He shall have dominion also from sea to sea - The best comment on this, as it refers to Solomon, may be found in 1 Kings 4:21, 1 Kings 4:24; : "And Solomon reigned over all kingdoms, from the river unto the land of the Philistines, and unto the border of Egypt; for he had dominion over all on this side the river, from Tiphsah even to Azzah, over all the kings on this side the river; and he had peace on all sides round about him."
Solomon, it appears, reigned over all the provinces from the river Euphrates to the land of the Philistines, even to the frontiers of Egypt. The Euphrates was on the east of Solomon's dominions; the Philistines were westward, on the Mediterranean sea; and Egypt was on the south. Solomon had therefore, as tributaries, the kingdoms of Syria, Damascus, Moab, and Ammon, which lay between the Euphrates and the Mediterranean. Thus he appears to have possessed all the land which God covenanted with Abraham to give to his posterity.
Unto the ends of the earth - Or land, must mean the tract of country along the Mediterranean sea, which was the boundary of the land on that side: but, as the words may refer to Christ, every thing may be taken in its utmost latitude and extent.
He shall have dominion also from sea to sea - There is probably an allusion here to the promise in Exodus 23:31: “And I will set thy bounds from the Red Sea even unto the sea of the Philistines, and from the desert unto the river.” This was the original promise in regard to the bounds of the promised land. A promise similar to this occurs also in Genesis 15:18: “In the same day the Lord made a covenant with Abram, saying, Unto thy seed have I given this land, from the river of Egypt unto the great river, the river Euphrates.” The meaning here is, that what was implied in these ancient promises would be carried out under the reign of the king referred to in the psalm. The “immediate” allusion, therefore, in the phrase “from sea to sea,” may have been from the Red Sea on the East to the Mediterranean on the West; but still the language is susceptible of a more enlarged application, and may mean from one sea to another; that is, embracing all the lands or countries lying between seas and oceans; or, in other words, that the dominion would be universal. Compare the notes at Psalm 2:8.
And from the river - The Euphrates. This was emphatically “the river” to the Hebrews - the great river - the greatest river known to them; and this river would be naturally understood as intended by the expression, unless there was something to limit it. Besides, this was expressly designated in the original covenant as the boundary of the promised land. See, as above, Genesis 15:18. The meaning here is, that, taking that river as one of the boundaries, or as a starting point, the dominion would extend from that to the utmost limits of the earth. It would have no other boundary but the limits of the world. The promise, therefore, is, that the dominion would be universal, or would pervade the earth; at once a kingdom of peace, and yet spreading itself all over the world. It is hardly necessary to say that this did not occur under Solomon, and that it could not have been expected that it would occur under him, and especially as it was expected that his reign would be one of peace and not of conquest. It would find its complete fulfillment only under the Messiah.
“I have sworn unto David My servant ... with whom My hand shall be established: Mine arm also shall strengthen him.... My faithfulness and My mercy shall be with him: and in My name shall his horn be exalted. I will set his hand also in the sea, and his right hand in the rivers. He shall cry unto Me, Thou art my Father, my God, and the Rock of my salvation. Also I will make him My first-born, higher than the kings of the earth. My mercy will I keep for him forevermore, and My covenant shall stand fast with him.” Psalm 89:3-28. PP 755.1
“His seed also will I make to endure forever,
And his throne as the days of heaven.” Psalm 89:29. PP 755.2
“He shall judge the poor of the people,
He shall save the children of the needy,
And shall break in pieces the oppressor.
They shall fear thee while the sun endureth,
And so long as the moon, throughout all generations....
In his days shall the righteous flourish;
And abundance of peace, till the moon be no more.
He shall have dominion also from sea to sea,
And from the river unto the ends of the earth.”
“His name shall endure forever:
His name shall be continued as long as the sun:
And men shall be blessed in him:
All nations shall call him blessed.” PP 755.3
Sneeringly the rabbis said, “Whither will He go, that we shall not find Him? will He go unto the dispersed among the Gentiles, and teach the Gentiles?” Little did these cavilers dream that in their mocking words they were picturing the mission of the Christ! All day long He had stretched forth His hands unto a disobedient and gainsaying people; yet He would be found of them that sought Him not; among a people that had not called upon His name He would be manifest. Romans 10:20, 21. DA 458.1
Many who were convinced that Jesus was the Son of God were misled by the false reasoning of the priests and rabbis. These teachers had repeated with great effect the prophecies concerning the Messiah, that He would “reign in Mount Zion, and in Jerusalem, and before His ancients gloriously;” that He would “have dominion also from sea to sea, and from the river unto the ends of the earth.” Isaiah 24:23; Psalm 72:8. Then they made contemptuous comparisons between the glory here pictured and the humble appearance of Jesus. The very words of prophecy were so perverted as to sanction error. Had the people in sincerity studied the word for themselves, they would not have been misled. The sixty-first chapter of Isaiah testifies that Christ was to do the very work He did. Chapter fifty-three sets forth His rejection and sufferings in the world, and chapter fifty-nine describes the character of the priests and rabbis. DA 458.2
God does not compel men to give up their unbelief. Before them are light and darkness, truth and error. It is for them to decide which they will accept. The human mind is endowed with power to discriminate between right and wrong. God designs that men shall not decide from impulse, but from weight of evidence, carefully comparing scripture with scripture. Had the Jews laid by their prejudice and compared written prophecy with the facts characterizing the life of Jesus, they would have perceived a beautiful harmony between the prophecies and their fulfillment in the life and ministry of the lowly Galilean. DA 458.3Read in context »