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Origen

David's Throne - Acts 2:29–36

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Origen
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This thread was prompted by another thread and certain claims made concerning David's throne.

 

Many just gloss over Peter's remarks without trying to follow his argument, and in doing so they miss some key points Peter was making.  Peter is making an argument and there is a flow of thought linking certain key ideas to one another.

 

Quote

"Brothers, I may say to you with confidence about the patriarch David that he both died and was buried, and his tomb is with us to this day. Being therefore a prophet, and knowing that God had sworn with an oath to him that he would set one of his descendants on his throne, he foresaw and spoke about the resurrection of the Christ, that he was not abandoned to Hades, nor did his flesh see corruption. This Jesus God raised up, and of that we all are witnesses. Being therefore exalted at the right hand of God, and having received from the Father the promise of the Holy Spirit, he has poured out this that you yourselves are seeing and hearing. For David did not ascend into the heavens, but he himself says,"


 The Lord said to my Lord,

Sit at my right hand,

until I make your enemies your footstool.


"Let all the house of Israel therefore know for certain that God has made him both Lord and Christ, this Jesus whom you crucified."

 

(1) Note Peter's flow of thought in verse 30.

 

Quote

knowing that God had sworn with an oath to him that he would set one of his descendants on his throne, he foresaw and spoke about the resurrection of the Christ

 

Since David was a prophet, and knew one of his descendants would be set on his throne, he foresaw and spoke of the resurrection of the Christ.

 

According to Peter, David links his knowledge concerning one of his descendants being set on his throne to the resurrection of the Christ.  He does not link to the some future kingdom on Earth or to the second coming but to Christ's resurrection.  Peter simply has no reason to bring up Christ's resurrection and the throne together unless they are linked in some way.

 

(2) Now let's note the flow of thought in verses 32-33.

 

Quote

This Jesus God raised up, and of that we all are witnesses.  Being therefore exalted at the right hand of God...

 

Please note the verb "exalted" is in the past tense.  This has already happened and is not some future event.

 

Peter wants to make sure that every one knows that Christ was resurrected and he gives evidence for it.  This point is foundational to his argument.  Again it goes back to what David said about Christ's resurrection and the throne.

 

Notice the "therefore."  Peter is drawing a conclusion (i.e. giving a reason why) based upon what he has already said.  Now don't forget the points that Peter has already made concerning David speaking of Christ's resurrection and the throne.  Again,

 

Since David was a prophet, and knew one of his descendants would be set on his throne, he and spoke of the resurrection of the Christ.

 

Christ was indeed resurrected "therefore" God exalted Him, and given what Peter had previously said concerning David the link is made.

 

The link between one of David's descendants being on his throne has nothing to do with a future kingdom on Earth or the second coming.  It was Christ exaltation\enthronement following the resurrection.  Peter makes it very clear that it was the resurrection.  Again there is simply no reason to bring up Christ's resurrection and the throne unless they are linked.

 

(3) Peter now cites Psalm 110:1 (a Psalm written my David).

 

Quote

For David did not ascend into the heavens, but he himself says,


“‘The Lord said to my Lord,

“Sit at my right hand,

until I make your enemies your footstool.”’

 

Peter gives further evidence concerning what David said about Christ.  David predicted both Jesus’ resurrection (v. 31) which then culminated in His exaltation\enthronement (v. 25), something Peter had already referenced (i.e. David knew one of his descendants would be set on the throne and foretold of Christ resurrection).  Thus we have Christ's resurrection and His exaltation\enthronement all linked back to David.  Moreover the link is even made stronger by the fact the verbs "set" in verse 30 and "sit" in verse 34 (i.e. καθίζω and κάθημαι) are synonyms.

 

(4) Now Peter brings it all together in verse 36.

 

Quote

Let all the house of Israel therefore know for certain that God has made him both Lord and Christ, this Jesus whom you crucified.”

 

I think the designation "the house of Israel" is very telling given how Peter has based his argument upon what David said about Christ's resurrection and the throne.  After all it should be the house of Israel who ought to be most interested in David and his throne.  No doubt the restoration of the kingdom was be upmost Importance to the house of Israel.  Peter point was the very one they crucified was the very one David foresaw and God had kept his promise.  This Christ was exalted\enthroned just as David said.

 

Peter states that God has made Jesus both Lord and Christ.  Again notice the "therefore."  Peter is drawing a conclusion based on what he has already stated.  The reason why God make Jesus both Lord and Christ followed from what David said.

 

Since David was a prophet, and knew one of his descendants would be set on his throne, he foresaw and spoke of the resurrection of the Christ.

 

Christ was resurrected and exalted\enthroned just as David said.  Therefore God has made Jesus both Lord and Christ again showing that God kept his promise to David.

 

Both titles "Lord and Christ" drive Peters point home.  I am sure most of you know the word "Lord" means "master, sovereign, ruler" etc.  I am also sure that most of you know that the word "Lord" was also used as a title for Yahweh.

 

Peter is using very powerful and descriptive terms.  Christ is sovereign ruler.  Again we have to follow Peter's line of thought and how he links that back to what David said.

 

Given this context the word "Christ" (i.e. χριστός = anointed one) has a special significance.  Who was the anointed one?  What kind of messiah was the house of Israel looking for?

 

The term "anointed one" could be used as a reference for the king.  The king was God's "anointed one."  That is not to say that the term could not be employed in other contexts and in other ways.  The messiah (i.e. anointed one), according to Jewish thought, was to be a king who would restore Israel as a kingdom.  Given Peter's argument concerning David, the throne, Christ's exaltation\enthronement, and the fact that Peter uses the term "Lord" (i.e. sovereign ruler), the term "anointed one" in this context functions as a kingly title.

 

Thus both titles "Lord and Christ" point to Jesus' royal status.  He is the king who sits upon David's throne.  There is no reason to believe either David nor Peter thought it had to be the actual throne of David nor did it need to be here on Earth.  This is made clear when David links the throne and Christ's resurrection and exaltation\enthronement.  Peter states after Christ's resurrection He was exalted\enthroned and quotes David to prove it.  According to the text this takes place in heaven after the ascension not here on Earth.

 

If Christ's exaltation\enthronement in heaven does not fulfill God's promise to David, then Peter was wrong.  Both his argument and his citing of Scripture to prove his point is wrong.  It makes no sense for Peter to even bring up David's throne in this context if there was no link to Christ's exaltation\enthronement and David quote from Psalm 110:1.  All the elements are there.  Peter makes the connections using what David knew and said concerning his throne.

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Origen
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Addendum

 

Point One

Both Hebrew and Greek scholars acknowledge the word "throne" often refers to more than just the chair upon which the king sits.  The word "throne" (i.e. Hebrew = כִּסֵּ֖א, Greek = θρόνος) by extention refer to a king's "reign\rule, dynasty, kingdom, dominion, sovereignty."  According to the Theological Wordbook of the Old Testament (vol. 1, p. 448):

 

Quote

The great bulk of the references to throne take the term figuratively. Thus to sit on the throne of the kingdom was to rule the kingdom, or in some cases, to begin to rule the kingdom (cf. 1 Kgs 16:11; etc.). Of the eighty-seven figurative usages, at least forty-seven indicate that it was God who either placed a person on, or removed him from, the throne. Many of these are related to the establishment of the Davidic line, and of these the vast majority relate to Solomon’s accession (1 Kgs 1–2). The frequent statement that God has “established” (כּוּן, q.v.) someone’s throne further indicates that royal stability, wherever it is found, is a function of God’s sovereignty.  Theological Wordbook of the Old Testament. (R. L. Harris, G. L. Archer, Jr. & B. K. Waltke, Eds: Moody Pub., 1980, 2 Vols.)

 While there is no doubt that the word "throne" can and sometimes does refer to a literal throne, that is much too narrow a view and does not adequately reflect the meaning of the term.  There is more to it than that.

 

Two Examples:

 

(1) 2 Sam. 14:9 - And the woman of Tekoa said to the king, “On me be the guilt, my lord the king, and on my father’s house; let the king and his throne be guiltless.”

 

It is clear that the women is not saying that the throne itself be guiltless.  She is saying that neither the king nor any part of his dynasty, kingdom is responsible.

 

(2) Luke 1:32 - "He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. And the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father David,..."

 

The word "throne" in this context is not simply a reference to the seat upon which David sat.  Obviously the giving of the throne to Jesus means that he is heir to the Davidic dynasty.

 

I cite these examples (and there are many more) in order to demonstrate that the semantic range of the word "throne" (in Hebrew or Greek) covers more than simply a literal throne.  Give the extended meaning of the term and the example of Luke 1:32, this shows that the actually throne of David is not needed.  If one understand "throne" to refer to the Davidic dynasty, there is no problem.

 

Luke 1:32 is even more interesting given what Peter says Acts 2:29-36 (see above post).  Luke is the only N.T. author to specifically mention David and his throne.

 

Point Two

Many claim there is a difference between David's throne and God's throne, the heavenly throne.  I believe Acts 2:29-36 and the meaning of the term "throne" completely dispels that idea.  Yet there are other reason for rejecting that claim.

 

For example:

 

"So Solomon sat on the throne of David his father, and his kingdom was firmly established."  1 Kings 2:12

 

Now look at the parallel passage in 1Chronicles 29:23.

 

"Then Solomon sat on the throne of the LORD as king in place of David his father."

 

In 1 Kings 2:12 the throne is referred to as "the throne of David" but in 1Chronicles 29:23 it is "the throne of the LORD."

 

There is no distinction between God’s throne and David’s throne.  I am sorry to say this but David was just keeping the seat warm till the real King got here and where ever that KING sits (i.e. Christ) is the His throne.

 

David himself acknowledges this fact .

 

"And of all my sons (for the LORD has given me many sons) he has chosen Solomon my son to sit on the throne of the kingdom of the LORD over Israel. (1 Chronicles 28:5)

 

It is "the throne of the kingdom of the LORD over Israel" not David's throne.  The phrase "David's throne" (and those like it) were just ways to refer to the Davidic dynasty and the promise God made to him.

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Becky
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This is a great topic. One which needs be discussed. So many of us are setting on the same pew year after year, we will not learn anything deeper then the milk of the Word.  Thank you @Origen for being so clear in your words. And precise in the Word of the Lord. 

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Origen
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2 minutes ago, Becky said:

This is a great topic. One which needs be discussed. So many of us are setting on the same pew year after year, we will not learn anything deeper then the milk of the Word.  Thank you @Origen for being so clear in your words. And precise in the Word of the Lord. 

Thank you Becky.

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Becky
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May i copy this to FB? 

 

When something is so well laid out backed by scripture it will be hard to find any rebuttal . I would like to read a rebuttal of the same quality. 

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