NASHVILLE (BP) — This weekly Bible study appears in Baptist Press in a partnership with LifeWay Christian Resources of the Southern Baptist Convention. Through its Leadership and Adult Publishing team, LifeWay publishes Sunday School curricula and additional resources for all age groups.
This week’s Bible study is adapted from The Gospel Project curriculum.
Bible Passage: 2 Samuel 7:8-26
Discussion Questions: Why do you think it is important that God promised to reign through a human being? In what ways does the church fulfill the role of being God’s temple?
Food for Thought:
In 2 Samuel 7:11b-17, we see God promising to build David an eternal house. This is a promise that ultimately refers to the Messiah who would come and reign forever.
It is helpful to remember that most biblical prophecies have a dual meaning. There is an immediate meaning, and then there is an ultimate one. From the perspective of the prophets, of course, it was often difficult to untie the two, but they remain distinct. Think of it like the experience of seeing a mountain range in the distance. When you first spot it, you might see two distinct peaks, seemingly right next to each other. It’s only as you get closer that you see these peaks are miles apart.
The first fulfillment of this prophecy was David’s biological son Solomon. Solomon’s name literally means “rest.” His reign would extend rest throughout Israel, and it would be on his watch that Israel constructed the temple. Still, Solomon would do some patently foolish things — some “King Saul-like” acts — such as having 700 wives and worshiping idols. But even so, God would keep His promise and would not strip the kingdom from him completely.
Yet this prophecy points through Solomon to another king — Jesus. He was the descendant of David whose kingdom would last, the descendant who would establish the ultimate temple, not a building constructed with human hands but the temple of His own body. And after His ascension to His heavenly throne, He would send His Spirit to make us — His people — the temple of God.
Unlike Solomon, Jesus would not need to be disciplined with the stripes of men. Instead, He would be bruised for our iniquity, and by His stripes, we would be healed (Isaiah 53:5). The real Son of David would build the real temple of God and establish God’s realpresence with His people forever. And He would not just be David’s son. He would be God’s own Son, building the house of salvation for God’s people on earth all by Himself.
In Jesus, God would be the fulfillment to His own promise.
The Gospel Project
The Gospel Project is a chronological, Christ-centered study for kids, students, and adults. The Bible is not a collection of stories. It is one story of God’s plan to rescue His people from sin and death. It is the story of redemption, the gospel message of Jesus Christ. More information, free samples, and The Gospel Project blog can be found at gospelproject.com.
Other ongoing Bible study options for all ages offered by LifeWay can be found at LifeWay.com/SundaySchool.