Free Republic
Browse · Search
Topics · Post Article

To: nickcarraway; NYer; ELS; Pyro7480; livius; ArrogantBustard; Catholicguy; RobbyS; marshmallow; ...
Praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ Ping

Please FReepmail me to get on/off the Lenten Ping List.

3 posted on 03/18/2019 9:58:23 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies ]

To: All

From: 2 Samuel 7:4-5a, 12-14a, 16

Nathan’s prophecy about the dynasty

[4] But that same night the word of the Lord came to Nathan, [5] “Go and tell my
servant David, ‘Thus says the Lord: [12] When your days are fulfilled and you lie
down with your fathers, I will raise up your offspring after you, who shall come
forth from your body, and I will establish his kingdom. [13] He shall build a house
for my name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom for ever. [14] I will be
his father, and he shall be my son. [16] And your house and your kingdom shall
be made sure for ever before me; your throne shall be established forever.’”


7:1-17. Nathan is a court prophet who will also appear in later accounts connec-
ted with Solomon and Bathsheba, his mother (cf. 2 Sam 12:1-25 and 1 Kings 1:
11-40). As prophet he is God’s spokesman (he twice uses the classic formula-
tion, “Thus says the Lord”: vv. 5 and 8); here he has to oppose the king’s plans
(vv. 5-7); he proclaims a message which cannot but have its effect on the liste-
ner because the word of God is true and it always comes to pass.

Nathan’s prophecy is particularly important: it decides who will succeed David,
and it has to do with the Messiah, who will be a descendant of David. What he
says has all the formality of an oracular statement; it conforms the dynastic
succession and specifies the role of the temple among God’s chosen people.

For pagan peoples (Egyptian, Assyrian, Babylonian etc.) the temple was the
centre of their world and the focus of their religious spirit; it was there that they
kept their gods. In Israel, on the other hand, the temple will have quite a different
role. It is based on the fact that the true God is not content with a temple; he has
no need of a house in which to dwell (cf. 1 Kings 8:27). If he allows there to be
sanctuaries or shrines (cf. Gen 28:20-22), the desert tabernacle or tent (cf. Ex 33:
7-11) and later the temple of Jerusalem (cf. 1 Kings 8:1-66), these are only signs
of his presence among the people, not a habitation that he in any sense needs.
Nathan’s prophecy shows that it is not so much the temple as the Davidic dyna-
sty that is the sign of divine presence and protection that God has set up from the
start. Hence the play on words between “house of God” (temple) and “house of
David” (dynasty).

The hereditary monarchy, then, is the centre of Nathan’s prophecy. If Michal’s
sterility cut off the line of succession from Saul, the prophecy assured that Da-
vid’s line would endure. From the central part of the prophecy (vv. 13-16) we can
see that every descendant of David, the figure of the future Messiah, will have
the following qualities:

a) He will be a son to God (v. 14a). This is not natural, human, sonship; it refers
to the closeness of the relationship between God and the king (cf. Ps 2:7; 89:26-
27), so that the person and rule of the king will symbolize the presence of God
and the active role he plays in the life of the people. The king’s sonship to God,
then, is an expression of the covenant established between God and David’s line.
God commits himself to act towards the king as a good father to his son. Jesus
will bring these words and this covenant to full fruition, for he is the “eternal Son
of God” made man (cf. Gal 4:4). Whereas he is the Son of God by natural gene-
ration, all the baptized are “sons in the Son”: “For this is the very reason why
the Word became flesh, why the Son of God became the Son of man: so that
man, by entering into communion with the Word and thereby partaking of divine
filiation, might be converted into a son of God” (St Irenaeus, “Adversus haereses”,
3, 19, 1; cf. “Catechism of the Catholic Church”, 460).

b) He will be punished when necessary, but the punishment will be only tempo-
rary (14b-15), that is, David’s line will not be cut off as happened to Saul, nor will
any dethronement last, because the love of God will always win out. In the light
of this oracular statement, any misfortunes of the people, even the exile in Ba-
bylon, despite being punishment for their sins, will be above all a proof of God’s
mercy. The death of Jesus on the cross, though caused by the sins of men, is
above all a proof of the love of God who gave up his Son (cf. Rom 8:32), and of
the love of Jesus who gave himself up on men’s behalf (cf. Rom 4:25; Eph 5:25).

c) The Davidic dynasty will endure forever (vv. 12-13, 15-16). The title “son of Da-
vid” will refer not only to genealogical descent but also to the fact that the holder
is the beneficiary of this promise and of the Davidic covenant (cf. 1 Kings 8:25;
Ps 132:10-18; Jer 17:24-27; Ezek 34:23-24; etc.). After the exile this is the title
which is most often applied to the Messiah, and the writers of the New Testa-
ment, of course, are at pains to point out that Jesus is the “son of David” (cf. Mt
1:1; 9:27; Rom 1:3). The liturgy of the Solemnity of St Joseph, Husband of the
Blessed Virgin, includes this text, because it is he who is the guarantor of the
Davidic descent of Jesus (Mt 1:20) through being “of the house of David” (Lk 1:

Source: “The Navarre Bible: Text and Commentaries”. Biblical text from the
Revised Standard Version and New Vulgate. Commentaries by members of
the Faculty of Theology, University of Navarre, Spain.

Published by Four Courts Press, Kill Lane, Blackrock, Co. Dublin, Ireland, and
by Scepter Publishers in the United States.

4 posted on 03/18/2019 10:00:50 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies ]

Free Republic
Browse · Search
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794 is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson