Monday, February 24, 2014

“An Eternal Kingdom” Adult Sunday School Lesson

International Sunday School Lesson
For Sunday March 2, 2014

Purpose: To remember that we must constantly realign our hopes and dreams with God’s eternal kingdom

Bible Lesson: 2 Samuel 7:1-17
Background Scripture: 2 Samuel 7:1-17

Bible Text: 2 Samuel 7:1-17 (CEB)
(4) But that very night the Lord’s word came to Nathan: (5) Go to my servant David and tell him: This is what the Lord says: You are not the one to build the temple for me to live in. (6) In fact, I haven’t lived in a temple from the day I brought Israel out of Egypt until now. Instead, I have been traveling around in a tent and in a dwelling.( 7 )Throughout my traveling around with the Israelites, did I ever ask any of Israel’s tribal leaders I appointed to shepherd my people: Why haven’t you built me a cedar temple?

(8) So then, say this to my servant David: This is what the Lord of heavenly forces says: I took you from the pasture, from following the flock, to be leader over my people Israel.(9) I’ve been with you wherever you’ve gone, and I’ve eliminated all your enemies before you. Now I will make your name great—like the name of the greatest people on earth. (10) I’m going to provide a place for my people Israel, and plant them so that they may live there and no longer be disturbed. Cruel people will no longer trouble them, as they had been earlier, (11) when I appointed leaders over my people Israel. And I will give you rest from all your enemies.

And the Lord declares to you that the Lord will make a dynasty for you. (12) When the time comes for you to die and you lie down with your ancestors, I will raise up your descendant—one of your very own children—to succeed you, and I will establish his kingdom. (13) He will build a temple for my name, and I will establish his royal throne forever. (14) I will be a father to him, and he will be a son to me. Whenever he does wrong, I will discipline him with a human rod, with blows from human beings. (15) But I will never take my faithful love away from him like I took it away from Saul, whom I set aside in favor of you. (16) Your dynasty and your kingdom will be secured forever before me. Your throne will be established forever.

My Thoughts by Burgess Walter

Just when we think we have got it all figured out, we find that our plans and God’s plans do not align with each other. David was feeling pretty good with himself, he had established peace with most of Israel’s enemies, and he had built a nice cedar palace to dwell in. Everything seemed good, so he decides it would be nice to build a cedar tabernacle to house the Ark of the Covenant for God.

Even the prophet Nathan thinks this sounds like a good idea, and assures David that God is “with him” so Nathan adds his blessing to the idea.

What happens to Nathan is a good example for us, when we think we know God’s mind, and offer counsel, without consulting God. Nathan makes an assumption that since everything is going so well with David and the kingdom, then David’s desires must be the same as God’s. David’s insight and plan was really small compared to what God wanted to accomplish through David and his offspring. Like us, David was looking at the small picture God’s plan was about an eternal covenant, that would stretch from David to the present and beyond. Through David a bloodline would be established, whereby everyone could achieve what had previously been reserved only for the descendants of Abraham.

The Messiah would come from David’s bloodline, and would last for all of eternity. When David informs Solomon, his son, about God’s plan in 1 Chronicles 22:8, he says, “But the Lord told me: You’ve shed much blood and waged great wars. You won’t build a temple for my name because you’ve spilled so much blood on the ground before me.

When we plan ahead, we must always take into account how our plans should align with God’s plans. God’s plans involve eternity, we often find it hard to think beyond tonight.

Deuteronomy 4:29 says, “You will seek the Lord your God from there, and you will find him if you seek him with all your heart and with all your being.” Finding God’s will involves a relationship where God is not taken for granted.

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