DESTINATION: 1 Chronicles 1-29
CALENDAR OF EVENTS:
c. 1900 B.C.
Jacob and his family live in Canaan
c. 1400 B.C.
The Israelites conquer the Promised Land
c. 1050 B.C.
Saul becomes king of Israel
David's reign begins in Hebron
The ark is brought into Jerusalem
David wars against the Ammonites
David stores up materials for the temple
David dies and Solomon becomes king
Solomon dies and the kingdom divides
The book of 1 Chronicles recounts the lineage of King David and documentsGod's promise that He would establish His reign on earth through King David.
The book of 1 Chronicles can be divided into two sections.
1. The Royal Line Of David – 1 Chronicles 1-9
2. The Reign of David – 1 Chronicles 10-29
The rise of David – 1 Chronicles 10-12
The ark is acquired – 1 Chronicles 13-17
The victories of David – 1 Chronicles 18-20
David prepares to build the temple – 1 Chronicles 21–27
The end of David's life – 1 Chronicles 28–29
PLACES OF INTEREST:
Cave of Adullam
– Located 12 miles southwest of Bethlehem, this was one of David's favorite hiding places when he was fleeing from Saul.
City Of David
– Originally called Zion, David renamed the city after he conquered Zion.
– The closest Philistine city to Israelite territory. This city posed the greatest threat to Israel.
- Hebron is one of most ancient cities in the Middle East, and one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world. It was also an ancient Canaanite royal city. According to archaeological findings it was probably founded in the 35th century B.C. It is mentioned numerous times in the Bible. In particular, a nearby cave called the Cave of the Patriarchs is where Jews believe Abraham, Sarah, Isaac, Rebekah, Jacob, and Leah are buried.
– Another name for Jerusalem. The name was coined by the Israelites because the city belonged to the Jebusites.
- Built and founded by the Jebusites, it became the capital of the Jewish kingdoms of Israel, Judah and Judea in the First Temple and Second Temple periods.
- Kirjath Jearim was mentioned as a Hivite city and is connected with the Gibeonites. It is mentioned as the place where the Ark of the Covenant was moved after being in Beth Shemesh. About 70 years afterward, the ark was moved to Jerusalem and placed in a tent outside the palace of David.
– located 20 miles southwest of Rabbah, the capital of Ammon. Today it is known as Madaba. It was here that Aramean armies and the Ammonites attacked Israel. Israel was caught in the middle.
– Gilboa is a ridge above the Valley of Jezreel in Israel. The ridge extends east-west and is west of the Jordan River. The name is sometimes referenced in the Hebrew Bible as Mount Gilboa. The ridge also lent its name to the second battle (the Battle of Gilboa) fought in the valley below, in which the Philistines defeated Saul and Israel.
- Mount Moriah is the name of the elongated north-south stretch of land lying between Kidron Valley and "Hagai" Valley, between Mount Zion to the west and the Mount of Olives to the east. It would become the place where the temple was built.
Valley of Rephaim
– The scene of many battles between Israel and the Philistines. The valley extended southwest from Jerusalem and marked the northern border of Judah.
Valley of Salt
– Located a few miles east of Beersheba. It was here that David smote the Syrians. Amaziah also slew ten thousand Edomites.
– Located 25 miles southwest of Gath, Ziklag became David's private possession. David made raids from Ziklag when he was hiding from Saul.
– Another name for Jerusalem. The original Canaanite city was surrounded by high, thick walls and considered a stronghold.
PEOPLE OF INTEREST:
– One of David's mighty men. He was the brother of Joab. He killed three hundred men with his sword and was the most respected of all the mighty men of David.
– Leader of the Gershonite Levites. Asaph and his sons ministered as singers and composers.
– One of David's mighty men. The son of Dodo, he defended a field of barley from the Philistines.
– Head of the Merarite division of musicians. He composed Psalm 89 and was known as a wise man.
– The grandson of the prophet Samuel, a Kohathite. He is probably the same Heman mentioned in the inscription of Psalm 88.
Hiram King of Tyre
– A powerful ruler of the Phoenician city-state of Tyre. He supplied material for the construction of the temple and other buildings – including David's palace.
– Saul's fourth son who survived the battle where his father took his own life. He became king of Israel five years after Saul's death.
– One of David's mighty men. He killed 300 men with his spear.
– A musician; also known as Ethan. He "prophesied with a harp."
– The daughter of Saul. David married Michal at the beginning of his time of service to Saul. Saul annulled the marriage when David took flight from Saul.
– The prophet who served David and Solomon as a private chaplain or counselor.
- There are two men by this name. The first is Obed-Edom whose house sheltered the ark for three months. He was also the chief door-keeper. The second was the son of Jeduthun and was also a gatekeeper.
– The first king of the ancient Kingdom of Israel. According to the Bible, Saul took his own life when wounded as the battle turned against him.
Uriah The Hittite
– The husband of Bathsheba. David had Joab arrange to have him killed in battle in order to marry his wife.
– The head of the Kohathite clan. David divided the Levites into three groups, the Kohathites, the Merarites and the Gershonites.
– When Solomon came into power Zadok ministered as high priest at the temple.
A house of cedar
– This was an indication of David's wealth. Cedar panelingwas too expensive to be used in ordinary homes.
– Those who were set apart for God's service.
– A false god worshipped by the Philistines and other people in Syria and northwest Mesopotamia as the god of grain. The Philistines celebrated military victories by bringing a trophy of their success back to the temple of Dagon where it could displayed as tribute.
Instruments of God
– Instruments used to sing songs of praise to God. Music was an important way in which the people worshipped God, their creator. It was central to the worship life of Israel.
– The descendants of Levi, one of the twelve sons of Jacob. The name is related to the verb "lava" which means to join – implying the Levites were joined to God. The Levites were divided into three groups – the Kohathites, the Gershonites and the Merarites. At Mount
Sinai, God chose Aaron to be the nation's high priest. Only a descendent
of Aaron could serve as a priest, but the other branches of the Levites
shared in caring for the tabernacle. David created new duties once the
temple was constructed by instituting musicians, singers, gatekeepers,
treasurers and royal officials.
– The office of prophet as a "professional" calling began with Samuel. However, there were individuals – such as Abraham – who were known as prophets.
– The first mention of the name Satan is found in 1 Chronicles. The word means "adversary" and was used as a proper name.
– A rough garment usually made of goat's hair and worn by mourners as an expression of grief.
– Derived from the Hebrew word for "eight," referring to the musical scales.
Figure 1: The nations defeated by King David
Figure 2: David's Kingdom (at the time of his death)
If you have ever taken the Bible from 30,000 Feet quiz on the web site. It's very revealing. I was on it today and I took my own quiz from the last study and I failed two questions. There were only ten questions, but some of them are hard questions.
Let's turn in our Bible to 1 Chronicles chapter 1. In this study we will cover the entire book of 1 Chronicles as we make our way through the entire Bible. We've been on quite a journey and I think this is our 21st study in this series. We are going to cover the whole book because this is a repeat of some material that we've already covered so we are going to highlight it, look at some things, mention a few others, and move on.
Let's have a word of prayer. Lord, as fun and as rewarding it has already been tonight in our worship and not only in our worship but in our fellowship before we even got here: out in the parking lot or out in the foyer, out by the fountain, café and book store and then even in the sanctuary when we arrived. Meeting people and fellowshipping and catching up and being encouraged by others. It's a fulfilling exercise and Father we pray that as we gather now around Your Word that even though it's not in depth and even though we are going to notice some broad principles, I pray Your Spirit will help us to understand the scope of Your plan not only in history but for us individually. We anticipate and experience Your presence with us as You, God with us, are here, not only in the pages of Your Word but in every true believer. In Jesus' Name. Amen.
When we hear the word chronicle, we typically think of a newspaper: The San Francisco Chronicle or the Houston Chronicle. It is the chronicling of the events of any community. It's the reporter's view giving the history of a city. That's not far from what we are going to see here. The 1 and 2 books of Chronicles gives you the vantage point of the history of the nation especially the southern kingdom, especially the city of Jerusalem, and especially the kingdom of David. It's far more, however, than just a report or a newspaper set of reports. It's more than just a chronology, though there is a lot of chronology, and it's more than history though there's enough of that in what we are about to read. It is the history of the nation from a spiritual perspective. 1 Chronicles will cover some of the same material we have already covered in books like 2 Samuel, 1 Kings, and 2 Kings. Some of those events that we have already read are here in 1 Chronicles. However, I look at 1 Chronicles like an editorial. It's a divine editorial and the history of the nation from a spiritual perspective. We don't know for sure who the author of the book is. I believe it was none other than Ezra who wrote the book of Ezra. Actually the Talmud, the Jewish writings, give the authorship to Ezra. As you go through this book and you take the time to actually read the whole book, which some of us have done, and if you compare it to the style in the book of Ezra there are very similar styles. Ezra was a priest and he writes as a priest and the perspective of 1 Chronicles is a spiritual perspective as if written by a priest. So it is very possible that Ezra wrote this book. Here is another clue. The last couple of verses of the book of 2 Chronicles, chapters 36, verses 22 and 23, and the first three verses of Ezra chapter 1 are identical; with some minor textual variation but other than that they are identical texts. So there is enough here that would infer that Ezra was probably the one who wrote this divine perspective and editorial for those who had come back from the Babylonian captivity as encouragement to rebuild their nation.
Now, let me give you the outline of the book. I like to divide this book up into pretty noticeable slices and there are only two. Chapters 1 through 9 are obviously an entity all to themselves because it's like reading a phone book; it's a list of names. Chapters 10 through the end of the book, chapter 29, is more historical. So you have genealogical and historical. Or you can call chapters 1 through 9, The Rightful Ancestry of David or David's Rightful Ancestry. Chapters 10 through 29 can be called David's Royal Activity. You can slice the book right into two.
What's interesting about chapters 1 through 9 which are filled with these genealogical tables is that the genealogies go all the way back to Adam; from Adam to David. So chapters 1 through 9 actually span 3,000 years of history. But chapters 10 through 29 which cover the reign of King David only cover 30 years. So you can see that the emphasis of the author is showing you a genealogy up until David the King is on the scene and everything that revolves around his leadership as the King of Israel.
Now there are some themes to be aware of in this book. Theme number one is God's blessing. Theme number two is God's judgment and theme number three is God's covenant. Those are the three big words that are mega themes of the book of 1 Chronicles. By the way, the name David is mentioned more than 180 times in this book. That will give you a clue as to what the subject of the book is about - David and the promises that God makes to David.
Let's look at David's rightful ancestry and look briefly at some verses; at 3,000 years of history; and at genealogies from Adam to David. Chapter 1, verse 1: "Adam, Seth, Enosh." Verse 4: "Noah, Shem, Ham, and Japheth," all familiar names. Verse 24: "Shem, Arphaxad, Shelah," Verse 25: "Eber, Peleg, Reu," (for you trivia buffs, verse 25 is the shortest verse in the Old Testament; the shortest verse in the New Testament is John 11:35). Verse 26: "Serug, Nahor, Terah, and Abram, who is Abraham. The sons of Abraham were Isaac and Ishmael. These are their genealogies."
In chapter 2 we have the line of Ram until King David and here are a few names. Verse 10: "Ram begot Amminadab, and Amminadab begot Nahshon, leader of the children of Judah; Nahshon begot Salma, and Salma begot Boaz; Boaz begot Obed, and Obed begot Jesse; Jesse begot Eliab his firstborn, Abinadab the second, Shimea the third, Nethanel the fourth, Raddai the fifth, Ozem the sixth, and David the seventh."
Chapter 3, verse 1: "Now these were the sons of David who were born to him in Hebron." So in these nine chapters we have the most extensive chronological list to be found anywhere in the pages of the Bible. From Adam all the way through the twelve tribes of Israel and now to the Dynasty of King David. They are highly selective because there are a lot of people mentioned but there are a whole lot of other people that would be left out. It's selective because the author is trying to draw your attention historically from Adam to David. So you have an emphasis on the Tribe of Benjamin because that was King Saul's tribal allotment. You have the Tribe of Judah because that was King David's tribal allotment and then you have David and his ancestry that are mentioned here. David's ancestry is shown from the dawn of human history and the past forward up onto and through the captivity. Keep in mind who is writing the book; Ezra. This is post captivity after they leave Babylon and they come back to Jerusalem. He is trying to encourage the followers, the Jews who have been in bondage for 70 years and are now back building their homeland and their temple. He is trying to encourage them saying, "Look God has had a plan that extends all the way back in human history with Adam and extends all the way through to King David because God has a plan for the future of this kingdom of which David was once the king." He is trying to give them encouragement for building.
When the New Testament opens, the first 17 verses are not exactly what we would call a literary hook. They don't really grab your attention because it's a genealogical record. "So and so begot so and so" and that's how the New Testament begins; with a whole bunch of "begots." But what you should understand is that just because it begins with a genealogy and it's not an attention getter and doesn't seem interesting, that section is no less the Word of God than John 3:16. It's all the Word of God and all inspired by God and as Paul wrote to young Timothy, "All Scripture is given by inspiration of God and is profitable for doctrine, reproof, correction, instruction and righteousness," even the genealogical tables. I'll tell you why it's important. I know that if you have your Bible open and you're looking over the names in 1 Chronicles you're thinking, "Oh, man, that's not relevant to my life." Here's why the Jews kept genealogical records and it's very important. Number one, whenever they would sell land it was important that you proved what tribe you were from because you need to keep a record of that so that in the future your tribe, your family, and that name will be kept intact in the land. No matter what happens, you have authentication on record of who owns the land. So it was important for moving land from person to person and generation to generation. The number two reason that genealogies are important is because of the priesthood. Now, if Ezra wrote this book, and I believe that he did, it's pretty easy to see that to Ezra genealogies were paramount because when they came back from captivity not everyone remembered what tribe they were even from. Some of them couldn't prove their own tribe from the tribe of Levi in order to serve as priests in a rebuilt temple. So he would not let them serve because they couldn't prove genealogical records because only one tribe and one tribe only could serve in the Tabernacle and in the Temple and that was the Tribe of Levi. So because of land, because of the priesthood and a third and really important reason for the New Testament genealogy is because of the Messiah. The Messiah is promised throughout the Old Testament but the Messiah is promised through a specific tribe. If anybody would claim, "I am the Messiah," the first question any Jewish person would ask is, "Tell us about your family; show us your genealogical records; what tribe do you come from; can you be traced back to King David our greatest king?" So genealogical records were kept and parentage was important ultimately for that reason.
Over twenty years ago when we were in another building, a man came through the front door during a mid-week Bible Study on a Thursday night. I noticed him and then an assistant pastor came over and said, "Skip, there's a guy over here that says he's Jesus Christ. He says he'd like to talk to you." I said, "Boy, I would like to talk to him!" I brought him into my office and said, "Hi, I'm Skip," and he said, "I am Jesus." I said, "Great! Let me cut to the chase. What tribe are you from?" I stumped him and he didn't have anything to say. I said, "Okay, let's make it easy, where were you born?" Now if he is the Messiah you would expect him to say, Bethlehem. He said, "Pittsburg!" I opened the door and said, "Get out of here." So genealogical records were kept just in case somebody in the future would say, "I am the Messiah from Pittsburg."
Chapters 10 through 29 are the second slice of this book: David's royal activity. The rest of this book concerns the 30 years of David's reign over the kingdom, north, and south. It wasn't split at the time. It was God's people, the 12 tribes centered in Jerusalem. Chapter 10 gives us the end of Saul's kingdom and the beginning of David's kingdom. Watch this divine editorial on the spiritual health of this nation. Verse 13: "So Saul died for his unfaithfulness which he had committed against the Lord, because he did not keep the word of the Lord, and also because he consulted a medium for guidance. But he did not inquire of the Lord; therefore He killed him, and turned the kingdom over to David the son of Jesse." Chapter 11 is the beginning of David's kingdom. Verse 1: "Then all Israel came together to David at Hebron, saying, 'Indeed we are your bone and your flesh. Also, in time past, even when Saul was king, you were the one who led Israel out and brought them in; and the Lord your God said to you, 'You shall shepherd My people Israel, and be ruler over My people Israel.' Therefore all the elders of Israel came to the king at Hebron, and David made a covenant with them at Hebron before the Lord. And they anointed David king over Israel, according to the word of the Lord by Samuel." Think back in your mind to 1 Samuel chapter 16 when the prophet Samuel was dispatched and deployed by God to go to Bethlehem and to the house of Jesse to find the next king. If you remember, he was really skittish about that and said, "Boy, what if Saul the king finds out that I am looking for the next king?" "You go tell him that you are there to sacrifice to the Lord." So he goes to the house of Jesse to find the next king. Why does he go looking for another king? This is now 1 Samuel chapter 13, verse 14, and this is God's word to Saul through the prophet: "'Now your kingdom shall not continue. The Lord has sought for himself a man after his own heart and the Lord has commanded him to be the commander over his people because you have not kept what the Lord commanded you.'" David is called and he is the only one in the entire Bible who is given this description of "A man after God's own heart." Some of you might be thinking, "How can he be called a man after God's own heart? I read the whole story of David and I think he has a lot of flaws." You're right. He has a lot of flaws but he's called a man's after God's own heart and there are a lot of different ways to spin that phrase from the Hebrew. One translation says, "A man after God's own mind," or thinking God's thoughts. The Knox translation says, "He is a man to fulfill God's intentions," or God's purposes. Think of that phrase for a moment. Think of the possibilities of that phrase with those gathered in this room or those watching by internet or listening on the radio. Think if you were to become a man or a woman after God's own heart. That is, you want what God wants and you want to fulfill God's intention and God's purpose. You are thinking and you are living your life through that filter. "What is God's heart in this? What is He saying? How can I fit into His plan right here in my community?" Think of the possibilities of being a man or a woman after God's own heart. That's where it begins. Believe it or not, a while back I happened to come across a recipe. Now I'm not a great cook. I can do an egg and I can barbeque chicken okay. It was an old recipe for cooking a rabbit and here is how the recipe began. "First, catch the rabbit." That makes sense. It didn't say, "First go down to the store and buy the rabbit." First you have to catch it. That's how old the recipe is. That's the priority. To cook a rabbit you have to catch a rabbit. To be a spiritual influence in your society and in your family you have to first be spiritual. You first have to set priorities in your life and everything flows from the priorities that you set. If your priority is, "I want to be a man or a woman after God's own heart," the possibilities are unlimited.
There's a great story about a cathedral in Milan, Italy. There're three arches as you go up through the main entrance of it. The biggest arch is right in the middle and then there are two slightly diminutive arches on the right and the left. There is an inscription over each archway that you can see plainly in the stone as you are going up. The one over the left arch says, "All that pleases is but for a moment." On the other archway it says, "All that troubles is but for a moment." Right in the center is the most important of all and it says, "Nothing is important except that which is eternal." That's a great way to line up your life. You are going to go through life and you are going to have pleasant things happen to you and troublesome things happen to you and that's all momentary. The real important stuff is spiritual and eternal. If you can navigate your life that way, you'll be a man or a woman after God's own heart. That's what God said He wanted as far as the political leader of the country of Israel.
The rest of 1 Chronicles deals with King David up until the transition of leadership to his son Solomon. However, though we've already covered some of that ground historically there's a divine editorial here. If you were to compare the narratives in Samuel, Kings and 1 Chronicles there are certain things that are omitted as well certain things that are also included. For instance, included in Chronicles as well as in the other narrative is the story about bringing the Ark to Jerusalem and David blowing it. It tells of how they put it on a cart and when Uzza put his hand out to steady it because it was falling off God struck him dead. That whole failure is recorded here. But there are other things that are omitted here. Number one, David's struggle with King Saul is omitted from the record here. It's just not pertinent to the history of this author. Number two, David's sin with Bathsheba is omitted here. Number three Absalom's rebellion. None of those are spoken about in 1 Chronicles. Why? Simply because the audience that would get 1 Chronicles is post captivity and not in captivity like in 1 and 2 Kings. Ezra and Nehemiah will bring them back and want to encourage them that no matter what failures and stuff has happened in the past there's a whole new future and let's get up and rebuild the temple. So this divine editorial is put here to encourage those people and look for their glorious future.
Look at what God said to Samuel about King David. I'm quoting from a modern translation: "'The Lord doesn't make decision the way you do,' God said to the prophet Samuel, 'people judge by outward appearances but the Lord looks at the person's thoughts and intentions.'" He was referring to David. Remember that Jesse thought, "Oh, he's the youngest kid; he's watching sheep; what could he do?" Even Samuel thought, "I don't know if this is king material or not. I thought the big guy Eliab was the guy." So God had to stay, "Stop right there. You are looking at all the wrong things. I don't see like you or his dad sees. I'm looking at the thoughts and the intentions and the deep parts of the heart." So that whole concept and idea of God looking at the heart of a young boy and eventually a man after God's whole heart is what God captures in 1 Chronicles. God sees David, warts and all and flaws and all very differently then we see David. When you think of David, a lot of us could look at his history and say, "That guy was a failure. He was an adulterer and a murderer." Though the whole story is told in the Bible, the way God chooses to record it in this divine editorial is to preserve the thought that, "To me he's more than that. He's not just a failure or just a human with flaws and sins, to Me he is the king of Israel who will bring forth The Messiah through his genealogy." That's how he is held up in this book.
Let's look at another example of this divine editorial in chapter 12. In this chapter people from different tribes come to align themselves with this new king, David. Verse 21: "And they helped David against the bands of raiders, for they were all mighty men of valor." A whole list of their names and their feats are given in this section. "And they were captains in the army. For at that time they came to David day by day to help him, until it was a great army, like the army of God." That is the divine editorial. In other words a bunch of stragglers came and they kept streaming in every day and eventually there is a whole bunch of them and it was a mighty army and God would say, "Like the army of God."
So here is this group that has gathered around David, the new king and they are loyal to him. In the next few chapters, David finds himself at odds with a common enemy of Israel at the time, the Philistines. Now David has already fought the big Philistine guy, Goliath, but the Philistines are back and they settle in the land and they pose a lot of problems. David is becoming quite a warrior now but here we get insight into this great political warrior's prayer life. We see what kind of a man he was when he went into the battle field.
Chapter 14, verse 8: "Now when the Philistines heard that David had been anointed king over all Israel, all the Philistines went up to search for David. And David heard of it and went out against them. Then the Philistines went and made a raid on the Valley of Rephaim. And David inquired of God, saying, 'Shall I go up against the Philistines? Will You deliver them into my hand?'
The Lord said to him, 'Go up, for I will deliver them into your hand.'" It's a great ruler, isn't it? It's a great leader, a great king, a great prime minister, and a great president who will say, "Let me pray about this first. Let me see what God's mind would be if He would speak to me about this." You may remember back when President Bush's dad was the president of the United States when the first gulf war was happening and the night that he decided to invade Bagdad. Before he did, he invited Billy Graham to the White House to spend the night. I'll never forget it because I was on the phone to Billy's son Franklin and he said, "Heads up, my dad just went to the White House." So I knew in advance or he was telling me, "I think that means there's going to be an attack and he wants some spiritual support." I admire any president who will get spiritual support for any kind of a move. "Hey, come in here. Give me advice. What does God say?" Here King David does that.
In chapters 13 through 16 there is that whole section of moving the Ark of the Covenant after the Philistines brought it back and it's now under the control of Israel once again. That sacred relic that used to be in the Tabernacle will once again be in the temple. It's that whole incident of trying to do the right thing the wrong way; moving the Ark of the Covenant up to Jerusalem. The move, the mess up, the failure, and leaving the Ark in Kiriath Jearim for a long time are all recorded. Without going through it again, eventually it does go up to Jerusalem the right way; the Levites carry it. Eventually it makes its way into Jerusalem in a tent prepared for it and there is a great celebration.
We are going to move to chapter 17. This chapter is the key chapter of this book. It's the pivotal chapter of the book. In fact I'll even say that this chapter is one of the most pivotal chapters in the rest of the Bible because it deals with that word I mentioned in our introduction: covenant. Blessings, judgment, covenant - those are the three big themes. This chapter deals with the covenant and it is a repetition of 2 Samuel chapter 7 but from a divine standpoint. In 2 Samuel chapter 7 and in chapter 17 of 1 Chronicles is the covenant that God makes with King David. If you don't understand this covenant, a lot of the Bible will be shrouded in mystery. A lot of the phrases and verses will not make sense and you will not get the meaning of it. This is a pivotal chapter because God promises here that David will have a lineage that will last forever and ever. Who would that refer to? Jesus Christ. Part of the covenant that God makes will be fulfilled in David's son Solomon who will sit on the throne but a large portion of it must be fulfilled in Jesus Christ. We always like to talk about the scarlet thread of redemption. That is a phrase we've mentioned in this Bible From 30,000 Feet study. What I'd like to do is to show you how Jesus is seen in different parts of the Old Testament all the way to the New and chapter 17 is that scarlet thread. It's Jesus in 1 Chronicles.
Here is how the story goes. David is in Jerusalem and he looks around one day and says, "Gosh, I have some nice digs here; I live in a good spot and I got it made here. But when I look outside my window I see that God is living in a tent." He was referring to the Ark of the Covenant under this little tent that they built. So he is sort of feeling sorry for God and is thinking, "I feel like God is homeless while I live in this nice palace. So I'm going to build a huge house for God," the Temple. The prophet Nathan, who is with him in his chambers, says, "Do all that is in your heart, David." Like, "Right on dude! Amen! Good attitude!" That night God wakes Nathan up and says, "Nathan, you spoke to soon. You told him to go do everything that is in his heart but I have to tell you something. I don't need a big house. I never asked for some edifice to be built for Me. I dwelt in the tent, the tabernacle and I've always been with you." But he loved the heart that David had in doing something for God. Look at 1 Chronicles 17 verse 9: "'Moreover I will appoint a place for My people Israel.'" So David is saying, "I want to build God something special," and God is saying, "'I will appoint a place for My people Israel, and will plant them, that they may dwell in a place of their own and move no more; nor shall the sons of wickedness oppress them anymore, as previously, since the time that I commanded judges to be over My people Israel. Also I will subdue all your enemies. Furthermore I tell you that the Lord will build you a house.'" Now David has been thinking of literally building God a house; a building; a temple for worship. David is thinking of a literal house and God promises David a house dynastically. A dynasty and a lineage; that he'll have sons that will be raised up. So here is David making plans for God and God says, "Hold up! Nathan go tell David, 'Have I got plans for you! You're making plans for Me and you got this cool house laid out for Me but I'm going to make you a house, a lineage, a genealogy, a dynasty and My plans for you are great.'" Here's a point to be made. You can never out give God. The heart of God shines through here. Anytime you make any overture or there is any desire in your heart, "Oh, I want to serve the Lord in this or that capacity; or God put it on my heart to get involved over there; I'm going to do something for God," understand that God says, "I love that heart and I'm going to do something for you. I'm going to bless you and I'm going to do things through you and for you." You can never out give him. Verse 11: "'And it shall be, when your days are fulfilled,'" (when you kick the bucket), "'When you must go to be with your fathers, that I will set up your seed after you, who will be of your sons; and I will establish his kingdom. He shall build Me a house.'" Now He speaks literally - it's Solomon who will build the temple; David makes the plans and comes up with the financing, but Solomon will build the house, the literal temple. "'And I will establish his throne forever.'" Is this referring to Solomon? Is he still alive? Is his throne still alive? No, but the throne of David and the son of David is promised to reign forever. "'I will be his Father, and he shall be My son; and I will not take My mercy away from him, as I took it from him who was before you.'" (that is Saul), "'And I will establish him in My house and in My kingdom forever; and his throne shall be established forever.'" So here is the covenant. In the first component of the covenant God says, "David you're going to have a son and he is going to build a temple, a house," and that is Solomon. The second component is that the throne of David is going to be established forever; not through Solomon although he is the son of David, but Solomon becomes in a sense, the archetype of the greater Son of David and the ultimate Son of David and that is the Lord Jesus Christ. So look at it historically. David is the king; he dies and Solomon takes over. The Kingdom is split after Solomon dies and you have Jeroboam and Rehoboam. Rehoboam is the son of Solomon and sits on the throne. The dynasty of David is uninterrupted until the Babylonian captivity and then it's interrupted. Then they come back but there is no king to sit upon the throne. Even when Jesus Christ comes back the first time, He doesn't come to reign as a king over a worldly kingdom but He comes as the Savior. When Jesus came the first time, He came to deal with sin and he came as the Savior. But if you look at the second coming, it's vastly different than the first. We read about it in Revelation chapter 19. We don't have a little meekly, babe coming in Bethlehem; or later on Jesus riding a donkey meek and mild. We have the coming King on a steed with judgment and ruling over the whole creation. So at the first coming, Jesus doesn’t reign, He deals with sin and salvation. At the second coming this will be fulfilled as He occupies the throne of David and rules and reigns. Keep that thought in mind because we will close with that later on in this study.
I mentioned that this was a pivotal chapter. I'll say once again but in a different way that it's going to be hard to understand the prophets, the ministry of Jesus Christ and it will be hard for you to understand eschatology in general, or a study of the last things, unless you get a grasp on chapter 17. Here's why. The New Testament begins. "The book of the genealogy of Jesus Christ," and it says, "the son of David." That is because Matthew wants you to know that this One will fulfill the promise that God made to King David back in this chapter in Chronicles. When Gabriel appears to Mary in Luke chapter 1 he says: "'And behold you will conceive in your womb and bring forth a son and shall call his name Jesus and 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.'" Keep in mind that you have a young girl who is about 13 years of age and she has already flipped out that an angel is talking to her in the middle of the night. She is even more flipped out that the angel said that even though you've never had any sexual relationships with any man, you are pregnant. And now, the Lord will give your child the throne of His father David and you are the vessel to bring forth the Messiah.
On Pentecost in Acts chapter 3, Peter begins his sermon with David. Here is Peter's sermon on Pentecost as he quotes Psalm 16 by David: "'Men and brethren, let me speak freely to you that 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 has 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.'" All of these verses that we are reading tie back to chapter 17 of 1 Chronicles.
As the book of 1 Chronicles goes on, temple worship is explained. David prepares materials for it and Solomon will be the one who will build it.
Chapter 22, verse 6: "Then he called for his son Solomon, and charged him to build a house for the Lord God of Israel." This was David's temple and this was his idea. God put it in David's heart or at least it came from David's heart, the man after God's own heart. Solomon will build it but historically if you read literature about the first and second temple periods, you find that the first temple is always referred to as Solomon's Temple even though it really wasn't. It was David's Temple built by his son and God just said, "David, you've got blood on your hands so your son is going to have to build it and not you." I was listening to J. Vernon McGee the other day speaking on this section of Scripture. He was talking about how people call it Solomon's Temple and said in his southern accent, "The only temple that Solomon had was on the side of his head. It was David's temple!" Verse 7: "And David said to Solomon: '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. Behold, a son shall be born to you, who shall be a man of rest; and I will give him rest from all his enemies all around. His name shall be Solomon,'" (the name means peace or rest), "'for I will give peace and quietness to Israel in his days.'" So the temple and the ministry of the temple is outlined.
In chapters 23 and 24 are 24 divisions of priests who will serve in their courses. There are the duties for the Levites and the Kohathites. (Remember the Kohathites and the Gershonites and the Merarites were those three branches of the family that did different things?)
Chapter 25 is all about worship leaders, musicians, and singers.
Chapter 26 is all about the ushers or the gate keepers.
Chapter 27 is all about the chief officers and the captains and the military branch that would be guarding that central portion of Jerusalem.
Chapter 28 is a public leadership meeting as David announces his plans of building the temple to the people of Israel.
In chapter 29 David takes an offering. There is a building program and buildings cost a lot of money so he takes an offering and the response is overwhelming. Verse 9: "Then the people rejoiced, for they had offered willingly, because with a loyal heart they had offered willingly to the Lord; and King David also rejoiced greatly." He is not going to build the temple, Solomon is. But he is preparing the financing for it and he is so stoked because he can die a happy man knowing that temple is going to be built. It was in his heart and he wants to honor God and the people have responded willingly for the right reason. I believe there is another reason why this is in here and it comes to us in the book of Haggai when after captivity, (they come from captivity with Ezra and Nehemiah to build the temple), they start rebuilding it and then they get lackluster about it. They just sort of get apathetic and say, "Oh, whatever," and people start building their own homes, fixing up their own places and forgetting about the temple in Jerusalem. So the prophet Haggai has to come along and rebuke the people for becoming so selfish and thinking only about their lives when the temple is in disrepair. I think Ezra knew that history and wanted to pull that in the forefront as the people are now back in Jerusalem. He's saying, "Hey, remember your forefathers, when King David took an offering for this place and they gave willingly and David rejoiced." Verse 20: "Then David said to all the assembly, 'Now bless the Lord your God.' So all the assembly blessed the Lord God of their fathers, and bowed their heads and prostrated themselves before the Lord and the king." This was followed by an enormous amount of animal sacrifice that is mentioned in the following verses. Thousands of animals are slaughtered as a sacrifice to the Lord. Verse 22: "So they ate and drank before the Lord with great gladness on that day. And they made Solomon the son of David king the second time, and anointed him before the Lord to be the leader, and Zadok to be priest." In verse 26 of chapter 29 we have a summary of King David's reign: "Thus David the son of Jesse reigned over all Israel. And the period that he reigned over Israel was forty years; seven years he reigned in Hebron, and thirty-three years he reigned in Jerusalem. So he died in a good old age, full of days." It's an interesting description. "Hey did you hear? David died." "Really! What was the cause of death?" "He was full of days." His time was up. There is a time appointed for everyone and when you are full of the days God has appointed it will be your time. "David died full of days and riches and honor; and Solomon his son reigned in his place. Now the acts of King David, first and last, indeed they are written in the book of Samuel the seer, in the book of Nathan the prophet, and in the book of Gad the seer." I don't know much about these books and I've never read them, but I just know that they existed at that time and they were probably chronicles kept by these people. Just a word about chronicling: Before there were ever any cameras, MP3 players, tape recorders, CD's or DVD's, there were chroniclers. Every single court had people in the court taking notes every day. They would record the events of that day and they would enter them into the log and it's throughout all of history. So these were probably other chronicles that are not canonical books or inspired by God to be in the canon of Scripture it is recorded that these books existed.Verse 30: "With all his reign and his might, and the events that happened to him, to Israel, and to all the kingdoms of the lands." The reign of King David is summed up in this book and his reign was one of might, power, splendor and for the most part it was even peaceful once he got on the throne. His followers were loyal and reigned with him and the mighty men, those that reigned with David, are mentioned.
I want to close with Revelation chapter 20. John is chronicling what he has seen in this revelation that God gave to Jesus and that Jesus gave to the angel who gave it now to John who writes it down for us. Verse 1: "Then I saw an angel coming down from heaven, having the key to the bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand. He laid hold of the dragon, that serpent of old, who is the Devil and Satan." By the way I didn't mention it and we didn't read it because it was in another section of Scripture but the first time the word Satan is ever used or mentioned in the Bible is in 1 Chronicles. "and bound him for a thousand years; and he cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal on him, so that he should deceive the nations no more till the thousand years were finished. But after these things he must be released for a little while." That has always puzzled a lot of people. Why is God in the future going to release Satan once he is bound? My question is why did God let him out the first time? If you can answer that one, I'll give you the second answer. Verse 4: "And I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was committed to them. Then I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded for their witness to Jesus and for the word of God, who had not worshiped the beast or his image, and had not received his mark on their foreheads or on their hands. And they lived and reigned with Christ for a thousand years. But the rest of the dead did not live again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection. Blessed and holy is he who has part in the first resurrection. Over such the second death has no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with Him a thousand years." The Bible predicts that in the end times after the tribulation period on the earth, after the second coming of Christ, and after judgment, there will come on the earth 1,000 years. That's where we get the term millennium. People say, "The word millennium isn't in the Bible." Well the word for 1,000 years is in the Bible and another word for that is millennium. It's best to read the Bible straight up, straight forward and literal. I think 1,000 years means 1,000 years! Big revelation! But there are a lot of people who like to spiritualize it. "Well it doesn’t really mean 1,000 years." In fact some people say and there is a theological viewpoint that says we are in the millennium right now. If that's true I have to say that I am really disappointed. If this is it, no thank you! 1,000 years is 1,000 years and the reason I say this is because if you start messing with it and saying, "Well there is no need for a millennium and what is the point of 1,000 years and maybe it's figurative and spiritual and not literal," then you have to mess with a lot of other Scripture. For instance, when God predicts that Israel will be in Egypt for 400 years and then get released into their own land, you find out later that God really meant it and it was 400 years. It was not spiritual but literal. Or when God predicts 70 years captivity, you find out later that it wasn't spiritual but it was literally 70 years. You don't have any right then to come to Revelation and say that it doesn't mean that. Well if it doesn't mean that what does it mean? If it doesn't mean that it can mean anything and then you have a confusing view point and nobody takes the Bible for what it literally says. Here's the question: Why do we need a millennium? What's the point? Why not go from all the bad stuff to right into heaven, the eternal state? Why not at the end of the world just go right into the eternal state and bliss and why 1,000 years on the earth? That's what the millennium is. 1,000 years of Christ reigning on the earth. Why do we need a millennium? Two reasons: The millennium is needed to redeem creation from the curse and from the judgment. Back in the first couple of chapters of Genesis a curse fell upon the earth and a curse has been on the earth ever since the fall. When you get to the tribulation period and the early chapters of the book of Revelation we discover that the earth is going to be decimated and trashed, with all due respect to the environmentalists. I think we should preserve what God gave us the best that we can but if you think we messed it up, you ain't seen nothing yet! Wait until God gets a hold of this environment and absolutely trashes it. So because of the fall and the curse and because of the judgment during the tribulation period there is going to be a need to renew and restore that which is destroyed and 1,000 years is God's answer to the prayers of the saints for the last 2,000 years, "Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven." The second reason and here is really the point of it, the millennium is needed for God to fulfill all of the promises he made to His people in the past, especially King David. God promised to King David a kingdom and that His greater Son, the Messiah would reign, and the kingdom is predicted not only to King David but to all the prophets. Did you know that every one of the Prophets speak about a coming kingdom; an earthly kingdom and a heavenly kingdom? Not just heavenly spiritual eternal bliss on the clouds playing harps, but a literal earthly kingdom is mentioned and the millennium is the first part of that. How is God going to fulfill all of the promises through all of the prophets to David, etc. throughout all of the Old Testament? The first installment of that promise is the millennium. That is the earthly kingdom where Christ literally rules and reigns from the city of Jerusalem over the whole earth. Restored and renewed earth - 1,000 years of that and then the second phase of that is what we call the eternal state. So Jesus Christ will reign and rule from Mount Zion. So we started with a theme and we end with a theme. If the chronicler was trying to say, "Look, from the beginning of mankind, starting with Adam, God has preserved a people, and a lineage that has lead to King David. Then He promised David a kingdom that includes his own offspring. God can preserve from eternity past all the way through history this people through David and his people to be in the land. Then take heart; build the temple; and build the city." If that is in the mind of the chronicler, we understand like we mentioned before in other studies, that God's plan to bring forth the Messiah and the Scriptures and blessing to the earth revolves around what we have called the epicenter - Jerusalem; Israel. Now Israel has been in the news for the last 4,000 years; it's always in the news. Sometimes there is a lot of debate as to who is right and who should be occupying what territory, etc. There are a lot of politics involved and I am not going to say that everything Israel has done and every ruling that prime ministers have made have been correct and right, but I do stand by God's covenant with His people. There is a little poem that I'll never forget: "How odd of God to choose the Jew; but not so odd as those who choose the Jewish God, but hate the Jew." I always have problems when I go to certain countries and they say, "You can speak on anything, but don't talk about Israel or God's plan for that nation." Okay, so there's just a whole lot of the Bible you can never teach or you have to spiritualize it to make it mean anything other than what it really means that you leave out the whole picture. God has a plan and whether you support His plan or not, it's going to happen. Jesus Christ the Son of David will rule and reign from Jerusalem for 1,000 years so get used to it because you are going to rule and reign with Him. In fact you are going to up every year to the Feast of Tabernacles in Jerusalem. If you've said you've always wanted to go to Israel, don't worry, you'll go. It'll be free, you don't have to buy a ticket, you don’t have to go on a tour, and it'll look a lot better than it does now. However, what's really cool about going on a tour now is that you have a before and after comparison. Because you'll stand there and think, "Boy, I remember what it was like last time I when I was here and it's totally different now."
Let's pray. Heavenly Father thank You for the time that we've spent and thank You for letting us get a glimpse into your covenant, Your promise. Lord, forever means forever and 1,000 means 1,000 and 144,000 means 144,000 just like 70 years captivity means 70 years. You keep Your promises and we don't have a right to tamper with them or alter them or make them fit our own predisposed theology or eschatology. Lord, we bow before You and before Your Word and we pray that it will have full access to every part of our lives. Our career choices, our marriages, our families, our children, what we listen to, what we watch, and how we treat other people. Lord, as You are so merciful and were merciful with David and his lineage Your ultimate mercy was displayed in Your Son Jesus Christ. Thank You for that. In Jesus' Name. Amen.