- \\ Abrahamic Covenant The Abrahamic Covenant was an unconditional covenant*, God promised several things to Abraham.
- He personally promised to Abraham that he would make his name great (Genesis 12:2)
- He would have numerous physical descendents (Genesis 13:16)
- He would be the father of a multitude of nations (Genesis 17:4-5)
- God also made promises regarding a nation called Israel. The geographical boundaries of the Abrahamic covenant are laid out on more than one occasion in the book of Genesis (12:7; 13:14-15; 15:18-21)
- Another provision in the Abrahamic covenant is the fact that the families of the world will be blessed through the physical line of Abraham (Genesis 12:3; 22:18)
Mosaic Covenant The Mosaic covenant was a conditional covenant that either brought God's direct blessing for obedience or God's direct cursing for disobedience upon the nation of Israel.
- Part of the Mosaic covenant was the ten commandments found in Exodus 20
- The rest of the law which contained over 600 commands--roughly 300 positive and 300 negative.
- The history books of the Old Testament (Joshua-Esther) detail how Israel succeeded at obeying the law or how Israel failed miserably at obeying the law.
- Deuteronomy 11:26-28 detail specifically the blessing/cursing theme.
Davidic Covenant The Davidic covenant was an unconditional covenant. The promises to David in this passage are very significant.
- David is to have a child, yet to be born, who shall succeed him and establish his kingdom.
- This son (Solomon) shall build the temple instead of David.
- The throne of his kingdom shall be established forever.
- The throne will not be taken away from him (Solomon) even though his sins justify chastisement.
- David’s house, throne, and kingdom shall be established forever.”
This is an unconditional covenant made between God and David where God promises David and Israel that the Messiah (Jesus Christ) would come from the lineage of David and the tribe of Judah and would establish a kingdom that would endure forever (2 Samuel 7:10-13).
It is unconditional because God does not place any conditions of obedience upon its fulfillment. The surety of the promises made rests solely on God’s faithfulness and do not depend at all on David, or Israel’s, obedience.
This covenant centers on several key promises that are made to David.
- God reaffirms the promise of the land that He made in the first two covenants with Israel (The Abrahamic and Mosaic Covenants). This promise is seen in 2 Samuel 7:10, “Moreover I will appoint a place for My people Israel, and will plant them, that they may dwell in a place of their own and move no more; nor shall the sons of wickedness oppress them anymore, as previously.”
- God promises that David’s descendent or “seed” will succeed Him as king of Israel and that David’s throne will be established forever. This promise is seen in 2 Samuel 7:12-13, "I will set up your seed after you, who will come from your body, and I will establish his kingdom. He shall build a house for My name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom forever.”
The provisions of the covenant are summarized in 2 Samuel 7:16, “And your house and your kingdom shall be established forever before you. Your throne shall be established forever." The promise that David’s “house”, “kingdom” and “throne” will be established forever are significant because they show that the Messiah will come from the lineage of David and that He will establish a kingdom from which He will reign. The covenant is summarized by the words “house,” promising a dynasty in the lineage of David; “kingdom,” referring to a people who are governed by a king; “throne,” emphasizing the authority of the king’s rule; and “forever,” emphasizing the eternal and unconditional nature of this promise to David and Israel.
Let's look at this in a little more detail:
In 2 Samuel 5:1-10 we see King David attempting to bring together the 12 tribes of Israel into one cohesive nation.
David defeated the Jebusites who had been living in the middle of the land of Israel and fortified the city renaming it “The City of David”.
King David then directed his attention to the Ark of the Covenant which had been captured by the Philistines and remained in the house of Abinadad (1 Samuel 7:1)
But now with the military victories which David had won, including the defeat of the Philistines, and the beginning of the consolidation of the kingdom, David felt that the blessing of God had returned to Israel and the rightful place for the Ark was at the center of the new capital.
David arranged for the Ark to be brought to Jerusalem and be housed in the tabernacle which the king had provided (2 Samuel 6:17).
The seed of this concept began to develop in David's heart and mind:
2 Samuel 7:1-2 Now it came to pass when the king was dwelling in his house, and the LORD had given him rest from all his enemies all around, that the king said to Nathan the prophet, "See now, I dwell in a house of cedar, but the ark of God dwells inside tent curtains."
King David wanted to build a temple in which God could dwell. All the surrounding nations had built magnificent temples for their gods. King David realized that his God was the holy One of Israel, the true and living God, the One whose goings forth are from everlasting to everlasting.
Up to this time there had been no permanent home for God. King David sincerely wanted to build a great temple in which God could dwell in the midst of the nation.
But this was not to be. God, through the prophet Nathan, told David that he would not be permitted to build a house for Him (1 Chronicles 17:3-4). David was a soldier, and while his attitude was right in desiring to build a permanent home for God, his hands were bloodied from battle. It would not be appropriate for him to build the house for God. That privilege would be given to David's son, Solomon. While David would not be permitted to build God a home, God declared that He would build a house for David as an eternal, kingly dynasty.
2 Samuel 7:12-16 " When your days are fulfilled and you rest with your fathers, I will set up your seed after you, who will come from your body, 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 his Father, and he shall be My son. If he commits iniquity, I will chasten him with the rod of men and with the blows of the sons of men. "But My mercy shall not depart from him, as I took it from Saul, whom I removed from before you. "And your house and your kingdom shall be established forever before you. Your throne shall be established forever." ' "
This promise included the following facts:
1- David's son would succeed him on the throne and establish his kingdom (v. 12)
2- Solomon (David's son) rather than David would build the Temple (v. 13a)
3- Solomon's throne would be established forever (v. 13b)
4- If he sinned there would be appropriate punishment, but God's mercy and loyal love would endure forever (vv. 14-15)
5- David's house, kingdom, and throne would be established forever (v. 16)
Psalm 89:3-4 I have made a covenant with My chosen, I have sworn to My servant David: 'Your seed I will establish forever, And build up your throne to all generations.'
In time, Solomon did build a house for God, and at its dedication God took up residence in the Temple of Mount Moriah at Jerusalem (1 Kings 8:10-11).
The nation of Israel had the Shekinah Glory of God in their midst and were the most blessed nation in history.
When Solomon died, sin once again entered into the kingdom and divided it into two parts. The ten northern tribes became know as Israel and the two southern tribes became know as Judah.
In the year 722 BC the northern kingdom was taken into captivity by the Assyrians ending the northern kingdom.
The southern, or Royal, kingdom continued for another 136 years. During that time 19 kings of the Davidic lineage ruled. Only 8 of the 19 did that which was right in the sight of God. Eleven were wicked kings.
In 605 BC Nebuchadnezzar came to Jerusalem to exert his authority over Judah and the Davidic kings. He took some of the vessels from the house of God as well as some captives, including Daniel the prophet, back to Babylon. In 586 BC he put an end to all Davidic rule in Jerusalem. This event began what the Bible describes as “the time of the Gentiles” (Luke 21:24).
From that day to the present time no divinely appointed Jewish king of the tribe of Judah and family of David has ruled over Israel.
There has been Jewish sovereignty since Israel's modern independence in 1948. However the nation remains in unbelief, and her rulers are neither divinely appointed nor of the Davidic lineage.
God is still faithful to His covenant promise. Look at the world today, especially in the Middle East. From a human perspective the world is out of control, but from a divine perspective everything is being prepared for the coming of the One who is of the tribe of Judah (Genesis 49:10) and the family of David (2 Samuel 7:12-16).
In the book of Revelation the apostle John wrote: But one of the elders said to me, "Do not weep. Behold, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has prevailed to open the scroll and to loose its seven seals." (Revelation 5:5).
The One who could loose the seals and open the scroll is the One who possesses the title deed to planet Earth. Jesus, in the last chapter of the Bible, said of Himself: I, Jesus, have sent My angel to testify to you these things in the churches. I am the Root and the Offspring of David, the Bright and Morning Star." (Revelation 22:16)