Rawlings School of Divinity
Master of Arts in Biblical Studies (MA)
Eric J. Spano
Revelation, Bridegroom, Divine Warrior, Revelation 19, Psalm 45, Messianic, Messiah, Sons of Korah, Bride, Marriage Imagery, Nuptial Imagery, Eschatology
Christianity | Religion
Strickland, Robert Brandon, "Jesus as Bridegroom Warrior King: The Use of Psalm 45 in Revelation 19" (2022). Masters Theses. 930.
While the book of Revelation includes no direct quotes from the OT, it is no secret that allusions to the OT permeate the text of John's apocalyptic vision. In alluding to the OT, John develops thematic links and imagery, resulting in theological messaging that informs his readers of the reality of Christ's rule and reign. This thesis investigates John's theological messaging in Revelation 19. Primarily this thesis will examine the themes and imagery of Revelation 19 in light of Psalm 45. It is my proposal that John borrows both imagery and language from Psalm 45 to depict Jesus as the all-inclusive messianic bridegroom warrior king. Overall, this study will seek to show that the themes and motifs of Psalm 45 influenced John in his writing of Revelation 19. Several links reveal this connection. First, Revelation 19 and Psalm 45 speak of a kingly figure who rides out in battle under the banner of "truth and meekness and righteousness" (Ps. 45:3-5; cf. Rev. 19:11-21; 19:2). Second, both texts present the kingly figure as a warrior and a bridegroom king (Ps. 45:8-15; cf. Rev. 19:6-21). Third, the bride in both contexts is arrayed in wedding clothes and made ready for the king (Ps. 45:14; cf. Rev. 19:7-8). Fourth, Psalm 45 and Revelation 19 present themes of joy and gladness for those who submit to the king (Ps. 45:10-15; cf. Rev 19:7), as opposed to destruction for the king's enemies (Ps. 45:3-5; cf. Rev. 19:11-21). These connections and several others will be explored in the body of the thesis. Ultimately by alluding to several key motifs and themes found in Psalm 45, John portrays Jesus as the ideal eschatological Davidic king. Jesus, as the ultimate Davidic king, victoriously conquers his enemies and consummates his kingdom and eternal rule at his second coming. The result of this theological messaging is a call for his readers to flee idolatry, remain loyal to the "King of kings and Lord of lords"(Rev. 19:16), and wait for their sure vindication at his coming.