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Study Resources :: Text Commentaries :: Don Smith :: Portraits of Christ

Don Smith :: 1Sa; 2Sa; David the Lord’s Anointed

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Portraits of Christ—Samuel

“David, the Lord’s Anointed”

David’s place in Biblical history.

  • Perhaps outside of Christ Himself, no other Biblical figure stands as prominent as David, the son of Jesse.
  • He is not only one of the prominent ancestors of Christ, but in many ways the most eminent personal type of Him in the Old Testament. (Arthur W. Pink, The Life of David, page 6)
  • He was Israel’s greatest psalmist.
  • Many of the seventy-three psalms credited to him are the clearest prophetic utterances and portraits of Christ in all the Bible.
  • He was Israel’s greatest king, foreshadowing Christ’s life and rule.
  • There are sixty chapters in the historical books dedicated to telling his story.
  • More than fifty-eight references to David are also found in the New Testament, as evidence that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.
  • Even though his life is filled with personal sin and drama, he and his writings point us to Christ.
  • His story as recorded in First and Second Samuel is a careful selection of portraits; not to flatter David, but to demonstrate God’s grace and mercy to be revealed in Christ.
  • David’s ancestry and history is like an arrow on a compass that keeps pointing to Christ.

God’s promise of the Shepherd King of Israel.

  1. The promise doctrine: God’s promise from all eternity to propagate, provide and preserve a seed through whom the Christ would come to redeem a people for God’s glory and pleasure.
  2. God’s promise of the Seed in the Old Testament:
    • God promised the Serpent and Adam: “And I will put enmity between you (Serpent) and the woman (Israel/Church), And between your seed (Serpent’s seed) and her Seed (Israel/Church); He (Christ) shall bruise your head (Serpent’s), and you (Serpent) shall bruise His (Christ’s) heel.” (Genesis 3:15)
    • God promised Abraham: “No longer shall your name be called Abram, but your name shall be Abraham; for I have made you a father of many nations. I will make you exceedingly fruitful; and I will make nations of you, and kings shall come from you.” (Genesis 17:5-7)
    • God promised Jacob: Also God said to him, “I am God Almighty. Be fruitful and multiply; a nation and a company of nations shall proceed from you, and kings shall come from your body.” (Genesis 35:10-12)
    • God promised Judah: “The scepter shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh comes; And to Him shall be the obedience of the people.” (Genesis 49:10)
    • God promised David: “Also the LORD tells you that He will make you a house. When your days are fulfilled and you rest with your fathers, I will set up your seed after you, who will 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. I will be his Father, and he shall be My son.” (2 Samuel 7:12-14)
    • God promised David in the Psalms: “I have made a covenant with My chosen, I have sworn to My servant David: ‘Your seed I will establish forever, And build up your throne to all generations.’” (Psalm 89:3-4)
    • God recorded His promise in Ruth: “Now this is the genealogy of Perez: Perez begot Hezron; Hezron begot Ram, and Ram begot Amminadab; Amminadab begot Nahshon, and Nahshon begot Salmon; Salmon begot Boaz, and Boaz begot Obed; Obed begot Jesse, and Jesse begot David.” (Ruth 4:18-22)
    • God promised the Shepherd of Israel through David: “Give ear, O Shepherd of Israel, You who lead Joseph like a flock; You who dwell between the cherubim, shine forth!” (Psalm 80:1)
    • God promised the Shepherd of Israel to Isaiah: “Behold, the Lord GOD shall come with a strong hand, And His arm shall rule for Him; Behold, His reward is with Him, And His work before Him. He will feed His flock like a shepherd; He will gather the lambs with His arm, And carry them in His bosom, And gently lead those who are with young.” (Isaiah 40:10-11)
    • God promised His sheep to send a divine Shepherd: “For thus says the Lord GOD: ‘Indeed I Myself will search for My sheep and seek them out. As a shepherd seeks out his flock on the day he is among his scattered sheep, so will I seek out My sheep and deliver them from all the places where they were scattered on a cloudy and dark day. And I will bring them out from the peoples and gather them from the countries, and will bring them to their own land; I will feed them on the mountains of Israel, in the valleys and in all the inhabited places of the country. I will feed them in good pasture, and their fold shall be on the high mountains of Israel. There they shall lie down in a good fold and feed in rich pasture on the mountains of Israel. I will feed My flock, and I will make them lie down, says the Lord GOD. I will seek what was lost and bring back what was driven away, bind up the broken and strengthen what was sick; but I will destroy the fat and the strong, and feed them in judgment. And as for you, O My flock, thus says the Lord GOD: “Behold, I shall judge between sheep and sheep, between rams and goats.’” (Ezekiel 34:11-17)
    • God promised His Shepherd would be slain: “Awake, O sword, against My Shepherd, Against the Man who is My Companion,” says the LORD of hosts. “Strike the Shepherd, And the sheep will be scattered.” (Zechariah 13:7)
    • God promised His Shepherd would be born in Bethlehem: “But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, Though you are little among the thousands of Judah, Yet out of you shall come forth to Me the One to be Ruler in Israel, Whose goings forth are from of old, from everlasting. Therefore He shall give them up, until the time that she who is in labor has given birth; then the remnant of His brethren shall return to the children of Israel. And He shall stand and feed His flock in the strength of the LORD, in the majesty of the name of the LORD His God; And they shall abide, for now He shall be great to the ends of the earth; And this One shall be peace.” (Micah 5:2-5; Matthew 26:32-33)
  3. God’s fulfillment of His Promised Seed in Christ.
    • God’s promised seed is traced in Matthew through David: “So all the generations from Abraham to David are fourteen generations, from David until the captivity in Babylon are fourteen generations, and from the captivity in Babylon until the Christ are fourteen generations.” (Matthew 1:17)
    • God promised Joseph the Son of David a Son: “But while he thought about these things, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, ‘Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take to you Mary your wife, for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit. And she will bring forth a Son, and you shall call His name JESUS, for He will save His people from their sins.’” (Matthew 1:20-21)
    • God promised Mary the Son of David: “And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bring forth a Son, and shall call His name JESUS. He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Highest; and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David. And He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of His kingdom there will be no end. He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Highest; and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David.” (Luke 1:31-33)
    • God promised the Son of David through Zechariah: “Blessed is the Lord God of Israel, For He has visited and redeemed His people, And has raised up a horn of salvation for us in the house of His servant David, as He spoke by the mouth of His holy prophets.” (Luke 1:68-70)
    • God announced the birth of the Son of David to shepherds in Bethlehem: “For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.” (Luke 2:11)
    • God’s promise was known throughout Israel: “Will the Christ come out of Galilee? Has not the Scripture said that the Christ comes from the seed of David and from the town of Bethlehem, where David was? So there was a division among the people because of Him.” (John 7:41-43)
    • Jesus claimed He was the Good Shepherd: “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives His life for the sheep.” (John 10:11-12)
    • The Apostles preached Christ was the promised Seed by referring to David: “For David says concerning Him (Christ): ‘I foresaw the LORD always before my face, For He is at my right hand, that I may not be shaken. Therefore my heart rejoiced, and my tongue was glad; Moreover my flesh also will rest in hope. For You will not leave my soul in Hades, Nor will You allow Your Holy One to see corruption. You have made known to me the ways of life; You will make me full of joy in Your presence.’ Men and brethren, let me speak freely to you of the patriarch David, that he is both dead and buried, and his tomb is with us to this day. Therefore, being a prophet, and knowing that God had sworn with an oath to him that of the fruit of his body, according to the flesh, He would raise up the Christ to sit on his throne, he, foreseeing this, spoke concerning the resurrection of the Christ, that His soul was not left in Hades, nor did His flesh see corruption. This Jesus God has raised up, of which we are all witnesses. Therefore being exalted to the right hand of God, and having received from the Father the promise of the Holy Spirit, He poured out this which you now see and hear. For David did not ascend into the heavens, but he says himself: ‘The LORD said to my Lord, “Sit at My right hand, Till I make Your enemies Your footstool.’” (Acts 2:25-35)
    • The Apostle Peter referred to Jesus as, “The Chief Shepherd, Who would appear to reward His people with a crown of glory.” (1 Peter 5:4)
    • The Apostle Paul argued that Jesus was the Christ from the seed of David: “He promised before through His prophets in the Holy Scriptures, concerning His Son Jesus Christ our Lord, who was born of the seed of David according to the flesh, and declared to be the Son of God with power according to the Spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead.” (Romans 1:2-4)
    • Jesus referred to Himself as the Root and Offspring of David: “I, Jesus, have sent My angel to testify to you these things in the churches. I am the Root and the Offspring of David, the Bright and Morning Star.” (Revelation 22:16)

Prophetic Portraits of Christ in David’s Life - Types and Shadows

  • Both were the “Beloved” of God the Father.
  • Both were ordained and chosen of God.
  • Both were men with a heart like God’s.
  • Both were of the promised lineage of Judah and the kings of Israel.
  • Both were born in Bethlehem.
  • Both knew they were destined for the throne.
  • Both were publicly anointed by the Holy Spirit.
  • Both triumphed over their enemies.
  • Both were kings who ascended on high to bring gifts.
  • Both were shepherds (David, the Shepherd of Israel and Christ the Good Shepherd).
  • Both were compassionate to the lame and poor.
  • Both were celebrated as they entered Jerusalem.
  • Both were rejected by their Israel.
  • Both were plotted against by Israel’s leaders.
  • Both were men of sorrow and acquainted with grief.
  • Both were men of prayer.
  • Both offered sacrifice on Mount Mariah.
  • Both were objects of divine wrath to satisfy God’s righteous justice.

The Philistine champion defied the living God and His people. (1 Samuel 17:1-11)

  1. The Philistines gathered southwest of Bethlehem to battle against Israel.
    • It is likely they heard of Saul’s disfavor with Samuel and the Lord.
    • The Philistines and the Israelites camped along two hills facing each other, looking over the Valley of Elah with a small stream flowing through it.
    • Battle lines were drawn along geographical landmarks.
  2. The Philistines sent out their champion.
    • A champion is like a gladiator or the head representative of an army, who fights for his people.
    • One man wins and all his seed wins—one man dies and all his seed become servants.
    • As Goliath and David were champions of their respective nations, so Satan and his seed were defeated at the cross by Jesus, the Son of David, on behalf of His chosen people.
    • One man Adam sinned—all men died.
    • One man Christ died—many men live.
    • “For there is one God and one Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus, who gave Himself a ransom for all.” (1 Timothy 2:5-6)
  3. Goliath represented Satan’s enmity against Israel’s seed.
    • The meaning of his name is uncertain: “exile, stout or soothsayer.” He was not a Philistine.
    • He comes from a race of giants called “Anakim” or “Rephaim.”
    • They are mentioned by Moses as dwelling in the land promised Judah. (Deuteronomy 2:20-21)
    • When the twelve spies sent by Moses returned, they felt like grasshoppers before the descendents of Anak. (Numbers 13:31-33)
    • Caleb and Joshua fought against giants leaving some in Gath. (Joshua 11:21-22)
    • Goliath had four brothers and likely some sons.
    • A Bethlehemite, by the name of Elhanan, later killed the brother of Goliath.
    • Jonathan, the son of Shimea, also killed a giant from Gath. He had six fingers on each hand and six toes on each foot, twenty-four in all. (2 Samuel 21:18-22)
  4. Goliath towered over everyone.
    • He was at least 9 feet 9 inches tall.
    • His armor is estimated to have weighed between 120 to 225 pounds.
    • His spearhead alone weighed 15 pounds.
    • He had a shield-bearer go before him.
    • He was head and shoulders above all the Philistines.
  5. Goliath taunted and mocked Israel. (2 Samuel 21:21)
    • He shouted at them to appoint a man to be their champion.
    • The loser would become the other’s servant.
  6. Saul and his army were frightened.
    • Saul was the likely champion, who stood taller than any of his people. (1 Samuel 9:1-2)
    • He once was courageous in the face of overwhelming odds, but when the Spirit of the Lord departed, his confidence and power were lacking.
    • Jonathan also could have been a champion, since he alone had killed twenty men. (1 Samuel 14:4)
    • Israel once considered itself God’s servants, but had become Saul’s servants.
    • Israel once feared the Lord above all, but the fear of Goliath overwhelmed them. (1 Samuel 11:7-9)

The Shepherd of Israel was sent by his father to the battlefield. (1 Samuel 17:12-19)

  1. 1 Samuel 17:12 once again affirms David’s identity to remind us of his place in Christ’s genealogy and his anointed place as Israel’s long-anticipated king.
  2. Jesse was advanced in years.
    • The thought of his three sons in battle was of great concern.
    • The three oldest brothers were Eliab, Abinadab and Shammah.
    • David’s other five brothers are not mentioned here, but they were not sent to the battlefront.
    • Perhaps it is a sign of Jesse’s delight in David, even as Jacob delighted in Joseph and sent him out to see how his brothers were doing.
    • David had come and gone before caring for his father’s flock, while also serving King Saul.
  3. Goliath had presented himself as the Philistines’ champion for forty days.
    • Forty days or forty years has symbolized testing and trials.
    • At the end of the forty days Jesse sent David his son, who served in obscurity as a shepherd boy, with gifts to give to his brothers as well as others in leadership, which was the custom of the day.
    • Jesse told David to return with a pledge (a sign of his brothers well being) and news about the progress of the battle.
    • Saul and his army stood rattling their swords, waving their flags and talking trash along the sidelines, yet there was no champion to come forth for Israel.
  4. Even as David obediently left his father’s house to bring gifts, so the Eternal Son obediently left His Father’s House to do His will.
    • “Therefore, when He came into the world, He said: ‘Sacrifice and offering You did not desire, But a body You have prepared for Me. In burnt offerings and sacrifices for sin You had no pleasure.’ Then I said, ‘Behold, I have come…In the volume of the book it is written of Me…to do Your will, O God.’” (Hebrews 10:5-7)

The Shepherd of Israel went to the battlefront. (1 Samuel 17:20-27)

  1. David arrived and delivered his gifts just as his father commanded him.
    • He came while Goliath was going out on the fortieth day to shout some more.
    • He ran with youthful zeal and excitement at the sight of Goliath.
    • He greeted his brothers and then heard the giant yell out in defiance of Israel.
  2. Israel was faint-hearted at the sight and sounds of the enemy.
    • David’s brothers and fellow soldiers asked David what he thought about Goliath.
    • They also affirmed the king’s reward for any man who would go out to fight on behalf of Israel.
    • The man who killed Goliath would be enriched with great riches, would be offered the king’s daughter Michal’s hand in marriage, and get a tax exemption status. (1 Samuel 18:27)
  3. David wanted to know what Israel was going to do.
    • He saw this crisis as a reproach, not only on Israel, but on the living God.
    • How could a man outside God’s covenant of grace defy those of the Covenant?
    • The men standing around him didn’t volunteer but only affirmed the king’s reward for any man who killed Goliath.

The Shepherd of Israel was rebuked by his brothers, even as Jesus was rebuked by His brothers. (1 Samuel 17:28-30)

  1. Even as David’s three brothers treated him, so Jesus’ three brothers, James, Joses and Judas rejected and rebuked Him, when they questioned his motives.
    • Eliab, David’s oldest brother, was embarrassed by the brash banter of his young brother.
    • He and his brothers knew that God’s and their father’s favor was upon their little brother.
    • Eliab, like others, had probably heard all the heroic episodes spread about David’s exploits as a valiant shepherd caring for their father’s flock.
  2. Eliab’s anger demonstrated his long-time unresolved jealousy and resentment against David.
    • He questioned David’s motives, “Why did you come down here?” (1 Samuel 17:28)
    • He questioned his brother’s faithful service, “And with whom have you left those few sheep in the wilderness?”
    • Then he answered his own questions with a diatribe against David that was meant to intimidate and humiliate him before all the other soldiers standing by.
    • “I know your pride and the insolence of your heart, for you have come down to see the battle.”
    • Eliab accused him of having inappropriate pride and having a inadequate work ethic.
    • He neglected to understand and appreciate that David had come from his father to bring gifts and seek news of their well being.
  3. David bore the accusations with restrained temper.
    • He asked the question, like he had before, when his older brothers ridiculed and made nagging demands upon their little brother, “What have I done now?”
    • David’s response was like that of Christ when questioned by soldiers at his inquisition.
    • A soldier struck Jesus in the face. (John 18:22-23)
    • Jesus asked, “If I have spoken evil, bear witness of the evil; but if well, why do you strike Me?”
    • In the same manner David challenged back, “Is there not a cause?” or “Is there not something here today that should really matter to all of us?”
    • David turned to others standing around him and asked them this penetrating question.
    • Their response was the same, “The king will enrich with great riches.”

The Shepherd of Israel offered divine deliverance from the enemy. (1 Samuel 17:31-37)

  1. David was presented to Saul after it was reported what David had been saying.
    • David said, “Let no man’s heart fail because of him; your servant will go and fight with this Philistine.”
    • David called himself “Israel’s servant” to do God’s work on their behalf.
  2. Saul dismissed David’s youthful offer.
    • He pointed out David was too young for such a challenge.
    • He also reminded him that Goliath had been a man of war from his youth.
  3. David then carefully claimed he too was a man of valor from his youth as a shepherd boy.
    • As a keeper of his father’s sheep, he had learned to battle wild threatening beasts.
    • He had killed a lion and a bear when they each took a lamb from the flock.
    • He delivered the lambs from its mouth and fought it when it came after him.
    • He took the beard of a lion’s mane, struck it with his shepherd’s staff and killed it.
    • David further argued if he could kill them, he could definitely kill this giant, who was outside God’s covenant of grace, seeing that he defied the armies of the living God.
  4. David further clarified the reason for his triumph.
    • He glorified the Lord as the source of deliverance from the paws of the lion and the bear.
    • If God could do this in him when he was even younger, then the Lord could certainly deliver him from the hand of this Philistine.
  5. Even as David demonstrated the heart of a good shepherd risking his life for one little lamb, so Jesus the Good Shepherd picked up on David’s example and applied it to Himself in a parable teaching His love and care for the flock of God.
    • “Take heed that you do not despise one of these little ones, for I say to you that in heaven their angels always see the face of My Father who is in heaven. For the Son of Man has come to save that which was lost. What do you think? If a man has a hundred sheep, and one of them goes astray, does he not leave the ninety-nine and go to the mountains to seek the one that is straying? And if he should find it, assuredly, I say to you, he rejoices more over that sheep than over the ninety-nine that did not go astray. Even so it is not the will of your Father who is in heaven that one of these little ones should perish.” (Matthew 18:10-14)
    • Those who believe in the power of God in fighting His battles can join with Paul in Romans 8:31-32, “What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?”
    • The Lord seeks to find those who have a heart for God’s fame above their own and who seek to be His servants.
    • “For the eyes of the LORD run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to show Himself strong on behalf of those whose heart is loyal to Him.” (2 Chronicles 16:9)

The Shepherd of Israel prepared to deliver Israel from the enemy. (1 Samuel 17:37-40)

  1. Relieved to find a willing champion, Saul consented to David’s request.
    • Saul’s response dripped with religiosity, “Go, and the Lord be with you!”
    • If he believed this, why didn’t Saul, the man head and shoulders above all the men of Israel, step up to fight Goliath with the Lord’s power?
  2. Saul then attempted to clothe David for battle in his own armor.
    • It was the finest armor made.
    • David must have looked pathetic wearing armor too big and too heavy for him, so that he could not run or even walk in them.
    • David knew he hadn’t tested them in battle, so he took them off.
  3. David would not rely on the weapons and armor of man.
    • He took his trusty and tried shepherd’s staff.
    • He chose five smooth stones—maybe to kill any other giants who were brothers of Goliath.
    • He took his weapon—a simple sling shot.
    • The Lord had prepared him for such a moment long before, as he contemplated God’s grace in his life.
    • “The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want. He leads me in the paths of righteousness for His name’s sake. Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life; and I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever.” (Psalm 23)

The Shepherd of Israel faced the enemy in the name of the Lord. (1 Samuel 17:41-47)

  1. Armed for battle, David drew near to the Philistine.
    • Goliath saw David and began to take giant steps to meet Israel’s young champion.
    • Goliath’s shield bearer walked in front of him.
    • He expressed his disgust that a mere youth be sent out to fight.
    • He asked, “Am I a dog that you come to me with sticks?”
    • He cursed David in the name of his god “Dagon.”
    • In jest he promised to deliver David over to the birds of the air and the beasts of the field.”
    • There could be no greater contrast than these two champions facing each other.
    • “Before destruction the heart of a man is haughty, and before honor is humility.” (Proverbs 18:12)
  2. David admitted he didn’t come with typical weapons of war.
    • David clearly stated why Goliath should be afraid, “I come in the name of the LORD of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied.”
    • “The name of the LORD is a strong tower; the righteous run to it and are safe.” (Proverbs 18:10)
    • With unwavering faith while nearing the giant, David claimed victory. “This day the LORD will deliver you into my hand and I will strike you and take off your head from you.”
  3. David fought against the giant because it was the Lord’s battle not his.
    • So all the earth may know there is a God in Israel. (1 Samuel 17:46)
    • So all the assembly shall know that the Lord does not save by the sword and spear.

The Shepherd of Israel crushed the head of the enemy. (1 Samuel 17:48-54)

  1. David ran directly at Goliath.
    • He stopped long enough to put one stone in the sling and another in the left hand in reserve.
    • Then he quickly whirled the sling in the air and let the stone go.
    • God’s effectual, providential power directed the stone to hit the giant between the eyes.
    • When the giant fell, there was a loud thud and a cloud of dust.
  2. David stood over the fallen giant and took out his sword and beheaded him on the spot.
    • One can only image the shock and amazement by the armies that sat in the grandstands of the surrounding hills, watching this spectacle unfold before their eyes.
    • The Philistines, rather than drop their swords to become Israel’s servants, ran for home.
    • Israel was emboldened by David’s feat and arose and shouted, as they pursued the enemy.
    • The enemy was not only defeated, but Israel plundered the tents of the Philistines.
  3. Even as David beheaded Goliath in a public display and disarmed the principalities and powers of the Philistines, so Christ disarmed principalities and powers, making a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them in it. (Colossians 2:15)
    • Christ slew sin by Himself, being slain for our sin to justify many and give them the benefits of His triumph.
    • “Inasmuch then as the children have partaken of flesh and blood, He Himself likewise shared in the same, that through death He might destroy him who had the power of death, that is, the devil, and release those who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage. For indeed He does not give aid to angels, but He does give aid to the seed of Abraham.” (Hebrews 2:14-17)
  4. David symbolically dedicated the triumph to the His Lord. (1 Samuel 17:54)
    • He took the head of Goliath to Jerusalem. Why?
    • As a symbol of what he would some day bring upon the Jebusites who possessed Jerusalem.
    • Tradition has it that David buried the head of Goliath on a hill later called,“The Place of the Skull.”
    • If so, it would be a prophetic picture of God’s ultimate triumph over Satan—crushing his head on the hill where Christ would be crucified.
    • David took Goliath’s armor to his tent as a souvenir of God’s triumph through him.
    • He also took Goliath’s sword and dedicated it to the Lord.
    • It was placed and preserved in the tabernacle.
    • Later it would become David’s weapon to lead his men in battle.

The Shepherd of Israel offered complete victory to Israel over the enemy. (1 Samuel 17:55-58)

  1. Saul sought to know David’s genealogy because he may have feared his replacement had come.
    • David was brought to Saul with Goliath’s head in his hand.
    • Saul wanted to know whose son he was.
    • David responded, “I am the son of your servant, Jesse the Bethlehemite.” (1 Samuel 17:58)
  2. The stage was set…the seed had arisen…the Shepherd of Israel had come.
  3. The Lord promised Israel He would meet with them between the spread wings of the two cherubim over the mercy seat on the Ark of the Covenant. (Exodus 25:18-22)
  4. David referred to his days in the cave as “taking refuge in the Shadow of God’s wings.”
    • Psalm 57 was written by David when he fled from Saul in the cave. “Have mercy on me, O God, have mercy on me, for in you my soul takes refuge. I will take refuge in the shadow of your wings.”
    • Psalm 17:8 speaks of God’s unique place in His eyes. “Keep me as the apple of your eye; hide me in the shadow of your wings.”
    • Psalm 36:7-9 speaks of God’s unfailing love that draws us to Him in His house. “How priceless is your unfailing love! Both high and low among men find refuge in the shadow of your wings. They feast on the abundance of your house; you give them drink from your river of delights. For with you is the fountain of life; in your light we see light.”
    • Psalm 61:4 speaks of dwelling with him forever. “I long to dwell in your tent forever and take refuge in the shelter of your wings.”
    • Psalm 63:7-8 speaks of the joy in the shadow of His wings. “Because you are my help, I sing in the shadow of your wings. My soul clings to you; your right hand upholds me.”
    • Psalm 91:4 speaks of God’s shelter under His wings. “He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.”
  5. Jesus referred to Himself in Matthew 23:37 as the one who longed to place His people under his wings. “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not willing.”

Prophetic Portraits of Christ in the Life of David from 2 Samuel 5

  1. David was born of royal seed — Christ was born King of the Jews
  2. David was called the anointed one — Christ was the Anointed One
  3. David performed mighty works — Christ performed miracles
  4. David wandered as a nomad — Christ had no place to lay his head
  5. David had a small band of followers — Christ had the twelve disciples
  6. David had to wait to become king —Christ was rejected as Israel’s king
  7. David entered Jerusalem in triumph — Christ entered Jerusalem in triumph
  8. David ruled in Zion — Christ rules in the New Zion, the Church
  9. David’s kingdom was received by Gentiles — Christ’s kingdom was received by Gentiles

God’s covenant blessing rested on David. (2 Samuel 7)

  1. God is a covenant-keeping God.
    • The Lord promised a Redeemer would come from the seed of the woman and crush the head of the serpent. (Genesis 3:15)
    • He cut an everlasting covenant with Abraham to bless all the families of the earth through One from his seed. (Genesis 12:2-3; 17:5-8)
    • He promised to bring forth kings from Abraham’s, Jacob’s and Judah’s seed (Genesis 17:15-16; 35:10-12; 49:10)
    • The Lord promised Israel He would be a faithful God who keeps covenant and mercy (Deuteronomy 7:9)
    • The Lord promised His counsel shall stand and He will do all His pleasure. (Isaiah 46:9-10)
  2. God gives covenantal rest. (2 Samuel 7:1)
    • The Lord gave David rest from all his enemies, after 15 years as the King of Israel.
    • David may have had in mind the promise of God that when He gave rest to Israel, He would chose a place to make his name abide. (Deuteronomy 12:10-14)
  3. God calls His people to rest in Christ.
    • “Rest in the LORD and wait patiently for Him; Do not fret because of him who prospers in his way.” (Psalm 37:7)
    • “Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” (Matthew 11:28-29)
    • “There remains therefore a rest for the people of God. For he who has entered His rest has himself also ceased from his works as God did from His.” (Hebrews 4:8-10)

David desired to build God a house like the tabernacle. (2 Samuel 7:2-3)

  • David’s loyal companion of the king’s court was the prophet Nathan.
  • Nathan was his spiritual advisor, which may explain how God gave David wisdom to fight the enemy and eventually find rest from his enemies.
  • Nathan was a wise counselor…“He who walks with wise men will be wise, But the companion of fools will be destroyed.” (Proverbs 13:20)

David shared his thoughts with Nathan about building a house for the Lord.

  • He rested in a cedar-paneled palace because of God’s covenant blessings.
  • He looked from his palace roof and saw God’s ark resting in an unspectacular temporary tent.
  • In his mind he reasoned, “How could the God of heaven rest in such a humble dwelling?”
  • What David didn’t understand was that the tabernacle was intended by the Lord to be a type of Christ coming in humility, taking on human flesh and dwelling among us.
  • “And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross.” (Philippians 2:8-9)

Nathan was an encouragement to David.

  • He knew David had a heart for God’s glory.
  • He encouraged David to pursue the desire of his heart if God was with him.
  • David believed this to be the way God leads His people to dare to do great things for His glory.
  • “Lord, all my desire is before You; And my sighing is not hidden from You. My heart pants, my strength fails me.” (Psalm 38:9-10)
  • “He will fulfill the desire of those who fear Him; He also will hear their cry and save them.” (Psalm 145:19)
  • “Delight yourself also in the LORD, And He shall give you the desires of your heart.” (Psalm 37:4)
  • We are to pursue the desire of our heart and trust the Lord will redirect our desire if it isn’t His will.
  • “Therefore let us, as many as are mature, have this mind; and if in anything you think otherwise, God will reveal even this to you.” (Philippians 3:15)
  • We also are to be encouragers of one another to pursue the Lord.
  • “And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching.” (Hebrews 10:24-25)

God covenanted with David to build him a house. (2 Samuel 7:4-7)

  1. The Word of the Lord came to Nathan in the night to tell David not to build a house for God.
    • The Lord called David, “My servant,” indicating he was not displeased with his desire to build a house for Him.
    • Solomon later recounts this word from the Lord as God’s pleasure in David, even though He deferred his plan for Solomon to fulfill. (1 Kings 8:16-20; 2 Chronicles 6:7-10)
      • “Now it was in the heart of my father David to build a temple for the name of the LORD God of Israel. But the LORD said to my father David, ‘Whereas it was in your heart to build a temple for My name, you did well that it was in your heart.’”
      • “Nevertheless you shall not build the temple, but your son who will come from your body, he shall build the temple for My name.”
    • David told Solomon why the Lord disqualified him from building the Temple.
      • “My son, as for me, it was in my mind to build a house to the name of the LORD my God; but the word of the LORD came to me, saying, ‘You have shed much blood and have made great wars; you shall not build a house for My name, because you have shed much blood on the earth in My sight.’” (1 Chronicles 22:7-10)
  2. The Lord questioned David why he thought He needed a temple made by the hands of men.
    • He never needed a temple built by the hands of men. (2 Samuel 7:5-7)
    • Had God needed a temple when in the wilderness? No!
    • He keeps moving with His people in a portable tent.
    • Had the Lord commanded any judges to build a temple? No!
  3. The Lord of hosts promised to make a great name for David like great men of old. (2 Samuel 7:8-9)
  4. The Lord promised to appoint a place for His people Israel to plant them in the land. (2 Samuel 7:10)
  5. The Lord promised to give him rest from all his enemies. (2 Samuel 7:11)
  6. The Lord promised to make a “house” for David. (2 Samuel 7:11-17)
    • After David died, the Lord would raise up his offspring (seed) from his body.
    • The Lord’s promise is the promise of Christ, even though Solomon was a type of Christ.
    • Jesus Christ is the seed of David declared to be the Son of God by the resurrection. (Acts 13:22-23; Romans 1:4)
    • The angel promised Mary her son would be the One foretold to come from David’s seed.
    • “And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bring forth a Son, and shall call His name JESUS. He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Highest; and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David. And He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of His kingdom there will be no end.” (Luke 1:31-34)
    • The Lord promised to establish his (David’s) throne and kingdom forever.”
    • He would build a house for “My” name as the Ark is for His name.
    • He would be to him a Father and he shall be a Son. (Psalm 2; Matthew 3:17; Hebrews 1:5)
    • He would discipline his Son with the rod of men and with the stripes of the sons of men, when the son committed iniquity. David’s son Solomon committed iniquity, but Jesus the Son of David took upon our iniquity and was beaten, flogged and smitten by the will of the Father.
    • His steadfast love would not depart from Him as it did with Saul.

David sat before the Lord in prayer. (2 Samuel 7:18-29)

  1. David went before the Lord in the Tabernacle.
    • He left his royal palace and humbly sat before the Ark of God’s Presence.
    • He came to linger in prayer and gratitude.
    • There was no disappointment for God rejecting his desire to build Him a house.
  2. David acknowledged God’s Covenant goodness.
    • He realized his humble state, “Who am I? What is my house that you have brought me this far?”
    • He knew this was a small thing for God to do, even though it was an unbelievable accomplishment for men to understand.
  3. David gave thanks to the Lord for His Sovereign plan to bless for a great while to come.
    • The Lord faithfully fulfilled His promises.
    • “Abraham did not waver at the promise of God through unbelief, but was strengthened in faith, giving glory to God, and being fully convinced that what He had promised He was also able to perform.” (Romans 4:20-22)
    • “He who calls you is faithful, Who also will do it.” (1 Thessalonians 5:24)
  4. David was convinced the Lord’s blessing was by grace and not by his own merit.
  5. David ascribed to the Lord sovereign rule over all things.
    • He was far greater in comparison to any god Egypt could imagine.
    • He made a great name for Himself in claiming and redeeming Israel.
    • He established for Himself a people forever.

“It is by turning God’s promises into petitions
that they are turned into performances.” —Matthew Henry

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Est; Enmity Against the Seed Next Section →

The Blue Letter Bible ministry and the BLB Institute hold to the historical, conservative Christian faith, which includes a firm belief in the inerrancy of Scripture. Since the text and audio content provided by BLB represent a range of evangelical traditions, all of the ideas and principles conveyed in the resource materials are not necessarily affirmed, in total, by this ministry.


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