This past term we have been studying the Life of David with our ministry and it has been so much fun thinking about a life that is clearly described warts and all as it were. The life of David real, it’s authentic and it is intensely challenging to us in our everyday lives.
With Christmas almost upon us I have been thinking a little about David’s lineage. At the high point of the David story we find him offering to build God a house. It seemed like a great idea, Nathan the prophet agrees and yet God had other ideas. Rather than David it was to be his son Solomon who would build God’s house. Instead God said He would build David a house – not the kind of house we live in but a dynasty and an eternal Kingdom.
“…The Lord declares to you that the Lord himself will establish a house for you: 12 when your days are over and you rest with your ancestors, I will raise up your offspring to succeed you, your own flesh and blood, and I will establish his kingdom. 13 He is the one who will build a house for my Name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom for ever. 14 I will be his father, and he shall be my son. When he does wrong, I will punish him with a rod wielded by men, with floggings inflicted by human hands. 15 But my love will never be taken away from him, as I took it away from Saul, whom I removed from before you. 16 Your house and your kingdom shall endure for ever before me; your throne shall be established for ever.”2 Samuel 7:11b-16
Many generations would come from David’s line and one day there would be one who would come to reign on David’s throne forever. How wonderful is this that God would make such promises to David…the shepherd boy who God made King of Israel. Many generations later the writers of the gospel accounts make clear that Jesus Christ was born in the line of David. Jesus was the one about whom Isaiah also wrote prophesying His eternal reign.
6 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 Counsellor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. 7 Of the greatness 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 for ever. The zeal of the Lord Almighty will accomplish this.Isaiah 9:6-7
The first chapter of Matthew’s gospel (the begging of the New Testament) begins with a genealogy detailing the family history of Jesus all the way back to David and even as far back as Abraham. Not only was Jesus the Son of David but He was also the fulfilment of the promises God made to Abraham (Genesis 12) when God said He would make him into a great nation, bless him and make him a blessing to all peoples on Earth. Jesus was the Messiah that God promised all the way back in Genesis. He was the one who God said would come as the serpent crusher (Genesis 3:15).
Matthew’s genealogical record is really interesting because of the kind of people that God weaves into His story. It’s not full of super-incredible people but ordinary people who trusted God and made themselves available to Him. Contrary to the prevailing culture there are quite a few women included on this list as well as some who were foreigners to Israel! In the middle of this genealogy is King David. His inclusion is in one sense not particularly surprising, but just read what it says about him.
David was the father of Solomon, whose mother had been Uriah’s wife.Matthew 1:6
In the latter part of David’s life we see a number of moral failures that could well have been the end of him. Most well-known of course was the incident of his adultery with Bathsheba. King David, when he should have been in battle with his army, slept with another mans wife and got her pregnant. If that was not enough he then he tried to cover it up! As things began to unravel for him, he ended up having her husband Uriah (one of his great fighting men) killed and then took Bathsheba to be his own wife. Matthew statement here does not hold back the punches. Bathsheba is not even named but merely mentioned as Uriah’s wife. God weaves even the most messed up of people into His story and from that lineage came Jesus. You see this was not the end of the David story because there was repentance and forgiveness. God works in us and even uses our failures as He works out His great plan of salvation for a needy world.
This would be a great place to stop but I also wanted to include some of the wealth of prophecies about Jesus in the Old Testament. Read on and you will get a flavour of how Jesus fulfilled them all! I include a mere 20 but there are many hundreds more a worth a more detailed study if you have some time this Christmas…
- He would rise from the dead (contrast Psalm 16:8-11 with Acts 13:35-37)
- He would initiate a New Covenant (contrast Jer 31:31 with Heb 8:6-13, 9:15 & 12:24)
- He would be forsaken yet vindicated (contrast Psalm 22:1-31 with Matthew 27:39-46)
- He would be the rejected cornerstone (contrast Psalm 118:22-24 with Matthew 21:42)
- He would heal, free captives and bring good news (contrast Isaiah 61:1-2 with Luke 4:17-21)
- He would be born of a virgin (contrast Luke 7:14 with Matthew 1:22-23)
- He would be the suffering servant (contrast Isaiah 52:13-53:12 with Mark 10:45 & Acts 8:32-35)
- He would be pierced (contrast Zechariah 12:10 with John 19:31-37)
- He would come riding on a donkey (contrast Zechariah 9:9 with Matthew 21:1-7)
- He will be called God’s Son (contrast Psalm 2:2-12 with Mark 1:11 & Acts 13:33
- He will be betrayed for 30 pieces of silver (contrast Zechariah 11:12-13 with Matthew 26:14-15)
- He would be the Son of Man (contrast Daniel 7:13-14 with Mark 8:31)
- He would be the Passover lamb (contrast Exodus 12:1-51 with 1 Cor 5:7-8)
- He would be born in Bethlehem (contrast Micah 5:2 with Matthew 2:1-6 & John 7:40-43)
- He would be greater than David (contrast Psalm 110:1-4 with Luke 20:41-44)
- He would be a descendent of David (contrast 2 Samuel 7:12-16 with Matthew 1:1 & Luke 1:32-33)
- He would be a light for the nations (contrast Isaiah 42:1-7 with John 8:12)
- He would be preceded by another (contrast Isaiah 40:3-5 with Matthew 3:1-3)
- He would be Abraham’s descendent through whom all nations would be blessed (contrast Genesis 12:3 with Acts 3:24-26)
- He would be born of a woman (contrast Genesis 3:15 with Galatians 4:4)