalm 45 is an interesting and debated Psalm whose meaning divides even foremost interpreters.

The easiest approach to the Psalm is to see it as a wedding celebration for Solomon and perhaps the daughter of the Egyptian Pharaoh (1 Kings 3:1). The author praises the Israelite king for his virtue and strength in battle (45:3-5) and then commends the future bride to abandon her former life and submit to the king (45:10-16). The Psalm ends with the writer promising that the ends of the earth will know the king’s name (45:17).

Song of Solomon 3:6-11 might be a parallel passage to this approach.

Another approach would be to see the Solomon/Egyptian Princess view morphing into something greater. While some things are rightly about Solomon, many aspects in Psalm 45 do not fit him.

You are more beautiful than the sons of men and God has blessed you forever (45:3). Was this true of Solomon?

Moreover, the Israelite king is called “God” by the writer in 45:6-7, “Your throne, o God, is forever and ever . . .; therefore, God, Your God, has anointed you.”

The Psalm talks of the King in terms of loving righteousness and hating lawlessness (45:7). Was this true of Solomon with his 700 wives and 300 mistresses (1 Kings 11:3)? God had told all future kings not to multiply wives (Deuteronomy 17:17). Solomon’s foreign wives turned his heart from God (1 Kings 11:3).

Was Solomon true when he built the temple of the LORD and also built high-places for the worship of his foreign wives’ gods (1 Kings 11:8)?

Solomon and the Egyptian princess apparently did not have Sons who became the rulers of the world (45:16). Rehoboam, Solomon’s first born, was so foolish that he lost all the northern tribes from his kingdom (1 Kings 12:1-17).

Solomon also did not have the kind of military exploits listed in the Psalm since he was not a warrior like his father.

Also, the Psalm calls the husband “your lords” in Hebrew (45:11), a title many times used of YHWH. It commands the bride to bow down (literally, “worship”) using a term normally reserved for God.

If we listen to the writer of Hebrews, Psalm 45:6-7 is God the Father addressing God the Son as God (Hebrews 1:8-9).

Spurgeon says that if Solomon is present at all in the Psalm, it is only a passing shadow. Rather, Psalm 45 is about the warrior-king Jesus (Revelation 19:15-16; Isaiah 11:4; 2 Thessalonians 2:8) and His virgin-bride, the Church (Ephesians 5:31-32; Revelation 21:2). She is told to forget the past, and it is the Messiah-King’s name which the Psalmist praises (45:17).

What do you think?