Lift Up Your Heads, O Gates: Starts with Metaphysics

1 The earth is Yahweh’s, with its fullness, the world and those who live in it,
2 because he has founded it on the seas, and has established it on the rivers. (Psalm 24, LEB)

This famous Psalm, depicting the Father’s announcement of Jesus’ triumphant entry into heaven with, ‘Open up You Gates,’ starts off with an introduction of metaphysics and ontology. That is, before we ask the question about, “ascending the mountain of Yahweh,” or why is this prophecy so important regarding the “ancient Gates” to open to a “Victorious King of glory,” we are given the foundation. God created all things, and thus He owns all things. This is value without end. It is riches without measure. This value of Yahweh is immeasurable when compared to all things and so-called gods. All reality itself, is owned by Him.

The argument is rather simple. If you created all the seas and rivers, and all things, then you own it. It belongs to you. God is this person.

There is a reason why the Scripture starts with Genesis and the creation account. If owning a penthouse and a billion-dollar company is valuable, then how much more is God, who ultimately owns this person, owns his penthouse, and owns his company; but in addition, God owns all other persons and owns all other things?[1] Yet, God also owns all spiritual reality; He owns all invisible propositions and thoughts. He owns the past and He even owns the future itself. How do you put a price tag on that?

That is, the Scripture’s position is that metaphysics matters. It is the foundation, which other big questions of life stream from. And so, I do not need to read some old Greek philosopher to understand the importance and priority of metaphysics, as an ultimate question. The Scripture tells me so. As a quick side point, even things like Jesus’ atonement is a subcategory of metaphysics. It is how God has created new creations by His Son, and how God creates and relates to the reprobates designed for damnation.  Reality is important. I remember a non-Christian woman asking me, “Oshea, you are so talented, why then do you choose to be a Christian.” My response was a short one, “Because, I actually believe, Jesus created the worlds in 6 days.”

Going back to our Psalm. The context of asking ‘who may ascend the hill of God,’ is predicated on that fact, this God is the very one who created reality and owns all of it. Or that is, since Yahweh is the most valuable, richest, exalted person in all reality, then if you are able to ascend to His penthouse and get help and supply from Him, then this would be the best of all outcomes for a created creation like us. Since I do not own the world and am so limited, then if I could approach Him and get help from Him, then I would be in a much better place.

Next, the Psalmist asks a question about ethics, which is really a statement. God’s penthouse in the sky is a holy place. If you are not holy, then no entry to see Him.

It is here in the Psalm the flow is interrupted, as God the Father serenades the heavens, with a call to have the ancient Gates to His kingly palace opened for a person. This person is Jesus Christ ascending the Hill of mount. Zion, after His resurrection. The scene is of a hero in the ending of the movie, with his cape flowing in the wind, with a sword in his right hand, and the severed, bloody head of death in His left. The Father sees Him from afar, scaling the clouds in splendor and says, “Open the doors, Open the Gates, here comes my victorious Son, with value of triumph surrounding Him like the sun bursting forth in its rising from the night.”

In Christ, God does not count men’s unholiness against them. Rather Jesus substitutes Himself in our place and became our sin for us. Then in addition, under Yahweh’s plan, Jesus’ holiness is credited to our accounts. Thus, by Jesus new covenant—an agreement verified by His blood, we are innocent and even righteous in sight of the Person who lives in heaven’s penthouse. Isaiah 53 (Matthew 8:17) puts healing of the body in this category of Jesus substitutionary death and life from the grave, as a mediatory between God and man. The central idea of substitutionary, is that Jesus mediates our sins upon Himself, so that WE DO NOT. Isaiah puts our sickness there. In blood, Jesus mediates our sickness upon Himself, so that WE DO NOT. Jesus ratified this oath in His precious blood, of the new covenant.[2]  We can now approach God for all our needs and help. We can in love, and without fear, give Him true thanks and gratitude for all His benefits toward us. The Psalmist says such persons receive from this infinitely valuable Person, salvation, and blessings. Let us not overly spiritualize what blessings are. Both in the Old and New Covenants, they refer to receiving both spiritual and natural goodies. They are certain on the demand of faith, which always gives you access to this God of salvation and blessings.


Who may ascend the mountain of Yahweh?
And who may stand in his holy place?
4 He who is innocent of hands and pure of heart,
who does not lift up his soul to falseness,
and does not swear deceitfully.
5 He will receive blessing from Yahweh,
and justice from the God of his salvation.
6 Such is the sort of those who seek him,
those who seek your face, even Jacob. Selah
7 Lift up your heads, O gates,
and rise up, O ancient doorways,
that the king of glory may enter.
8 Who is the king of glory?
Yahweh, strong and mighty;
Yahweh, mighty in war!
9 Lift up your heads, O gates,
and lift up, O ancient doorways,
that the king of glory may enter.
10 Who is the king of glory?
Yahweh of hosts,
He is the king of glory! Selah



[1] I say this on the ultimate level. However, on the relative level ontology, it is proper to say, as Jesus taught us, “give to Caesar what he owns, and give God what God owns.” Thus, if you did not receive a miracle, but the medicine help you, then on this same level as Jesus taught us, Medicine is credited with the glory, not God, because ‘give to medicine what it owns.’ If you do not like this, then grow in faith, and make healing part of your common experience.


[2] Vincent Cheung, commenting on this topic says,

The Bible teaches that deliverance from damnation is not the only benefit of the atonement, but among many other things, it also offers healing for the body. Matthew 8:16-17 says, “When evening came, many who were demon-possessed were brought to him, and he drove out the spirits with a word and healed all the sick. This was to fulfill what was spoken through the prophet Isaiah: ‘He took up our infirmities and carried our diseases.'” This applies Isaiah’s prophecy about the atonement to the healing miracles of Christ. Thus it is certain that the atonement offers healing for the body, and that this benefit is manifested in miracles of healing, and not in natural remedies. Since verse 16 also mentions the “demon possessed,” this means that verse 17 – the atonement – applies to both those who are afflicted by physical sicknesses and those who are afflicted by demonic powers. Anyone who denies this doctrine makes himself an enemy of the atonement, and holds the blood of Christ in contempt…

If someone says, “Since faith for salvation is a sovereign gift, I will not come to Christ, but wait for faith. If God wills, he will save me.” We would realize that he is making an excuse for his unbelief, uncertainty, and rebellion. We would answer, “Now he commands all people everywhere to repent” (Acts 17:30), and “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved” (Acts 2:21). Likewise, although God is sovereign over healing as he is sovereign over everything, this is not an excuse for unbelief, uncertainty, and rebellion. We relate to God on the basis of his precepts, not his decrees. He says, “The prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise him up” (James 5:15), and “Everything is possible for him who believes” (Mark 9:23).

Vincent Cheung. Biblical Healing. 2012. P 8,12