Summary: Second Samuel 7:1-17 teaches us several truths about God.
Today we come to 2 Samuel 7 in our series on “The Life of David.” This is one of the most important chapters in Scripture as it deals with the Lord’s covenant with David.
Let’s read about David and the covenant of God in 2 Samuel 7:1-17:
1 Now when the king lived in his house and the Lord had given him rest from all his surrounding enemies, 2 the king said to Nathan the prophet, “See now, I dwell in a house of cedar, but the ark of God dwells in a tent.” 3 And Nathan said to the king, “Go, do all that is in your heart, for the Lord is with you.”
4 But that same night the word of the Lord came to Nathan, 5 “Go and tell my servant David, ‘Thus says the Lord: Would you build me a house to dwell in? 6 I have not lived in a house since the day I brought up the people of Israel from Egypt to this day, but I have been moving about in a tent for my dwelling. 7 In all places where I have moved with all the people of Israel, did I speak a word with any of the judges of Israel, whom I commanded to shepherd my people Israel, saying, “Why have you not built me a house of cedar?” ’ 8 Now, therefore, 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 you should be prince over my people Israel. 9 And I have been with you wherever you went and have cut off all your enemies from before you. And I will make for you a great name, like the name of the great ones of the earth. 10 And I will appoint a place for my people Israel and will plant them, so that they may dwell in their own place and be disturbed no more. And violent men shall afflict them no more, as formerly, 11 from the time that I appointed judges over my people Israel. And I will give you rest from all your enemies. Moreover, the Lord declares to you that the Lord will make you a house. 12 When your days are fulfilled and you lie down with your fathers, I will raise up your offspring after you, who shall come from your body, and I will establish his kingdom. 13 He shall build a house for my name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom forever. 14 I will be to him a father, and he shall be to me a son. When he commits iniquity, I will discipline him with the rod of men, with the stripes of the sons of men, 15 but my steadfast love will not depart from him, as I took it from Saul, whom I put away from before you. 16 And your house and your kingdom shall be made sure forever before me. Your throne shall be established forever.’ ” 17 In accordance with all these words, and in accordance with all this vision, Nathan spoke to David. (2 Samuel 7:1-17)
I was talking with a friend recently about how long different monarchs reigned. You may recall that Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom reigned for more than 63 years. Her great-great-granddaughter is Elizabeth II, the current monarch of the United Kingdom. She has reigned for more than 68 years and is still going strong! But Queen Elizabeth II is not the longest-reigning monarch. The longest-reigning monarch of a sovereign state is Louis XIV, who reigned for more than 72 years!
David became king in about 1010 BC and he reigned as king for about 40 years. Even though David died, God promised David that he would “establish the throne of his kingdom forever” (2 Samuel 7:13). This amazing promise of God to David is known as the “Davidic covenant.” An astonishing amount has been written about this covenant that the Lord made with David. We could profitably spend many weeks examining the various facets of this covenant. However, today I want us to focus not so much on the covenant but on the covenant God, or, as Dale Ralph Davis writes, “not on the promise but on the Promiser.”
Second Samuel 7:1-17 teaches us several truths about God.
Let’s use the following outline:
1. God Is Sovereign (7:1-3)
2. God Is Condescending (7:4-7)
3. God Is Gracious (7:8-11)
4. God Is Indefectible (7:12-17)
I. God Is Sovereign (7:1-3)
First, we learn that God is sovereign.
It is likely that the events recorded in 2 Samuel 7 took place later in David’s reign as king. Verse 1a of chapter 8 says, “After this David defeated the Philistines and subdued them.” The writer of Samuel had a tendency to group things together thematically rather than chronologically. So, we read in verse 1 of chapter 7, “Now when the king lived in his house and the Lord had given him rest from all his surrounding enemies….” The reason the writer of Samuel put this after chapter 6 is because chapter 6 is about David bringing the ark of God to Jerusalem.