Who are the two lords in Psalm 110:1? Are these two lords equal? Are these Lords one and the same? If the LORD and my lord are not equal in the Old Testament, has the meaning of "adoni" in the New Testament changed and "adoni" is now equal with YHWH?


In the first instance, the Hebrew Yahweh is used. A name given by God as His own, and being a third person name form of the verb to be (namely, "I am"). This name refers to God.

"My lord" (Heb. adoni) in Hebrew refers to the king, the lord of the Kingdom. It is in this sense that the mother of the Messiah is called "em adoni" ("mother of my lord [the king]") by Elizabeth (Luke 1:43), itself a royal title denoting queenship.

When David refers to the Messiah, therefore (something conceded by Jews of Jesus' day), and calls him "my lord," he means that he is the king of the king himself - that is to say, greater than God's highest authority on earth.

The degree or nature of the lordship is not specified by the word alone - it is only implied that the lord here mentioned is King David's lord, and in this light Jesus uses this passage to prove the divinity of the Messiah, or, at least, His superiority to Davidic Kings - God's highest ordained authority, acting in His place.

How can the future Messiah be David's "lord," if He isn't pre-existent - isn't God - isn't more father to David than son? "How does David then call thim lord?" (Mt. 22:43).

The equality is not stated definitely, but implied strongly by virtue of the necessary identity of the lord spoken of, namely, the Messiah, God incarnate (John 1:1, 11-14; Rev. 19:13).

  • Yahweh and Adoni not equal, correct? – user35499 Jun 4 '20 at 22:29
  • אדני is used of men and of God, it just means "lord." It neither expresses nor denies divinity, it merely means "lord." In certain contexts it is used of God, and in others of God. Jesus argues clearly and emphatically that it means more than just a man in this passage. – Sola Gratia Jun 4 '20 at 22:32
  • Jesus can be David's Lord b/c he will be the son of God - that still doesn't 'require' him to be God or equal with God at all! The son of God will be king of kings etc because he has earnt the right. – user48152 Jun 4 '20 at 23:36
  • That's not a hermeneutical question, but a theological one, since "son of God" is not used univocally in the New Testament. Sometimes it means an adopted son of God, sometimes it refers to the divine Word (most of the time) through Whom the Father made everything that exists. The Son of God didn't begin to exist, according to the New Testament. – Sola Gratia Jun 4 '20 at 23:41
  • there's only ONE son of God who matters, (who was born 2000 yrs ago) sry, what's your point? – user48152 Jun 5 '20 at 4:02

No, they are not equal. One is Yahweh, the other is not. There is only one Yahweh as David well understood. Yahweh is God, He is the one revealing what will happen when the 'Messiah' arrives to do all these things and to be the one who is foreknown from the beginning.

1 Pet 1:20 For He was foreknown before the foundation of the world, but has appeared in these last times for the sake of you

Acts 2:36 "Therefore let all the house of Israel know for certain that God has made Him both Lord and Christ-- this Jesus whom you crucified."

Secondly, the word for Lord means master - a word never used for Yahweh. So not only does this make them not equal, it states that the 'Lord' is NOT God.

  • The Greek Kyrios ("Lord") is not only used of God - it is almost the exclusive translation of God's name in the Greek Old Testament. It doesn't specify in itself whether its referent is God or not - that's implied by context (in the Hebrew Bible, whether Yahweh is that which it translates, or in the New Testament, if its referent is God). – Sola Gratia Jun 4 '20 at 22:43
  • Kyrios (Greek) and Adoni both mean "Lord" in Greek and Hebrew. They neither imply nor preclude divinity. Divinity is derived from context, such as when the Lord is said or implied to be God. – Sola Gratia Jun 4 '20 at 23:10
  • almost, implied, doesn't always, referred??? The Q asked about the OT which is not Gr. There is a difference between adoni and Adonai - one can be God the other cannot. – user48152 Jun 4 '20 at 23:10
  • @user48152—But Adoni can be God. “and the Lord (ha-adon), whom you seek, shall suddenly come to his temple” (Mal. 3:1). Whose temple is it? Yahveh's. Who were they seeking? They were seeking Yahveh. cf. Mal. 2:17: “Where is the God of judgment?” – Der Übermensch Jun 5 '20 at 3:45