Psalm 118:22-23 foretells Jesus’ rejection by others, as it portrays the rejected building stone which God selects and uses as the cornerstone for his Temple (Matt. 21:42; Acts 4:11-12; Eph. 2:19-22; 1 Pet. 2:4-8). Psalm 16:7-11 expresses the faith of a righteous man that God will have the final word over death, and it is fulfilled in Jesus’ resurrection from the dead (Acts 2:31-32; 13:34-37). Although the New Testament does not make the point, Jesus’ ascension and entry into heaven then fulfill the scene portrayed in Psalm 24:7-10, which is the reward of the godly life described in Psalm 24:1-6.
Psalm 110:1, 4 is the most-quoted Old Testament passage in the New Testament. The vision of Jesus seated as King and Priest at God’s right hand is cited by Jesus himself (Matt. 22:44; 26:65) and in the apostolic preaching (Acts 2:34). It underwrites our ethics (Col. 3:1), exemplifies God’s power available for us (Eph. 1:20), illuminates our hope (1 Cor. 15:25), certifies Jesus’ finished atonement — he can “sit” because his sacrifice, once-offered, is sufficient forever (Heb. 1:3; 8:1; 10:12-13), and inspires our faithfulness (Heb. 12:2).
Finally, the author of the Epistle to the Hebrews examines Psalm 110:4 word by word in light of Jesus. He notes that Jehovah, not Jesus, appointed Jesus as high priest (Heb. 5:4-6). God did so with an oath, not merely with a promise (Heb. 6:17-20; 7:21-22). God will never change his mind about Jesus’ priestly appointment, as he once did about ancient Eli’s (Heb. 7:21; 1 Sam. 2:27ff). Unlike the Levitical priests, Jesus is a priest forever, since he lives forever to intercede (Heb. 7:23-25). And he is a priest like Melchizedek, a priest whose efficacy rests on his own moral character, not on ceremonial purity, symbolic holiness or physical and ancestral requirements for office (Heb. 7:15-17; 7:26—8:2).