Monday, 26 May 2014

(147) May 27: 1 Chronicles 17-19 & John 10:1-21

Ask God to open your mind, heart and will to understand, delight in and obey what you read.

To discover:­­
As you read note what we learn about David.

To ponder:
Now settled, David is concerned the ark rests under a tent, feeling it deserves something more noble just as he himself lives in a palace. His thoughts are of a temple, and Nathan is not against the idea. But God is clear it is not for David to do this for him. Rather, he is concerned with what he can do for David! And so he enters into the Davidic covenant. The LORD reveals he has never needed a house nor asked for one. Instead, his desire is to make David’s name like that of the greatest men of the earth, and provide a place of security and peace for Israel. To this end he promises a “house” (ie. dynasty) for David. What differs to the account in 2 Samuel is the replacement of references to God giving David rest from his enemies to David “subduing” them (17v10, 18v1). The Chronicler’s emphasis is on David’s greatness. He also omits God’s declaration that he will punish David’s offspring when they do wrong (2 Sam 7v14). So the author is less concerned with the failure of subsequent kings than looking straight to David’s supreme offspring whose kingdom and throne would last forever, fully fulfilling God’s promise.
            David’s response is to be overwhealmed, humbly marvelling that God would do this for him, and praising God for displaying his supremacy in redeeming Israel for himself. He then prays God would fulfil his promise so that people would not only know how great a God he is, but that he is Israel’s God. Reflecting his strong faith, David then reflects that because of God’s promise to build his house, he has courage to pray that God would do just that, and is confident his house will be blessed. We can be certain God will fulfil our prayers when they are in line with his promises.
            The following chapters prove God is fulfilling his promise. He promised David would “subdue” his enemies, and that’s just what he does (18v1) with the Philistines, Moabites, Zobahites, Arameans, Edomites and Ammonites. It is stressed that “the LORD” gave David “victory wherever he went” (18v6, 13). These victories portray David as potentially the promised “star” of Jacob (Num 24v17-18), the ruler whom the nations would obey (Gen 40v10) – even the long-awaited serpent-crusher (Gen 3v15). But because God’s covenant with him looked to an everlasting kingdom under one of his offspring, it is hinted that he is actually being portrayed as a model of what that king would achieve. This is probably why these chapters omit his failings and sins (as well as much else) which we read of in 2 Samuel. The author knew they were well known, but had a different purpose in writing. So we see these subjected nations bringing David tribute (18v2, 6), some of which is bought to Jerusalem and even used in the later temple. The king of Hamath seeks peace by sending his son to congratulate David. And we read David did “what was just and right” for his people. This looks us longingly for when Christ will subject all his enemies to himself, including death itself; and those who are reconciled to him will be raised to enjoy his eternal kingdom, which he will reign in all righteousness (1 Cor 15v24-28).
            The events with the Ammonites are probably included to demonstrate the size of victory David could have by God’s hand (see the size of the enemy in 19v6-7). Key is the result: Hadadezer’s vassal kings ended up subject instead to David, and at peace with him. Moreover, the Arameans were then unwilling to assist his enemies. It is through the gospel that Christ brings those whose allegiance is to Satan, false gods or simply their own desires into subjection and peace with him (2 Cor 10v3-6). Indeed, this Son of David will wrest the entire creation from these false rulers and make it his own.

Praying it home:
Praise God that he will bring all evil into subjection under Christ. Pray that you thoughts, desires and actions would increasingly brought into obedience to him.

Thinking further:
None today.
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