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A Timeless Throne

A Timeless Throne

Sermon Transcript

Crime. Wars. Poverty. Injustice. Our world is broken, but while the kingdoms of this world rise and fall, there is One whose Kingdom is above every other. One whose Kingdom will not end, and a King who will one day bring peace and redeem all. Join Dr. Marty Baker as he takes a look at 2 Samuel 7:8-17 and kicks off our 2023 Christmas series.

Sometimes, God speaks so graciously to you, you are stunned into reverential silence. Sometimes, God goes above and beyond when he speaks, leaving you with no doubt that He is with you and is working out His plan in your life.

During this series I started last Christmas, I stated that my father’s favorite song, as he battled brain cancer, was Vince Gil’s Go Rest High On That Mountain. It just “happened” to start playing through my Apple iPhone in our car rental as we drove on the California freeway just south of the military cemetery where he’s buried.  The song finished the moment we were directly parallel with my father’s grave.  With the hundreds of songs on my phone, there is no way this occurred by sheer accident.  No, the living God graciously gave me a word that my father was fine.

Fast forward to several months ago.

As Liz and I headed north again on that same freeway to meet some friends for Mexican food, Vince Gil’s song, my father’s song, came on AGAIN.  This time, it started playing when our car was even with the cemetery, and it stopped playing as we exited just north of the military part of the cemetery to head to the restaurant.  Pulling up to the stop sign, we looked in wonder at each other with eyes wide open.  I said, “You know, Liz, God has spoken again.  Dad is just fine.”

God’s rich grace had washed over us through a moving, memorable song.  That grace ministered to me the first time I heard it in the car rental.  I knew God had spoken most clearly.  That grace was abundantly perceived the second time I heard Vince Gil’s musical tribute to his brother.  This is just like the Lord. He profoundly pours His grace over you, leaving you assured He has gone above and beyond to bless you through a message.

Looking at the precise prophecies of the Messiah coming from the Old Testament is clear evidence that God has graciously spoken to you.  As it is statistically impossible that Vince Gil’s special number just happened to play TWICE in relation to the proximity to my father’s grave, the fact that Jesus fulfilled over sixty exact prophesies concerning the coming of the Messiah is off the statistical chart.  In each of them, the Father sings to you, letting you know that in the coming of Jesus 2,000 years ago, He has spoken most definitively and graciously.  He hasn’t just sung to us two distinct times through prophetic specificity.  No, He has sung to us at the right time in human history SIXTY TIMES.  Are you listening to Him?

As I heard the Lord speak graciously twice through a country Western song, I think listening to God speak again through a prophetic passage we have studied and know well is appropriate.  It is Second Samuel 7:8-16. Contextually, King David asked the Lord if he could honor Him by building a marvelous temple in Jerusalem (2 Sam. 7:1-2).  The Lord quickly responded to David’s admirable request by informing him that because he had been a victorious warrior, He was not qualified to build the Temple (1 Chron. 28:3).  He could collect all the materials needed for the future Temple; however, the architect and driver behind its construction would be his son (Solomon).

In verses 8 through 17, God spoke prophetically to King David.  As you will see, His words went far beyond what David had requested.  David asked to build the Temple for God, and God kindly said, “No, that’s not for you to do.”  He could have left it at that, but He didn’t.  God turned and graciously gave David, using a word of prophecy, what he didn’t ask for. And it’s a prophetic promise that didn’t just impact David. It impacts all of mankind through the birth of Jesus, the final Davidic King of Kings.

What exactly did God say to David?

God Graciously & Prophetically Promised An Eternal Davidic Empire (2 Sam. 7:8-16)

I’m sure David was as stunned as I was in my car rental.  God freely gave him what he wasn’t expecting or looking for . . .  an eternal dynasty.  By definition, the eternal nature of the Davidic dynasty speaks of an eternal Davidic king to rule and reign over it.  As we shall see, that King was and is Jesus Christ. Watch how this prophetic song concerning Him unfolds on the sheet music of Second Samuel 7.

God’s Gracious Prophetic Promise Presented (2 Sam. 7:11-16)

First, God reminds David that his victories on the battlefield against Israel’s enemies ultimately were won by divine power, not human power.

9 "And I have been with you wherever you have gone and have cut off all your enemies from before you;

God prophetically promised to bring the messianic Seed through Adam and Eve (Gen. 3:15ff). He next prophetically promised that the Seed would come through the regal tribe of Judah, of which David was a member (Gen. 49:8ff).  In Nathan’s prophetic word, David learned that his specific family line would become THE line of the Messiah and King of Kings.  What grace was shown to David, who was far from perfect.  God not only gave him success on the battlefield, but he also promised to make his name memorable:

and I will make you a great name, like the names of the great men who are on the earth.

Travel with me to Israel someday (hopefully, the country will be safe for travel in the future), and you’ll see just how memorable David’s name is.  Historically, he is remembered as Israel’s greatest king, and that’s why many named their children after him.  Interesting. Being a humble man, David didn’t ask for a name that would be remembered above other names, but that’s what God promised him.  How gracious. But there is more. Read on.

 10 "I will also appoint a place for My people Israel and will plant them, that they may live in their own place and not be disturbed again, nor will the wicked afflict them any more as formerly 11 even from the day that I commanded judges to be over My people Israel; and I will give you rest from all your enemies.

Israel is in the land now, but they don’t know the peace prophesied here.  Hamas attacks them from the south, Hezbollah rockets them from the north, insurgents afflict them from the West Bank, rebels in Yemen fire rockets at them, and, of course, Iran is behind all the bloodthirsty anti-semitism.  But, as God graciously prophesies, the day will come when Israel is not only in the land, but they will know permanent, eternal peace.  Again, this lasting peace can only be assured by a powerful king who is infinite in nature.  Let’s not get ahead of ourselves. More on Him in a moment.

At this juncture, let’s read the gracious prophetic promise:

11 . . . The LORD also declares to you that the LORD will make a house for you. 12 When your days are complete and you lie down with your fathers, I will raise up your descendant after you, who will come forth from you, 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 a father to him and he will be a son to Me; when he commits iniquity, I will correct him with the rod of men and the strokes of the sons of men, 15 but My lovingkindness shall not depart from him, as I took it away from Saul, whom I removed from before you. 16 And your house and your kingdom shall endure before Me forever; your throne shall be established forever (2 Sam. 7:11-16).

God promised three precise things to David.

A Perpetual Davidic House (2 Sam. 7:11). “A house” denotes David’s regal dynasty (vv. 11, 16, 18, 19, 25, 26, and 27).  This should bring a smile to your face.  David asked God if he could build Him “a house,” and God kindly said, “No.” But, then, God turned and said, “I will build you a house.” And God didn’t just promise that David would enjoy political power during his short lifetime.  On the contrary, God gave him what he didn’t ask for:  a forever kingdom house, “And your house and your kingdom shall endure before Me forever” (v. 16a). Again, we must stop and ask ourselves, “How could King David’s dynastic house be eternal since David was a mere man?” Answer? A God-man from the Davidic line would need to come, and He did as we shall see.

As a side note, I must ask, “Since the eternal Davidic dynasty is based on the ‘I will’ of God, do you think there is any enemy that can thwart it?” There is none.  Though they try in our day and will try in the prophetic future to destroy the Jewish nation so the Jewish King of King cannot rule and reign, He shall rule and reign because His kingdom is based on the ‘I will’ of the Heavenly Father.  Some 800 years after Nathan’s prophecy, Isaiah tells us what God will do at the end of the Tribulation to those who oppose His house:

15 For behold, the LORD will come in fire and His chariots like the whirlwind, to render His anger with fury, and His rebuke with flames of fire. 16 For the LORD will execute judgment by fire and by His sword on all flesh, and those slain by the LORD will be many (Isa. 66). 

In the end, God’s Davidic King will reign supremely.  You have His word on it.

A Perpetual Davidic Kingdom (2 Sam. 7:12, 16)

Once more, a mere man could not fulfill what God prophetically promises here.  David came and went, and so did his son, Solomon, who followed him as the king. Latently, therefore, the prophecy spoke of the coming eternal King who would rule and reign over an everlasting kingdom:

12 When your days are complete and you lie down with your fathers, I will raise up your descendant after you, who will come forth from you, and I will establish his kingdom . . . 16 And your house and your kingdom shall endure before Me forever; your throne shall be established forever (2 Sam. 7:11-16).

When you think of a kingdom, you think of land parameters.  The Abrahamic covenant is clear about the precise boundaries of this Davidic kingdom:

8 On that day the LORD made a covenant with Abram, saying, "To your descendants I have given this land, from the river of Egypt as far as the great river, the river Euphrates: (Gen. 15).

First, note God has given this land to His chosen people, Israel (Deut. 7)..  No United Nations ruling, diplomatic strategy by the United States concerning a two-state solution, or terroristic actions carried about can nullify what God has given Israel.  They didn’t colonize the land.  The land was/is theirs by divine right and will as God spoke to Abraham some 1,200 years before David.

Today, the genocidal motto of Hamas is “From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free.”  This is an absolute perversion of what God prophesied, and it is a wicked, heinous lie that originates with the Devil, the father of all lies (44 "You are of your father the devil, and you want to do the desires of your father. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. Whenever he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own nature; for he is a liar, and the father of lies, John 8). The actual motto was given by the living  God to Abraham for Israel: From the Nile River to the Euphrates River, Palestine will be Israel’s.  This area covers all the lands of Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Uganda, Egypt, Syria, Iraq, Turkey, and probably Jordan, Saudia Arabia, and Yemen.  Solomon’s kingdom was the biggest of any of Israel’s kings; however, he never had total control of this much land and certainly didn’t rule over it forever.  Once more, David’s son was only representative of the ultimate Davidic Son who would come and set in motion the spiritual and geo-political events to establish this forever kingdom. When He finally reigns, Jerusalem will be His capital (Isa. 2), and while His kingdom will be worldwide, the precise boundaries of his kingdom will be much of what is now the Middle East.  Amazing.

God’s gracious prophetic promise to David extended to his very throne.

A Perpetual Davidic Throne (2 Sam. 7:13, 16).

The king’s throne represented His royal power and authority.  This particular throne will be the throne of thrones because it will be established by God forever:

13 He shall build a house for My name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom forever. 14 I will be a father to him and he will be a son to Me; when he commits iniquity, I will correct him with the rod of men and the strokes of the sons of men, 15 but My lovingkindness shall not depart from him, as I took it away from Saul, whom I removed from before you.

Built into this facet of the prophecy is grace for Davidic kings who would sin, and sin they did.

  1. Solomon: good and evil (I Kings 1:1-11:43)
  2. King Rehoboam: evil (1 Kings 11:42-14:31)
  3. King Abijam: evil (1 Kings 14:31-15:8)
  4. King Asa: good (1 Kings 15:8-24)
  5. King Jehoshaphat: good (1 Kings 15:24; 22:41-51)
  6. King Jehoram: bad (2 Kings 8:16-24)
  7. King Ahaziah: bad (2 Kings 8:24-29; 9:14-26)
  8. Queen Athaliah: bad (2 Kings 8:26; 11:1-20)
  9. King Jehoash: good (2 Kings 11:1-12:21)
  10. King Amaziah: good (2 Kings 14:1-22)
  11. King Uzziah: good then bad (2 Kings 15:1-7)
  12. King Jotham: good (2 Kings 15:32-38)
  13. King Ahaz: bad (2 Kings 15:38-16:20)
  14. King Hezekiah: good (2 Kings 16:20; 18:1-20:21)
  15. King Manasseh: bad (2 Kings 21:1-18)
  16. King Amon: bad (2 Kings 21:18-26)
  17. King Josiah: good (2 Kings 21:26-23:30)
  18. King Jehoahaz: bad (2 Kings 23:30-34)
  19. King Jehoiakim: bad (2 Kings 23:34-24:6)
  20. King Jehoiachin: bad (2 Kings 24:6-17)
  21. King Zedekiah: bad (2 Kings 24:17-25:30)

Of Judah’s kings, only nine are biblically classified as good, but even those had moments of sinful activity.  According to God, no sin among the royal Davidic class would ever thwart His gracious promise to David.  And what did God prophetically promise to David? He never promised there would always be a Davidic King on the throne.  Sin and God’s judgment on sin and the sinner thwarted this reality.  God promised that David’s regal seed would always remain (Psalm 89:34-36) and that this particular kingdom covenant would, in fact, one day be realized as the forever kingdom.  What a gracious promise.  David knew full well the powerful pull of sin in his own life, and I’m sure he wondered at the time how God would fulfill this prophetic promise to men with clay feet.  God went above and beyond David’s realistic thinking and showed how He would discipline the sinning Davidic sons; however, this discipline would not annul the covenant.  The sinful activity couldn’t annul the covenant because it was based squarely on the “I will” of God Almighty.

Aren’t you glad God is a God of grace?  Aren’t you happy that God uses broken, dysfunctional, and broken people? God promised to work in and through holy and unholy Davidic kings to bring His King and Kingdom to earth one day.  By so doing, God most certainly went above and beyond anything David asked for or thought possible through a man like him.

Looking down the halls of time from David to the coming of Jesus, the ultimate Davidic Son, we see . . .

God’s Gracious Prophetic Promise Fulfilled (Selected Texts)

What was the very first Christmas about?  Good question.  Here is the four-fold answer:

Jesus fulfilled the regal requirements of the Davidic Covenant. How so? Matthew, which was written to convince Jews that Jesus was the messianic Davidic King, ties Christ’s genealogy to Joseph, who was a direct descendant of David.  Although Jesus’ birth was miraculous so he wouldn’t be tainted with Adamic sin, Jesus was a son of David through his father by legal means (Matt. 1:1-17).  Luke records Christ’s natural lineage back to David through His mother, Mary, who also came from the Davidic line through Solomon’s brother and David’s other son, Nathan (2 Sam. 5:14; 1 Chron. 3:5).  After years of the Davidic regal line lying in the smoldering ruins of the nation after the fall of Babylon (586 B.C.) to their occupation by the Romans (63 B.C.-73 B.C. ), God willed the birth of the long-awaited royal son of all Davidic sons.  The old Christmas carol asks the right question:

What child is this, who, laid to rest
On Mary's lap, is sleeping?
Whom angels greet with voices sweet
While shepherds watch are keeping?

The answer is quite clear:

This, this is Christ the King
Whom shepherds watch and angels sing
Haste, Haste to bring him grace
The Babe, the Son of Mary!

In addition, . . .

Jesus fulfilled the moral requirements of the Davidic Covenant. While all Davidic kings were sinners, with some being more so than others, not even the good, godly ones could be the perfect Davidic King foretold in the prophets (Isa. 9:6).  Their sinful inadequacies pointed logically to the One who would come and be born without sin and also live a sinless life.  Isaiah prophesied the Messiah and Davidic king would be called “God with us” (Isa. 7:14).  The angel revealed to Joseph, the son his wife would bear stated how this son would fulfill Isaiah’s prophecy:

20 But when he had considered this, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, "Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife; for that which has been conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit. 21 "And she will bear a Son; and you shall call His name Jesus, for it is He who will save His people from their sins." 22 Now all this took place that what was spoken by the Lord through the prophet might be fulfilled, saying, 23 "Behold, the virgin shall be with child, and shall bear a Son, and they shall call His name Immanuel," which translated means, "God with us" (Matt. 1). 

Joseph, the legal tie of Jesus to the Davidic royal line, learned that this son would be the God-man.  By definition, God is sinless, and as such He would be positioned to not only be the Savior for man’s sin (Rom. 5:12-21), but He would usher in a kingdom of absolute holiness (Isa. 1:26-27; 4:3-4; 29:18-23; 31:6-7; 35:8-9; 52:1; 60:21; 61:10; Jer. 31:23; Ezek. 36:24-31; 37:23-24; 43:7-12; 45:1; Joel 3:21; Zeph. 3:11, 13; Zch. 8:3; 13:1-2; 14:20-21) . . . something the world knows nothing of today.

Jesus fulfilled the eternal requirements of the Davidic Covenant.  How so? He was, as Isaiah prophesied in Isaiah 7:14 and 9:6, God.  Micah, a contemporary of Isaiah, also prophesied as such by using the most potent words in Hebrew to speak of His eternality when He arrived.

2 But as for you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, Too little to be among the clans of Judah, From you One will go forth for Me to be ruler in Israel. His goings forth are from long ago, From the days of eternity (Mic. 5).

When the chief priests and scribes identified the Messiah’s birthplace to King Herod (Matt. 2:4-6), they rightfully quoted from Micah 5:1-5.  They understood the fact that He’d be a ruler to beat all rulers, and they also rightly grasped the place of His birth as Bethlehem.  Unfortunately, they passed over the fact that He would be an eternal God-man. They probably did this because they didn’t fully understand this mystery.

The New Testament verifies the eternal nature of the God-man, Jesus, the son of David. The angel’s words to Joesph couldn’t be misinterpreted:

23 Behold, the virgin shall be with child, and shall bear a Son, and they shall call His name Immanuel, which translated means, "God with us" (Matt. 1).

Could Christ’s identity be any clearer? When the angel told Mary about her son, note the language he employed:

26 Now in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city in Galilee, called Nazareth,27 to a virgin engaged to a man whose name was Joseph, of the descendants of David; and the virgin's name was Mary. 28 And coming in, he said to her, "Hail, favored one! The Lord is with you." 29 But she was greatly troubled at this statement, and kept pondering what kind of salutation this might be. 30 And the angel said to her, "Do not be afraid, Mary; for you have found favor with God.

 31 "And behold, you will conceive in your womb, and bear a son, and you shall name Him Jesus. 32 "He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Most High; and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David; 33 and He will reign over the house of Jacob forever; and His kingdom will have no end" (Lk. 1).

Gabriel made sure that Mary understood Christ’s identity.  He would be her son, but also the Son of the Most High God, the Father, and He would be the one qualified to sit foverer on David’s throne as prophesied.  How would He do this?  He was not only from the proper lineage, he was not only sinless, but He was the eternal God in human form.  Jesus said this much in John 8:58 when the Jews asked Him to identify Himself:

58 Jesus said to them, "Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was born, I am." (John 8).

The religious leaders then attempted to stone Jesus for outright blasphemy (John 9:59) because He dared to claim divine status.  They were wrong, and He was right.  He had to be the eternal One to be the eternal Davidic king.  Their Scriptures taught this much, but they skipped over these verses for their power purposes.  I pray you don’t skip over the evidence concerning the identity of Jesus. It’s a matter of spiritual life and death. It’s also a matter of which kingdom you will participate in:  the kingdom of darkness or the Messiah’s coming kingdom of light and life.

Jesus fulfilled the peace requirements of the Davidic Covenant.  All the prophets who prophesied after Nathan’s prophecy to David, spoke of a Davidic king who would come and establish individual and national peace (Isa. 2:4; 11:6-9; 32:17-18; 33:5-6; 54:13; 60:18; 65:25; 66:12; Ezek. 28:26; 34:25, 28; Hos. 2:18; Mix. 4:2-3; Zech. 9:10). Isaiah’s prophetic word is illustrative of them all:

6 For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us; and the government will rest on His shoulders; And His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace. 7 There will be no end to the increase of His government or of peace, on the throne of David and over his kingdom, to establish it and to uphold it with justice and righteousness from then on and forevermore. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will accomplish this (Isa. 9).

Eternal peace. Christ’s kingdom will bring this to our sin-tattered earth when He returns.  Who wouldn’t want to be part of this kingdom? No crime. No wars. No terroristic attacks on the innocent. No missiles that can destroy the planet. No armies. No need for a police force. No need for prisons. No need for alarm systems. No victims of anything. No racism. No dysfunction. No addictions. No reptured relationships. No need for daily news reports giving us all the bad news.  No riots. No evil will be present . . .  only peace brought to you forever by the hand of David’s most incredible son, Jesus, the Christ.

Question: Will you be in Christ’s forever kingdom when it comes?  Entrance starts when you realize by faith that before Christ can become the Davidic King, He first had to become the Savior, as foretold by the angel who spoke to Joseph.  His words were most instructive:

21 "And she will bear a Son; and you shall call His name Jesus, for it is He who will save His people from their sins" (Matt. 1). 

God waits to pour His rich, redeeming grace all over you so you can be saved and become part of His kingdom.  I can think of no more excellent gift a person could receive by childlike faith this Christmas.