First of all it is great to be back blogging thru the Bible! My quartet had a wonderful trip to Finland, but it is good to be back in the swing of things here at home.
Today's OT reading comes from 2 Samuel 9-10; 1 Chronicles 18-19; and Psalm 89. I am a little curious as to why my friend Mark put Psalm 89 with these chapters from 2 Samuel rather than yesterday's reading (2 Sam. 7-8), because Psalm 89 is a reflection on a doxology for God's covenant with David, which is given in 2 Samuel 7.
As you may recall, David wanted to build a house of worship for the Lord to replace the tabernacle. God declined this request, but offered instead to build a "house" (dynasty) for David. God promised that David's offspring would always be on the throne, that He would have a Father/son relationship with his offspring, and that David's offspring would build the house of the Lord (2 Samuel 7:12-16).
Psalm 89 celebrates this great covenant, and calls upon all creation to praise God for His covenant with David, the chosen one (Ps. 89:3-5). In verse 27 the psalmist takes the voice of God and declares:
"And I will make him the firstborn,
the highest of the kings of the earth."
David was not the literal firstborn in his family - in fact, he was the youngest son of Jesse. But God selected him to become the firstborn, referring not to chronological order but to rank. As the parallelism in the next line explains, to be the "firstborn" is to be "the highest of the kings of the earth."
Of course David's actual offspring often fell far short of the ideal set forth in this psalm. Solomon did in deed built the temple, but he later strayed from the faith of his father due to the influence of his pagan wives. And while some of the kings of David's line were great men of integrity (Hezekiah and Josiah), most of them were deeply flawed. The end of Psalm 89 (verses 38-52) probably reflects one of the periods of exile for Judah, as the people lamented their sins and God's punishment.
Only the great David's greater Son, Jesus, could truly fulfill the ideal of what the firstborn king of all the earth could be. He built a greater house - the church; reigns on a greater throne - the right hand of God; and endures forever as God's Chose One.