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Chinese1/17/2006English
經文:歷代志上十七至十八章
鑰節:「耶和華上帝啊!我是誰,我的家算什麼,您竟使我到這地步呢?」(17:16)
提要

        大衛被膏立為以色列王,並由推羅王希蘭供應材料,建造美麗的宮殿(14:1)。他默想自己舒服的境遇,便為主的約櫃僅只放在帳棚中感到難過。(欲知進一步說明,請看撒下7章同步記載的評註)。他對上帝的愛,促使他想為主做一些事,上帝也稱許他的願望(詩37:4);但是,只是稱許而已,上帝另有祂神聖的計畫。

        先知拿單聽到了大衛的意願,並沒有先問主,便感情用事,以天然心智所理解的上帝之心,貿然說話。他鼓勵大衛實現他的願望,為主建一個適當的房子。但上帝並不讓祂的旨意曖昧不明,便藉著某一夜晚啟示拿單,祂的旨意並不是要大衛替祂造一所房子,把話挑明了。至於理由,在歷代志上後面便提到:大衛是一個征戰的人,並且使多人流血(22:8;28:3)。到他兒子所羅門統治時,則會變得更為和平;這氣氛才是建造上帝殿宇的恰好時機。

        主用了這個機會應允大衛:與其大衛替上帝建一所房子,不如祂為大衛建一所房屋:不是石造的,而是代代永存的房子。以後將是他的兒子,不是他自己,為上帝建殿。大衛深受上帝恩典激勵,這可由他的祈禱表示出來。事實上,主已高升這牧羊的孩子到這塊土地上至高的地位,並賦予他牧養以色列民的責任(17:7)。大衛卑微地承認上帝的崇高、尊貴、與超卓,還有祂把如此巨大的祝福賜給他,使他深覺不配。不過他仍在禱告中以最大的信心和感謝接受了。我們都不配接受上帝的恩典與祝福,尤其是祂「說不盡的恩賜」,主耶穌基督,上帝國度的房角石(林後9:15)。

        大衛可能並不完全了解上帝應允的含義;但是由於以色列對彌賽的期望逐漸滋長,愈來愈多先知也啟示這些,因此彌賽亞自己要從大衛的後代中臨世的觀念,就十分清楚了。於是,經上有話說:「他要為我建造房屋,我要永遠庇佑他的王位」(17:12;路1:32~33)所謂永遠的王位就是指彌賽亞會建造上帝屬靈的聖殿,帶領眾人進入上帝的國度。而這已經由耶穌一次且永遠的完成了。祂的國位果真永遠延續。新約聖經認為下一節經文明顯是指耶穌,並表明祂的神性:「我要做他的父親,他要做我的兒子」(17:13;徒13:33;參詩2:7、12;來1:5)。

        如十八章繼續證明的,大衛的統治真是充滿了豐盛的福祉;但經歷了這全部過程,我們也可得知,上帝如何保守了他,並賜他得勝(18:6、13)。大衛的軍事實力保護他疆域的安全,同時也使他擁有好些臣屬國。這一點不但幫助國家在經濟上有實力,也使他有管道取得建造聖殿的材料(8、11節)。大衛向西,征服了非利士(1節);向東,摩押(2節);向北,敘利亞,當時叫做亞蘭(3~11節);向南,以東(12~13節)。

        讀完了大衛的武功之後,歷代志的執筆者又提到了大衛的行政官員(18:14~17),以顯示他的王國運作有效而良好。大衛的成就總結成這些話:「大衛作以色列眾人的王,又向眾民秉公行義」(18:14)。這些相同的本質,也可寄望於將要來的彌賽亞。我們的主確實秉行了完全的公義。

禱告

        謝謝您,主:當我們像大衛當年一樣問您,「我是誰?」,您用您的話告訴我們,我們是您所愛的。請應允我們能實現您的旨意,從今時直到永遠。奉耶穌基督的名禱告,阿們。

English

Scriptures:Read 1 Chronicles 17&18
Key Verse:"... Who am I, O Lord Cod? And what is my house, that You have brought me this far?"(1 Chronicles 17:16)
Overview

        David was firmly established as the King of Israel and had his own beautiful palace already built with the supplies from King Hiram of Tyre (14:1). As he contemplated his comfortable situation, he felt sorry that the Ark of the Lord was only housed in a tent (for further information see commentary on the parallel account in 2 Samuel 7). His love for God motivated him to want to do something for Him, and God honoured his desire (Psalm 37:4); however, it was honoured in God's own way and in harmony with His divine plan.

        When the prophet Nathan heard David's desire, he did not first enquire of the Lord, but spoke with his emotions and his natural mind's understanding instead of the mind of God. He encouraged David to fulfill his desire of building a proper house for the Lord. God, however, did not leave His will ambiguous but made it clear that same night by revealing to Nathan that it was not His will for David to build Him a house. The reason given later on in the book of Chronicles is that David was a man of war and had shed much blood (22:8; 28:3). The reign of his son Solomon, however, would be more peaceful, a much better atmosphere in which to build God's house.

        The Lord used this occasion to promise David that rather than David building a house for the Lord, He would build a house for David — not a house built of stone, but an enduring dynasty. It would be his son, not he, that would build God's house. David was overwhelmed by God's graciousness, and this was expressed in his prayer. Indeed, the Lord had elevated this shepherd boy to the highest position in the land and had given him the responsibility to now shepherd His people Israel (17:7). David humbly recognized God's sovereignty, majesty, and transcendence, as well as his own unworthiness for such a great blessing to be bestowed upon him. Yet, as his prayer revealed, he received it with great faith and thankfulness. We are all unworthy recipients of God's grace and blessings, especially of His "indescribable gift", the Lord Jesus Christ, the master builder of God's Kingdom (2 Corinthians 9:15).

        David may not have fully recognized the implications of God's promise, but as the Messianic hope of Israel grew and more prophecies were revealed, it became clear that the Messiah Himself would come from the line of David, and it was He who was spoken of in the words: "He shall build Me a house, and I will establish his throne forever" (17:12; Luke 1:32-33). The Messiah would build God's spiritual house by bringing people into the Kingdom of God. This was, and will continue to be, fulfilled by Jesus Christ, whose throne will truly last forever and ever. The New Testament views the next verse as clearly referring to Jesus and expressing His deity: "I will be his Father, and he shall be My son" (17:13; Acts 13:33; cf. Psalm 2:7,12; Hebrews 1:5).

        As chapter 18 goes on to prove, David's reign was indeed full of much warfare, but through it all, we are told of how God preserved him and gave him the victory (18:6, 13). David's military might secured all his borders and gave him vassals as well. This helped to financially strengthen the nation and even provide some of the building materials for the Temple which Solomon would later build (v. 8, 11). To the west, David conquered Philistia (v. 1); to the east, Moab (v. 2); to the north, Syria, called Aram at that time (vv. 3-11); and to the south, Edom (vv 12-13).

        After reading of David's conquests, the chronicler mentions David's administrative officers (18:14-17) to show that his kingdom was efficient and well organized. David's accomplishments are summed up with the words: "So David reigned over all Israel, and administered judgment and justice to all his people" (18:14). These same qualities came to be expected of the coming Messiah. Our Lord certainly does administer perfect justice.

Prayer

        Thank you, Lord, that when we ask You, as David did, "Who am I?", You tell us through Your Word that we are Your beloved. Grant that we may fulfill Your purpose now and forever.


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