Covenant Words
Covenant Words

Episode · 6 years ago

God's Promise To David (1 Chronicles 17:1-15)

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

Rev. Christopher Chelpka

Let's hear God's word from first chronicles chapter seventeen. First chronicles seventeen is divided into or one could divide it into two parts, God's promise and then David's prayer or David's response to that promise. To night we cover the the first part of that God's promise to David. So let's hear God's word first chronicles seventeen. Now, when David lived in his house, David said to Nathan the Prophet, behold, I dwell in a house of Cedar, but the Ark of the Covenant, of Jehovah's Under a tent. And Nathan said to David, do all that is in your heart, for God is with you. But that same night the word of Jehovah came to Nathan. Go and tell my servant David. Thus says Jehovah, it is not you who will build, build me a house to dwell in, for I have not lived in a house since the day I brought up Israel to this day, but I have gone from tent to tent, from dwelling to dwelling in all places where I have moved with all Israel. Did I speak a word with any of the judges of Israel, whom I command to shepherd my people, saying, why have you not built me a house of Cedar? Now, therefore, thus set, thus shall you say to my servant David? Thus says Jehovah of Hosts. I took you from the pasture, from following the sheep, to be a print, to be prince over my people Israel, and I have been with you wherever you have gone and have cut off all your enemies from before me. And I will make for you a name like the name of the great ones of the Earth, and I will appoint a place for my people Israel and will plant them that they may dwell in their own place and be disturbed no more, and violent men shall waste them no more, as formerly, from the time that I appointed judge as over my people Israel, and I will subdue all your enemies. Moreover, I declare to you that Jehovah will build you a house when your days are fulfilled, to walk with your father's. I will raise up your offspring after you, one of your own sons, and I will establish his kingdom and he shall build a house for me and I will establish his throne forever. I will be to him a father and he shall be to me a son. I will not take my steadfast love from him, as I took it from him who was before you, but I will confirm him in my house and in my kingdom forever, and His throne shall be established forever, in accords with all these words and accordance with all this vision. Nathan spoke to David, maybe seated. So David is king over Israel. He is one of the Kings, one of the great kings, so we might even say v King. I'm in the Old Testament. We think about the prominence of David in the psalms, in the historical books, even in the prophets, where him and his kingdom, in this promise that God makes here, comes up over and over and over again. We think we realize quickly how important David is in the whole of scripture. If you go, I think, to random people and ask them what stories do you know about the Bible off and they're going to be stories about David, one about his kingship, either his rise to power or various things that went on during his reign. God obviously uses David...

...and his great plan of redemption, but David is particularly unique, even among other kings that God uses, because of what we have here in first chronicles seventeen. To No other king does God make a promise like this one. This promise is a covenant. We see it in the way that it's written, the structure that is laid out here. It's called a covenant and other portions of Scripture, and so that's why sometimes we refer to this particular moment in history as the Davidic covenant. We even have this particular name because of its great importance. But in order to understand its importance we have to understand the context in which it comes. So let's consider that this evening, consider the context in which this promise of God has made, why God makes these promises and and why it's important for us. Now does David's kingship matter to us in our lives? Well, the ancient Near East it was common for kings to build temples to their gods. You can imagine why, just from a political standpoint, that would be a good thing to do. In a sense, it would be an extension of your kingly power. Right, you've you've built yourself this palace that, when he says David lived in a house. You don't want to be thinking three bedroom to bath yard. You know that kind of thing. This is a house, this is a palace that David has built. The fact that it's made out of Cedar, which is mentioned here, is is no small thing. This is a house for a king. This is his his kingly palace, and so David is established there in his house and he he decides that he wants to build a house, a word that can also be used not only to describe a palace but a temple, a place for God to dwell, a palace for God. And this says I say it was a sort of a common thing. You can imagine the king having his Great Palace and then next to the palace was the throne room of his God's. It was an extension of kingly power and glory and in a sense it would add a lot of religious weight to what you did. In some other words, as a King, you're not only now exercising political power, but you're saying God is on my side. That's a pretty powerful thing. A lot of things have been done in our country in the name of God and the belief that God was on our side. This is true of places throughout history, and it's true as well in the ancient times. Now David wants to do this, but political motivations don't seem to be what's going on here. We remember that David is not just another King and God is not just another idol. David is God's anointed King. He is anointed by the one true God, who is a dablished David's King kingship with his mighty arm. So when David wants to give deference to God or give something to God, when David Sits in his seedar palace and looks down on the Ark and says something doesn't feel right about this. It seems to be an extension or an action that's coming from from to true piety. If you put yourself in David Shoes, you can see why you would feel that way. There you are in your palace, you look out and you say, I've spent all of done all of this work and all of these things because I believe that bringing the Ark to Jerusalem is, in a sense,...

...to establish God's authority here. Is it right for God to be an a tent while I'm in this palace? Well, so David goes to Nathan a prophet, a man of God, a pious man, a good man, and he asks David, what do you think I should do? and He makes this comment. Behold, I dwell in a house of Cedar, but the Ark of the covenants of Jehovah is under a tent. And Nathan, the Prophet, says do all that is in your heart, for God is with you. David, Sir Nathan sort of gives him the go ahead. He says, I see no reason why this couldn't be. He doesn't exactly say that he should do it, but he says the the Lord, has been with you, and it's makes sense to me. But God has other plans. That's the context in which this comes and this chapter is about God's other plans. I'll just pause there and say this is a good reminder that, no matter how good an idea seems, it's not our piety or our good reasoning on which we should depend, but we depend on God, as we read in another place, unless God builds the house, the builders build in vain. And so we may have plans and intentions and desires to do things, but ultimately our trust must be in the Lord. So back to God's promise. Why does God reject David's plan? Why does? Why did he say no to David? He's going to say yes to Solomon. Solomon's going to build him a temple. He will eventually establish himself this way in in Jerusalem. So why does God say no to David's presumably pious and Godly Desire? Well, there's four different things. First of all, he wants to emphasize that he needs nothing from David. God does not need to receive something from David, and he says in this way. He says in Verse Five, for I have not lived in a house since the day I brought up. Is Real. To this day I've gone from ten to twenty, ten to tent dwelling to dwelling. I've been just fine without a temple. This is such a contrary thing to the way false gods and idols and idolatry usually worships or works idolatry, when humans create gods of their own image, how does it usually work? Well, usually there's all kinds of superstitious places and thing and things that you say in charms, that you do and this whole set of things that has to happen in order for the God to work to do his good or to do his bad. But God turns all that on its head and says, I've lived intense and I've done everything that I have done from this place. I do not need this. God is sufficient in himself. In particular, he needs nothing from David this. It leads to a second point, that it is God who is great and David is great because of God, not the other way around. God has not become supreme in Israel because David has lifted him up, because David has made him great. God reminds David and of the and us of this when he says that I brought you from the pastures. You were a shepherd and I have made you into a prince. God is great because he is great, not because David made him that way. So he reminds David that of his greatness. In this way, he reminds David that he doesn't need him or that he doesn't need a temple in order to do what he wants to do. He also reminds him that he never asked for one. God decides to worship...

...how he God decides how we are to worship. He chooses where he is to dwell and how, among his people and he says, I've not commanded this. Among all the judges of this Israel, have I ever commanded why have you not built a house of Cedar for me? And then, finally, the final reason God rejects David's plan is because God has a better plan. And this is often the way, isn't it? We get frustrated, we don't understand why God does the way, the things that he does. We say to him, I thought through this, I acted wisely, I sought counsel, I acted according to good and holy motivations. And yet know why? Because God has another plan. God's not in heaven flipping a coin deciding at random what he will do and not do, or what will happen or not happen. Nothing is pushing or motivating god outside of himself. God Rejects David's plan because he has another plan. He has a promise. What is that plan? What is his promise to David? It's a three things here. First of all, he promises to make a great name for David. What a turn of events. God doesn't simply say no and walk away or no, thank you nice for thinking of it, but I'm fine. No, he says no I will make a great name for you. You want to build me a house, I'm going to build you a house. This really shows the greatness of God, particularly in His grace. But he is going to make a great name for David, he says in Verse Eight, like the name of the great ones of the earth. Let me just ask you. Has God done that? Well, yes, as I said at the beginning, David is one of the great ones. He is the one of the ones that we know, the people who don't even read the Bible know about King David. He is God has kept his promise to him. He has known throughout the Earth. There's a second thing God promises to do. He not only promises to establish him as a one of the great ones of the earth and make a name for him, he says in Verse Nine, and I will appoint a place for my people, Israel, and I will plant them that they may dwell in their own place and be disturbed no more. These two things together, David's great name and the place and protection for God's people, are meant to go together. As the king goes, so goes the people. That's the rule that we see over and over and over again in our own lives and in the pages of scripture. You see it in on your own lives. If you have bad father and mother, you typically have bad children, you have a bad CEO, a bad board of directors. The company is usually bad. The leadership often determines how the rest of the organization works, and the same as true in a country. So God making David Great is not just an individual promise for David, though it's that, but it's also a promise for the people. As the king goes, so goes the people. And he promises him not just a palace of Cedar to dwell in, but a place for his people, Israel. He will plant them that they may dwell in their own place and be disturbed no more. David will be able to defeat the enemies of the people because God is standing with him, riding with him, fighting with him,...

...and so there will be this blessing for the people. Thirdly, there will be God promises a house. He know of this term is used flexibly throughout this chapter. A house or a kingdom through his son. So we read this in verses ten and eleven. He says, moreover, I will declare to you that Jehovah will build you a house? Well, David doesn't respond by saying, well, what do you mean? I already have a house. God's talking about something different. Not only is David going to have a palace to dwell in, but he's going to have a family. This is similar to the promise he makes to Abraham. He says in Verse Eleven, when the days are fulfilled, to walk with your father's I will raise up your offspring after you, one of your own sons, and I will establish his kingdom. So he's going to do this through his son, and this son is going to be a very special son. There's this adoption formula that God uses here. In verse thirteen. I will be to him a father and he shall be to me a son, an adoption formula that's used here for God to say I will beasts, that he will have this special place in my house, he will belong to me and I will take care of him. He promises even more than this, though, amazing things, great things. This House that he will establish will be forever. In Verse Twelve, he says that I will establish his throne forever. He says that I will not take my steadfast love from him. He says I will confirm him in my house and in my kingdom forever, and His throne shall be established forever, forever, forever, forever, Amen and Amen. This is what God is going to do for David's son. So all this language means that God's plan was God's promise, a covenant that he is making with his servant, and that's why David takes such a prominent place, because God is not just raising up a king and moving him on. God is establishing, through David and through his son, a kingdom that will last forever, a place and a people that will last forever, a dwelling place that God himself will dwell with them, because this son, he says, will build him a house, he will build him a temple, and there he will be with his God, will be with his king and with his king's people for all eternity. Now we don't read it here, but in other places, even in First Chronicles, Chapter Twenty eight, verse seven, for example, we read one other element of this covenant promise, though it's unconditional in a way. God says, I will do this, I will do this, I will do this. There is one stipulation attached in first chronicles twenty eight seven, we read I will establish his kingdom forever if he continues strong in keeping my commandments and my rules as he is today. That references to Solomon, Pre Solomon in particular, and refers to the promise to David's sons. Now, this promise certainly seems to find a measure of fulfillment in Solomon. Solomon gains the spirit of the Lord. Solomon Gains Great Wisdom and anointing. Solomon gains great power in his kingdom. is a kingdom of peace, of prosperity,...

...of goodness all around, of great wealth and enjoyment. But Solomon does not follow the commandments of the Lord, particularly relating to this taking of many wives and his wives who worshiped other gods. This leads into false worshiped and even falling. Immediately following Solomon's Kingship, we see this great kingdom that God has established and promised split into and eventually both falling down. And by the time we get to Jesus's time, it's been four hundred, five hundred years since a King of David's line has been on the throne. A promise that in a measure seems to be fulfilled in such a great way and yet falls apart. This thing that happened, this falling apart of the dividic kingdom, does two things. One, it wepts our appetite for the things that will come and to it reminds us that of the of the king that will come and will establish those things. This king is, of course, our king, King Jesus. We read in Luke one hundred and thirty two that he is from David. The apostles a point and numerous ways, using the psalms, like Psalm too and Psalm one hundred ten, to remind us that he is the one who has been promised, he is from the Line of David, he do comes to do the father's will, he is the anointed one, and indeed this is all the people's hopes and expectations. When he rides into Jerusalem, into the place where David's throne has been established, where Solomon's Temple has been built and rebuilt now by this point, and here's they are, Jesus, the son of David Coming, and the people are channel yelling and chanting Hosanna, Hosanna, the king has come. Here he is, and who would it better be then this one? Who's doing miracles and teaching the things of God and teaching with authority. He's going to come and he's going to establish this kingdom. But then he's crucified and everyone says what, this was the king this who else could it be? This is the promised one of David. But what do we learn in the resurrection? What does Jesus tell us about that crucifixion, about his death? He says it was one hundred percent necessary so that peace could be established, not temporarily but forever, so that his throne could be established forever, so that the things that most hurt us, Satan, our sin, so that these things would be conquered. Jesus could have just kicked the Romans out if he had wanted to, but he wanted to do something much greater than that, and in order for that to happen, he needed to also be a sacrifice, not just a king, but a lamb who would go to the Cross and die for our sins so that we could have rest from them, so that we could...

...have peace with God, in fellowship with him, so that God could dwell with us and not just kick us out of the land again. God in Jesus Christ establishes the throne of David Forever, forever, and this was the expectation. We read of this, not only in first chronicle seventeen, but listen to two places in the prophets, two verses from Isaiah and two verses from Ezekiel. I'll read the Ezekiel passage first, Ezekiel, twenty four and twenty five. My Servant, David shall be King over them and they shall all have one shepherd. They shall walk in my rules and be careful to obey my statutes. They shall dwell in the land that I gave to my servant, Jacob, where your fathers lived. They and their children and their children's triljan children shall dwell there forever, and Dave and my servant shall be their prince forever. I only said I'll read two verses. I'll keep that promise. You can keep reading there later. So these Egal thirty seven, Isaiah, chapter nine, versus six and seven. For unto us a child is born, for unto us a son is given, and the government shall be upon his shoulder and he shall his name, shall be called wonderful counselor mighty God, everlasting father, Prince of peace, of the increase of his government and of peace. There will be no end on the throne of David and over his kingdom, to establish it and to uphold it with justice and with righteousness. From this time forth and Forevermore, the zeal of Jehovah of Hosts will do this. This is, of course, Jesus Right. This is what the prophets were speaking about. This is what everyone was anticipating, the son of David to come and establish his throne forever, that there would be no end to peace, that there would be no end to prosperity, no end to blessing, that you couldn't even measure it. So what does this mean for us? Well, this is everything. Des Covenant to David is our promises. Jesus is fulfillment of this covenant. Jesus is being this son. Means that we have a king that we can say God has fulfilled his promises in Jesus, and so that means we read the Old Testament accordingly. All the ways that I have been reading first chronicles and understanding these connections between David and Jesus are because of this, because of this important covenant that God makes, this promise that God makes, and certifies with his own blood on the cross. We read the Old Testament and an entirely in not an entirely different way, but in the way that God has set it up and the way that God has taught us. And so we come to see David's kingship and Solomon's kingship and the kings that come after them that are recorded in the chronicles to teach us about Jesus, his kingship and our life in him. But it also has a deep effects, not only in the way we read God's word, but how we apply it in our lives and how we think about things. Even now. Jesus indeed did ascend to the throne, was glorified and, I'm took the staying out of death. And yet at the same time, Hebrews to verse eight, reminds us that there is that...

...that we do not yes, verse a, we do not yet see everything in subjection to him. Let me read that a little slower. We do not yet see everything in subjection to him. And this is true, isn't it? There is a way in which, though he rules and reigns in this supreme way and has established his throne forever and ever, there's still people fighting against him, the kings of this world, rattling their sabers and making counsels together, saying how will we destroy the Lord and his anointed one? This is hard to live under, and I mention this because it's tempting to look away from the promises in first chronicles, ift, seventeen, and Jesus is fulfillment of them, to other things, for example, to look away from the promises here and look to earthly politics or other kinds of things. US to put our trust and our hope and getting things right here in this world, making sure that we get all the our ducks in a row in our families, in our country. That's, of course important, but it's not going to establish peace forever and ever. It's not going to establish the throne of David and all eternity, it's not going to increase the government of Jesus Christ for all time. The only thing that will do that is God working through this promised one who has come. So as we live our lives, we let's live them in light of the promise. Let's live them in light of the king who rules and reigns over us and even though we do not yet see all things in subjection to him. We believe that all things are in subjection to him. The proof of the resurrection, with the work of his miracles, with his very words, with the spirit living and dwelling in us, how can we have any doubt? So let us be patient, but let us also be confident, for our king rules and reigns. God has fulfilled his promises and will bring all things to his good and perfect ends. Let's pray.

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