God on the Spot – Part 7: Providing a King
By Dianne E. Butts –
God gave the Israelites a portrait of Himself and His plan through the Tabernacle Moses built. Then the Israelites were supposed to preserve this revelation of God so the whole world could know Him.Moses was born in 1525 BC and died in 1406 BC. But after Moses died and God moved the Israelites into the Promised Land, He told them to completely clean out the land from all foreigners. This was not because God didn’t like those people. This was to protect the purity of the revelation God had given of Himself.
But the Israelites only “partially obeyed,” which really means they failed to do what God said. Eventually the people they allowed to remain in the land began to corrupt the Tabernacle worship with their own ideas and gods, and so the picture God painted of Himself was in danger of being corrupted.
Throughout all of this, however, it was not humans, but God, who was on the spot to protect the revelation of Himself. Eventually, the people of Israel told Samuel the prophet that they wanted a king because they wanted to be like all the other nations (1 Samuel 8:5, 7, 19-20). They rejected God as their king.
God gave them Saul as the first king of Israel in 1050 BC. Saul didn’t work out so well. God finally rejected Saul as king (1 Samuel 15:26, 35, 16:1) and sent Samuel to Jesse of Bethlehem, saying, “I have chosen one of his sons to be king” (1 Samuel 16:1).
God put Himself on the spot. Saul’s son Jonathan had a legal right to the throne. Saul repeatedly tried to kill David before David could take over as king, but God protected him. And Jonathan, in great faith and at great cost to himself, accepted God’s will that he would not be king but David would be (1 Samuel 23:15-18).
David was a young boy when Samuel anointed him as Israel’s future king, but David didn’t actually become king until he was thirty years old (2 Samuel 5:4).
All the while God was still on the spot to produce the Messiah through the bloodline of Abraham, which we are now following through Boaz and Ruth, to Obed, to Jesse, to David. It was within David’s conversation with God about building a house for God so that His ark would no longer have to live in a tent (Tabernacle) that God confirmed Messiah would come from David’s bloodline. And so, although it has been more than four centuries since Moses built the Tabernacle, the portrait of God in the desert, we now watch David and Solomon prepare to build the more permanent Tabernacle, the Temple, on the same mountain where Abraham offered Isaac.
In the Temple, the portrait of God remains visible to all the world as we continue to march toward that time when God would bring Messiah through Abraham’s bloodline. But we’re not there yet. There are rocky times ahead in Israel. We still have a thousand years to travel through the bloodline of good and evil kings before Messiah comes. And it is God Who is on the spot to preserve now not only the bloodline, but also the revelation of Himself through His written record and His portrait, the Tabernacle-Temple, so that all the world may know Him.
August: “God on the Spot – Part 8: Protecting the Bloodline, Preserving His Word” Throughout the history of Israel, God was on the spot to protect and preserve the bloodline of Abraham and the revelation of Himself through both good and scoundrel kings, and the exiles.
© 2010 Dianne E. Butts
Dianne has written for over 50 Christian print magazines and seventeen books, including the upcoming For God So Loved the World He Created Chocolate. Her work has appeared in Great Britain, Bulgaria, Poland, Canada, and Korea. When she’s not writing, she enjoys riding her motorcycle with her husband, Hal, and gardening with her cat, P.C., in Colorado. www.DianneEButts.com www.DeliverMeBook.blogspot.com