This text is a part of the Robust Passages collection.
1Now when the king lived in his home and the Lord had given him relaxation from all his surrounding enemies, 2the king mentioned to Nathan the prophet, “See now, I dwell in a house of cedar, but the ark of God dwells in a tent.” 3And Nathan mentioned to the king, “Go, do all that is in your heart, for the Lord is with you.”
4However that very same night time the phrase of the Lord got here to Nathan,5“Go and inform my servant David, ‘Thus says the Lord: Would you construct me a home to dwell in?6I’ve not lived in a home for the reason that day I introduced up the folks of Israel from Egypt to today, however I’ve been transferring about in a tent for my dwelling.7All over the place the place I’ve moved with all of the folks of Israel, did I communicate a phrase with any of the judges of Israel, whom I commanded to shepherd my folks Israel, saying, “Why have you ever not constructed me a home of cedar?” ’8Now, subsequently, thus you shall say to my servant David, ‘Thus says the Lord of hosts, I took you from the pasture, from following the sheep, that try to be prince over my folks Israel.9And I’ve been with you wherever you went and have lower off all of your enemies from earlier than you. And I’ll make for you a fantastic title, just like the title of the nice ones of the earth.10And I’ll appoint a spot for my folks Israel and can plant them, in order that they might dwell in their very own place and be disturbed no extra. And violent males shall afflict them no extra, as previously, 11from the time that I appointed judges over my folks Israel. And I will provide you with relaxation from all of your enemies. Furthermore, the Lord declares to you that the Lord will make you a home.12When your days are fulfilled and also you lie down along with your fathers, I’ll increase up your offspring after you, who shall come out of your physique, and I’ll set up his kingdom.13He shall construct a home for my title, and I’ll set up the throne of his kingdom without end.14I will probably be to him a father, and he shall be to me a son. When he commits iniquity, I’ll self-discipline him with the rod of males, with the stripes of the sons of males,15however my steadfast love is not going to depart from him, as I took it from Saul, whom I put away from earlier than you.16And your home and your kingdom shall be made certain without end earlier than me. Your throne shall be established without end.’”
—2 Samuel 7:1–17
A Place for God’s Presence
The narrator refers to David as “the king” in every of the primary three verses, presenting David as securely enthroned as covenant king. He additionally introduces two key phrases discovered within the chapter. “Lived” recurs in verse 6 and as “dwell” in verses 2, 5, and as “sat” in verse 18. “House,” one other key time period (cf. touch upon 2 Samuel 7:5), right here refers back to the palace Hiram’s workmen constructed for David and the place David has taken up everlasting residence (2 Sam. 5:11). Additional, the narrator states that “the Lord had given him rest from all his surrounding enemies.” These phrases are repeated from Deuteronomy 12:10–11, which describes the preparations for worshiping God after the Israelites are efficiently settled within the land.
Though verse 2 is the primary look of Nathan the prophet, he isn’t launched, and we have no idea the place he got here from nor how he turned related to David’s court docket. Although he acts as David’s adviser and confidant, Nathan is not any lackey however a worthy successor to Samuel as court docket prophet (cf. touch upon 1 Sam. 12:23). Later he delivers the Lord’s verdict on David’s sin (2 Samuel 12) and performs an influential position in making certain that Solomon succeeds David (1 Kings 1). He will even write an account of occasions in David’s reign (1 Chron. 29:29).
David is anxious over the anomaly that exists in Jerusalem and attracts Nathan’s consideration to it. “Dwell . . . dwells” repeats the verb rendered “lived” in verse 2 Samuel 7:1; it’s incongruous that David dwells “in a house of cedar” (cf. 2 Sam. 5:11), a well-constructed palace constructed from sturdy, high-quality timber, whereas the ark is housed “in a tent” (lit., “in the curtain”), referring to the material, most likely of goatskin, enclosing the tent. To each Nathan and David it’s self-evident that there may very well be no objection to glorifying God by constructing a temple for the ark, which symbolized his presence together with his folks. It was additionally a culturally accepted norm for a king to construct a temple in honor of his patron deity, to whom he attributed his success.
Nathan encourages David to “go” (equal to “go ahead”) together with his undertaking, though he has not explicitly said what he plans to do. “Heart” covers the entire vary of a person’s psychological schools—thought, will, and emotion. Whereas Nathan maybe interprets “rest from all his surrounding enemies” (2 Sam. 7:1) as achievement of the situation in Deuteronomy 12, he justifies his endorsement of David’s proposal together with his extra basic commentary that “the Lord is with you” (cf. feedback on 1 Sam. 10:7; 2 Sam. 7:9). The Lord is undoubtedly favorably disposed to David, however this doesn’t warrant a blanket endorsement of all that David proposes. It’s the Lord’s proper to resolve when and by whom a temple for him needs to be constructed. Nathan acts precipitately in expressing private approval when he has the truth is been consulted as “the prophet,” the Lord’s spokesman.
Who Ought to Construct It?
That very same night time God loses no time in correcting Nathan’s mistaken conclusion. Although “the word of the Lord came” is discovered as early as Genesis 15:1 and happens in reference to Samuel (1 Sam. 15:10), will probably be used extensively in later prophetic literature for the communication of a divine message to a prophet. The components attracts consideration to the authenticity of Nathan’s announcement and introduces the longest divine speech recorded for the reason that days of Moses.
The prophet is instructed to “go” (most likely involving bodily motion to the palace; distinction 2 Sam. 7:3) to “my servant David,” an honorable title expressing divine recognition of David’s standing (cf. Num. 12:7–8; Josh. 1:2). The messenger components “Thus says the Lord” (cf. 1 Sam. 2:27) emphasizes that Nathan is now appearing because the licensed mouthpiece of the Lord, not expressing his personal views.
The Lord’s probing query “Would you construct me a home to dwell in?” doesn’t reject David however factors out how unsuitable it will be for him to guide such a undertaking (cf. the unfavourable declaration in 1 Chron. 17:4). Elsewhere it’s defined that David’s warfare, although respectable, makes it incongruous for him to construct the temple of the God of peace (1 Chron. 22:8; 28:3). The noun “house” (Hb. bayit) is a key phrase within the chapter, employed in three senses: as palace, temple, or dynasty. It’s used as soon as by the narrator, six occasions by God, and eight occasions by David.
The Lord reminds David that there was no everlasting construction of wooden or stone for the ark since its building. As an alternative God has been content material with—certainly, had instituted—the present provision of being “in a tent for my dwelling” (lit., “in a tent and in a tabernacle”), a brief, moveable construction wherein he condescended to share the approach to life of his folks as they journeyed about. These preparations are to not be altered with out divine permission.
The Lord additionally factors out that at no time did he “speak a word” of criticism or reproach to these he appointed as rulers of his folks as a result of that they had not constructed a temple. He has been, and nonetheless is, happy with a tent. (Clearly using “temple” in 1 Samuel 1:9 for the Shiloh sanctuary doesn’t suggest it was a everlasting edifice.) “Judges” right here renders the Hebrew time period “rod” or “tribe,” which can be understood by metonymy as “rulers who hold the staff,” although in 1 Chronicles 17:6 the standard phrase for “judges” is discovered. For the metaphor of “shepherd” utilized to a ruler, cf. touch upon 2 Samuel 5:2.
The Lord then units out his relationship with David. “Now, therefore, thus you shall say to my servant David” echoes the preamble of verse 5, as does the messenger components “Thus says the Lord of hosts,” although the divine title used right here emphasizes the fact that David’s Overlord is the one in charge of all powers and assets within the universe (cf. 1 Sam. 1:3). “I am the one who took you” (AT) stresses the divine initiative (cf. 1 Sam. 16:1–13) by which God has chosen him, taken him from tending sheep, and remodeled him right into a better shepherd as “prince [Hb. nagid, “chief”; cf. touch upon 1 Sam. 9:16] over my folks Israel”—who’re additionally accorded a key position (2 Sam. 7:7, 8, 10, 11) on this revelation.
The Lord reminds David that in his path from pasture to palace he has loved God’s presence (cf. 1 Sam. 16:18) and has been granted victory over all of his enemies. The Lord’s previous highly effective provision kinds a certain foundation for confidence in his guarantees for the long run. The Lord commits himself to enhancing David’s standing additional by granting him fame and renown (cf. 2 Sam. 7:18, 21), simply as he had promised Abram that he would make his title nice (Gen. 12:2).
The Lord will even bless his folks as a complete by offering them with safety in order that they won’t be harassed by “violent men” (lit., “sons of wrongdoing”; rendered “the wicked” in 2 Sam. 3:34). It is a reference to the encompassing nations, whom the Lord had used all through the interval of the judges to chastise his folks (Judg. 2:14). Whereas the “place” God would appoint for Israel would possibly check with the positioning on which the temple can be constructed, the next metaphor of “plant” makes it extra possible that the time period factors to the Promised Land, which can now come fully underneath Israel’s management (1 Kings 4:21) and the place they are going to be firmly mounted, like a tree with deep roots.
The Lord’s previous highly effective provision kinds a certain foundation for confidence in his guarantees for the long run.
The main focus reverts to David, who’s promised divine upkeep of the remainder he already enjoys (2 Sam. 7:1). Certainly this relaxation will probably be surpassed, for “the Lord declares to you that the Lord will make you a house,” the place “house” (cf. touch upon 2 Sam. 7:5) refers to a dynasty, not a bodily construction. The repeated divine title emphasizes the Lord’s private initiative and assure that David’s sons will proceed to rule the land after his dying.
The dynastic promise consists of three features. First, David will probably be succeeded by his son, an association described as being made by a “sure oath” (Ps. 132:11). Although after a protracted life David will “lie down with your fathers,” a metaphor for dying, the Lord will “raise up” (“cause to stand”) David’s “offspring,” a time period with appreciable theological resonance (Gen. 3:15; 9:9; 17:9; 22:18). The clause “who shall come from your body” defines David’s successor as neither an adopted son nor a usurper however a direct descendant; this can be a citation of the promise to Abram (Gen. 15:4) that clearly factors to Solomon. “I will establish” highlights the Lord’s making agency what he has put in place and is a key time period repeated in 2 Samuel 7:13, 16 (cf. 1 Sam. 13:13; 20:31; 2 Sam. 5:12) to convey out the distinction with Saul’s aborted dynasty.
Second, “He shall construct a home for my title” declares that David’s son, not David, will construct the temple. “A house for my name” displays “the place that the Lord will choose, to make his name dwell there” (Deut. 16:2), that’s, he’ll personally personal it and keep his particular presence together with his folks there. On the identical time the Lord will “establish” (repeating the verb of two Sam. 7:12) the “throne of his kingdom forever” in order that the dynasty won’t ever be outmoded. “Forever” is one other key time period on this chapter, occurring eight occasions in varied kinds (3 times in divine speech and 5 occasions in David’s speech). Whereas these expressions might merely point out “throughout a designated period,” their repeated use indicators “eternally.”
Third, the Lord units out how he’ll cope with every future member of the dynasty: “I will be to him a father, and he shall be to me a son.” “I” and “he” are explicitly expressed within the Hebrew with a purpose to correlate the 2 sides of the covenant relationship, the Lord and the Davidic monarch—a relationship that achieves true reciprocal perfection solely within the case of Christ, who as Messiah inherits David’s consultant position (Heb. 1:5).
There may be conditionality inside the Davidic covenant, as obligations fall on the covenant king (cf. Ps. 132:11–12). Nonetheless, the sin of David’s sons is not going to be permitted to thwart the divine objective. “When [the king] commits iniquity” by deviating from the conduct anticipated of him, the Lord will right the covenant king: “I will discipline him with the rod of men, with the stripes of the sons of men.” Stripes outcome from being crushed with a rod in fatherly chastisement. Though “rod of men” would possibly suggest that the Lord will apply to the king such punishment as he ordinarily makes use of with mankind, the thought is extra probably that the Lord will use different people to chasten his erring king. It is a description not of the king’s everlasting future however of what’s going to occur within the circulation of human historical past: covenant disobedience will entail earthly deprivation of covenant blessings. David himself experiences such temporal penalties within the latter a part of his reign.
The Steadfast Love of the Lord
“Steadfast love” (Hb. hesed; cf. 1 Sam. 15:6; 2 Sam. 2:5) is the dedication anticipated from a covenant associate, and the Lord guarantees that it “is not going to depart [sur]” from the king. The covenant promise is not going to be revoked “as I took [sur] it from Saul, whom I put away [sur] from earlier than you” (cf. 1 Sam. 13:13–14). So, regardless of aberrations of particular person successors to the throne, the Davidic dynasty will probably be maintained in perpetuity as a result of God is not going to allow its position in his functions to be subverted.
The essential phrases of the covenant are repeated in conclusion: “Your house [dynasty] and your kingdom shall be made sure forever before me.” To be “made sure” (cf. 1 Sam. 2:35; 25:28; Ps. 89:29) raises the promised realm above the vicissitudes of human affairs. Within the Hebrew textual content, “before me” is definitely “before you,” trying right down to the generations that may observe David. “Before me” (discovered within the LXX) yields a extra messianic sense in that the dynasty is perpetuated earlier than God, who ensures the permanence of David’s line (cf. 2 Sam. 7:13; Ps. 89:28–29, 36–37). Finally this will probably be achieved solely by the one who lives without end: Christ. For “established,” cf. touch upon 2 Samuel 7:12–14 (cf. additionally Ps. 89:4, 37).
This text is written by John L. Mackay and is tailored from the ESV Expository Commentary: 1 Samuel–2 Chronicles (Quantity 3).