1 Chronicles 17:10b-14 I declare to you that the LORD will build a house for you: When your days are over and you go to be with your fathers, I will raise up your offspring to succeed you, one of your own sons, and I will establish his kingdom. He is the one who will build a house for me, and I will establish his throne for ever. I will be his father, and he will be my son. I will never take my love away from him, as I took it away from your predecessor. I will set him over my house and my kingdom for ever; his throne will be established for ever.
As things settled down in Zion, King David had it in his heart to build a more ‘permanent house’ there for the LORD. But the LORD gave Nathan, the prophet, the above important message to give to the King.
The ‘Our Daily Bread’ notes, in commenting on John 2:22 (“After [Jesus] was raised from the dead, his disciples recalled what he had said …”) said:
“Reading the last chapter of a mystery novel first may sound like a bad idea to those who love the suspense of a good story. But some people enjoy reading a book more if they know how it ends. In ‘Reading Backwards’, author Richard Hays shows how important the practice is for our understanding of the Bible. By illustrating how the unfolding words and events of Scripture anticipate, echo, and throw light on one another, Professor Hays gives us reason to read our Bibles forward and backward.”
This certainly applies to today’s verses. Understandably, King David would think of God’s promises to him in material, temporal terms: a beautiful temple building to be built by his son, Solomon, and a world in which Israel would remain top nation, with all people worshipping ‘the LORD’ (Yahweh/Jehovah) as the one true God in Zion, the Holy City.
But, from our perspective, with the subsequent Scripture in our hands, and the events of the last 3,000 years before us – especially the birth, death and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ, David’s son and God the Son – we can see clearly what the real message of the Chronicler is.
Ultimately, they apply to Jesus, and not Solomon (or Rehoboam or Abijah, or Asa, etc).
Ultimately, they apply to the Church that is built on Jesus as its foundation, and against which even the gates of Hell cannot prevail (Matthew 16:16-18), and not to a temple building in Jerusalem.
Ultimately, they apply to the true Holy City, the eternal heavenly Zion revealed to us in Revelation 21, where “[God] will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away”, to the place where King Jesus now sits on “his throne [that] will be established FOR EVER.”
– Bruce Christian