I Chr 2:13-15, Ruth 4:22, I Sam 17:12

God’s choice of David

David was the seventh son of Jesse (I Chr 2:15 - but the eighth son according to I Sam 16:10. It may be that another son failed to live through to manhood and to produce offspring so that his line isn’t recorded for us in the later genealogy of Chronicles but this is a pure guess as we have no other Scriptures to base this on), the least favoured amongst his brothers due to his youth. When the respected prophet Samuel arrived in Bethlehem to anoint God’s choice of king amongst Jesse’s sons, David had neglected to be invited to the feast (I Sam 16:11), having familial duties to perform in tending the sheep that appear to have been penned close by.

Samuel’s choice from Jesse’s sons highlights the problem that each one of us experience when we fail to rely upon God’s insight into a person’s character and choose, rather, the wisdom that we have in our own strength.

The first king of all Israel, Saul, had been chosen by God because he fitted Israel’s idea of what a king should be like - he was a large man who the people, quite literally, looked up to (I Sam 10:23-24) and Samuel makes the same mistake before Jesse, thinking that God’s ideal for a king for his people has to do with greatness of stature (I Sam 16:6-7). Instead, God chooses the least of Jesse’s sons (according to the standards of the day) because of what He sees in his heart (I Sam 16:7,12-13).

However, it wasn’t when David was called to be God’s anointed king that he was promised that one of his descendants would be the Messiah. Indeed, it was probably around twenty-one years later when David was established king in Jerusalem that YHWH told him of events that would concern his descendants for many generations.

God’s choice of David’s line for the king and the King
II Sam 7:1-5,12-16

David didn’t presume upon the Lord. When God made him this promise, he was taken very much by surprise (II Sam 7:18-29), an indication that the Lord hadn’t spoken to him about this subject before.

II Sam 7:13 has YHWH announce that

‘...I will establish the throne of his kingdom forever’

and must immediately be referred to Solomon, his son by Bathsheba - yet it was to have a future fulfilment in the coming Messiah who was to reign forever.

II Sam 7:16 notes also to David that

‘...your throne shall be established forever’

Naturally speaking, David’s throne finished in Zedekiah at the time of the exile (Zedekiah was really a puppet-king and in Matthew’s genealogy the heir apparent is through Jeconiah).

So, was God wrong? Only when we limit God’s purpose to our own vision or interpretation does He ever seem wrong. YHWH had purposed that the Messiah would reign forever and it would be that David would have a Son who would be established forever, Jesus. All these prophecies took on a new meaning and interpretation for the Jewish nation when the kingdom line of Davidic kings came to an abrupt end at the time of the exile.

While it would be true to say that David thought of the prophecy as having to do with the throne of the kingdom that he then ruled over, David knew of a time when the Messiah would come (for instance Psalm 110) and his thoughts may have wandered onto whether God’s words implied that he would be chosen as the ‘father’ through whom the Messiah would come.

David’s often the character that’s used to speak of the coming Messiah in the prophets and psalms when the author is plainly not David. The authors prophesied consistently that through David, Messiah would come. For example (my italics throughout)

Psalm 132:11-12
‘The Lord swore to David a sure oath...one of the sons of your body I will set on your throne’
Note that obedience was a condition for his sons to perpetually keep the throne - yet it wasn’t so in II Samuel chapter 7.

Psalm 89:3-4
‘...I will...build your throne for all generations
which continues into v.29,35-37. Note v.38-45 - Ethan ‘s eyes saw God’s covenant with David brought to an abrupt end not realising that
a. it was conditional upon obedience and,
b. it was to be fulfilled in the ever-living Son of David.

Isaiah 9:6-7
‘...upon the throne of David...forevermore’
To the Israelites a child was to be born who would sit upon David’s throne forever - the Messiah, the Son of David (Luke 1:33, Dan 7:13-14).

Jeremiah 23:5-6
‘...I will raise up for David a righteous Branch, and He shall reign as King...’
and Zechariah 6:12-13 where ‘the Branch’ is a type of high priest.

See also Jeremiah 30:9, 33:15, 33:17, Ezekiel 34:23-24, 37:24-25.

Throughout the time after David had died, YHWH referred to the coming Messiah as connected with David, king of Israel. So much so that Jer 30:9 talks of God bringing ‘David their king’ back that Israel may serve Him. It was through David, therefore, that the Messiah was to be born in Israel - even in the same village as that of David noted in Micah 5:2 which reads

‘O Bethlehem...from you shall come forth for Me, One who is to be ruler in Israel, whose origin is from of old, from ancient days’