Sundays @ 10:00am at Dexter McCarty Middle School

GBC Bible Reading Plan May 5–May 11

GBC Blog (18)

Week 19, May 5–May 11: 1 Sam 28–2 Sam 16, Ps 63–68

  • Sun      5/5       1 Sam 28–31 
  • Mon     5/6       2 Sam 1–3      Psalm 63
  • Tue      5/7       2 Sam 3–5      Psalm 64
  • Wed     5/8       2 Sam 6–7      Psalm 65
  • Thu      5/9       2 Sam 8–10    Psalm 66
  • Fri        5/10     2 Sam 11–13  Psalm 67
  • Sat       5/11     2 Sam 14–16  Psalm 68

Our reading this week takes us to the end of 1 Samuel and into 2 Samuel. Keeping in mind that this is probably best read as one continuous narrative, the story does shift from Saul’s kingship to David’s. David has already entered the picture, but with Saul’s death in chapter 31 of 1 Samuel, his reign is over and the stage is set for 2 Samuel and for David’s time as king. God has chosen David to be Israel’s next king, and Samuel carried out the Lord’s instructions to anoint the son of Jesse, even while Saul was still king (1 Samuel 16). However, it is not until the first part of 2 Samuel, after Saul and his sons die in battle, that David accedes to the throne. At first he reigns in Hebron over Judah (2 Sam 2:1–4), then he unifies all the tribes of Israel and reigns over the unified nation in Jerusalem (5:1–10). From this point forward, Jerusalem becomes the center of Israelite identity, the place where the king resides, where the ark of the Lord dwells, and where the temple will be built.

The time of David’s kingship is a high point in all the history of Israel; the nation experiences rest from the enemy nations all around (7:1). During this time of peace, David has the notion to build a more permanent house for the Lord. The tabernacle has been God’s dwelling place since the Israelites were at Mt. Sinai, but David feels a tent is not adequate to house the God of all creation. Chapter 7 of 2 Samuel recounts David’s interaction with the Lord, through the prophet Nathan, about the idea of building a temple. This is one of the most important chapters in all the OT. It is here where we read of the Lord making a covenant promise with David and with the descendants who will come after him.

David is unsettled by the fact that he lives in a cedar house but the ark of the Lord still resides in a tent. At first, Nathan affirms David’s plan to build a temple for God, but the Lord has bigger plans in mind. Nathan hears from the Lord in the night and returns to David with a word from the Lord that will reverberate through the rest of Scripture and through history.

Instead of David building a house, a physical dwelling place for the omnipresent God of the cosmos, the Lord will establish a different kind of house, a dynasty of kings in David’s line. This royal lineage will culminate in one King who will reign forever.

Moreover, the LORD declares to you that the LORD will make you a house. 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. He shall build a house for my name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom forever (2 Sam. 7:11b–13).

This promise to David echoes the earlier promises to Abraham. God had told Abraham that his seed, or offspring, one from his own body, would be the heir of the promise (Gen. 15:4). The similarity in the language of these passages is unmistakable, and it appears we are meant to see that this promise to David is a continuation and narrowing of those earlier promises to Abraham. All nations of the earth will be blessed through Abraham’s offspring (Gen. 12:1–3), and now we know this promise will be fulfilled through David’s descendent. And really, this thread of promise goes back even earlier than Abraham. David’s son will be the promised seed to crust the serpent’s head and reverse the curse of sin (Gen. 3:15).

As we keep reading in the story of David, we are quickly faced again with the problem of sin. David himself sins egregiously just a few short chapters after receiving this promise from the Lord. He steals another man’s wife for his own and murders the man in an effort to cover up his adultery (2 Samuel 11). There is no way to sanitize this story, and we should not try. David exemplifies the kind of wicked behavior that deserves God’s just punishment.

As we continue reading in 2 Samuel, then into 1–2 Kings, we will see the consequences of David’s sin and the hereditary nature of sin that infects the whole line of kings following after David, starting with Solomon. All of this points ahead to a descendant of David to come who, instead of continuing the pattern of sin, would live a life without sin, would die in the place of sinners as the perfect sacrifice, would rise again in victorious defeat of sin and the serpent Satan who introduced sin and death into the story of humanity.

Jesus is the king, from David’s line, who will sit on the eternal throne of God’s kingdom and reign over all in peace.