Question:

Hey Mr. Jeffrey,

I'm having issues understanding II Samuel 7:14. Clearly, it is a reference to Jesus and the kingdom of God, but who is God talking about committing iniquity in this passage?

Answer:

"The LORD also declares to you that the LORD will make a house for you. When your days are complete and you lie down with your fathers, I will raise up your descendant after you, who will come forth from you, and I will establish his kingdom. He shall build a house for My name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom forever. I will be a father to him and he will be a son to Me; when he commits iniquity, I will correct him with the rod of men and the strokes of the sons of men, but My lovingkindness shall not depart from him, as I took it away from Saul, whom I removed from before you. Your house and your kingdom shall endure before Me forever; your throne shall be established forever" (II Samuel 7:11-14).

David desired to build a temple for God, but God would not allow him to do so. However, God did make a promise to David.

On the surface, the prophecy is about Solomon and the lineage of David. Solomon did build a house for God. The throne was not taken away from David's lineage. Even when Jeconiah sinned so greatly that God vowed that none of his descendants would sit on the throne (Jeremiah 22:24-30), God suspended the kingship until the birth of Jesus, who inherited the throne through Joseph, even though he was not physically Joseph's son. Jesus was a physical son of David through his mother Mary, who was a descendant of Nathan, the son of David. Thus, it was through Jesus that the promise that God would establish the throne of his kingdom forever was fulfilled.

Interestingly, there are hidden double meanings within this prophecy. It is hinted at because God said, "When your days are complete and you lie down with your fathers, I will raise up your descendant after you" (II Samuel 7:12). This cannot literally apply to Solomon because Solomon took the throne prior to David's death and God is talking about a descendant who would come after David died. "He shall build a house for My name" does apply to Solomon, but it has a greater fulfillment in Jesus when he established the church. "I will establish the throne of his kingdom forever" only applies to Solomon in that Jesus sits on David's throne eternally, but the kingdom he rules is Christ's kingdom and not the physical kingdom of Israel. "I will be a father to him and he will be a son to Me" also applies to Solomon, but in a greater sense, it applies to Jesus who is the Son of God. However, the next phrase only applies to Solomon and his physical descendants: "when he commits iniquity, I will correct him with the rod of men and the strokes of the sons of men." The next phrase, "but My lovingkindness shall not depart from him" applies somewhat to Solomon, though he and several of his descendants departed from God and were punished as a result. This same phrase again has greater meaning when applied to Jesus. The final phrase, "Your house and your kingdom shall endure before Me forever; your throne shall be established forever" was only fulfilled through Jesus, though in a sense, it was a continuation of Solomon's kingdom.

What we find is that some prophecies can have more than one application. Consider: "When Israel was a youth I loved him, and out of Egypt I called My son" (Hosea 11:1). This is clearly a statement about Israel's past, but God, through Matthew, applies a different meaning to the second line: "So Joseph got up and took the Child and His mother while it was still night, and left for Egypt. He remained there until the death of Herod. This was to fulfill what had been spoken by the Lord through the prophet: 'Out of Egypt I called my Son'" (Matthew 2:14-15). The double meaning is only clear when someone points it out.

God has used hidden references to the future, especially references to the Messiah, that are clearly there when pointed out, but without knowing the fulfillment you would miss that it even was a prophecy about the Messiah. These hidden references prevent people from creating a forced fulfillment of a prophecy -- you can’t make something happen that you were not aware was supposed to happen. They also serve as proof that the prophecies and their fulfillment came from God. It is just like many modern movies. In movies, a hidden reference to something else, such as another movie, is placed in plain sight but not noticed. These are called "Easter eggs." Easter eggs are used to prove who created the movie and to prevent copying by inserting references that no one would accidentally make. Modern movies did not come up with the concept. God used it in His book thousands of years ago.

Question:

Wow, thank you for pointing that out. I am in total awe of the stellar wisdom of God. I never fully understood that prophecy. Now it makes perfect sense. So God placed certain double meanings in prophecy that didn't fully reveal everything some of the time?

I heard a preacher point out that it also shows the Lord's wisdom because it didn't allow Satan to find out all of God's plans. Is that correct?

Answer:

I'm sure it served several purposes, but yes, the hidden double meanings would hide details from Satan. Since you can only see them in hindsight, they show that God planned and executed events without the aid of men.

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