“Lift up your heads, O ye gates; And be ye lifted up, ye everlasting doors: And the King of glory will come in” (Psalm 24:7).
This psalm of David refers to the restoration of the Ark to Jerusalem after it had been captured by the Philistines. The presence of the Ark in their midst had caused great problems for the Philistines and so they returned it to Kiriath-jearim and it remained there for twenty years. (1 Samuel 7:1-2).
After David had become king, he assembled all Israel together to bring back the Ark to Jerusalem but after Uzza put out his hand on the cart and the Lord struck him down, David left it at the house of Obed-edom for three months (1 Chronicles 13).
Then David prepared a house for the Ark in Jerusalem and gathered the heads of the fathers together to bring up the Ark from the house of Obed-edom to Jerusalem. (It was on this occasion that David’s wife Michal, the daughter of Saul, looked out of the window and saw David rejoicing in humility before the Lord and she despised him in her heart) (1 Chronicles 15).
In 1 Chronicles 16 the installation of the Ark in the place prepared for it at Jerusalem is recorded, and Asaph was assigned the task of giving thanks to the Lord. Asaph’s psalm of thanksgiving follows in Chapter 16 verses 8-36.
David’s Psalm 24 is his own response to the return of the Ark to its rightful place in the midst of His people. Firstly, he glorifies the Lord (verses 1-2); then he describes those who are God’s people (verses 3-6); finally he speaks to the holy city (verses 7-10).
The earth is the LORD’S, and the fullness thereof; the world, and they that dwell therein.
For He has founded it upon the seas, and established it upon the floods.
Who shall ascend into the hill of the LORD? Or who shall stand in his holy place?
He with guiltless hands and clean in heart, who did not lift up his soul on futile (or worthless) things and did not swear deceitfully to his neighbour
He shall receive the blessing from the LORD, and righteousness from the God of his salvation.
This is the generation of them that seek him, that seek your face, O God of Jacob. Selah.
Lift up your heads, O ye gates; and be ye lifted up, ye everlasting doors; and the King of glory shall come in.
Who is this King of glory? The LORD strong and mighty, the LORD mighty in battle.
Lift up your heads, O ye gates; even lift them up, ye everlasting doors; and the King of glory shall come in.
Who is this King of glory? The LORD of hosts, he is the King of glory. Selah.
Luke draws on this scripture when referring to end times events:
“And then shall they see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draws nigh” (Luke 21:27-28).