Captain and Spiritual King
Lesson 6 | Sabbath, 5 February 2022
“Before leaving His disciples, Christ plainly stated the nature of His kingdom. He called to their minds what He had previously told them concerning it. He declared that it was not His purpose to establish in this world a temporal, but a spiritual kingdom. He was not to reign as an earthly king on David’s throne. Again He opened to them the Scriptures, showing that all He had passed through had been ordained in heaven, in the councils between the Father and Himself. All had been foretold by men inspired by the Holy Spirit. He said, You see that all I have revealed to you concerning My rejection as the Messiah has come to pass. All I have said in regard to the humiliation I should endure and the death I should die, has been verified.” –The Desire of Ages, p. 820.
CAPTAIN OF THE LORD’S HOST
1. After the Israelites crossed the Jordan, who appeared to Joshua near Jericho? What did Joshua ask?
Joshua 5:13 And it came to pass, when Joshua was by Jericho, that he lifted up his eyes and looked, and, behold, there stood a man over against him with his sword drawn in his hand: and Joshua went unto him, and said unto him, Art thou for us, or for our adversaries?
“When Joshua went forth in the morning before the taking of Jericho, there appeared before him a warrior fully equipped for battle. And Joshua asked, ‘Art thou for us, or for our adversaries?’ and He answered, ‘As Captain of the host of the Lord am I now come.’ If the eyes of Joshua had been opened … and he could have endured the sight, he would have seen the angels of the Lord encamped about the children of Israel; for the trained army of heaven had come to fight for the people of God, and the Captain of the Lord’s host was there to command…. It was not Israel, but the Captain of the Lord’s host that took Jericho. But Israel had their part to act to show their faith in the Captain of their salvation.” –Sons and Daughters of God, p. 160.
2. What did Joshua do immediately when he knew who this was? According to the Spirit of prophecy, who was this “Captain”?
Joshua 5:14, 15 And he said, Nay; but as captain of the host of the Lord am I now come. And Joshua fell on his face to the earth, and did worship, and said unto him, What saith my lord unto his servant? 15And the captain of the Lord’s host said unto Joshua, Loose thy shoe from off thy foot; for the place whereon thou standest is holy. And Joshua did so.
“… First of all he [Joshua] sought an assurance of divine guidance, and it was granted him. Withdrawing from the encampment to meditate and to pray that the God of Israel would go before His people, he beheld an armed warrior, of lofty stature and commanding presence, ‘with his sword drawn in his hand.’ To Joshua’s challenge, ‘Art thou for us, or for our adversaries?’ the answer was given, ‘As Captain of the host of the Lord am I now come.’ The same command given to Moses in Horeb, ‘Loose thy shoe from off thy foot; for the place whereon thou standest is holy,’ revealed the true character of the mysterious stranger. It was Christ, the Exalted One, who stood before the leader of Israel. Awe-stricken, Joshua fell upon his face and worshiped, and heard the assurance, ‘I have given into thine hand Jericho, and the king thereof, and the mighty men of valor,’ and he received instruction for the capture of the city.” –Patriarchs and Prophets, pp. 487, 488
3. What desire began to grow in David’s heart and mind when the nation became free of enemy threats and harassment? Knowing his intention, what message did the Lord give to him?
2 Samuel 7:1, 2, 4-7 And it came to pass, when the king sat in his house, and the Lord had given him rest round about from all his enemies; 2That the king said unto Nathan the prophet, See now, I dwell in an house of cedar, but the ark of God dwelleth within curtains…. 4And it came to pass that night, that the word of the Lord came unto Nathan, saying, 5Go and tell my servant David, Thus saith the Lord, Shalt thou build me an house for me to dwell in? 6Whereas I have not dwelt in any house since the time that I brought up the children of Israel out of Egypt, even to this day, but have walked in a tent and in a tabernacle. 7In all the places wherein I have walked with all the children of Israel spake I a word with any of the tribes of Israel, whom I commanded to feed my people Israel, saying, Why build ye not me an house of cedar?
“The tabernacle built by Moses, with all that appertained to the sanctuary service, except the ark, was still at Gibeah. It was David’s purpose to make Jerusalem the religious center of the nation. He had erected a palace for himself, and he felt that it was not fitting for the ark of God to rest within a tent. He determined to build for it a temple of such magnificence as should express Israel’s appreciation of the honor granted the nation in the abiding presence of Jehovah their King. Communicating his purpose to the prophet Nathan, he received the encouraging response, ‘Do all that is in thine heart; for the Lord is with thee.’” –Patriarchs and Prophets, p. 711.
4. Of what wonderful experiences did the Lord remind David through Nathan the prophet?
2 Samuel 7:8, 9 Now therefore so shalt thou say unto my servant Da- vid, Thus saith the Lord of hosts, I took thee from the sheepcote, from following the sheep, to be ruler over my people, over Israel: 9And I was with thee whithersoever thou wentest, and have cut off all thine enemies out of thy sight, and have made thee a great name, like unto the name of the great men that are in the earth.
“But that same night the word of the Lord came to Nathan, giving him a message for the king. David was to be deprived of the privilege of building a house for God, but he was granted an assurance of the divine favor to him, to his posterity, and to the kingdom of Israel: ‘Thus saith Jehovah of hosts; I took thee from the sheepcote, from following the sheep, to be ruler over My people, over Israel; and I was with thee whithersoever thou wentest, and have cut off all thine enemies out of thy sight, and have made thee a great name, like unto the name of the great men that are in the earth. Moreover I will appoint a place for My people Israel, and will plant them, that they may dwell in a place of their own, and move no more; neither shall the children of wickedness afflict them any more, as beforetime.’” –Patriarchs and Prophets, pp. 711, 712.
5. At this point, what promises did the Lord give to bless His people? Who will truly build “a house”?
2 Samuel 7:10, 11 Moreover I will appoint a place for my people Israel, and will plant them, that they may dwell in a place of their own, and move no more; neither shall the children of wickedness afflict them any more, as beforetime, 11And as since the time that I commanded judges to be over my people Israel, and have caused thee to rest from all thine enemies. Also the Lord telleth thee that he will make thee an house.
David “for years had sought to do his duty as a faithful servant of God; he had labored for the upbuilding of his kingdom, and under his rule it had attained to strength and prosperity never reached before. He had gathered rich stores of material for the building of the house of God,…
“And the Lord did not forsake David.” –Conflict and Courage, p. 182.
“The blessing comes because of pardon; pardon comes through faith that the sin, confessed and repented of, is borne by the great Sin Bearer. Thus from Christ cometh all our blessings. His death is an atoning sacrifice for our sins. He is the great Medium through whom we receive the mercy and favor of God.” –Our High Calling, p. 83.
6. Who was to build a house for the Lord after David died? While the prophecy referred primarily to Solomon, who was David’s descendant whose kingdom would endure forever?
2 Samuel 7:12, 13 And when thy days be fulfilled, and thou shalt sleep with thy fathers, I will set up thy seed after thee, which shall proceed out of thy bowels, and I will establish his kingdom. 13He shall build an house for my name, and I will stablish the throne of his kingdom for ever.
1 Kings 8:20 And the Lord hath performed his word that he spake, and I am risen up in the room of David my father, and sit on the throne of Israel, as the Lord promised, and have built an house for the name of the Lord God of Israel.
Luke 1:32, 33 He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David: 33And he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end.
“From the day when Solomon was entrusted with the work of building the temple, to the time of its completion, his avowed purpose was to build ‘a house for the name of the Lord God of Israel.’ This purpose was fully recognized before assembled Israel during the dedication of the temple. In his prayer he acknowledged that Jehovah had said, ‘My name shall be there.’” –Review and Herald, January 11, 1906.
“As David had desired to build a house for God, the promise was given, ‘The Lord telleth thee that He will make thee a house…. I will set up thy seed after thee…. He shall build a house for My name, and I will stablish the throne of his kingdom forever.’” –Patriarchs and Prophets, p. 712.
A THRONE ESTABLISHED FOREVER
7. How long would the reign of David’s true descendant last? To whom does this great prophecy actually refer?
2 Samuel 7:14-16 I will be his father, and he shall be my son. If he commit iniquity, I will chasten him with the rod of men, and with the stripes of the children of men: 15But my mercy shall not depart away from him, as I took it from Saul, whom I put away before thee. 16And thine house and thy kingdom shall be established for ever before thee: thy throne shall be established for ever.
Jeremiah 23:5 Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, that I will raise unto David a righteous Branch, and a King shall reign and prosper, and shall exe- cute judgment and justice in the earth.
Acts 2:30 Therefore being a prophet, and knowing that God had sworn with an oath to him, that of the fruit of his loins, according to the flesh, he would raise up Christ to sit on his throne.
Daniel 7:13, 14 I saw in the night visions, and, behold, one like the Son of man came with the clouds of heaven, and came to the Ancient of days, and they brought him near before him. 14And there was given him dominion, and glory, and a kingdom, that all people, nations, and languages, should serve him: his dominion is an ever- lasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and his kingdom that which shall not be destroyed.
“The Messiah was to be of the royal line, for in the prophecy uttered by Ja- cob the Lord said, ‘The scepter shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh come; and unto Him shall the gathering of the people be.’ Genesis 49:10.” –The Acts of the Apostles, p. 223.
“The uplifted Saviour is to appear in His efficacious work as the Lamb slain, sitting upon the throne, to dispense the priceless covenant blessings, the benefits He died to purchase for every soul who should believe on Him. John could not express that love in words; it was too deep, too broad; he calls upon the human family to behold it. Christ is pleading for the church in the heavenly courts above, pleading for those for whom He paid the redemption price of His own lifeblood. Centuries, ages, can never diminish the efficacy of this atoning sacrifice.” –Evangelism, p. 191.