Advent: The Family of David.

“And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bring forth a Son, and shall call His name JESUS. He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Highest; and the LORD God will give Him the throne of His father David. And He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of His kingdom there will be no end.” (Luke 1:31-33)

Not only was Messiah to be from the seed of a woman, the seed of Abraham, and the tribe of Judah, but also the Messiah was to belong to the family of David.

Psalm 89 is a Psalm of David. In vs. 26-27 David writes, “He will call out to me, “You are my Father, my God, the Rock my Savior. I will also appoint him my firstborn, the most exalted of the kings of the earth.”

God had promised to regard David’s son as his own “firstborn.” “Firstborn” is itself a messianic term, for it indicates not the child who is  born first in chronological order, but the one who is first in preeminence, first in rank, and first in privilege.

Note how Jacob (i.e., Israel) is called God’s “firstborn” (Ex 4:22), even though Esau came out of his mother’s womb as the first of the twins.  Likewise, Ephraim is called the “firstborn” (Jeremiah 31:9), even though Manasseh, his brother, was older.  That  is  also  why  Christ  is  called  the  “firstborn  of  all creation” in Colossians 1:15, and why Hebrews 1:6 uses this same term to designate Jesus in his comment that God brought forth his firstborn Christ into the world.

At the same time, the idea of the collective singular is not far away for Hebrews 12:23 addresses the whole church of believers as the “firstborn.”  Just as the “seed” includes all who believe as well as the one who represents them all, so the “firstborn” heads up the whole body of the “firstborn.”

Dr. John MacArthur writes, The firstborn child was given a place of special honor and a double portion of the inheritance (Gen. 272 Kings 2:9). However, in a royal grant covenant, a chosen person could be elevated to the level of firstborn sonship and thus have title to a perpetual gift involving dynastic succession (cf. Ps. 2:7). Though not actually the first, Israel was considered the firstborn among nations (Ex. 4:22); Ephraim the younger was treated as the firstborn (Gen. 48:13–20); and David was the firstborn among kings. In this latter sense of prominent favor, Christ can be called the firstborn over all creation (Col. 1:15), in that he is given the preeminence over all created beings.”

Additionally, Psalm 132:11 says, The LORD has sworn in truth to David; He will not turn from it: I will set upon your throne the fruit of your body.”

2 Samuel 7:12-16 says, “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. 13 He shall build a house for My name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom forever. 14 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. 15But My mercy shall not depart from him, as I took it from Saul, whom I removed from before you. 16And your house and your kingdom shall be established forever before you. Your throne shall be established forever.” 17According to all these words and according to all this vision, so Nathan spoke to David.”

 The messianic character of the Davidic promise. Nathan’s prophecy, then, predicts several important new features about the coming Messiah: (1) The Messiah will come from David’s flesh and seed; (2) he will be David’s heir; (3) he will also be God’s natural son, (4) he will have a kingdom, rule, and reign that will never end; and (5) he will surely come one day in the future.

The Prophet Isaiah writes in Isaiah 1:1-10, “There shall come forth a Rod from the stem of Jesse, and a Branch shall grow out of his roots. The Spirit of the LORD shall rest upon Him, the Spirit of wisdom and understanding, the Spirit of counsel and might, the Spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the LORD.”

A shoot coming up from the stump of Jesse means that the branch (i.e. Messiah) will bear fruit; He will prosper and benefit others. He will come directly from the lineage of David and will fulfill God’s promises in the Davidic Covenant.

Finally, the Prophet Jeremiah writes in Jeremiah 23:5-6 that, “Behold the days are coming, says the LORD, that I will raise to David a Branch of righteousness; A King shall reign and prosper, and execute judgment and righteousness in the earth. In His days Judah will be saved, and Israel will dwell safely; now this is His name by which He will be called: THE LORD OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS.”

Jeremiah’s reference to a Branch of Righteousness refers to the righteous branch of the Davidic Line.

Does the New Testament teach that Jesus Christ is a descendant of King David and therefore in the kingly family? Is Jesus of Nazareth a “son” of David?

Matthew 1:1 says, “The book of the genealogy of Jesus Christ, the Son of David, and the Son of Abraham.”

Luke 1:31-33 says, “And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bring forth a Son, and shall call His name JESUS. He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Highest; and the LORD God will give Him the throne of His father David. And He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of His kingdom there will be no end.”

Luke 3:31 says , in reference to Jesus Christ, that He was “the son of Melea, the son of Menna, the son of Mattatha, the son of Nathan, the son of David.”

It is clear from the New Testament record that it proclaims that Jesus Christ is the Son of David. Thus we move from the “seed of the woman,” who will be victorious over Satan, to the “seed of Abraham,” who will be a blessing to all the earth, to the kingly tribe of Judah, to the “seed of David,” who will have a rule that will never end.

May the Lord’s truth and grace be found here.

Soli deo Gloria!

 

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