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Saturday, December 2nd, 2023
the Week of Christ the King / Proper 29 / Ordinary 34
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Bible Dictionaries

Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament

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For the student of the Gospels the most important OT passage concerning David is 2 Samuel 7. David expressed to Nathan a strong desire to build a temple for Jehovah in his new capital, a wish indicative of worldly wisdom as well as piety on the part of the king. Jehovah denies David’s request, but promises to build for him an everlasting house, a dynasty without end. David’s throne is to stand for ever. Psalms 2, 110 are founded on this notable promise, and the author of Psalms 89 in a far later time, when David’s throne had been overturned by the heathen, reminds Jehovah of His ancient promise, and pleads earnestly for the speedy passing of His wrath. The early prophets, Amos (Amos 9:11), Hosea (Hosea 3:5), Isaiah (Isaiah 9:7; Isaiah 16:5; Isaiah 37:35), unite with the author of Kings (1 Kings 2:45; 1 Kings 6:12 etc.) in the expectation that the promise made to David in 2 Samuel 7 will not fail. The prophetic hopes for the future of Israel spring from Nathan’s message as branches from the trunk that gives them life. Jeremiah (Jeremiah 23:5 f., Jeremiah 33:15 ff.) carries forward the work of his predecessors of the 8th cent. b.c., asserting the perpetuity of David’s dynasty in most emphatic terms. Ezekiel (Ezekiel 34:23 f., Ezekiel 37:24 f.) cheers the discouraged exiles with the picture of a glorious restoration of the throne of David. The great ruler of the future will be a second David. In the period after the return from Babylon, the author of the last section of Zechariah (Zechariah 12:7 to Zechariah 13:1) describes the glories of the coming time in connexion with the Davidic dynasty: ‘The house of David shall be as God, as the angel of Jehovah before them.’ The Messianic hope in the inter-Biblical period, like that of the OT, attached itself to David. The author of Ecclesiasticus (Sirach 47:11) reminds his readers that the Lord exalted David’s horn for ever, entering into a covenant and promising him a throne of glory in Israel. About a century later the author of 1 Mac. (2:57) says, ‘David for heing merciful inherited the throne of a kingdom for ever and ever.’ Most important for the student of the Gospel history is Psalms 17 of the Psalms of Solomon, a collection of patriotic hymns belonging to the period immediately following Pompey’s capture of Jerusalem (63–48 b.c.). Psalms 17 is a notable Messianic prophecy, prayer and prediction being freely inter-mingled after the fashion of the OT prophets and poets. The Messianic King is to be David’s son (Psalms 17:4). Jehovah Himself is Israel’s King for ever and ever (Psalms 17:1); but the Son of David is His chosen to overthrow the heathen, and institute a righteous reign in Israel (17:30, 42f.).

The four Evangelists unite in the view that the Messiah was to come from the seed of David (Matthew 1:1, Mark 10:47, Luke 2:4, John 7:42). ‘The Son of David’ was synonymous in the time of our Lord’s earthly ministry with ‘Messiah’ or ‘Christ.’ Both the scribes and the common people held this view. When the children cried in the temple, ‘Hosanna to the Son of David’ (Matthew 21:15), both the rulers and the multitude looked upon the words as a distinct recognition of the Messiahship of Jesus. The Epistles (Romans 1:3, 2 Timothy 2:8) and the Revelation (Revelation 5:5; Revelation 22:16) concur in calling attention to the Davidic origin of Jesus. The interest of NT writers in David is confined almost exclusively to his relation to our Lord Jesus as His ancestor and type.

Jesus refers to one incident in the life of David in reply to the accusation of His enemies as to His observance of the Sabbath (Mark 2:25, cf. 1 Samuel 21:1-6). This incident is said to have taken place ‘when Abiathar was high priest.’ [On the difficulties created by this statement see art. Abiathar.]

During the week preceding our Lord’s crucifixion, perhaps on Tuesday, He asked the Pharisees a question which put them to silence and confusion. Having drawn from them a statement of their belief that the Christ would be the son of David, He at once quoted David’s words in Psalms 110:1 to show that the Messiah would also be David’s Lord (Matthew 22:41 ||). Jesus wished to show His foes and the multitude that the orthodox view of the time overlooked the exalted dignity of the Messiah. He was to be far greater than David, for He was his Lord. See, further, Broadus on Mt. ad loc., and, for the meaning of ‘David’ and ‘Moses’ in our Lord’s citations from the OT, art. Moses.

Literature.—Gore, BL [Note: L Bampton Lecture.] 196ff.; Gould, ‘St. Mark,’ and Plummer, ‘St. Luke,’ in Internal. Crit. Com. in loc.; Expos. Times, iii. [1892] 292 ff., viii. [1897] 365 ff.; Expositor, v. iii. [1896] 445 ff.

John R. Sampey.

Bibliography Information
Hastings, James. Entry for 'David'. Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament. https://www.studylight.org/​dictionaries/​eng/​hdn/​d/david.html. 1906-1918.
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