God Said No
God Said No
2 Sam 7:1-29
If you have any kind of prayer life, you have probably experienced God answering no. Some people, depending on their level of spiritual maturity, just say it must have been God’s will, and move on. Others will stop to question why. Why did the Lord reject my request? Why does God say no sometimes? Well, we can answer that with a simple phrase—God is sovereign. Definition--Supreme in power; possessing supreme dominion; as a sovereign ruler of the universe.
I want to quickly remind you what has happened in the life of David in the past few chapters. David is now the rightful king over Israel. The throne is established in Jerusalem. He led Israel in two decisive battles over the Philistines. Last week we saw the victorious transport of the Ark of the Covenant to Jerusalem. Look at verse one: David sits in his house, there is rest from his enemies, and he gets to thinking. I have this nice house of cedar, but the ark of God dwelleth within curtains. That’s just not right, that my house is nicer than God’s house. I think we would be well served to build a nice house for the Ark of the LORD. Nathan the prophet—Go for it. Here lately everything you touch turns to gold. In my opinion God has His had of blessing on you. Before I go on, we should know by now that God is pretty particular about the ark. How it should be moved, how it was a curse to the Philistines, how its pattern was given to Moses by the Lord. In verse 4, the LORD begins to speak to His prophet Nathan. Notice with me that God does not rip his hide for his error in judgment. He is simply going to set him straight, and trust that he will tell David the truth. Now we are going to see a series of questions that Nathan is to ask David.
V5—Shalt thou…Are you sure this is the right thing to do David?
V6—Is there any indication from the past that I desired a house? It has been nearly 500 years since the days of the Tabernacle. Did you get this from the Word? Did a prophet speak to you on the matter?
V7—Have I ever asked for a house of cedar?
All of these questions point to God’s answer to David’s quest to build a house for God…NO. As you read through this account there are several reasons that you could speculate on as to why David had this idea. The pagans always mad nice places for their false Gods, how much more does the True God deserve a nice house? The stories of the Tabernacle indicate God’s blessing and guidance for the people of Israel. Wasn’t God pretty much answering David, and guiding him thus far? I think it comes down to the simple fact that David was losing sight of the Sovereignty of God. It is common in our day to say something like this, especially at Bible College graduations, “Go out and doing something great for God!” Build a great church, win a multitude of souls, be known as a tremendous expositor of the Word of God. Here may be another mindset in this room tonight: Right now my life is being richly blessed, I am on a high peak of my Christian experience, just you watch and see how God answer this prayer!
If we allow ourselves to be taught tonight, this passage can adjust our thinking, and cause our minds to be right concerning the sovereignty of God.
V8—David, don’t forget where you came from. I took you out of the sheepcote. Remember when Samuel went to your father’s house to anoint the next king? You weren’t even invited to the party. If I had not intervened in your life, you might still be herding sheep. David, it was me, the LORD, the elevated to the position where you are now.
1 Peter 5:6 Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time: Do you understand that when God elevated David to be the King of Israel, that David’s position exceeded his wildest dreams?
V9—I have made thee a great name. Was his name always great? Well, Saul had him on the run to such a degree that he lied to priests, acted like a madman, ran off to Moab and the land of the Philistines. Don’t forget about his temper tantrum when he was dealing with Nabal. It was God who empowered David to kill Goliath and be a part of all those military victories, God gave David a great name. David is still a great name in Jewish and Christian history, and God ensured his legacy would live own when He said that David was a man after His own heart.
V10-11—David, if there is going to be a house for me, I will tell you the when and where of it. It is not up to you. Let’s leave the doing of great things to the doer of great things. Did you see that God is going to build the house for David instead of the other way around? Let me give you two quick points of application that will help us to understand why God said no.
I. A better plan. The house that God had planned for David was not a house of cedar, He had something far better in mind. After you die, I am going raise up one of your seed, one of your sons, and I will establish the kingdom. I will also establish his throne forever. This is the Davidic Covenant. Look in verse 14, God is going to show a difference in dealing with Saul, and the future son Solomon. Saul gets cut off, but Solomon will be chastened. What is the difference? The covenant. Saul was expected to obey God in order to keep his position. We know after a bad choice of sacrificing, and not finishing the job with King Agag, that God told Saul that his kingdom was going to be given to a neighbor who is better than thee. Now consider Solomon for a moment. The man had 700 wives and 300 concubines. These women turned his heart from God, and he turned to idolatry. Which of these sounds worse to you? Saul or Solomon? See, God’s not fair? It’s not about fairness, its about justice. You see the covenant with David had nothing to do with performance, but with the Promise of the God who made the covenant. Do you see what is being contrasted here? The Law and Grace. I’ll take grace, it doesn’t depend upon me. Hallelujah! Well did God deal with Solomon’s sin? Absolutely, the same way He deals with yours and mine-- through chastening.
II. A better perspective. David goes and sits down before God and says who am I? That is a proper response to grace. God you are going to do this for me? Build me a house, and give me a kingdom, and a throne, forever? Turn that to your own state. God you sent your only begotten Son to die on the Cross of Calvary, and shed His precious blood for me?
V21—For thy word’s sake. Sounds like something you may have heard this morning.
Isaiah 55:11 So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.
V22—Thou art great God!
Supreme in power; possessing supreme dominion; as a sovereign ruler of the universe
Psalms 48:1 Great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised in the city of our God, in the mountain of his holiness.
Psalms 96:4 For the Lord is great, and greatly to be praised: he is to be feared above all gods.
Psalms 135:5 For I know that the Lord is great, and that our Lord is above all gods.
Psalms 145:3 Great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised; and his greatness is unsearchable.
No longer was David, slayer of ten thousands, king of Israel. It was David, humble servant of a great God.
V26—Let thy name be magnified. Make larger, bring into better focus. How is that going to be done?
He must increase, and I must decrease. Let the world see God and what He hath done.
So when you are about to embark on completing something great for God, remember this: you can’t do anything without the blessing and approval of our sovereign Lord. When He puts His hand out to stop you, it is to let you know He has a better plan, and to give you a better perspective.