Redemptive-Historical Survey: 9 | The Monarchy & Davidic Covenant (LDBC Recap 4/3/16 Pt. 1)

 Explanation

logo-lake-drive-baptist-churchOn Sunday, January 24th, 2016, I began a Core Seminar on Redemptive History & Biblical Theology at my church, Lake Drive Baptist Church. During the course of this series I’ll be sending out emails recapping lessons and directing recipients to resources for further study.

Rather than just share these recaps with my church family, I’ve decided to share them here on the blog for anyone else who might be interested. I will be posting them occasionally over the next couple of months on a weekly basis or so.

See previous posts:

Recap/review

This week we looked at two stages in redemptive history: first, the monarchy and the covenant God made with David and his descendants; and, secondly, the wisdom literature and the psalms.

We begin the first installment of this week’s recap by surveying the role of the monarchy and Davidic covenant in redemptive history.

Overview of Biblical material

1 & 2 Samuel, 1 & 2 Kings, 1 & 2 Chronicles.

  • Israel rebelliously demands a king (1 Sam 8). God appoints Saul.
  • Saul disqualifies himself from kingship by disobedience.
  • David is appointed king and rules successfully, conquering much of the unconquered portions of the Promised Land and settling Israel securely in the land.
  • God makes the Davidic Covenant with David.
  • After David, Solomon becomes king. He oversees the building of the temple in Jerusalem.
  • After Solomon (David’s son), the kingdom is divided (1 Kgs 12:1-20).
    • The Northern Kingdom, known as “Israel,” composed of the 10 Northern tribes.
    • The Southern Kingdom, known as “Judah.”
  • During this period, these two divided kingdoms persist in rebellion and idolatry until eventually God punishes them both with exile. The kings, as leaders of the people, exemplify the evil behavior of the nation.
  • Whereas the Northern Kingdom sees much instability with regards to her kings (e.g., assassinations, regime changes, etc.), David’s dynasty remains unbroken in the Southern Kingdom.

Role within redemptive history

With the overview of the material in play, we now ask, how does this stage—specifically God’s promises in the Davidic Covenant—fit into redemptive history? How does God’s promises about a king relate to his purposes to bring about his new-creational kingdom?

We can summarize the role of this stage of redemptive history as follows: Through covenant-bound promises to David, God specifies how he will exercise his new-creational kingdom intent of reigning over as well as through his people: he will reign especially through kings from David’s line.

However, due to disbelieving disobedience, as exemplified in the splitting of the kingdom, God’s people continue to fail to experience the full extent of God’s new creational kingdom.

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Calvin on Loving Others as Image-Bearers

michelangelo-finger-of-god-lg

The Lord enjoins us to do good to all without exception, though the greater part, if estimated by their own merit, are most unworthy of it. But Scripture subjoins a most excellent reason, when it tells us that we are not to look to what men in themselves deserve, but to attend to the image of God, which exists in all, and to which we owe all honour and love. … Say that he is unworthy of your least exertion on his account; but the image of God, by which he is recommended to you, is worthy of yourself and all your exertions. … We are not to reflect on the wickedness of men, but look to the image of God in them, an image which, covering and obliterating their faults, should by its beauty and dignity allure us to love and embrace them.

John Calvin, Institutes of the Christian Religion, book III, chapter 7, section 6.

Athanasius’ On the Incarnation

I previously wrote a review On the Incarnation by Athanasius (c. 297-373). Well, I read the book again and wrote another review that I thought I’d share with you here. Hopefully this second review, which covers a lot of the same things as the first one, has greater insight and clarity. Enjoy!

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In his work, On the Incarnation, Athanasius seeks to present “a brief statement of the faith of Christ and of the manifestation of His Godhead to us” (IX.56). Acknowledging that “such and so many are the Savior’s achievements that follow from His incarnation” (X.54) such that one is unable to present them satisfactorily, he nonetheless determines to set forth his understanding of “why it is that the Word of the Father . . . has been made manifest in bodily form” (I.1); his answer in short: “for the salvation of us men” (I.1). What follows is less a systematic doctrinal treatise and more an explanation and defense of the incarnation against its 4th century misconceptions and critiques.

Athanasius begins his account with creation and the fall. Of all His creatures, God bestowed upon mankind a special grace, the Image of God. For Athanasius this Image means a sharing in the divine being (“though in a limited degree”; I.3; III.11) and a unique incorruptibility because of this intimate knowledge of and union with the Incorruptible One (I.4-5; II.6-7; III.13). In such a state, man would have continued forever (I.3). But by “turning from eternal things to things corruptible” man embraced corruption—death—by forsaking union with the eternal (I.5; cf. I.4). Such is the setting for “the divine dilemma and its solution in the incarnation” (II).

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