In this pivotal chapter, God promises that DavidSecond king of Israel, David united the northern and southern kingdoms. More will always have a son on the throne of JudahJudah was the name of Jacob's fourth son and one of the 12 tribes. More (vv. 1-15), and David responds with thanks and praise (vv. 16-27).
God’s covenantA covenant is a promise or agreement. In the Bible the promises made between God and God's people are known as covenants; they state or imply a relationship of commitment and obedience. More with David (1 Chronicles 17:3-15) and God’s promise of forgiveness to SolomonThird king of Israel who was known for wisdom and building the first Temple More at the dedication of the templeThe Jerusalem temple, unlike the tabernacle, was a permanent structure, although (like the tabernacle) it was a place of worship and religious activity. On one occasion Jesus felt such activity was unacceptable and, as reported in all four Gospels, drove from the temple those engaged... More (2 Chronicles 7:11-22) form the two pillars upon which the Chronicler’s theology is structured: king and cult. As usual, the Chronicler has reframed the earlier material from SamuelThe judge who anointed the first two kings of Israel More to allow the text to speak to the concerns of his own postexilic community.
Here, the Chronicler has followed his source (2 Samuel 7) very closely. There, as here, God’s promise is developed through a delightful play on the ambiguous nature of the fourteen occurrences of the Hebrew word for “house,” variously signifying the “palace” where David lives (v. 1), “the temple” he wishes to build for God (v. 4), or the “dynasty” of his descendants who will sit upon his throne (vv. 10b, 14). There, as here, though, God will not permit David to build a house (temple) for God (v. 4), God will build a house (dynasty) for David (v. 10b), and one of that house (dynasty) will build the house (temple) for God (v. 12a).
The small differences, however, are significant:
- Mention of the exodus in 2 Samuel 7:6 is omitted by the Chronicler, possibly because the deliverance from Egypt has been eclipsed for his community by the activity of David and their own return from Babylon.
- The reference to Solomon’s expected sin and God’s punishment (2 Samuel 7:14) is left out for the same reason that David’s peccadilloes are omitted.
- Most important, God says that Solomon, not David, will be confirmed as king in the kingdom that is described as belonging to God, not to David (1 Chronicles 17:14, contrast 2 Samuel 7:16).