The Established Kingdom
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The Established Kingdom
2 Samuel 7:1-11, 16
Psalm 89:1-4, 19-26
We are on our fourth and final Sunday advent before Christmas Day. This Christmas is a very special Christmas because it is probably a different Christmas than we have ever experienced in our lifetimes as we have a Christmas during a pandemic. However, not even a global pandemic can stop our celebration of our savior’s birth. I wonder through all that has happened how people may think differently about Christmas. I wonder if it is appreciated more and I wonder if it is less about the commercialism of the holiday and more about the tradition and about the recognition of God entering the world as one of us.
After David had established his kingdom and his home in Zion from where he would rule his kingdom, he notices that he has this great and wonderful home built for himself and yet they are still using this tent for the Lord. The tabernacle tent was by no means something to sneer at as the Lord gave extravagant instructions on how it would look and how it would be built and assembled. On the plus side the tent was also mobile and never needed to stay in one place. However, David has it in his heart to build a temple for the Lord or more like a permanent palace just as he had his own palace. He tells the prophet Nathan what he has in mind but neither of them consults the one person that this plan concerns the most. Nathan tells him to go ahead with his plan as he is certain the Lord would approve. Of course, Nathan’s assumption was incorrect and the Lord responds to David’s plan saying. “Are you the one to build me a house to dwell in?” The Lord never asked for this nor does he need to have a place to dwell. The whole point of having the Tabernacle was to reveal himself and his presence to Israel so that they would believe. God then reminds David of his roots from where he came and where the Lord has brought him. He also explains that his name would be remembered as one of the greatest on earth. The Lord also promises that David’s kingdom will endure forever and that his throne will be established forever.
Fast forward several hundred years we see an Angel visiting a young teenage girl. This girl is chosen to conceive and bear a child and not in the normal way to conceive one. She is a virgin but also pledged to be married to a young man. This child will be special as it is foretold that he will rule over Jacobs descendants forever and that his kingdom will never end. Why is Mary chosen for such a task as this? God could have chosen anyone but he singles her out from all the women or young girls in the entire world. For starters she is a girl with pure heart and devotion to the Lord. Secondly, she happens to be engaged to a man who is a direct descendant of king David. This will be important as by earthly rights the child would have a right to the throne of Israel. This would fulfill the prophecies from long ago.
Mary is submissive to the Lord’s will but she is also troubled about this as she has never been with a man before and certainly not with the man she was pledged to. Her suddenly being pregnant would cause a lot of talk and a lot of assumptions that could be detrimental to her life. However, the angel gives her some important information. He much older cousin Elizabeth is in her 6th month and this is also a child from chosen by the Lord. Mary visits her cousin for consolation and assurance for herself that what the angel has told her is true. If Elizabeth really is with Child then just maybe everything is going to be ok.
When Mary returns home after her visit it would be very apparent that she is pregnant and I am sure this would be very upsetting to Joseph who had been waiting and longing to marry her. Upon seeing this he decides to divorce her quietly as to not cause harm to her for by the law she could be stoned to death. However, the angel appears to Joseph as well and reveals to him the truth of what is to come and therefore, they are married.
The time comes that Caesar has called for a Census of his kingdom. This meant that the men must return to their hometown to be counted. The timing of everything is perfect as Mary is in her final month of pregnancy. Joseph was the only one required to go but there was no way that he was going to leave his wife behind as she would have more than like still be gossiped about among the village. Mary leaving Nazareth would have been a relief to her. Plus, this timing is perfect in that they would be staying in Bethlehem just at the right moment in which the child would be born. This would be to fulfill the prophecy that was foretold. A child born in the line of David also born in the City of David. Everything is set up to establish his throne. God’s promise was kept to David as through Christ his throne will never end over Israel. It is firmly established forever. This is because the Son of David has established his throne and it is an eternal throne.
I have heard a saying for the longest time that I used to think was true. Not only that but there is a song that repeats this saying that God is in control. However, I was introduced to this concept a few months ago that God is not always the one who is in control. This is because God chooses to let our decisions to unfold. Though he might not be in control there is one thing for certain. God is in charge. Despite how the chips fell and despite how Satan continually attempts to thwart God’s plan and design he is still in charge. It just so happened that God took something that was already going to happen anyway, Mary was going to marry Joseph any way and he just so happened to be born into the line of David. God used what was already happening and took charge, produced his miracle, and gave the world the greatest gift that they were ever given. By doing so God has established not only David’s kingdom but he has established his own kingdom for all eternity. By doing so he has defeated Satan and defeated the death due to all since the beginning. I am so glad that God is in charge and that his kingdom has been established. No matter how much our culture changes and no matter how far away our nation and our world fall away from the truth, God’s throne has been established and he is in charge. That is such a wonderful promise and truth.