Hundreds of years have passed since the LORD revealed to his servant Moses that Israel would one day be blessed with a permanent place of worship (Deuteronomy 12).
After years of warfare, King David and Israel experience a time of peace. David sends for Nathan to discuss a proposal, "See now, I dwell in a house of cedar, but the ark of God dwells inside ten curtains" (2 Sam. 7:2). Perhaps David got the idea to build the LORD a temple as he read Deuteronomy 12 during his quiet time. Nathan quickly responds with an affirmative, but God interrupts Nathan's sleep that night to reveal a different plan.
God responds to David's request by applauding his desire for a temple, by blessing David with a house of his own―not physical, but eternal―and by assigning the task to David's son.
God promises to raise up David's offspring to succeed him, that David's house and kingdom will endure forever before Him, and that his throne will be established forever (7:12-16). Overwhelmed, David responds, "Who am I, O Lord GOD? And what is my house, that You have brought me this far? And yet this was a small thing in Your sight, O Lord GOD; and You have also spoken of Your servant's house for a great while to come. Is this the manner of man, O Lord GOD?" (7:18-19). Good question, David! "Is this normal?"
Early in the Bible's metanarrative God speaks of a coming Redeemer. He speaks to Noah regarding the global flood. He speaks to Abraham regarding a son, a land, a people, and a 400 year captivity. He speaks to Moses regarding a future Prophet and a cursing―the captivity of His people in a foreign land. After David, He speaks through various prophets regarding future events, including a coming Messiah and the new covenant. Oh yes, the Divine Storyteller often hints of future events to those participating in His Story!
God has written story parts for us as well, "For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them" (Ephesians 2:10). Glory! How great is our God that He included David perpetually in His Story and that He includes us as well.
What do David's request regarding the temple and his reply after God speaks to him about his son reveal about his understanding of God's relationship with Israel?
What role has the LORD given to David, and how does David fulfill his calling?
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