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2 Samuel 7:18-10:19: Responding to the Promise Print E-mail
2 Samuel
Sunday, 13 August 2017

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Godís promise to David is incredible. He tells him that he will have a kingdom that will last forever. He promises that Davidís name will be great (7:9b), that Israel will have a place to dwell (7:10-11a), and that David will have rest from all his enemies (7:11b). Even though it was David that wanted to build God a house of cedar, God tells David that He is going to build David a house, a forever dynasty (7:12-16). These are all amazing promises from the Lord, which are ultimately fulfilled with the person and work of Jesus. He is the Forever King born in the line of David. Through His death and resurrection He established the Forever Kingdom, so that all who turn from their sins and believe in Him will be forgiven and live forever with Him.

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So how does David respond to this promise of a forever kingdom? Although he will struggle and his sin will be great (see 2 Samuel 11ff), David responds with humility and obedience. The author of 2 Samuel wants us to see that David is not a perfect man, he is not the forever king. Yet, he does want us to see that David is a man after Godís own heart. We see evidence of that in his response to Godís promise. So what do we see?

Davidís prayer of thanksgiving and praise (7:18-29)

David immediately responds with prayer and praise. Look at 7:18-22. You can hear the amazement and wonder in Davidís prayer. He recognizes the mercy and grace that God has shown in choosing him and his family to be a part of this forever kingdom. And God did not give this privilege to David because he was worthy or deserving. He gave it to David out of love and grace. And this is not just for David but for all of Israel. Look at verses 23-24. God has loved His people Israel and pledged Himself to them to be their God forever. David is thanking God and praising God for such actions: ĎTherefore you are great, O Lord God. For there is none like you, and there is no God besides youÖí

David concludes his prayer with a lengthy ĎAmen, let it be so!í Look at verses 25-29. In one sense, Davidís prayer here might seem odd to us, for he is telling God to do what He has promised to do. But David is not being disrespectful or demanding in any way. Rather, he is simply rejoicing in Godís plan and crying out: ĎThy will be done.í David knows that what God has promised to him and his descendants is great and so the only thing he can say is ĎAmen, Lord!í Such an approach to prayer and Godís promises is a good example for us. As we read of Godís promises for us under the New Covenant, we should shout out with David: ĎAmen, Lord, let it be as you say!í We should pray as Jesus taught us to pray: ĎOur Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy Kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.í Humble thanksgiving and praise is always a right response to Godís promises.

Davidís victories with Godís help (ch. 8, 10)

One of the promises that God gave to David is rest from his enemies. Even though we know that that promise will not be fully realized until Jesus returns, it is at least partially fulfilled in the life of David. We see evidence of that in chapter 8. The author gives us a list of many of Davidís conquests. It includes the Philistines, the Moabites, the Ammonites, and the Edomites. David is having victory over all of the surrounding nations. And how is he continuing to have such victory? Look at verse 6 and 14. God is keeping His promise and blessing David with rest. Likewise, as David is defeating these nations, he is amassing wealth and power. The author lists all of the spoils of war that David was able to take from these nations. He was able to control the major trade routes, which also lead to more and more revenue. And what did David do with all of these spoils? Look at verse 11. David recognized that all of his success came from the hand of the Lord, so he dedicated the spoils to Him. He was also faithful in how he ruled over the people. Look at verse 15. David is ruling over all of Israel with justice and equity. These are the ways that God would have his king rule over His people.

Chapter 10 also recounts victories of David, particularly over the Ammonites and Syrians. When David tries to honor the new king of the Ammonites, that king shames the servants of David, which leads to war. They contract with the Syrians to help them and David sends Joab to defeat them. Even though Joab is surrounded by the two armies, he trusts in the Lord and encourages his men to fight. Look at verse 12. God gives him victory over both armies and when they try to regroup, David is able to defeat them again. Victory on every side. This chapter functions in a couple of ways. First, the new king of the Ammonites is a foil to Mephibosheth, which we will talk about next. And second, it gives the background for Davidís sin with Bathsheba, which we will look at next week.

Davidís kindness toward Mephibosheth (ch. 9)

David had promised Jonathan that he would care for his offspring (see 1 Samuel 20:42). He made a similar promise to King Saul (see 1 Samuel 24:21-22). But now that David was king, would he keep those promises? Would he show covenant faithfulness (hesed) as the Lord has shown him? We find an answer to that in 2 Samuel 9, which begins with a question. Look at verse 1. David wants to keep his covenant with Jonathan and Saul, so he asks about a descendant. He is told about Mephibosheth, who is a son of Jonathan that is crippled. David sends for him and he is brought before the king. Look what happens in verses 6-8. Even though Mephibosheth seems a bit wary before David (and rightly so since most kings would have considered him a threat and had him killed), he does appear before the king. But instead of being killed as a descendant of the former king, he is greatly honored as the son of Jonathan. David gives him back all of Saulís land and tells Mephibosheth that he will sit at his table like one of his sons. This is extremely unexpected. It is extravagant grace toward Mephibosheth. It is covenant love (hesed). David loved Jonathan and respected Saul, so he kept his covenant with them and honored Mephibosheth.

We cannot help but see a bit of our own story in this passage. We are unworthy servants of the King. We deserve His wrath and justice. We can only fall before Him, expectant of judgment. Yet, the King of kings and the Lord of lords pours out extravagant grace upon us as David did with Mephibosheth. He forgives our wrongs by paying for them at the cross and invites us to sit at His table for the rest of our lives and throughout eternity. Even this morning we will gather at His table as sons and daughters of the King.

David responds to Godís promise with humility and obedience. He offers praise and thanksgiving. He defeats his enemies with Godís help and provision. He shows steadfast love and keeps his covenant with Jonathan and Saul. As we will see, David will not respond with a perfect life, for his great sins will soon be clear. But he does show himself in our passage to be a man after Godís own heart.

So what about you? How have you responded to Godís great promise? You might say: ĎWhat great promise has God given to me?í Actually, if you will turn from your sins and believe in Jesus, then you can be a part of the very promise that God made to David. You can be a part of the Forever Kingdom through repentance and faith. Like Mephibosheth, you can sit at the Kingís table! But it does take humility and obedience. We must humble ourselves before King Jesus and admit our need for forgiveness, which is what is meant by repentance of sins. We must ask Him for mercy and strength to live lives of obedience to His word. As followers of Jesus, we must exalt God, edify the saints, and evangelize the lost, for the glory of our King. My prayer is that we will respond to Godís good promise to us in this way. Amen.

~ William Marshall ~

Last Updated ( Thursday, 24 August 2017 )

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