A Hope for Gentiles Too

One question looms over all of this series on 2 Samuel 7 doesn’t it? How can such a glorious promise made to Israel mean anything to gentiles like us? Most of us in this room do not come from Israelite origin, we are not Jews, we do not grab hold of the covenant promises of Israel by physical birth. Well, this promise is the only hope for gentiles like us, and it is not an over-statement to say that this same promise made to David, of a coming King, is the only hope of every gentile on the planet. How is this so?

Amos 9:11 says this, “In that day I will raise up the booth of David that is fallen and repair its breaches, and raise up its ruins and rebuild it as in the days of old, that they may possess the remnant of Edom and all the gentiles who are called by my name, declares the Lord who does this.” Do you see what this means for us? It means that in the promise made to David in 2 Samuel 7:8-16 God had in view a larger house and kingdom much bigger and much greater than only Israel! He had gentiles in view here! He had every nation and every people and every langauge and every tribe in view. This is a worldwide kingdom, remember the promise of Isaiah, “…of His kingdom, and of the increase of His government there will be not end.” Likewise Revelation 11:15 says, “The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of his Christ, and he shall reign forever and ever.”

This hope for Gentiles is made even more clear when we remember what Jesus did at the last supper. Remember what He said when He held up the cup? “This cup is the New Covenant in my blood.” This means that through His blood Jesus purchased, He bought, all the covenant promises of old for those who’ll one day trust in Him. We know this because 2 Corinthians 1:20 says “All the promises of God find their YES in Christ Jesus.” Therefore if you’re in Christ, if you’ve trusted Him and placed your faith in Him all the promises God has ever made are yours and you can hold on to them as tightly, find hope in them, feel the sovereign strong power of God promising to do good to you, now! Romans 8:32 also, “For He who did not spare His own Son but have Him up for us all, won’t he with Him graciously give us all things?” The “all things” in view include all the covenant promises of old, they aren’t just for Old Testament saints, or for believing Jews, all the promises are pulled forward and applied to the Church, applied to you, and applied to me. And specifically, you and I can now go to 2 Samuel 7, read of the promise of a coming King and rejoice that your King has come, He is Lord of Israel, Lord of India, Lord of China, Lord of Kenya, Lord of Columbia, and He is now pursuing gentiles who are called by His name in every tribe, language, people, and tongue – even people in Newton county.

So I end with a call to you, post-modern 21st century Americans from two places in Scripture:

Isaiah 55:1-3, “Come, everyone who thirsts, come to the waters; and he who has no money, come, buy and eat! Come, buy wine and milk without money and without price. Why do you spend your money for that which is not bread, and your labor for that which does not satisfy? Listen diligently to me, and eat what is good, and delight yourselves in rich food. Incline your ear, and come to me; hear, that your soul may live; and I will make with you an everlasting covenant, my steadfast, sure love for David.”

Revelation 22:16, “I, Jesus, have sent my angel to testify to you about these things for the churches. I am the root and the descendant of David, the bright morning star. Come, let the one who is thirsty come; let the one who desires take the water of life without price.”

After David heard the promise, the first thing our of his mouth was, “Who am I and what is my house that you O Lord would do such marvelous things for me?!” Perhaps God has brought you to that same point in life, and you have cried out in a similar manner after seeing your sin and beholding what Jesus did for us on the cross. And then perhaps you haven’t, I pray you would.

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He is Making All Things New

Continued from yesterday…

This is exactly what took place when the angel Gabriel appeared to Mary and said in Luke 1:31-33, “And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. And the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.” This is Him! David’s Son is here! He will reign forever and ever. Paul agrees and states in Romans 1:3 that the Son of David is Jesus. Matthew 22:45 says this Son of David is also the Lord of David, and 1 Corinthians 15:25 says the King ruling and reigning over the true Israel is David’s Son Jesus. So we see the promise made to David in 2 Samuel 7 has eternity shaping realities, when we find out that the son of David who will rule forever is the Son of God Himself. David’s heir who’ll build a house for God is David’s God.

If any of you are familiar with the famous Lord of the Rings novel written by J.R.R. Tolkien, you’ll remember there is a part in the very back that peaks to our topic today. After the quest was over and they were back in the safety of the elven city Rivendell, Gandlaf was sitting by the bed of Sam and Frodo. Sam woke up for the first time since the dark lord had been defeated, and Gandalf asked him, ‘How do you feel?’ Sam’s answer speaks much about the delight and hope of the Christian. Sam said, “Well, I don’t know how to say it. I feel, I feel’ – he waved his arms in the air – ‘I feel like spring after winter, and sun on the leaves; and like trumpets and harps and all the songs I have ever heard! Does this mean the King is now going to make all sad things untrue?” The wait is over, the King has come, and yes, He is making all things new.

The Return of the King

Befuddlement is the proper response upon reading 2 Samuel 7:8-16. David desired to build a house for God to live in, and God responds, not in the manner we expect, and says that instead of David building a house for God, God is going build a house for David. And not only a house, but an eternal house/throne/kingdom that would endure forever and ever. This is a strange God indeed. Can you see why this chapter could easily be one of the 7 summits of the Bible and one of the largest moments in the redemptive history? David was just told he would receive an eternal kingdom, and that he would never lack a son to rule on the throne of Israel. This is stunning to say the least. Here before us we have what the Church, for ages, has called the Davidic Covenant. And in this Davidic Covenant God promises that David’s throne would extend forever.

There is much happening in these few verses. God promises that Solomon will reign in David’s place one day, but it is not Solomon that will reign forever and ever. This is why 7:14 says, “When he commits iniquity, I will discipline him with the rod of men, and the stripes of the sons of men…” Yes, Solomon will reign but he will not reign perfectly, he will sin and need the Lord’s discipline, and eventually Solomon’s life will end. But verse 13 and 16 make clear that David’s kingdom will reign forever, it will be an everlasting kingdom. So God is making eternity shaping promises here, and Israel would have placed all their hope in the line of David. Yet, even in the midst of David’s reign Israel learned what happens when the king disobeys God; it always brought the nation to ruin, but God had promised (!) the line of David would not end. So the people would begin to yearn and groan for a king to come who would actually fulfill the conditions of the covenant, obey God fully, bring the nation to flourish under God’s mighty hand. They knew that such a king could only come from God Himself, a righteous, obedient descendant of David ruling justly on the throne.

Then David dies, and Solomon dies, and king after king after king come and go, mainly showing themselves wicked not righteous, and bringing destruction, ruin, and even exile to the nation. Then in the prophets writings we see glimpses of hope coming, that one day the king their looking for will come and make all sad things un-true.

Ezekiel says this in 34:23, “And I will set up over them one shepherd, my servant David, and he shall feed them: he shall feed them and be their shepherd. And I, the Lord, will be their God, and my servant David shall be prince among them. I am the Lord; I have spoken.” Jeremiah 23:5-6 says it too, “”Behold, the days are coming, declares the Lord, when I will raise up for David a righteous Branch, and he shall reign as king and deal wisely, and shall execute justice and righteousness in the land. In his days Judah will be saved, and Israel will dwell securely. And this is the name by which he will be called: “The Lord our Righteousness.” Isaiah says it in 9:6-7, “For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and 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 the Lord of hosts will do this.”

This last prophecy from Isaiah teaches us that the Davidic covenant is glorious because it shows the One whose coming goes by the name, Wonderful Counselor, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace, and Mighty God. What does this mean about who the King is? The coming King will none other than God Himself! God Himself will come as King and sit on the throne of David. In spite of all their sin and all their wandering God will come to His people and do good to them in His way and His timing. So you can almost feel the anticipation that existed within the heart of an Israelite. They had some dark days, and the night is darkest just before the dawn, and how glroious the sight would be of the coming of the King! O’ to see the New Day Dawning, to see the King come and sit on His throne, to see the people of God seeing what they have for so long yearned for! The King will come, and rule in righteousness and faithfulness forever.

2 Samuel 7: One of the Biblical 7 Summits

13 years ago a close friend in high school introduced me to the exciting and thrilling world of rock climbing, and from the moment I first ascended my first climb I was hooked and to this day I enjoy climbing as often as I can. It wasn’t long before I realized that many climbers dreamed and aspired to do one thing, climb the 7 summits. You see, the 7 summits is to the climbing world what the Super Bowl is to the NFL. These 7 summits are the 7 tallest mountains on each continent, and to be a climber whose climbed all 7 means you’re among the most elite climbers in the world. It wasn’t long before this aspiration began rising in me as my new climbing hobbie grew. The 7 summits hit me as I was beginning to pray over and think through this sermon, because in the Bible we can clearly see 7 summits as well, each summit being a monumental moment in history that not only changed everything for that specific time period, but is far reaching in it’s implications for the entire history of redemption. If one were to put all 7 summits down on paper, the events of 2 Samuel 7 are such a summit. Why? Lets look into it to see.

As we begin 2 Samuel 7 we find David as King of Israel and there is rest from war at this point in history because The Lord had defeated all of Israel’s enemies. David then has a thought he shares with Nathan the Prophet, “I live in a big house, God dwells in a tent.” Nathan responded eagerly and quickly, “Go, do all that is in your heart. The Lord is with you.” We take this to mean David wanted to build God a house, he wanted to make a temple. Now that’s not a bad desire, but God then comes to Nathan that same evening and gives Nathan a word for David. Listen to how God responds to David’s desire to build Him a house.

It would seem from these initial verses that God did not want a house to live in, because if He had wanted it, He clearly would’ve told the judges to build Him one. Even more so, God is Creator not part of the creation, in fact in Psalm 50 God states, “For every beast of the forest is mine, the cattle on a thousand hills. I know all the birds of the hills, and all that moves in the field is mine. If I were hungry, I would not tell you, for the world and its fullness are mine.” Similarly Paul says in Acts 17, “The God who made the world and everything in it, being Lord of heaven and earth, does not live in temples made by man, nor is he served by human hands, as though he needed anything, since he himself gives to all mankind life and breath and everything.” Even though David wants to build God a house, it would seem that David is about to hear something similar here, that God is God, He needs no home! “David don’t you know that I am The Lord, I am different than the false pagan gods that all dwell in temples.”

Well you would think God would say that, but He doesn’t.