Covenants: David's New Life (2 Samuel 7:1-17)

Speaker: Rev. Jon Herr
Date: 7/22/2018
Type: Sunday Sermon
Price: FREE

Nathan is an often-overlooked character in the Old Testament. Most people are familiar with him as the guy who boldly pointed his finger in the face of King David, and said, "You are the man!" But Nathan's propheteering is related to more than just David's adultery. In fact, it's pretty much completely related to the building of the temple! How is that so?

Nathan only shows up three times in the narrative of the books of Samuel and Kings:

1) 2 Samuel 7:1-17. Here, he shows up with zero introduction or background given. At first, he approves of David's desire to build a temple (based probably on Deuteronomy 12), but then God gives him thirteen verses of revelation to David which tell him he can't build the temple. He won't build God a house, but God will build him a house!

2) 2 Samuel 12:1-25. Here, he is the one who approaches David and confronts him about his adultery with Bathsheba. But more than that, immediately after David and Bathsheba's firstchild dies, they have another son--Solomon--and Nathan is the one who brings the news of his birth to David. Of course, this is important, because Solomon would be the one to build the temple. So far, Nathan prophesied a coming offspring who would build God's house, and now he attends to the birth of this initial offspring.

3) 1 Kings 1:1-53. Here, when David is old and out of touch, his son Adonijah sets himself up as king of Israel. It is Nathan who shows up and reminds Bathsheba that Solomon is supposed to be king. Bathsheba goes in and reminds David, and David commands Zadok and Nathan to anoint Solomon king, and they do so. Nathan prophesied a coming offspring; attended the birth of this offspring; and anointed this offpspring king. 

Solomon was supposed to build the temple, and Nathan was there pretty much every step of the way, to make sure that this occurred. And we're also told that Nathan records the history of David's rule (1 Chron 29:29) and Solomon's rule (2 Chron 9:29), as well as being involved with ordering all of the Levitical musicians in the temple (2 Chron 29:25).

In 2 Samuel 7:1-17, there are 4 sections. The setting (v 1-3), word related to God (4-7), word related to David (8-11a), word related to David's offspring (11b-17). In these four sections we see the following principles:

God’s timing is sometimes different than ours. God’s glory is not contingent on the glory of His house. God’s care is evident in the life of David, and in our lives. God’s covenant will continue forever.


Jon Herr Jon Herr (MATS, Reformed Theological Seminary; BS Bible, Philadelphia Biblical University) is Pastor of Christ Covenant Church of Chicago (CREC). Previously he served as a deacon and ministerial student at All Saints Church (CREC, Lancaster PA). He and his wife Jackie live in East Dundee, Illinois with their two daughters and two sons.