1Chronicles 16-17

Sunday Evening Bible Study

October 13, 2002


We are now in the early stages of David’s reign over the nation of Israel.

1Chronicles 16

:1-3 The Ark arrives

:2 David had made an end of offering the burnt offerings and the peace offerings

There were three basic types of sacrifices in the Old Testament:

Sin Offerings

Having an animal pay for your sin by dying in your place.  The animal’s blood was then sprinkled on the altar.

Burnt Offerings

This was a way of dedicating yourself to the Lord.
The entire animal was burnt on the altar, nothing left over and nothing eaten by the worshipper.
The picture was of the worshipper being totally consumed in the flames, totally being given to the Lord.
We see a similar picture in:
(Rom 12:1-2 KJV)  I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. {2} And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.

Peace Offerings

This was similar to having dinner with God.  After your sins were taken care of and you were dedicated to the Lord, then you sat down and had a dinner with God.  Part of the animal was given to God on the altar, part was eaten by the priest, part was given to you and your family for a three day feast.

:3 he dealt to every one of Israel

This food that David distributes is probably a result of the peace offerings, but there's significance I think in the fact that David distributes to everyone.  David made the offerings, he gets to keep the food, but instead he shares it.

David’s “blessing” was more than just words.  His “faith in God” affected those around him as well as himself.

Sometimes we hear people say that what you believe is a personal thing.  That the only one it affects is you.  Sadly, this is often true.  But it's not supposed to be that way.


Bless God, then bless others

Notice the order here:
First, David worships God
Second, David gives to the people
The horizontal falls in place if the vertical is healthy.
1.  If you have problems getting along with people, go to God and let Him clean you up first.
2.  If you want to be a blessing to people, you must first worship God.
3.  If you've really been worshipping God, you will also be blessing people.

:4-6 Worshippers appointed

:4 he appointed certain of the Levites

appointednathan – to give, put, set; (Qal) to give, bestow, grant, permit, ascribe, employ, devote, consecrate, dedicate, pay wages, sell, exchange, lend, commit; to put, set, put on, put upon, set, appoint, assign, designate

This is a word that seems to speak to a person’s will, their “choice”.


Worship is a choice

It’s a choice you make.
You choose whether or not to “appoint” yourself to worship or not.
This wasn’t an issue of whether or not they “felt like it”.
It was their job, their responsibility.
And these guys had to do it every day.
(1 Chr 16:37 KJV) So he left there before the ark of the covenant of the LORD Asaph and his brethren, to minister before the ark continually, as every day's work required:

:4 to minister before the ark of the LORD

ministersharat - to minister, serve. This is the ministry of worship on the part of those who stand in a special relationship to God, such as the priests.

David is appointing some of these men to do worship before the ark.

Their worship will be made up of music – there were singers, stringed instruments (psalteries and harps), cymbals, and trumpets. (vs. 5-6)

The Ark was the place where God would meet with man.

(Exo 25:22 KJV) And there I will meet with thee, and I will commune with thee from above the mercy seat, from between the two cherubims which are upon the ark of the testimony, of all things which I will give thee in commandment unto the children of Israel.

The Ark was to be a model of God’s throne in heaven.

In a sense, these Levites were going to be “performing” before the Throne. God’s throne.


Worship is singing to God

If you’re a performer, there are going to be times when some performances are a little more important than others.
I’ve been in choirs since I was a kid. I’ve been in school choir concerts. I’ve been in choirs that toured and performed many places. Some performances are a little more awe-inspiring than others. I remember in high school going to nursing homes, church luncheons, and retirement parks. But those didn’t seem near as important as when we competed in the big high school choir competitions each year at Chapman College. In college, our choir was invited to join a huge mass choir and sing at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion and sing with a huge orchestra. It was pretty cool to be even a little speck on that huge stage, singing to an audience of people dressed in tuxes and gowns.
But when it comes to worship, sometimes I have this feeling that we don’t really understand who is in the audience.
The Best for the Queen
One day while walking with some children and palace attendants, Queen Mary was caught in a sudden thunderstorm. The queen quickly took shelter on the porch of a home. To avoid attracting a crowd, she disguised her appearance by putting on a hat that partly covered her face and a plain coat she borrowed from one of her attendants. The queen then knocked at the door and asked to borrow an umbrella. “I’ll send it back tomorrow,” she told the unfriendly woman who answered the door. Despite the assurances about returning her umbrella, the woman did not want to lend her best umbrella. So she retrieved an old umbrella stored in the attic. One rib was broken, and there were several holes in it. With a haughty attitude and scornful words, she handed it to the unrecognized monarch. The next day the woman had another visitor—a man with gold braid on his uniform and an envelope in his hand. “The queen sent me with this letter,” he said, “and also asked me to thank you personally for the loan of your umbrella.” The woman was stunned, and then brokenhearted. She burst into tears. “This is just horrible—I missed an opportunity to give my queen my very best!” she sobbed. “And my attitude was shameful,” she added.
The thing about our church worship time that may be misleading is the fact that there are microphones and lights up front. It may lead you to think that the people up front are performing for you. The people up front may even be confused from time to time about this.
But the truth is, you aren’t the audience. You are part of the performance. You are part of the presentation.
There is only One in the audience. We are all to be performing to Him. We present our songs, our hearts, our lives to Him.

:4 to record

The three verbs that follow describe their worship, they tell how they worshipped (record, thank, praise).

to recordzakar – (Hiphil) to cause to remember, remind; to mention; to record; to make a memorial.

In the Psalm that David gives the Levites to sing (vs.8-36), David uses the word twice: It is used in 1Chron.16:12 “Remember His marvelous works”, and in 1Chron.16:15 “Be ye mindful always of His covenant”.

The form of the verb (Hiphil) is causal, so the emphasis should be on “causing to remember”.

The idea here is that the Levites were to minister in a way to cause the people to remember about the Lord and His work.


Worship requires remembering

What we do in worship should provoke our minds to recall how good God is and what He has done for us.
See how the word zakar is used in:
(Psa 63:1-6 KJV) A Psalm of David, when he was in the wilderness of Judah.

David wrote this Psalm when he was out in the middle of nowhere. He didn’t write this in the palace in Jerusalem.

O God, thou art my God; early will I seek thee: my soul thirsteth for thee, my flesh longeth for thee in a dry and thirsty land, where no water is;

David is in a time of need. This is not the kind of time that we think of praising God in.

{2} To see thy power and thy glory, so as I have seen thee in the sanctuary.

David remembers the glimpses of God that he’s caught at the Tabernacle.

{3} Because thy lovingkindness is better than life, my lips shall praise thee. {4} Thus will I bless thee while I live: I will lift up my hands in thy name.

“Praise” and “blessing” are words describing worship.

{5} My soul shall be satisfied as with marrow and fatness; and my mouth shall praise thee with joyful lips: {6} When I remember thee upon my bed, and meditate on thee in the night watches.

This all comes when David “remembers” the Lord while on his bed. He chooses to think about the Lord, even when he’s not in a great place.

I think it’s valuable to take time to remember those “glimpses” you’ve gotten of the Lord. It’s good to remember the things that God has done in your life.
But frankly, sometimes we get so depressed that we couldn’t remember a nice thing if we tried.
I think there is one thing we should always remember – God’s love for us that was demonstrated by Jesus on the cross.

(1 John 3:16 KJV) Hereby perceive we the love of God, because he laid down his life for us: and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren.

We’ll be sharing in communion today – and that’s what communion is all about – remembering what Jesus has done for us.

:4 and to thank

to thankyadah – to throw, shoot, cast; (Hiphil) to give thanks, laud, praise; to confess, confess (the name of God)

Here, it is used to express one’s public proclamation or declaration (confession) of God’s attributes and His works. This concept is at the heart of the meaning of praise. Praise is a confession or declaration of who God is and what He does.

David’s psalm (vs.8-36) is a psalm of “thanks”. Our Hebrew word is used in vs.7&8. David confesses God’s attributes in verses as vs.25-27 (great, creator, splendor, majesty, joy, glory, strength). God’s works are confessed in verses as vs.15-22 (His covenant and protection of Israel).


Worship gives thanks for God’s greatness

Our worship should contain expressions of acknowledgment of God’s great character and works.
There is a progression here: From causing our minds to remember who God is and what He’s done, to outwardly expressing these things.
This is how David writes the Psalm (vs. 7-36) as well. David uses this same Hebrew word (yadah) in the Psalm. The Psalm starts with:
(1 Chr 16:7-8 KJV)  Then on that day David delivered first this psalm to thank the LORD into the hand of Asaph and his brethren. {8} Give thanks unto the LORD, call upon his name, make known his deeds among the people.

This is how the Psalm starts, telling the people to give thanks to the Lord.

Then David launches into reminding the people of the wonderful things that the Lord has done.  He reminds the people of how awesome and powerful the Lord is.

At the end of the Psalm, after having demonstrated God’s mercy towards the people, David writes,
(1 Chr 16:34 KJV)  O give thanks unto the LORD; for he is good; for his mercy endureth for ever.

David has demonstrated God’s wonderful mercy, and the result is that we ought to give thanks to Him.

Some years ago on a hot summer day in south Florida a little boy decided to go for a swim in the old swimming hole behind his house. In a hurry to dive into the cool water, he ran out the back door, leaving behind shoes, socks, and shirt as he went. He flew into the water, not realizing that as he swam toward the middle of the lake, an alligator was swimming toward the shore. His mother in the house was looking out the window saw the two as they got closer and closer together. In utter fear, she ran toward the water, yelling to her son as loudly as she could. Hearing her voice, the little boy became alarmed and made a U-turn to swim to his mother. It was too late. Just as he reached her, the alligator reached him. From the dock, the mother grabbed her little boy by the arms just as the alligator snatched his legs. That began an incredible tug-of-war between the two. The alligator was much stronger than the mother, but the mother was much too passionate to let go. A farmer happened to drive by, heard her screams, raced from his truck, took aim and shot the alligator. Remarkably, after weeks and weeks in the hospital, the little boy survived. His legs were extremely scarred by the vicious attack of the animal, and on his arms, were deep scratches where his mother’s fingernails dug into his flesh in her effort to hang on to the son she loved. The newspaper reporter who interviewed the boy after the trauma, asked if he would show him his scars. The boy lifted his pant legs. And then, with obvious pride, he said to the reporter, “But look at my arms. I have great scars on my arms, too. I have them because my Mom wouldn’t let go.”
You and I can identify with that little boy. We have scars, too. No, not from an alligator, or anything quite so dramatic. But the scars of a painful past, Some of those scars are unsightly and have caused us deep regret. But, some wounds, my friend, are because God has refused to let go. In the midst of your struggle, He’s been there holding on to you. The Scripture teaches that God loves you. You are a child of God. He wants to protect you and provide for you in every way. But sometimes we foolishly wade into dangerous situations. The swimming hole of life is filled with peril, and we forget that the enemy is waiting to attack. That’s when the tug-of-war begins and if you have the scars of His love on your arms be very, very grateful. He did not and will not - let you go.
We have much to be thankful for.

:4 and praise

praisehalal – to shine; (Piel) to praise; to boast, make a boast; This root connotes being sincerely and deeply thankful for and/or satisfied in lauding a superior quality(ies) or great, great act(s) of the object.  The word “hallelujah” comes from this word, meaning “Praise Yah”.

Whereas the word yadah seems to be something a little more in the mind, “giving thanks”, I think this word seems to be a little more in the emotions.


Worship is filled with joy

Our worship should be filled with deep felt joy and adoration to our Great King.
Again, there seems to be a progression:  First we cause to remember, then we acknowledge with thanks, then our hearts become involved in praise.
We see the same progression in the Psalm where David encourages the people to “remember” what God has done (vs. 12,15), then to “give thanks” (vs. 34), and then the people respond:

(1 Chr 16:36 KJV)  And all the people said, Amen, and praised the LORD.

:5  Asaph the chief … with cymbals

Asaph was the worship leader.  He seems to have led the group with his cymbals.

:5 Obededom

This was the guy who had the Ark at his house for three months.  He can’t get enough of the Lord.

:7-36 David’s Psalm

:7 David delivered first this psalm …

This was actually a compilation of portions of several psalms.

verses 8-22 come from Psalm 105:1-15 (but not 105:16-45)

There are only some minor changes in the King James between Chronicles and the Psalm, but for the most part they are the same.

verses 23-33 come from Psalm 96:2-13 (the entire Psalm)

It’s mostly the same as Psalm 96, but towards the end of the section, there’s a bit of rearranging of some of the thoughts.

verse 34 is a common phrase that is found in several psalms – Ps. 106:1; 107:1; 118:1, 29; 136:1

verse 35-36 are found in Psalm 106:47,48

What is going on here?

David was arranging the songs.

He’s taking pieces out of several songs and putting them together – creating a sort of “medley”.
The songs he draws from aren’t ones titles “A Psalm of David”.  It’s possible that these were songs written by someone else.  It’s also possible that David wrote these but we just don’t have his name on it.
It could be that he liked the melodies, perhaps he thought the songs fit together.
There is also a theme that ties both sections together – pointing to the Lord and thanking Him for what He’s done and His greatness.

:8-22 – From Psalm 105

:10  let the heart of them rejoice that seek the LORD

(NASB - "Let the heart of those who seek the Lord be glad")

Seeking God is not some somber-faced event, a person climbing the top of the highest mountain in search of God, beating themselves, etc.  It is a time of JOY!

:12 Remember his marvellous works that he hath done

Rememberzakar – to remember, recall, call to mind; (Qal) to remember, recall

This is the word used to describe part of the Levites’ responsibilities in worship – to “record” (vs.4)

:15 Be ye mindful always of his covenant;

be ye mindfulzakar – to remember, recall, call to mind; (Qal) to remember, recall

Again, the same word as “record” in verse 4.

:17  an everlasting covenant

A covenant is a contract, an agreement, a promise.

God keeps His promises - He made promises to the fathers, He makes promises to us.  That's the whole point here.

:18 Unto thee will I give the land of Canaan,

God promised to Jacob:

(Gen 35:12 KJV)  And the land which I gave Abraham and Isaac, to thee I will give it, and to thy seed after thee will I give the land.

:19  When ye were but few

Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob didn’t start out as much.

God loves us even if we don’t amount to much in the world’s eyes.  God has big plans for us.

:20  they went from nation to nation

This is speaking of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob’s travels, their “sojournings”.


Today, there are these people known as the “Irish Travelers”.  The lady that was caught on videotape beating her four year old daughter in the parking lot was part of this group.  They continually travel throughout the year, going from city to city doing odd jobs.  They don’t exactly have a spotless reputation.

Abraham, Issac, and Jacob were very similar.

They never owned houses, just tents.
They were nomads, wandering from place to place.
Hebrews 11:8-10 By faith Abraham, when he was called to go out into a place which he should after receive for an inheritance, obeyed; and he went out, not knowing whither he went.  By faith he sojourned in the land of promise, as [in] a strange country, dwelling in tabernacles with Isaac and Jacob, the heirs with him of the same promise:  For he looked for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker [is] God.


Not comfortable in this world

We should be careful not to “settle down” or feel comfortable in this world.  I don’t mean that we shouldn’t buy houses or such.  But we should keep a very light touch on the things around us.

:21  suffered no man to do them wrong...

Abram and Pharaoh (Gen.12:10-20)

Abram told Pharaoh that Sarai was his sister (a half-truth).  He was afraid that he would be killed so Sarai could be taken as a wife.  Yet God protected Sarai despite it.

Abraham and Abimelech. (Gen.20:1-18)

Same predicament.  Same half-truth.  God spoke to Abimelech, warning him.  Sarah wasn’t touched.

Isaac and Abimelech.  (Gen.26:1-11)

Like father like son.  Isaac tells the same tale his dad did, except for him it’s a complete lie, Rebekah isn’t his sister at all.  Yet still they are protected.

Jacob and Laban.

Even though Laban took advantage of Jacob, Jacob was still able to leave with his four wives, children, and all his flocks.  Laban was kept from hurting Jacob.

:22  Touch not mine anointed

This is being stated in regards to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.

They were God’s “anointed” men, and God protected them, even when they did stupid things.

David will use this same phrase when he is given the opportunity to get back at Saul.

During one opportunity, David was hiding in a cave with his men, and Saul came into the same cave, all by himself.

(1 Sam 24:4-6 KJV)  And the men of David said unto him, Behold the day of which the LORD said unto thee, Behold, I will deliver thine enemy into thine hand, that thou mayest do to him as it shall seem good unto thee. Then David arose, and cut off the skirt of Saul's robe privily. {5} And it came to pass afterward, that David's heart smote him, because he had cut off Saul's skirt. {6} And he said unto his men, The LORD forbid that I should do this thing unto my master, the LORD'S anointed, to stretch forth mine hand against him, seeing he is the anointed of the LORD.
I wonder if David wasn’t saying this because of how the Lord had protected Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, even when they had been doing foolish things.


God’s protection

Even when we aren’t perfect, God protects us.
We may wander like gypsies through this world, but God is looking out for us.
God's heart is such that if someone touches you, watch out!  
(Zec 2:8 KJV)  for he that toucheth you toucheth the apple of his eye.

It’s like poking God in the eye when someone touches you.

:23-33 – From Psalm 96

:24-26  Declare his glory among the heathen


Reasons for witnessing

Why tell people about the Lord? (four reasons)
1.  He is great (vs.25)

He is worthy of our trust.

2.  He is to be feared above all gods (vs.25)

You’re going to be in trouble if you ignore Him.  It would be scary to have to face the Lord if Jesus hadn’t paid for our sins.

3.  Because the other “gods” are just worthless (vs.26)

idolseliyl – of nought, good for nothing, worthless

People put their trust in all sorts of things, but unless they put their trust in the Lord, they’re wasting their time.

People need to realize the emptiness of what they trust in when they aren’t trusting in God.

4.  He’s the Creator (vs.26)

He is incredibly awesome.  He’s not just some carved wooden figure, He’s the one who made the wood.

He’s the One who made us.  We ought to follow Him.

:27  Glory and honour [are] in his presence; strength and gladness [are] in his place

(1 Chr 16:27 NLT)  Honor and majesty surround him; strength and beauty are in his dwelling.

(1 Chr 16:27 NASB)  Splendor and majesty are before Him, Strength and joy are in His place.

gloryhowd splendour, majesty, vigour

honorhadar – ornament, splendour, honour

strength ‘oz – might, strength

gladnesschedvah – joy, gladness


David is almost giving these qualities a sense of personality, and that they choose to live in God's presence.

Glory and honor are two attributes of God that we find hanging on to Him all the time.

Strength and gladness are both attributes of God that God shares with us as we seek Him.

:29  the glory [due] unto his name

The idea again that God is worthy of worship.

He deserves our worship and adoration.

:33  Then shall the trees of the wood sing out at the presence of the LORD

Creation worships God

Jesus said that if his disciples didn’t praise Him, the rocks would cry out (Luke 19:40)

:34  O give thanks unto the LORD …

This is one of the most common phrases in the Psalms:

(Psa 106:1 KJV)  Praise ye the LORD. O give thanks unto the LORD; for he is good: for his mercy endureth for ever.

(Psa 107:1 KJV)  O give thanks unto the LORD, for he is good: for his mercy endureth for ever.

(Psa 118:1 KJV)  O give thanks unto the LORD; for he is good: because his mercy endureth for ever.

(Psa 118:29 KJV)  O give thanks unto the LORD; for he is good: for his mercy endureth for ever.

(Psa 136:1 KJV)  O give thanks unto the LORD; for he is good: for his mercy endureth for ever.

In this last Psalm, the phrase “for his mercy endureth for ever” is repeated at the end of each line throughout the Psalm.

We need to give “thanks” to the Lord.

thanksyadah – (Hiphil) to give thanks, laud, praise; to confess, confess (the name of God)

This is one of those words that described what the Levites were to do continually before the Lord (v.4)

:34  for he is good; for his mercy endureth for ever

The reasons why we are to give “thanks”.

goodtowb – good, pleasant, agreeable

God is good all the time.  All the time God is good.

mercycheced – goodness, kindness, faithfulness


verse 35-36 are found in Psalm 106:47,48

:35  And say ye, Save us, O God

This is the “request” of the song, the request of the prayer.

The order is important:  First comes the praise, then comes the request.

(Phil 4:6-7 KJV)  Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. {7} And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

Sometimes we come to God with complaining and grumbling instead of praise and thanksgiving.

:36  the people said, Amen, and praised the LORD

Amen‘amen – verily, truly, amen, so be it

praisedhalal – to shine; (Piel) to praise; to boast, make a boast

This is the root of the word “Hallelujah” or, “Praise Yah”

This was the word used in verse 4 describing what the Levites were to do – to “praise” the Lord.

:37-43 Continual worship put in place

:37  to minister before the ark continually

Worship should be continual.

If we don’t understand why worship should be continual, then we don’t understand God and we don’t understand worship.

The very reason we worship is because of who God is.

Some things just come naturally.  Some things just seem appropriate for the moment.

When someone on the Angels hits a home run, you have to stand up.  Even if you’re watching at home.


The worship in heaven is continual, night and day.

Over and over, those in heaven declare, “He is worthy”.  That’s why they worship Him, that’s just what you do when you see God face to face, you fall on your face and worship Him.


Worship should come from our response to God’s presence.

Isaiah 6
Isaiah found himself on his face before God – why?  because he saw the Lord high and lifted up.
Is the concept of “worship” a difficult one to you?  Put your eyes on Jesus.

:37  every day's work required

or lit., “according to the matter of the day on its day,” or “according to the service necessary for each day”.

Their worship was different each day since each day was different.

We need to learn caution in not letting our worship become stale and mechanical.  Learn new songs.  Write new songs. 

Sing songs according to the need of the day.

If you need the Lord's touch, sing songs about the Lord touching you.
If you need forgiveness, sing songs about His forgiveness.

:39  Zadok...at Gibeon

While Asaph and company were in Jerusalem offering continual praise, Zadok stayed in Gibeon, to offer sacrifices at the tabernacle.

Gibeon is about six miles northwest of Jerusalem.

Apparently the ark and the tabernacle were now separated.

The last time the tabernacle was mentioned was being at Shiloh, when Eli was the priest (1Sam.2:22).  From there, the ark was taken into battle against the Philistines and lost, but the tabernacle continued to be a tent of meeting and sacrifice.  When the ark was returned it was kept at Kiriath-jearim, not with the tabernacle.  Somewhere between the time of Eli and David, the tabernacle was moved to Gibeon.

Apparently Zadok was to minister at the tabernacle, and Abiathar at the ark.

:40  to offer burnt offerings

As it says here, this was commanded by the Lord to Moses.  It apparently had not been kept for quite a while...but David restores it.

The offering was to be two lambs each day, one at morning, one at evening.  Also flour, oil, and wine were to be offered. (Exodus 29:38-41)

:43  David returned to bless his house

David by no means is a model husband or dad.  He had lots of problems with his family.  In fact, we know from 2Sam.6:20-23, that this was when Michal, one of his wives, criticized David in his worship.

But there are some good lessons here to learn:


Don’t neglect your family for the sake of “the things of God”.

The Pharisees were famous for trying to use spiritual “loop holes” to get away with not taking care of their parents.  They tried to say that their money was all dedicated to God, and that they couldn’t help them out (Mat. 15:1-9)
Paul wrote,
I Timothy 5:8 But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel.
It is not spiritual to neglect your family.
Sometimes we who find ourselves in “ministry” positions can pour our whole selves into ministering to other people and find ourselves on “empty” when we get home.  Save some for the family!


Your relationship with God should flow into your family.

It’s sad when you see a person who is one thing at church, but another at home.
I think a test of true spirituality is to see what a person’s family thinks of them.  Are they the same at home as they are at church?
When you get blessed at church, it should spill over into your home - your wife, kids, etc.

1Chronicles 17

The parallel passage is found in 2Samuel 7.

:1-2 David wants to build a temple

:1  Nathan the prophet

He was used in several ways in David’s life:


Nathan wrote a book that chronicled the history of David and Solomon’s reigns.
I Chronicles 29:29 Now the acts of David the king, first and last, behold, they [are] written in the book of Samuel the seer, and in the book of Nathan the prophet, and in the book of Gad the seer,
II Chronicles 9:29  Now the rest of the acts of Solomon, first and last, [are] they not written in the book of Nathan the prophet, and in the prophecy of Ahijah the Shilonite, and in the visions of Iddo the seer against Jeroboam the son of Nebat?

God’s spokesman

In setting up the national worship, the temple, the organization, God used Nathan to guide David.
II Chronicles 29:25 And he (Hezekiah) set the Levites in the house of the LORD with cymbals, with psalteries, and with harps, according to the commandment of David, and of Gad the king’s seer, and Nathan the prophet: for [so was] the commandment of the LORD by his prophets.


This was the man who God used to confront David about his sin with Bathsheba.  (This took guts!)
II Samuel 12:1 And the LORD sent Nathan unto David. And he came unto him, and said unto him, There were two men in one city; the one rich, and the other poor.


Toward the end of David’s life, one of his sons, Adonijah decided to make himself king.  Nathan took the initiative to inform David and Bathsheba, and to help them in making Solomon king. (After having rebuked David...)
I Kings 1:23 And they told the king, saying, Behold Nathan the prophet. And when he was come in before the king, he bowed himself before the king with his face to the ground.

:2  Do all that [is] in thine heart; for God [is] with thee


Making decisions

There are times we don't have any clear direction from God, and all we can do is follow our heart if in our heart we are walking with God.
I think that sometimes we spend WAY TOO MUCH TIME analyzing our decisions when we simply need to make a choice and go with it.
There are some important things to think about though.
Your heart needs to be with the Lord.

Jesus said:

John 15:7 If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you.

Jesus promised us that if we abided in Him and His words in us, we could ask whatever we wanted.  Why?  Because we would be asking according to His will.

Your heart can be pretty dangerous.

Jeremiah 17:9  The heart [is] deceitful above all [things], and desperately wicked: who can know it?

Our hearts are very wicked and tricky.  We need to be extra careful if we intend to “go with our heart”.  That’s why we need to abide in Jesus.

We need to stay in God’s Word.

Hebrews 4:12 For the word of God [is] quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and [is] a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.

If God's Word abides in us, then it will be judging and discerning the thoughts of our hearts.

There are times when we lack God's direction in a given situation.

We've prayed, but no answer.

It is okay if we've been abiding in Jesus and His Word is in us, to follow our hearts.

But sometimes God isn't silent.  Sometimes God answers...

:3-15 God responds through Nathan

:4  Thou shalt not build me an house


When God says “no”

It is not always because what we intend to do is wrong or bad.
There was nothing wrong with what David wanted to do.

It was not wrong to build the Temple.  In fact, David’s son would be the one to build it.  God would even give David the plans (1Chr. 28:19-20) and the materials to build the Temple, just not permission to do the actual building.

In fact, later in the history of Israel, God would rebuke the people with very much the same words...

Haggai 1:4  "Is it time for you yourselves to dwell in your paneled houses while this house lies desolate?"

God had told them to rebuild the temple, and they got sidetracked, spending their time and money on themselves.

Here, David is wanting to do the right thing.

Later, we know that God told David that He didn’t want him to build the temple because of all the blood he had shed (1Chr. 22:7-8).  But God doesn’t tell David this now, and I don’t think this is the issue in God saying “no”.  We’ll get to God’s reasons later on in this passage.
But the point is, sometimes it can be hard to hear God say “no”.

:6 Why have ye not built me an house of cedars?

God never said He wanted anyone to build Him a house.

Have you ever been given a big, expensive gift that you really didn't want?

:7 I took thee from the sheepcote,

sheepcotenaveh  abode, habitation, abode of shepherds or flocks, pasture

:9  I will ordain a place for my people Israel

This is what is referred to as the Davidic covenant (like the Abrahamic, and Mosaic covenants).

These are God’s promises to David involving:

The land - Israel belongs to the Jews

A king and a kingdom - David’s descendants forever, the Messiah.

:10  the LORD will build thee an house

Basically, David has told God he wants to build Him a house, and God responds, "Thanks, no, but instead I'm going to build YOU a house."

To use a John Kennedy phrase, "It's not what you can do for God, but what God can do for you".

It certainly is easy at times to get all excited about our relationship with the Lord and feel like we've got to rush out and do something for God.


Let God love you first

I think that sometimes we get a little ahead of what God wants to do in our lives.
I think that we can jump out into stuff that we’re not quite ready for.
We want to be building palaces for God, but God wants to do construction on us.
The Bible's emphasis is on what God has done for man, not man for God.

:11  thy seed after thee

Referring specifically to Solomon, eventually to Jesus Christ.

:12 He shall build me an house, and I will stablish his throne for ever.

Solomon built the temple.

But Jesus Christ would reign forever

This is an example of prophetic telescoping - a prophesy jumping across vast spaces of time in a single sentence.

:16-27 David responds to the Lord

:16-27 … servant …

servant ebed – slave, servant

There is one word that pops up over and over again.  It’s a word that David keeps using to describe himself.  He uses the word 10 different times.

He could be referring to himself as the grand, exalted king of Israel.

Instead he keeps calling himself a “servant”.


The greatest is being a servant

David has kept a great attitude even though finding himself being exalted.
(Mark 9:35 KJV)  And he sat down, and called the twelve, and saith unto them, If any man desire to be first, the same shall be last of all, and servant of all.

:23  do as thou hast said



Sometimes when we hear of what great things God wants to do in our lives, we respond, “O no, Lord, not for me”.
I like David’s response, “Let me have it, Lord”.
Sometimes we feel that we can’t accept God’s gifts until we get cleaned up, until we get our lives straightened out.  That’ll never happen.  We’ll never deserve God’s gifts.
The Holy Spirit
Luke 11:11-13 If a son shall ask bread of any of you that is a father, will he give him a stone? or if [he ask] a fish, will he for a fish give him a serpent?  Or if he shall ask an egg, will he offer him a scorpion?  If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall [your] heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?
I want whatever God wants to give me.  I’ll take all the help I can get.
Open up and receive what God want to do in you.