The writer of 2 Samuel 7 uses a metaphor to tell us that rather than allowing David to build a temple for God, God will create a house of Israel by way of establishing an everlasting covenant with David and his ancestry, which includes the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, whose life line connects to David’s kingly reign.
The operative word here is “everlasting,” or “forever.”
Such concepts are affirmed in Psalm 46: “God is our refuge and strength, a very help in time of trouble. Therefore, we will not fear, though the earth should change.
Though the mountains shake in the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam, though the mountains tremble with its tumult … The Lord of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge.”
We also affirm this belief when we sing: “This is my Father’s world, Oh let me never forget,
That though the wrong seems oft so strong, God is the ruler yet.”
What we are affirming might simply be the beliefs:
• God is in charge.
• God knows what he is doing.
• God always has our best interest in mind.
I am sure the people who had to endure the tsunami in Japan or the typhoon in the Philippines or the earthquakes in various places all began to wonder if they could trust that these affirmations are true forever.
Doubts about God’s everlasting covenant can creep into our minds when we have a stroke, are told we have cancer, suffer a house fire or a serious auto accident, get news that a loved one committed suicide or experience some other incident that creates a crisis of faith.
I believe what God is trying to have us learn in studying 2 Samuel 7 is the fact that our wills (plans, purposes, bucket list) must always give way to God’s will, for now in this life we see through a glass darkly (I Corinthians 13:12).
Jesus certainly set the bar high for us to follow when he said “nevertheless, not my will but thine be done.” (Matthew 26:39-42)
THE REV. GENE NORRIS IS A PRESBYTERIAN PASTOR IN AUGUSTA.