[Lesson 47: David & Goliath] [Table of Contents] [Lesson 49: David & Bathsheba]

Lesson 48

King David and God's Promise

1 Samuel 18 - 2 Samuel 7

Peace be with you, listening friends. We greet you in the name of God, the Lord of peace, who wants everyone to understand and submit to the way of righteousness that He has established, and have true peace with Him forever. We are happy to be able to return today to present your program The Way of Righteousness.

Today we are continuing in the story of the prophet David. Two lessons ago, we saw how God chose young David to be the second king of Israel, though he did not begin to reign the day God appointed him. God rejected Saul, the first king, because he was unconcerned about doing the will of God. However, God testified concerning David, saying, "I have found David, son of Jesse, a man after my own heart; he will do everything I want him to do." (Acts 13:22) In our last lesson, we saw David kill the giant, Goliath, defeating him with a sling and a stone and a solid faith in the living God. Now let us continue the story of David and see how David replaced Saul as the king of Israel.

Continuing in the first book of Samuel, the Scripture says:

(1 Sam. 18) 6When the men were returning home after David had killed [Goliath] the Philistine, the women came out from all the towns of Israel to meet King Saul with singing and dancing, with joyful songs and with tambourines and lutes. 7As they danced, they sang: "Saul has slain his thousands, and David his tens of thousands." 8Saul was very angry; this refrain galled him. "They have credited David with tens of thousands," he thought, "but me with only thousands. What more can he get but the kingdom?" 9And from that time on Saul kept a jealous eye on David.

Thus, the Scriptures relate how the Israelites dearly loved David. But the more they loved David, the more Saul hated him. Jealousy filled Saul's heart and controlled him so that all he could think of was what he must do to get rid of David. Consequently, David fled and hid in the desert, together with the four hundred men of Israel who accompanied him. Saul and his soldiers hunted for David and his men in the wilderness. Saul did everything in his power to catch David and kill him. However, he could not do so because the Lord was with David. But Saul did cause David a lot of distress. For eight long years, David and his men had to run from an angry King Saul.

However, the jealousy and anger that Saul displayed toward David did not cause David to hate him. Why didn't David hate Saul, the man who was trying to kill him? David could not hate Saul, because David walked with the God who causes His sun to rise on the righteous and the unrighteous. As the Scripture says:

"Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. We love because He first loved us. If anyone says, 'I love God,' yet hates his brother, he is a liar. For anyone who does not love his brother, whom he has seen, cannot love God, whom he has not seen." (1 John 4:7,8,19,20)

We do not have time to read all that happened between Saul and David, but we do want to look at one story and observe David's humility and love. Reading in the first book of Samuel, chapter twenty-four, the Scripture says:

(1 Sam. 24) 1[Some people came to Saul and said to him], "David is in the Desert of En Gedi." 2So Saul took three thousand chosen men from all Israel and set out to look for David and his men near the Crags of the Wild Goats. 3He came to the sheep pens along the way; a cave was there, and Saul went in to relieve himself. David and his men were far back in the cave!

4The men said, "This is the day the Lord spoke of when he said to you, 'I will give your enemy into your hands for you to deal with as you wish.'" Then David crept up unnoticed and cut off a corner of Saul's robe. 5Afterwards, David was conscience-stricken for having cut off a corner of his robe. 6He said to his men, "The Lord forbid that I should do such a thing to my master, the Lord's anointed, or lift my hand against him; for he is the anointed of the Lord." 7With these words David rebuked his men and did not allow them to attack Saul. And Saul left the cave and went his way.

8Then David went out of the cave and called out to Saul, "My lord the king!" When Saul looked behind him, David bowed down and prostrated himself with his face to the ground. 9He said to Saul, "Why do you listen when men say, 'David is bent on harming you'? 10This day you have seen with your own eyes how the Lord gave you into my hands in the cave. Some urged me to kill you, but I spared you; I said, 'I will not lift my hand against my master, because he is the Lord's anointed.' 11See, my father, look at this piece of your robe in my hand! I cut off the corner of your robe but did not kill you. Now understand and recognize that I am not guilty of wrongdoing or rebellion. I have not wronged you, but you are hunting me down to take my life. 12May the Lord judge between you and me. And may the Lord avenge the wrongs you have done to me, but my hand will not touch you. 13As the old saying goes, 'From evildoers come evil deeds,' so my hand will not touch you.

16When David finished saying this, Saul asked, "Is that your voice, David my son?" And he wept aloud. 17"You are more righteous than I," he said. "You have treated me well, but I have treated you badly. 18You have just now told me of the good you did to me; the Lord gave me into your hands, but you did not kill me. 19When a man finds his enemy, does he let him get away unharmed? May the Lord reward you well for the way you treated me today. 20I know that you will surely be king and that the kingdom of Israel will be established in your hands."

After that, Saul returned home, but it wasn't long before jealousy took hold of his heart again and incited him to go back into the wilderness and resume his hunt for David. Saul did this for eight years, all because of jealousy! Yet, every time, God rescued David from the hands of Saul. In the end, Saul reaped the evil he had sown. Listen to what is written in chapter thirty-one.

The Scripture says:

(1 Sam. 31) 1Now the Philistines fought against Israel; the Israelites fled before them, and many fell slain on Mount Gilboa. 2The Philistines pressed hard after Saul and his sons, and they killed his sons Jonathan, Abinadab and Malki-Shua. 3The fighting grew fierce around Saul, and when the archers overtook him, they wounded him critically. 4Saul said to his armorbearer, "Draw your sword and run me through, or these uncircumcised fellows will come and run me through and abuse me." But the armorbearer was terrified and would not do it; so Saul took his own sword and fell on it.

On that day, Saul and his three sons died. Thus, the descendants of Saul were completely exterminated, just as God had said they would be. In the chapters that follow, the Scriptures relate how God turned the kingdom of Israel over to David. David was a just king who loved righteousness and hated iniquity. David loved the Lord God with his whole heart. The Word of God and the glory of God occupied first place in David's thoughts. Therefore, when David began to rule over Israel, the first thing that he wanted to do was to bring the Tent of Meeting (Tabernacle) and the ark (chest) of the covenant to Jerusalem. Jerusalem had become the capital of Israel, which is why David wanted to set up the tent of worship and the altar of sacrifice there.

After David had moved the tent of worship to Jerusalem, the Scriptures relate how he planned to build a beautiful temple to honor the name of the Lord. David wanted to build a temple in which the ark of the covenant could be placed and where sinners could present to God sacrifices which cover sin. However, the Lord told David that he was not the one to build a house for God, but that God would build for him a house, that is, a posterity which would endure forever! Listen to the covenant God made with David. He said to him:

(2 Sam. 7) 12"When your days are over and you rest with your fathers, I will raise up your offspring to succeed you, who will come from your own body, and I will establish his kingdom. 13He is the one who will build a house for my Name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom forever. 14I will be his father, and he shall be my son. 16Your house and your kingdom shall endure forever before me; your throne shall be established forever."

Do you understand the covenant God established with King David on that day? It was a tremendous promise that surpasses human comprehension! God promised David, "Your house and your kingdom shall endure forever before me; your throne shall be established forever!"

What?! How would David's kingdom endure forever? How could this be? How could David, who was only a man, have a government that would last forever? Here is the answer: God promised David that one of his descendants would establish an everlasting government. A Man would be born in David's royal family line who would receive the authority to reign in heaven and on earth forever. He would be called the King of kings, the Lord of lords, the Prince of Peace. Hundreds of years after David's time, and about seven hundred years before this King of kings was born, the prophet Isaiah penned these words:

"For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and peace there will be no end! He will reign on David's throne and over his kingdom, establishing and upholding it with justice and righteousness from that time on and forever. The zeal of the Lord Almighty will accomplish this!" (Isa. 9:6,7)

Do you know who, among the descendants of David, has been given the authority to establish an eternal government? Do you know who will judge the children of Adam on the Day of Judgment and reign throughout eternity? Yes, it is the Redeemer, the King from heaven, who was born of a virgin, a virgin who belonged to the descendants of David. Concerning this King, the Scripture says: "God exalted Him to the highest place and gave Him the name that is above every name!" (Phil. 2:9)

When David understood God's plan to send the Redeemer through his family line, David kneeled and worshiped the Lord saying,

(2 Sam. 7) 18"Who am I, O Sovereign Lord, and what is my family, that you have brought me this far? 19And as if this were not enough in your sight, O Sovereign Lord, you have also spoken about the future of the house of your servant. Is this your usual way of dealing with man, O Sovereign Lord? 22"How great you are, O Sovereign Lord! There is no one like you, and there is no God but you, as we have heard with our own ears. 28O Sovereign Lord, you are God! Your words are trustworthy, and you have promised these good things to your servant. 29Now be pleased to bless the house of your servant, that it may continue forever in your sight; for you, O Sovereign Lord, have spoken, and with your blessing the house of your servant will be blessed forever."

That is how David thanked the Lord for His promise concerning the King who would come forth through his descendants. You who know the Holy Scriptures know that God has already fulfilled part of this promise. For in the Gospel {Injil} we read that, a thousand years after David's time, God sent an angel to some shepherds who were tending their flocks in the same hills of Bethlehem where David had tended his father's flock. The angel of the Lord said to the shepherds, "I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord." (Luke 2:10,11) Yes, the King God promised to bring forth through David's posterity has been born. Presently, He is back in heaven, awaiting that terrible and glorious day when He will return to judge the world in righteousness. In that day, everyone will know that the promise God made to David concerning his eternal kingdom is true. In that day it will be said, "The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of his Christ, and he will reign for ever and ever!" (Rev.11:15)

We must stop here today. Thank you for listening. Next time, in the will of God, we will continue the story of King David and hear about an event that will make your ears tingle. Thank you for listening.…

God bless you. We leave you with this verse from the Holy Scriptures:

"Oh, the depth of the riches of the wisdom and knowledge of God!…For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be the glory forever! Amen!" (Rom. 11:33,36)