The God Who Surprises Us
Today’s reading: II Samuel 7-9; Luke 19:1-28
19 You have spoken also of your servant’s house for a great while to come, and this is instruction for mankind, O Lord God! II Samuel 7:19b
9 And Jesus said to him, “Today salvation has come to this house, since he also is a son of Abraham. 10 For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.” Luke 19:9-10
God often surprises us by His decrees and His ways. In today’s readings, David was surprised by God, and Jesus’ contemporaries were surprised by Him.
David experienced great military success as king of Israel. He reached the point of being able to rest from the continual battles he had experienced most of his life. His thoughts turned to building a house or temple for the Ark of God. Nathan, the prophet, initially saw this as a good thing until the Lord revealed another plan for David and his dynasty.
David would not build a house for God, but God would build a house for David. Not an earthly house but an eternal throne, with an eternal ruler. Not merely a throne over Israel but over all mankind. From the New Testament, we understand that covenant pointed to the Lord Jesus Christ, who has been exalted to the right hand of God the Father and rules forever.
God’s plan for David was far greater than a mere earthly temple. I don’t think it is too much to say that David was surprised by the gracious covenant which God made with him.
Many of Jesus’ contemporaries were surprised by His reaching out to outcast sinners like the tax collector, Zacchaeus. Jesus Christ came as the fulfillment of the covenants with Abraham and with David, and He came to seek and save lost people both within and without the nation of Israel.
What a surprise that a holy God would take on human flesh and live among us, not to reject and condemn us but to seek and to save us!
God surprises us and the gospel tells us how good His surprises are for all who believe in His Son. Are you surprised by His grace and mercy to you? Is not His grace truly amazing?
Give praise to Him. As the psalmist wrote:
He does not deal with us according to our sins,
nor repay us according to our iniquities.
Psalm 103: 10
That more than surprises me. It blows my mind.