Morning Light – October 21st, 2015
Today: [1 Chronicles Eighteen] David – Prophet, Priest and King. In this chapter David goes about through conquest to take the promised borderlands of the covenant. He pursues and conquers all the way to the Euphrates the promised territories and is the only king in Israel’s history to take God at his word in this regard. To David – believing was acting. There was not faith found in David that was not connected with corresponding action. In the Davidic Covenant God ignited in David an expectation of promise that looked far beyond the environs and limitations of a simple 30 year old shepherd boy.
[1Ch 18:1-17 KJV] 1 Now after this it came to pass, that David smote the Philistines, and subdued them, and took Gath and her towns out of the hand of the Philistines. 2 And he smote Moab; and the Moabites became David’s servants, [and] brought gifts. 3 And David smote Hadarezer king of Zobah unto Hamath, as he went to stablish his dominion by the river Euphrates. 4 And David took from him a thousand chariots, and seven thousand horsemen, and twenty thousand footmen: David also houghed all the chariot [horses], but reserved of them an hundred chariots. 5 And when the Syrians of Damascus came to help Hadarezer king of Zobah, David slew of the Syrians two and twenty thousand men. 6 Then David put [garrisons] in Syriadamascus; and the Syrians became David’s servants, [and] brought gifts. Thus the LORD preserved David whithersoever he went.
In the previous chapter David attempts to plan a temple unto the Lord but is refused by the prophet Nathan to do so. In the prophetic word that was given God establishes what we refer to as the “Davidic Covenant” whereby David is promised that his lineage will sit on the throne of Judah forever. Now in 586 BC Nebuchadnezzar destroyed Jerusalem, the house of David and the Temple bringing an end to the royal line of David. Did God fail to keep his promise? Theologians suggest that God did not promise David an unbroken monarchy but an unbroken lineage until the Messiah – the “righteous Branch” was came to claim His throne which of course applies to Jesus. The gospels faithfully record the lineage of David through both Mary and Joseph thus validating Jesus as a direct descendant of David. Thus even down to today Jesus sits at the right hand of the Father not only ruling and reigning over Judah but the Lord of the whole universe.
It is astounding to consider the implications of this promise to David that was in fact given by a prophet who at the first got it wrong and then reversed his own prophecy and in the course of DENYING DAVID what he actually wanted promised him something more far reaching than we can possibly imagine. Thus we see that in rebuking David for presuming to build Him a house God opened his goodness to him in order to provoke a proper response to His chastening. This is what Rom. 2:4,5 refer to when we read that it is “God’s goodness” that leads men to repent.
7 And David took the shields of gold that were on the servants of Hadarezer, and brought them to Jerusalem. 8 Likewise from Tibhath, and from Chun, cities of Hadarezer, brought David very much brass, wherewith Solomon made the brasen sea, and the pillars, and the vessels of brass. 9 Now when Tou king of Hamath heard how David had smitten all the host of Hadarezer king of Zobah; 10 He sent Hadoram his son to king David, to enquire of his welfare, and to congratulate him, because he had fought against Hadarezer, and smitten him; (for Hadarezer had war with Tou;) and [with him] all manner of vessels of gold and silver and brass. 11 Them also king David dedicated unto the LORD, with the silver and the gold that he brought from all [these] nations; from Edom, and from Moab, and from the children of Ammon, and from the Philistines, and from Amalek. 12 Moreover Abishai the son of Zeruiah slew of the Edomites in the valley of salt eighteen thousand. 13 And he put garrisons in Edom; and all the Edomites became David’s servants. Thus the LORD preserved David whithersoever he went.
We also see that David is said in this chapter to have established “his dominion” all the way to the river Euphrates. The implication was that David wasn’t taking territory previously not his but rather was claiming his rightful border. Where did this entitlement come from? While the people were still in the wilderness God promised them through Moses what their boundaries would be:
[Exo 23:31 KJV] 31 And I will set thy bounds from the Red sea even unto the sea of the Philistines, and from the desert unto the river: for I will deliver the inhabitants of the land into your hand; and thou shalt drive them out before thee.
When David read these verses they were not merely regarded as obscure religious language. David turned 30 in the year 1010 BC. The first passover was held in 1446 BC. Therefore there were approximately 500 years between Moses and David. Yet David took the promise as given and did something about it. In modern religious thinking we tend to take a passive regard for the promises of God. David was quite the opposite. As a man after God’s own heart he acted on what he saw and God backed his faith and gave him victory. This is what Jesus refers to in Luke 17:20,21 that the kingdom of God doesn’t come with observation. Many times we observe the promises and preserve them as sacred text but fail to ever act upon what they say. This is a form of deception. James 2:17 says that faith without works is dead, being alone. What we call belief in our modern thinking does not have action intrinsically connected to it. In the thinking of men like David faith does not exist outside of corresponding action. David acted and laid claim not by his thoughts but by his deeds to what God had promised.
14 So David reigned over all Israel, and executed judgment and justice among all his people. 15 And Joab the son of Zeruiah [was] over the host; and Jehoshaphat the son of Ahilud, recorder. 16 And Zadok the son of Ahitub, and Abimelech the son of Abiathar, [were] the priests; and Shavsha was scribe; 17 And Benaiah the son of Jehoiada [was] over the Cherethites and the Pelethites; and the sons of David [were] chief about the king.
Saul, David and Solomon were the only kings of Israel who reigned over an undivided kingdom. In three generations the people who cried out for a king corrupted themselves and because of idolatry lost their heritage in God. The consequences of the divided kingdom are measured in the total loss of the tribal cohesion of the 10 northern tribes who proceeded into captivity and other than a few remnants never returned. In 1 Sam. 8:7 God told Samuel that the people in desiring a king were not rejecting Samuel but in fact rejecting God Himself to rule over them. Samuel was the last of the line of Judges established after the leadership of Moses and Joshua. Moses led the people as a prophet. Samuel led the people as a prophet. In De. 18:15-18 God promises to raise up in Jesus a prophet like unto Moses to lead the people. Jesus was both prophet, priest and king fulfilling ever major office of leadership established by God. David himself prophesied through many of the psalms that he wrote – speaking of the promised Messiah. For us in a day when the very existence of the ministry of the prophet is universally disdained it should give us pause when we consider the thread of prophetic ministry so universally present throughout the scriptures. The rabbis taught that Adam spoke by the spirit of prophecy when he gave names to all the animals. The last book of the bible is a book of prophecy in which John said that the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy. Many people today want to prophesy in the spirit of Elijah as John the baptist did but Jesus said that the least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than John because we as New Testament believers are to prophesy in the spirit of Christ. This is our heritage and our privilege through the infilling of the Holy Ghost.
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