Read I Chronicles 17 -- 20
When David considered the contrast between the beauty and value of his own palace and the condition of the ancient Tabernacle tent where the presence of God dwelt, he felt ashamed. David wanted to build a Temple for God that would reflect his esteem for Him. David believed that the throne room of the True King of Israel ought to be the best. So he said to Nathan the prophet . . . I dwell in a house of cedars, but the Ark of the Covenant of the Lord remains under curtains (a tent). Then Nathan said to David, Do all that is in your heart; for God is with you (I Chronicles 17:1-2). However, the same night . . . the Word of God came to Nathan, saying, Go and tell David My servant, Thus says the Lord, You shall not build Me a house to dwell in (17:3-4).
God greatly honored David's sincere devotion, saying: The Lord will build you a house. . . . It shall come to pass . . . I will raise up your seed (son) after you . . . and I will establish his throne for ever (17:10-12). Without a doubt, David could not fully comprehend the magnitude of this promise that we recognize as having been fulfilled in Jesus Christ, the Son of God, the King of kings, and Lord of Lords, who shall soon rule over all the earth.
The attitude David first expressed was not one of great joy over how important he had suddenly become, but a sense of profound unworthiness: Who am I, O Lord God, and what is my house? To see God for who He really is, and to understand how He is beyond compare to all else, is truly humbling. O Lord, there is none like You, neither is there any God beside You (17:16-20).
David's response was one of deepest gratitude toward the King of the Universe for His concern for those whom He had created (Psalms 8:4-9). A spirit of humility permeated David's response: Who am I . . . that You have brought me hitherto (up to this)? The natural man usually responds to any advancement with thoughts of self-esteem and a sense of superiority for receiving "What I deserve." The Lord of Glory delights in blessing those who humbly ask: "Who am I?"
Although he was not allowed the honor of building the Temple, David recognized that the Lord had bestowed upon him a higher honor, that his house be established for ever (I Chronicles 17:23). Like David, we too have the opportunity to testify to the greatness of our glorious Lord as we praise Him in a spirit of true humility and with a willingness to serve Him. Though most of us find it easy to praise the Lord for answered prayer and the "good things" that come our way, few of us express the same praise when circumstances are disappointing. Yet, God is honored, and should be praised, even when we face disappointments and trials. In doing so, we acknowledge that God, in His infinite wisdom, loves and cares for us and controls all the circumstances in our lives.
Like David, we too need to stand in awe before God and ask: "Who am I?" to receive His wonderful promises. In awe we say with the Psalmist David: What is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visitest him? For thou hast made him a little lower than the angels, and hast crowned him with glory and honour (Psalms 8:4-5).
Christ Portrayed: By David, the great shepherd-king (I Chronicles 17:7; compare Matt. 1:1-2; Rom. 1:3), symbolic of Christ as the Good Shepherd (John 10:11) and the King of Kings (Revelation 19:16).
Word Studies: 17:1 under curtains means in the tent Tabernacle; 17:7 sheepcote means protecting sheep; 18:4 houghed means crippled by cutting leg tendons; 19:4 hard by means near the middle; 19:6 odious means detestable, repulsive.
Government Officials: Sen. Chuck Hagel (NE) and Rep. George Miller (CA) · BPM Staff: George Kopchak · Pray for Valarie Harper, Statewide Coordinator, Ohio Bible Reading Marathons · Pray for the Bible Pathway International Radio broadcast in memory of Anna Livingston · Country: Hungary (11 million) in east-central Europe · Major language: Hungarian · New freedom has opened the door to evangelism and Bible distribution · 61% Roman Catholic; 24% Protestant · Prayer Suggestion: Pray that God will teach you His ways and tranform your life by His Word (Isaiah 2:3).
Optional Reading: I Corinthians 4
Memory Verse for the Week: Revelation 20:12