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GOD’S BLESSING UPON DAVID

2 Samuel 7:1-7:29
Key Verse: 7:18-19

In the last lesson David brought the ark of God to Jerusalem, the city of David. The ark of God was described as that which is called by the Name, the name of the LORD Almighty who is enthroned between the cherubim that are on the ark. The LORD Almighty is enthroned in heaven and on earth as the sovereign king over all the kingdoms of the world. King David knew this King and brought the ark of God to Jerusalem, the City of David, revering and rejoicing in his presence. It is because of his love for the LORD Almighty. Today’s passage, 2 Samuel 7, can be considered one of the most important chapters in the Bible because it contains God’s covenant promise to David concerning the Messiah and his eternal kingdom through his line. And David expressed his deep gratitude, realizing God’s incredible blessing upon him and his house and the LORD”s people Israel. Amazingly, God’s blessing given to David is directly related to us in Christ Jesus.

First, God’s promise to David (7:1-17). In verses 1 and 2, “After the king was settled in his palace and the LORD had given him rest from all his enemies around him, he said to Nathan the prophet, ‘Here I am living in a palace of cedar, while the ark of God remains in a tent.” It is like a man who lives in a penthouse in a city being concerned about his parents living in a tent in a country. Nathan knew what David meant and replied, “Whatever you have in mind, go ahead and do it, for the LORD is with you.” What David had in mind and told to Nathan the prophet was precious and commendable in human eyes. Surely, it was out of David’s love for God. But what God had in mind was different from what David in mind and even what Nathan thought. God’s thoughts concerned an amazing history of God, extending into the far future.

In verses 4 and 5 “That night the word of the LORD came to Nathan saying: ‘Go and tell my servant David. This is what the LORD says:’” The word of the LORD that was to be delivered to David can be divided into three sections. The first part is about God himself. The LORD said, “Are you the one to build me a house to dwell in? I have not dwelt in a house from the day I brought the Israelites up out of Egypt to this day. I have been moving from place to place with a tent as my dwelling. Wherever I have moved with all the Israelites, did I ever say to any of their rulers whom I commanded to shepherd my people Israel, ‘Why have you not built me a house of cedar?’” This is a very interesting expression concerning God himself. Here we see the descriptions, “have not dwelt in a house”, “have been moving from place to place”, “a tent as my dwelling place”, “have moved with all the Israelites.” We know that God is spirit, and so is invisible. But when David expressed what he had in mind to build a house for God, God communicated in his terms. He is really a humble, communicable, tangible, and intimate God. We see the implication of God Incarnate. Indeed, he came into this world and dwelt among men. At this point, he is a moving, in-tent-living God, a pilgrim God for his people.

Then verses 8-11 say, “Now then, tell my servant David, ‘This is what the LORD Almighty says: I took you from the pasture and from following the flock to be ruler over my people Israel. I have been with you wherever you have gone, and I have cut off all your enemies from before you. Now I will make your name great, like the names of the greatest men of the earth.” This is God’s personal grace upon David. The LORD continues, “And I will provide a place for my people Israel and will plant them so that they can have a home of their own and no longer be disturbed. Wicked people will not oppress them anymore, as they did at the beginning and have done ever since the time I appointed leaders over my people Israel. I will give you rest from all your enemies.” Here “my people Israel” (7, 8, 10, 11) and “wicked people” are contrasted. This is God’s mindfulness for his people Israel. This includes the implication of building the temple of God which would be the centre of the life of God’s people in the near future, yet this looks forward to the city of God, the eternal dwelling place for the whole people of God.

Now the main message is given in verses 11b-16. “The LORD declares to you that the LORD himself will establish a house for you: When your days are over and you rest with your fathers, I will raise up your offspring to succeed you, who will come from your own body, and I will establish his kingdom. He is the one who will build a house for my Name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom forever. I will be his father, and he will be my son.” This is God’s promise concerning God’s Son the Messiah through David’s line and his eternal kingdom and throne.

And in verse 14b, “When he does wrong, I will punish him with the rod of men, with flogging inflicted by men.” As a human father disciplines his sons, so the Lord would discipline the seed, if he committed iniquity. This has reference to the intermediary seed until Messiah’s arrival (any king of David’s line from Solomon). However, the ultimate Seed of David will not be a sinner like David and his descendants were, as recorded in Samuel and Kings (see 2 Cor. 5:21). Significantly, Chronicles, focusing more directly on the Messiah, does not include this statement in its record of Nathan’s words (1 Chr. 17:13).

The LORD continues in 15-16, “But my love will never be taken away from him, as I took it away from Saul, whom I removed from before you. Your house and your kingdom will endure forever before me; your throne will be established forever.” In verses 12 and 13, the LORD said, “I will establish his kingdom...and I will establish the throne of his kingdom forever” meaning the Messiah’s kingdom and his eternal throne. At the end of the message, here the LORD promised, “Your house and your kingdom will endure forever; your throne will be established forever.” And in 1 Chronicles 17:14 the LORD said, “I will set him over my house and my kingdom forever; his throne will be established forever.” God’s house and David’s house are meant the same thing, and the Messiah’s kingdom, God’s kingdom and David’s kingdom are also the same, and the Messiah’s throne and David’s throne are also the same. It is because the Messiah would be a descendant of David in the kingly line. So the angel Gabriel delivered God’s message to the virgin Mary, “You will be with child and give birth to a son…He will be called the Son of the Most High. Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever; his kingdom will never end” (Luke 1:32-33). The three terms, ‘throne’, ‘house’ and ‘kingdom’ were all explicitly mentioned. And notably his throne and house and kingdom will be forever. And verse 17 says, “Nathan reported to David all the words of this entire revelation.”

The eternal kingdom of the Messiah through King David’s line and house is an awesome revelation of God’s promise to David through Nathan the prophet. It is disclosed first here in the Bible. God’s promise concerning the Messiah to bless all people on the earth was given to Abraham in Genesis 12:1-3, “I will make you into a great nation…and all peoples on earth will be blessed through you.” This was the word of God’s revelatory promise that came to Abraham. Then this promise was confirmed when Abraham obeyed God, even unto obeying the command to sacrifice his one and only son Isaac. Genesis 22:18 says, “and through your offspring all nations on earth will be blessed, because you have obeyed me.” And now the promise regarding the kingdom of the Messiah was revealed to David. That is why Matthew 1:1 says, “A record of the genealogy of Jesus Christ the son of David, the son of Abraham.” Again, God’s message to Mary concerning the child she would bear was, “He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever; his kingdom will never end.” Before Jesus’ coming, God revealed the kingdom of Christ that would destroy all the kingdoms of the world and cover the entire earth to Daniel in his vision. A rock would smash the enormous statue of gold, silver, bronze, iron and clay, breaking them into pieces, but the rock itself would become a huge mountain and fill the whole earth (Da 2:34-35). The promise of God concerning the Messiah’s eternal kingdom and eternal throne has been fulfilled through Jesus’ death and resurrection. And it will be consummated when Jesus comes again.

Our individual salvation is important. But we also should have the concept of the kingdom, the kingdom of the Messiah, Christ. This was Jesus’ prayer, “Your kingdom come.” Time and again we are discouraged and disappointed to see the kingdoms of this world, corrupt and temporal. But the kingdom of Christ is eternal because of its perfect righteousness with no corruption at all. We need to fight for the righteousness in this world, but our ultimate hope is in the eternal kingdom of the Messiah. Our salvation will be completed with the completion of the eternal kingdom of the Messiah when he comes again.

Second, David’s response to God’s promise (18-29).In 18-19, “Then King David went in and sat before the LORD, and he said: ‘Who am I, O Sovereign LORD, and what is my family that you have brought me this far? And as if this were not enough in your sight, O Sovereign LORD, you have also spoken about the future of the house of your servant. Is this your usual way of dealing with man, O Sovereign LORD?’” As it was written in the previous part, David was a mere shepherd boy in Bethlehem as the youngest son of Jesse, but God took him from the pasture and from following the flock and made him ruler over God’s people Israel. As we studied in 1 and 2 Samuel, God led him through his divine training to be the king over Israel, delivering him out of all the troubles and trials in life. And now, God spoke about the future of the house of David, saying, “Your house and your kingdom will endure forever before me; your throne will be forever.” David was so moved by God’s grace that he asked, “Is this your usual way of dealing with man, O Sovereign LORD?” Surely, this answer is “No.” It is not a usual way, but an unusual way. We will think more about it later.

Then David says continually, “What more can David say to you? For you know your servant, O Sovereign LORD. For the sake of your word and according to your will, you have done this great thing and made it known to your servant.” When he said, “What am I and what is my family…?” he seemed to be self-centred, yet he was not. In fact he was full of God. In this part he calls, “O Sovereign LORD” seven times (18, 19, 19, 20, 21, 22, 28, 29) “O LORD”, “LORD God”, and “O LORD Almighty, God of Israel.” David’s faith in the LORD, Sovereign LORD, was critical. With that faith he could bear God’s divine training. With that faith he could wait on God to be anointed king over Israel. With that faith he could conquer Jerusalem, defeat the Philistines and bring the ark of God to the City of David. And here he said, “O Sovereign LORD. For the sake of your word and according to your will, you have done this great thing and made it known to your servant.” And he calls himself, “your servant” 10 times in this part as the response to God calling him, “my servant David” (5, 8).

He continues in verses 22-25 in deep thought of God and God’s people Israel: “How great you are, O Sovereign LORD! There is no one like you, and there is no God but you, as we have heard with our own ears. And who is like your people Israel—the one nation on earth that God went out to redeem as a people for himself, and to make a name for himself, and to perform great and awesome wonders by driving out nations and their gods from before your people, whom you redeemed from Egypt? You have established your people Israel as your very own forever, and you, O LORD, have become their God.” This was his confession of faith in the LORD God as the only God and love for the people Israel, saying, “your people Israel” repeatedly as the response to God calling Israel, “my people Israel.” Finally he said, “You have established your people Israel as your very own forever, and you, O LORD, have become their God.” We know in the New Testament that this is fulfilled in Christ Jesus as God has formed his people new Israel through Christ, who would be God’s people forever with God becoming their God.

Then now David holds on to God’s promise and pray. “And now, LORD God, keep forever the promise you have made concerning your servant and his house. Do as you promised, so that your name will be great forever. The men will say, ‘The LORD Almighty is God over Israel!’ And the house of your servant David will be established before you.” The LORD Almighty, this name, was in the bottom of his heart with the prayer, “your name will be great forever,” although he had his personal claim based on God’s promise, “the house of your servant David will be established before you.” And David continues, “O LORD Almighty, God of Israel, you have revealed this to your servant, saying, ‘I will build a house for you. So your servant has found courage to offer you this prayer. O, Sovereign LORD, you are God! Your words are trustworthy, and you have promised these good things to your servant. Now be pleased to bless the house of your servant, that it may continue for ever in your sight; for you, O Sovereign LORD, have spoken, and with your blessing the house of your servant will be blessed forever.” His prayer is based on God’s promise and very personal. The Messiah’s kingdom would be through his line and house. David’s relationship with God and his house would be eternal in God’s blessing, although he would also die and his earthly human kingdom of Israel would be gone.

Notably in this chapter the word “forever” is written 7 times. In God’s promise to David, 3 times as mentioned in verse 13, “…I will establish the throne of his kingdom forever” and in the last verse 16 concerning this promise, “Your house and your kingdom will endure forever before me; your throne will be established forever,” and in David’s response to God’s promise, 4 times as written in verse 24, “You have established your people Israel as your own forever”, in verse 25, “And now LORD God, keep forever the promise”, in verse 26, “so that your name will be great forever,” and in the ending verse of this chapter, verse 29 “…bless the house of your servant, that it may continue forever in your sight…the house of your servant will be blessed forever.” Especially both God’s promise to David and David’s prayer end with the word, “forever.”

Then we come back to the question, “Is this your usual way of dealing with man, O Sovereign LORD?” This question applies to us also, because of his unfathomable blessings given to us in Christ Jesus. As we studied in the New Testament, Apostles Paul said in Ephesians 1:3 that God has blessed us…with every spiritual blessing in Christ.” He also said in Colossians, “You have been given fullness in Christ.” God’s every full blessing to us in Christ includes our eternal salvation in our eternal relationship with God the Father in Christ Jesus, and his eternal kingdom. David said, “Who am I and what is my family?” We also have the question, “Who am I”, and “Who am I in Christ Jesus.” He saved us from our sins, misery and humble state. Also, our future is spoken. Our future is in Christ and with Christ. His future is our future as his destiny is ours. What an amazing grace! Truly, “Who am I in Christ Jesus” is an unfathomable question. According to 1 Peter 10-12, the prophets in the Old Testament searched intently and with the greatest for and how these unfathomable blessings would come. It was revealed to them that they were not serving themselves but us those to whom the gospel was preached by the Holy Spirit. And even angels long to look into these things (1 Pe 1:12).

It is good to remember that there are two clear revelations in the Old Testament. The LORD spoke in Habakkuk 2:2-4, “Write down the revelation and make it plain on tablets…For the revelation awaits an appointed time…the righteous will live by his faith.” We are made righteous through faith in Christ Jesus, who died for our sins and was raised from the dead. And the righteous are to live by faith from first to last. And it is the consistent teaching of the Scriptures that when we live by faith, God blesses our children and our descendants generation after generation (Acts 16:31). And here in 2 Samuel 7, we see the words, “the entire revelation” (17), “made it known to your servant” (21), and “you have revealed this to your servant” (27). The eternal kingdom of Christ is the revelation from God to David and to us. God wants us to live by faith in the history of God with the hope of the eternal kingdom of Christ, in the assured blessedness of our future in eternity in Christ Jesus. We hear the wonderful words in Revelation 11:15, “The kingdom of the world has become the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of his Christ” and in Revelation 21:3, “Now the dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God.”

We praise God that the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ is our God and we are his people, and Christ’s eternal kingdom is ours as our eternal dwelling place. May we live in this world with this assured blessedness in deep gratitude for God’s unfathomable grace, participating in his kingdom work.

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