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Mystery of the Son of David

In a recent post we revisited the thought that it’s hard to find many clear prophecies of Jesus in the Old Testament–at least in the form that we might expect to find a predictive prophecy.

Few of the prophecies we cite are as plain in their context as the vision of Micah who foresaw that a mysteriously ancient king would come out of the small town of Bethlehem (the ancestral home of David) (Micah 5:2). Instead, much of what we believe has been fulfilled in Jesus is woven into historical descriptions of King David (Psalm 22:16-18), or in predictions of a son of David (2Samuel 7:8-13) that seem to fall short of God with us (2Sam 7:14).

It is equally true, however, that for a long time the rabbis of Israel have taught their nation to look for the messianic birth of a son of David who would be more than any king they had ever known (Isa 9:6-7).

So, eventually, the controversy that swirled around Jesus was whether he was that long awaited son (Mark 10:47-48).

When the wise men came looking for the birth of a king, it seems to have been common knowledge among the rabbis of Jerusalem that the Messiah would be born in the ancestral hometown of David (Matt 2:1-6.) So why did so many of Jerusalem’s leaders reject Jesus?

Try putting ourselves in their spot. How could we accept someone who looked at the Bible very differently than we do, embarrassed us in our objections, and left us trying to catch our breath in front of our friends and followers ?(Matt 22:41-44)

What would we think of a Christ who has a different idea of what is in our best interests–than we do?

And could the fact that Jesus fulfilled more of the Scriptures than we ever could have imagined– rather than less… might also be reason for us to believe that our expectations for what he can still do in our lives might be far better– and far more– than we we ever dreamed possible?

Mary Did You Know?


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28 Responses to “Mystery of the Son of David”

  1. SFDBWV says:

    Working backwards I will address the very last question Mart has asked.

    “What would we think of a Christ who has a different idea of what is in our best interest-than we do?”

    Well that about sums it up for me.

    All of the struggles of living have shown me that God has a better goal and plan for me than I know about. So I sludge along often in the dark carrying my cross and without answers keep moving forward *believing* that God knows what He is doing and trusting me and all I love and hold dear to His keeping.

    Steve

  2. Bill says:

    Merry Christmas, Mart!

    Merry Christmas, all you posters of prose, all you friends of BTA!

    This was another wonderful blog. You are an exceptional writer, Mart. You really should write a book. :)

    I loved this paragraph:

    “The fact that Jesus fulfilled more of the Scriptures than we ever could have imagined– rather than less… might also be reason for us to believe that our expectations for what he can still do in our lives might be far better– and far more– than we we ever dreamed possible.”

    That’s why I believe the Jesus story. It is not one I would have written myself. I would have written a grander, more obvious, more *believable* story of the birth of a Savior. No manger. No poor parents. No room-less Inn. No humanity, in fact.

    I don’t deserve any part of The Story. But I am grateful it was written for me.

    Merry Christmas, everyone.

  3. oneg2dblu says:

    Merry Christmas to all… as I sit here this morning knowing it is still the Eve of our Saviors birth, am realizing that even today Mary and Joseph could find no room through all their effort, but God still had a plan and provided a perfect place, at the perfect time, to bring forth His Perfect Son.
    He prepared a way for them and that same God still prepares a way for us.
    May the Joy of Christmas be birthed in you as a provision you had not been able to see for yourself.
    May God wrap you in His swaddling cloths, those that are washed white as snow in the Blood of His Son, and may we “All” be able to see through them tonight, in spite of all our circumstances, His very well prepared present. Merry Christmas! Gary

  4. SFDBWV says:

    Bill you comment about why you believe the Jesus story *rang* a loud bell in my mind and brought me to one of those realizations that I have always *believed* the Jesus story.

    I have no memory of not believing it or a point in time where I accepted the story to be true or accurate or believable, I have all of my memory believed the story to be synonymous with His being.

    This comes I suppose from being raised from birth under the influence of a Christian mother who indoctrinated me from my earliest life into becoming a *believer*.

    I have never looked at the story of Jesus’ birth or at the prophesies found in the OT or any references to Christ with anything except encouragement and conformations about what I already believed and understood, both intellectually as well as instinct.

    I have never once looked at any of the Bible and certainly at the stories of Jesus with criticisms needing convincing.

    I also suppose this is why I find myself defending the Word of God with such vigor and sometimes deep passion.

    Somewhere in the world Christmas has already arrived, so I join with you in wishing all a very merry Christmas.

    Steve

  5. poohpity says:

    That little baby brought us peace and goodwill towards our fellow man knowing that a forgiven heart would produce things that are so contrary to the things this world brings. Isa 52:7, Isa 53:5, Luke 1:79.

    Only when I see the contrast by the things that are against that peace, grace and mercy that are found in for instance 2 Tim 3:1-5, But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. 2 People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, 3 without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, 4 treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God— 5 having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with such people.

    That last verse having the form of godliness but denying it’s power then we stay as we were no change. I fully believe that God can and will change us to something far better than anything we could imagine if we only allow Him access to our hearts. Then a peace that passes all understanding and the darkness in our lives will over flow with light. If we have walked away from that Christ child and still hold animosity in our hearts towards others His joy and peace will have no place.

    May the grace and peace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you this Christmas season with expectations that are far above anything we could imagine within our hearts, minds and souls.

  6. swwagner says:

    Being a rather cautious and traditional person, if I had lived in Jesus’ day, I probably would not have accepted the ideas of such a “different” teaching, for awhile. But, I also know that the words of God (with the prodding of the Holy Spirit) are a living testament that doesn’t give you the option of ignoring such powerful truths. I hope that I would have listened and believed. The Old Testament people are to be admired for their faith because they had even less of the holy mystery than we do, yet; they believed and built the foundation of our faith today.

    The older I get (both physically & in the Lord) I am more and more bold about searching outside the norm if I am not satisfied with traditional answers. God is big enough to stand up under the scrutiny of all our doubts and questions…and personal enough to provide direct answers to our personal pain. Sometimes we don’t get an explaination, just a reminder that He is the GREAT I AM.

    The lineage of Christ / David is one of the most fascinating and deep truths of the Bible. For me it is a physical proof that can be used as a powerful witness to those of intellect who can’t grasp the simplicity of Jesus and the salvation He offers.

  7. Rocky says:

    Good morning Mart & Merry Christmas to all,

    Q1) Why did so many of Jerusalem’s leaders reject Jesus?

    A1) I believe that perhaps they really believed that He would overtake their kingdoms.

    Q2) How could we accept someone who looked at the Bible very differently than we do, embarrassed us in our objections, and left us trying to catch our breath in front of our friends and followers?

    A2) We are often embarrassed and ashamed of our own ignorance, especially when we try to bully someone to follow our lead, only to learn that the person we’re dealing with is more confident and knowledgeable than we are. No one likes to be embarrassed especially in public. It would be very difficult to accept someone like Jesus unless we are truly humbled and are willing to swallow some pride.

    Q3 What would we think of a Christ who has a different idea of what is in our best interests–than we do?

    A3) We are taught in Scripture not to lean on our own understanding. To embrace a teaching that is not being role modeled by our “teachers” whether it’s our parents, teachers, government or preachers is very difficult to do. So we do what is easy and comes naturally to us, and that is to lean on our own understanding.

    Q4) Could the fact that Jesus fulfilled more of the Scriptures than we ever could have imagined– rather than less… might also be reason for us to believe that our expectations for what he can still do in our lives might be far better– and far more– than we ever dreamed possible?

    A4) Ideally you’d think so, but in reality when I look at my own history, and I hear what my grandparents endured for our future, what my own parents endured for my future, what I have endured, what my kids have endured, like me, my kids & grandkids we don’t have a clue. That is why a personal relationship with Jesus Christ is so important, we will never have a clue until Jesus meets us personally when we find ourselves between that rock and the hard spot.

    God bless you all & Happy New Year!

    Rocky

  8. kingdomkid7 says:

    Our God will not be cabined. He will not be reduced to fit our expectations, imaginations, or tiny dreams. He will exceed anything we ever could imagine. (See Ephesians 3:17-20) So my guess is that the religious leaders did not accept Jesus because they couldn’t contain Him.
    A very Merry, blessing and love-filled Christmas to all. Thanks Mart for your faithfulness to us and this blog. May God continue to richly bless you!!!

  9. SFDBWV says:

    Merry Christmas to all.

    Matthew, Glenna and Steve

  10. bullwinkle says:

    Merry Christmas to each of you! I wish to thank all of you for your insight and dedication. Each morning begins by reading your posts and pondering how great our savior Jesus Christ is and how he impacts our lives, even when we can’t agree exactly what that should look like.
    sswanger said it so well when he stated: if I had lived in Jesus’ day, I probably would not have accepted the ideas of such a “different” teaching,. I realize that I may be taking that out of context and only using part of the quote, but it is important to realize that at that time it was extremely difficult to follow Jesus.
    Believing in Jesus would cost one everything, possibly even their life. There are places today where this is still true.
    Thank you again for your insight, especially Mart, my prayer for each of you is found in Eph 3:14-19.
    Merry Christmas,
    Pete

  11. BruceC says:

    May all have a joyous and wonderful Christmas. For me it is a time of awe and a time of reflection. I don’t think we can we ever in this life truly grasp the depth of God’s love and grace. We are so limited! But then we shall see him face to face! Wow!
    Expectataions are so designed around our wants and desires, and not around what our God knows is our greatest need. Israel was not looking for a Saviour to be the Lamb of God; but rather a mighty King to shed the oppression of Rome. Many times we are no different.
    Even today the Way He taught is not the way most our looking for. Far too often; even we believers, try to “Lego” or “Sims” our Lord into what we want, rather than opening our heart to all He wants for us.

    Last night at our Christmas Eve service at our church, they had a skit about unwrapping Jesus. Basically it said that Jesus is God’s gift to the human race. But a gift is not a gift until it is “opened”. How true that is. So many celebrate the gift; but not nearly as many have opened it.

    God Bless All!
    BruceC & Marylou

  12. SFDBWV says:

    As we go about our morning here I wonder about all of those who have awaken to *just another day*. To dashed dreams and broken hearts, where all the glitter of a holiday mean nothing.

    I am saddened as I ask God for those stuck in a dark place of life to find a way out, to be rescued from their pain.

    I suppose it is why I am not able to give to all people what they need, because if it were within my power I would. And perhaps spoil the ultimate goal God has in mind for them.

    The mystery is indeed this son of David, for He is filled with mystery and wonder and promise and hope.

    He is found on every page of Scripture and in every foretelling of the future; in, through and by Him we can have hope, even when all hope seems lost.

    Because He is our creator we will never be able to figure Him out, only kneel in surrender to Him.

    Surrender our wants and needs our fears and hopes, our questions and our lives; surrender to Him is not defeat but the ultimate gift of freedom.

    Steve

  13. poohpity says:

    Was reminded this morning of what Peter said about prophecies in 2 Peter 1:20-21, 20 Above all, you must understand that no prophecy of Scripture came about by the prophet’s own interpretation of things. 21 For prophecy never had its origin in the human will, but prophets, though human, spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.

    He also spoke of what is ours through the gift of Jesus Christ. 2 Peter 1:5-7.

    There is something that we have received that the world has no understanding bottom line when it may seem bleak and darkness has surrounded you the gift that is open to all to cling to is Jesus Christ then grace, peace ,mercy and love will abound from God in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. May all receive all that He can offer you this Christmas season and always. Love you, Deb

  14. Regina says:

    Good Afternoon All,

    Off topic here…
    MERRY CHRISTMAS, RBC friends!!! :-) I hope it’s one of the best Christmas’ you’ve ever had! It’s snowing in Texas! Can you believe that?? We’re the state of mostly hot Winters, and it’s snowing today…on Christmas Day! I wasn’t dreaming of a white Christmas, but I sure got one, and it’s BEAUTIFUL! I’m trying to soak it in as much as I can because it’s such a rarity here in Lone Star state! :) The snow flakes were so big and beautiful about an hour or two ago, but now it’s starting to melt away. I’m so thankful to our LORD for allowing me to see the end of another year, and I’m so grateful for family and friends!

    Love to all…
    Regina

  15. davids says:

    Merry Christmas to all! Following on my comments in the last post, I cannot give a better historical context or current meaning than the video on this website: “Bethlehem: Beyond the Christmas Story”

    Blesings!

  16. BruceC says:

    Sister Regina,

    If you like the snow you are welcomed to come to upstate NY in the next day or two and take as much as you want back with you! LOL! We are supposed to get a goodly amount; but i have seen worse and the Lord always has gotten us through it,

    On a more serious note though; I do pray for those who are experiencin g some very strong, dangerous storms in the south. May the lord protect them.

    BruceC
    Soli Deo Gloria!

  17. SFDBWV says:

    Just came in from doing a bit of clearing off this stuff from the roadway and sidewalk. It is an ugly mixture of ice and snow, we have had about 2 inches since 7 am and they are calling for 10 by tomorrow morning.

    Be safe Bruce, Regina I am very happy you got snow for Christmas.

    Steve

  18. lovely says:

    its a miracle to think that God would walk among them
    and talked to them let alone teach them. Who can imagine a God ,the creator of Heaven and Earth Psalm 121 would walk among them in such a humble manner that they can’t recognize him as the Messiah?For to those Jerusalem leader Messiah is someone high up which Cannot be reached. Still there are the 12 disciples who saw and recognized Him, the Messiah and followed Him
    May I be like the disciples that take the cross and follow Him daily.Yes at times in the past I have been like the Jews not willing to accept What Jesus taught
    Yet despite how much the Jews or we have rejected Him , he loved us enough to die for us, salvation is still available for the the Jerusalem leaders if they believe
    He said these to the Jews John 26 , John 27 My sheep listen to my voice; I know them and they follow me.
    John 28, I give them eternal life and they shall never perish, no one can snatch them out of my hand
    John 29 My Father , who has given them to me is greater than all.We all are His sheep has been given to Jesus way before we were all born.That’s a miracle, we are all in His hand & plan from the beginning so for those sheep that has wondered off, they’ll come back cause they have been given to Jesus .Such great love He has for us all.
    Happy Birthday Jesus
    & Merry Christmas everyone

    Lovely

  19. lovely says:

    sorry the Verses above is wrong should be John 10 vs 26,27,28

    Lovely

  20. SFDBWV says:

    Not really sure what Marts is waiting to hear concerning this topic. I hope he is just enjoying the holiday season with his family and not stressing about anything.

    I would suppose I am blessed for not seeing the many names for Jesus exposed in the Bible as a mystery. Rather just the Holy Spirit screaming out His identity for the most difficult among us to understand that all these names point to one name *Jesus of Nazareth*.

    I have read that God blinded the eyes of Israel so she would not recognize her Messiah. I guess once again I am blessed for His not blinding me as well.

    For as I read all across the Bible from Genesis to Revelation I recognize Jesus everywhere. Also if you look you see all of the things said about God are also said about Jesus and also the Holy Spirit as well.

    The Trinity is shown all over the Bible easily seen, when looked for.

    However what is it you seek? Is it God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit or is it criticisms and holes in the story or proof of what you have been shown?

    I say seek and you will find that which you seek, one holds peace the other confusion.

    Steve

  21. BruceC says:

    Steve,

    I am like you “just knew” since I was young. I did not question the existence of God, the Son, or the Holy Spirit. When I was a young man the truth of what Jesus did for me at Calvary; and the empty tomb really hit home. I had a rough time for years after that as a battle waged between Him and my stubborn flesh.
    It is so important that a new believer attend a really good church with good Bible studies. Some churches are not doing a great job of follow up.
    The more we seek Him the more we learn and the closer our walk with Him. I have found that “Prince of Peace” my brother. Many in the world today look toward man, governments, and all the other wrong places and booby traps that Satan has laid down.

    We got 8-9″ of new “stuff” on top of the 2-4 from last week. This time I had to move it. Ran out of one of my morning inhalers so it was a little tough; but by God’s grace I have the snow all blown off the drive and walkways. My arthritis will pay me back for it later1 LOL!

    God Bless All,

    BruceC
    Soli Deo Gloria!

  22. poohpity says:

    How many times do we pray for something and because the answer may not be what we would have chosen we get mad at God? Or grumble and complain because things are just not going the way we have liked our lives to turn out? Rather than having a quiet peace and acceptance we rant, rave and get depressed. I do not think we are any different than what happened back then when Jesus does not live up to our expectations.

    His teaching is rather than be ugly to enemies, to do good to them. Rather than causing disruption bringing peace to all situations. Rather than reacting in anger to those who may not think and act like we do we show them brotherly love and affection. If we think for a moment we are different then those who may not have accepted the birth of a baby in a manger as their long awaited King are sadly mistaken and the truth is not in them. The truth is hard to accept but through careful self examination there is no difference with how we live our daily lives when Christ is not included in much of what we say we believe with those who a little over a thousand years ago or even further back even after the Lord provided for their daily existence still made a choice to want an earthly king.

    Even the disciples who saw all the miracles that Jesus did, turned and fled while denying they ever knew Him because things were not turning out the way they thought. There is so much of them in us if one only takes the time to really look at what they say they believe and how they live their lives.

  23. poohpity says:

    I did not get any boots for Christmas.

  24. poohpity says:

    Mart asked, “So why did so many of Jerusalem’s leaders reject Jesus?”. They seemed to expect a conquering king rather than one who wanted to turn the hearts, minds and souls of His followers to that of peace, grace and mercy.

    The majority of the epistles except 1,2 and 3rd John all had a similar concept that showed what those who followed Jesus could have, which is peace. A heart that trusted in Jesus no matter the circumstance. 1 John spoke of a love that was displayed in how we treated other Christians. All the others like; Rom 1:6-7; 1 Cor 1:3; 2 Cor 1:2; Gal 1:3; Eph 1:2; Phil 1:2; 1 Thess 1:1; 2 Thess 1:2; 1 Tim 1:2; 2 Tim 1:2; Titus 1:4; Philemon 1:3; Heb 13:20,25; James 1:2-4; 1 Peter 1:2, 5:14; 2 Peter 1:2, 3:18; Jude 1:2 Rev 1:4-5; speak of peace.

    That is not what the Jewish leaders seemed to want they did not want peace they wanted a solution that would cause turmoil and unrest. A government on His shoulders that would over throw the current regime not one that taught them to have something inside that many would desire of peace and contentment knowing that God has it all under control. When they were mistreated to show kindness, gentleness, grace and mercy just like what they received when that little baby found His way to the Cross. A peace in our hearts that shows who our trust and dependence is in.

  25. His Sparrow says:

    “reject” the son of David???

    “put myself in their spot” ???

    so it was appropriate for the rabbis to arrange/manipulate for….

    scourging….
    crucifixion…

    a cruelty of the most intense display of hate of the time?

    I’m lost on this one, (even though there is prophecy about His death)

    Love
    His Sparrow

  26. davids says:

    So why did so many of Jerusalem’s leaders reject Jesus?

    For me there is a cautionary tale here. The Jewish leaders had heaped so much tradition on the Messiah that they could not recognize Him when He came. The Jewish leaders had such difficulty reconciling the military and peaceful prophecies of the Messiah that they even expected two Messiahs: Mashiach ben David and Mashiach ben Joseph. They were unable to accept Jesus because of thier traditional interpretation.

    We also tend to create traditions to interpret Jesus’ birth and life. From the British we receive the idea that Jesus was born in a barn surrounded by cows, although the people of the time raised sheep in pens. There is a tradition of three Kings, although the Bible only says magi (plural).

    In a similar way the Roman church built up traditions about Mary and the “Saints” and we still have some other traditions that are not founded in the Bible.

    Our Protestant faith was founded upon, and ought to remain, Sola Scriptura (Only what has been written). In this way, we can accept Christ for what He was rather than what we want Him to be.

  27. BruceC says:

    poohpity,
    You are correct when you talk about peace, grace, and mercy. And we should forgive those that misuse us and abuse us. And ask a blessing on them with no thought of revenge. But should we return to those people over and over again that do that to us? This is something I have trouble dealing with. If a mechanic, plumber, or anyone I have hired cheats me; should I hire him again? Would you continue to spend time with those that ridicule you for what you believe or what you do? Or continue to be friends with someone when it obviously is one way and only when you have something they need?
    At what point does one shake the dust off their feet?
    Just things I wonder about. Things i have had to deal with and still do.

    BruceC
    Soli Deo Gloria!

  28. poohpity says:

    Bruce, If we return to those people with the intent of accomplishing God’s will which seems to say to do good to them even when they do not do good to us. Not like a cowering person begging for their love but as a Child of God with head held high showing them the same patience and love we have been shown.

    I think the shaking the dust off is for those who we have shared the gospel with and they have rejected it and us but I could be wrong. It would be them who spurned and turned away from us. Most of the things we are taught is totally opposite of what the world teaches. I have to have the Lord’s requested help to love those who may be especially hard to show it to.

    I do know that if we ask God about the things we struggle with, especially people who get on our last nerve, to help us look at them the way He does our attitude towards them changes. I think it may be a little different than dealing with a hired person doing a job wrong, of course we would not hire them again but we may let them know gently the reason for not rehiring them.

    I know your struggles because over the last three years after mom died I have had to deal with some very strong feelings towards my family but over time those feeling have changed and it has affected other relationships as well but God will give you wisdom and it just may be something you do not want to hear at first but whatever He asks of us, He will also give us the strength to accomplish.

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