I Chronicles 1 – II Chronicles 9: People and Politics: The Ideal

Introduction

1. Summary

  • The genealogy of the ideal people together with their privileges and responsibilities
  • The ideal reigns of David and Solomon in the united Kingdom.

2. Structure

  • The ideal people (1Chron.1:1-9:34)
  • The ideal politics (1Chron.9:35-2Chron.9:31)

 

I. The Ideal People (1Chron.1:1-9:34)

A. General Analysis

  • Israel’s past (IChron.1:1-2:2)
  • Israel’s number/order(IChron.2:1-9:1a)
  • Israel’s present (IChron.9:1b-34)

B. Detailed Analysis

1. The Purpose of Genealogies

As this is the most extensive genealogical list in the Bible, we shall take this opportunity to consider some general points about biblical genealogies before going on to look at this genealogy in more detail. M. D. Johnson (Purpose of the Biblical Genealogies, 77–82.) identifies nine purposes for Old Testament genealogies:
a. To demonstrate existing relationships between Israel and neighboring tribes by tracing lines back to common ancestors. This shows at one and the same time a degree of kinship and also a degree of distinction between Israel and its neighbors. Examples include the descendants of Lot (Gen.19:36–38), Nahor (Gen.22:20–24), Keturah (Gen.25:1–6), Ishmael (Gen.25:12–16), and Esau (Gen.36).
b. To bring together previously isolated elements “concerning Israelite origins by the creation of a coherent and inclusive genealogical system.” A good example of this is the Genesis “Toledoth book.”
c. To bridge gaps in the narrative records. Good examples are in Genesis 5 and 11, and Ruth 4:18–22. (These are the ancient literary equivalents to the “fast-forward” function on modern videocassette recorders.)
d. To perform a limited chronological function, such as establishing dates for the Flood (Genesis 5) or the birth of Abraham (Gen.11), or dividing all of pre-exilic history into half (by assigning twelve priests from the Exodus to Solomon’s Temple and twelve from the Temple to the Exile in 1 Chronicles 6:1–15)
e. To perform a military function of numbering the warriors. A good example is Numbers 26.
f. To legitimate individuals (or to enhance their statures). A good example is the genealogy of Moses and Aaron in Exodus 6:14–26.
g. To establish and preserve the homogeneity of the Jewish community, found only in lists in Ezra-Nehemiah (and in rabbinic tradition).
h. To demonstrate the continuity of the people of God through great calamity (i.e., that they survived, despite exile). Good examples of this are found in both the genealogical lists in 1 & 2 Chronicles and Ezra-Nehemiah.
i. To express a “priestly” concern for order and arrangement, and the conviction that “the course of history is governed and ordered according to a pre-arranged plan.”
 

2. Outline of 1 Chronicles 1-9

a Non-tribe unit: Israel’s past (IChron.1:1-54)

b Royal tribe: Judah (with King David’s family) (IChron.2:1-4:23)

c Peripheral tribes (IChron.4:24-5:26)

d Centre: Tribe of Levi (IChron.6:1-81)

c’ Peripheral tribes (IChron.7:1-40)

b’ Royal tribe: Benjamin (with King Saul’s family) (IChron.8:1-40)

a’ Non-tribe unit: Israel’s present (IChron.9:1-34)
 

3. Divine plan

The length of the genealogies (from the beginning of time to the present time) affirms a divine plan for creation, humankind and especially for Israel. They show us that God’s promises and purposes for Israel continue.
Chronicler’s Message: God is controlling and guiding world history and every individual life.
 

4. Israel the goal

The first chapter moves from Adam (v1) to Israel (v34) which suggests that Israel is the goal of God’s creative purpose. The fact that the greater part of the genealogies is devoted to the ancestry of Israel as opposed to other nations also emphasizes Israel’s unique place in God’s plans.

Israel’s place in the world is the major point of the presentation of chapter 1. Here Israel, a small stateless community…sets forth its place within humanity. The implication of the opening chapter is that Israel may take confidence from its election and continuing divine provision.[footnote]W J Dumbrell, The Faith of Israel (Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2002), 324-325.[/footnote]

Chronicler’s Message: Israel is at the centre of God’s plans
 

5. Centrality of Levi (IChron.6:1-81)

The descendants of Levi occupy centre stage (IChron.6:1-81), with the all-important priestly families of Levi at the centre (IChron.6:49-60).
Chronicler’s Message: The temple and its servants must have central place among the tribes for God to bless the community.
 

6. Importance of royal tribes (IChron.2:1-4:23; 8:1-40)

Next in importance are the two tribes especially connected with the monarchy, Judah and Benjamin. Presumably Judah is the first tribe because of its royal status and because it was the dominant tribe in the post-exilic community. Also, because of the part Judah’s royal family played in their past disasters some may have wondered if David’s family should have any further part to play. The Chronicler’s message was that without David’s family at the head of the nation, the Israelites would never receive the glorious kingdom they had been promised.
The Davidic genealogy in chapter 3 extends to beyond the exile and into the postexilic period. Although the Davidic dynasty is down to a shadow of its former self, God’s faithfulness to his promises is demonstrated in that David’s descendants were still alive and accounted for.
To balance the royal tribe of Judah, the next to last unit presents the other royal tribe, Benjamin. Throughout history a great number of Judahites, Benjamites, and Levites remained committed to the Davidic king and the Jerusalem temple, the two essential institutions in the Chronicler’s ideal for restored Israel.
Chronicler’s Message: The Davidic monarchy is central to God’s purposes and promises.
 

7. Northern tribes (IChron.4:24-5:26; 7:1-40).

The inclusion of the northern tribes shows the Chronicler’s desire to unite all Israel. The northern tribal genealogical details are minimal, but significant. The Chronicler’s message is that there can still be a glorious future for “all Israel” if they unite around Jerusalem and its temple. Like the earlier prophets who predicted that the restoration after exile would involve all twelve tribes (Isa 9:1-7; 11:12; Ezek 34:23-24; 37; 40-48; Hos.1:11; 3:4-5; Amos 9:11-15), the Chronicler also looked for a reunification of all Israel. The post-exilic restoration would remain incomplete until representatives of all the tribes were gathered in the Promised Land. This gave hope of inclusion and blessing to these less important tribes, and instructed the more prominent tribes to work and pray towards the goal of re-establishing all the tribes of Israel to their rightful place in the land of promise.

At a time when the northern tribes had long been in exile, the Chronicler provides a genealogical listing for all the tribes (except Zebulun and Dan); in giving such a list, the Chronicler is (1) expressing his awareness of continuity with the larger number, (2) showing his concern to include the northern tribes rather than to exclude them, (3) suggesting that he regarded the schism as neither permanent nor desirable, and (4) possibly giving some expression to an eschatological hope for a revival of the nation in its largest extent.[footnote]R Dillard and T Longman III, Introduction to the Old Testament (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1995), 173.[/footnote]

Chronicler’s Message: God will re-unite all Israel in the restoration.
 

8. Israel’s Present (IChron.9:1-34)

-The Twelve Tribes Who Returned (IChron.9:1–9)
-The Priests Who Returned (IChron.9:10–13)
-The Levites Who Returned (IChron.9:14–34)
Having opened with Israel’s most distant past, through these genealogies the author links it with its most immediate present. The last section (IChron.9:1-34) describes the post-exilic Jerusalem community, particularly those involved in the Temple service David had organized. This connects the post-exilic and the pre-exilic communities and shows that God was still interested in them
However, the Chronicler begins chapter 9 with the reminder of the exile and its cause (IChron.9:1). If post-exilic Israelites wanted God’s blessing, they had to learn lessons from their past sins and the subsequent judgment.
It is highly significant that the Chronicler only lists those who lived in Jerusalem (IChron.9:3,34). Jerusalem’s inhabitants were the centre of the restoration effort after the exile.

The function of chapter 9 is that God’s plans for the world, centered upon Israel throughout its history (chaps. 2-8), are now being taken forward in the unlikely looking remnant that clustered around Persian Jerusalem. The northern tribal details are sketchy, as if to say that their attachment to Israel is tenuous; their Israelite status, however, is affirmed, and the genealogies are, in effect, an invitation to them to recognize the primacy of Judah and Jerusalem. The message to all Israel is that there can still be a glorious future. Concentrating on Judah, Chronicles maintains the idea of a united Israel, the full twelve tribes constituted as something that, in principle, may be realized again.[footnote]W J Dumbrell, The Faith of Israel (Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2002), 325.[/footnote]

By identifying the postexilic readers as the continuation of the chosen line, the Chronicler pointed to their opportunities and responsibilities. Since they were God’s people, they were offered the opportunity of God’s blessing in the promised land. They had a solid basis for hope in the full restoration of the kingdom. But their identity as God’s elect people also entailed many responsibilities. The Chronicler’s genealogies focused on the breadth and order of the tribes of Israel, emphasizing especially the importance of the Davidic and Levitical families. If his readers were to receive the blessings of God, they had to observe these divinely ordained arrangements carefully.[footnote]Spirit of the Reformation Study Bible (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2003), 597.[/footnote]

First Chronicles 2-9 follows the order of world-Israel, Jerusalem-temple. The world of nations forms the first external circle, with Israel as the centre. The tribes of Israel form the second circle in which Judah, Benjamin, and Levi form the definite centers of gravity, with Levi in the middle; the third circle is Jerusalem and its inhabitants. The temple, the dwelling of Yahweh, and its personnel stand in the centre. So we have a series of concentric circles. The pattern is a well-thought-out one of concentric holiness.[footnote]W J Dumbrell, The Faith of Israel (Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2002), 325.[/footnote]

Chronicler’s Message: The minute providential care of God towards past generations should encourage the returnees to put Him and His worship central.

C. New Testament Analysis

1. All Israel

The ideal of “all Israel” foreshadows a dominant New Testament theme. Christ’s Kingdom is characterized by an inclusion rather than exclusion (Mat.28:19; Gal.3:28). However, the Chronicler’s desire that “all Israel” be re-united in a restored Kingdom will only be completely fulfilled when Christ returns (Rev 19:6,7; 21:3,24).

And so all Israel shall be saved (Rom.11:26).

 

2. The Son of David

The genealogies demonstrate the unbroken Messianic line. These genealogies are continued in Luke 3:23-38 and Matthew 1:1-17. There, Jesus of Nazareth is demonstrated to be the fulfillment of the prophetic promises and the end of the Davidic and Messianic line (Rom.1:3).
 

II. The Ideal Politics (1Chron. 9:35 – 2Chron.9:31)

A. General Analysis

  • David’s Reign (1 Chron.9:35-29:30)
  • Solomon’s Reign (2 Chron.1:1-9:31)

B. Detailed Analysis

1. David’s Reign (1Chron.9:35-29:30)

-David’s reign begins (IChron.9:35-12:40)

-David brings the ark to Jerusalem (IChron.13:1-16:43)

-David prepares to build the Temple (IChron.17:1-29:30)

-David’s reign ends (IChron.29:26-30)
While Samuel and Kings present both the good and the bad in David’s and Solomon’s lives, Chronicles leaves out most of the bad and focuses instead on the good in order to present them as ideals for post-exilic Israel.
Although Saul’s life and ignominious death are briefly dealt with, the brief narrative presents one of the Chronicler’s most important theological principles.

Saul died because of his unfaithfulness to the Lord. He failed to keep the word of the Lord and did not inquire of the Lord, so the Lord put him to death. Saul’s life and death became for the author a prototype or pattern of the exile situation. It painted a picture that kept recurring throughout Israel’s history. It was a pattern with which the readers of Chronicles could identify – it was an “exilic” archetype. But the author balanced this prototype with the theme of “restoration” in the following chapters. For the chronicler, David fulfilled in part a savior role.[footnote]B Arnold and B Beyer, Encountering the Old Testament (Grand Rapids: Baker Books, 1999), 256.[/footnote]

For this reason, there is a disproportionate focus on David. Nineteen out of sixty five chapters are devoted to him as contrasted with the passing reference to Saul’s life and ignominious death. In 1 Chronicles 11-19 there are 76 references to David.

In 1 Chronicles King David is presented in all his strength. In consequence there are significant omissions: David’s agonizing years with King Saul; his seven-year reign over Judah prior to becoming king of all Israel; his many wives; his sin with Bathsheba and treachery towards Uriah; and the rebellion of his sons Absalom and Adonijah. In this book, with the exception of the census (IChron.21:1-30), the king is presented in his best light, for he personifies the hopes of the nation. He is the one to whom the Israelites look for a type of the Messiah/Deliverer.[footnote]G Crossley, The Old Testament Explained and Applied (England: Evangelical Press, 2002), 352.[/footnote]

David is not only the pattern and paradigm of kingship, but also the Davidic covenant, dynasty and temple are the future hope for the post-exilic community.

God had chosen David’s line and the temple in Jerusalem to be the instruments of blessing for his people through all generations. But this hope of blessing was conditional. The Chronicler also presented David and Solomon as models to be imitated. The postexilic community had to devote itself to the ideals of the united kingdom. Humble and faithful reliance on God, commitment to Davidic rule and devotion to the temple were essential to receiving the blessing of God.[footnote]Spirit of the Reformation Study Bible (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2003), 597.[/footnote]

Chronicler’s Message: The Davidic throne is the key to God’s blessing for Israel.
 

2. David becomes king (1 Chron.9:35-12:40)

-God transfers support from Saul to David (IChron.9:35-10:14)
-Israel transfers support to David (IChron.11:1-12:40)
The Chronicler begins his account of the monarchical period with Saul’s disastrous reign and the divine rejection of him (1Chr.10:14). This serves as a black background upon which the Chronicler presented in glowing terms the Davidic monarchy and its divine and human support. Scenes of divine blessing, depicted by joyous celebration and feasting, close each of the three main sections of David’s kingship – his becoming king, his bringing the ark into Jerusalem, and his preparation for temple building.
Chronicler’s Message: Both God and man authorized and supported the Davidic king.
 

3. David brings the ark to Jerusalem (1 Chron.13:1-16:43)

-David’s failure (IChr.13:1-14)

-David’s blessings (IChr.14:1-17)
International recognition, a large progeny, military victories and worldwide fame

-David’s success (IChr.15:1-16:43)
David’s initial failure regarding the return of the ark is balanced with his eventual success. The central section highlights God’s blessings on David despite his earlier failure and encourage him to re-attempt the ark’s return in the right way.
The ark was the most important item in the tabernacle and was looked upon as the footstool of Israel’s God and King. By bringing it into Jerusalem, David set a perfect example for the Chronicler’s post-exilic readers in making their King and Temple the centre of the rebuilt community.
Chronicler’s Message: The returnees will be blessed if they put God’s worship first.
 

4. David Prepares for Solomon’s Temple-building (1 Chron.17:1-29:30)

In this section David prepares for Solomon’s Temple building by collecting the building materials (IChr.18:1-20:28), locating the Temple site (IChr.21:1-22:1), commissioning the Temple construction (IChr.22:2-19), and transferring power to Solomon (IChr.23:1-29:25).
The Chronicler’s account of the Davidic covenant in 1 Chronicles 17 intentionally omits the clause about chastening upon disobedience found in 2 Samuel 7. While Samuel highlights the element of conditionality, the Chronicler’s emphasis is clearly upon its unconditionality. Other references show that the Chronicler did indeed regard the dynasty as eternally established (2 Chron.13:5; 21:7; 23:3).
Although David was prohibited from building the temple, more than half of the Chronicler’s presentation of David concerned his preparations for temple construction. He prepared the site (IChr.21:18,22,28; 2 Chr.3:1), drew up the plans, collected the building materials (IChr.22:1-5) and structured the duties of the Levites, priests, musicians, singers, gate-keepers and treasurers (IChr.23:1-26:32). By focusing on David’s enthusiasm for the temple, the Chronicler drew attention to the necessity of similar devotion to the temple in his day in order to secure God’s blessings.
Samuel presents David as King. However, Chronicles emphasizes his priestly role in returning the ark, organizing the Levites and preparing the temple site and materials. We see a merging of the two roles which would indicate that the Chronicler saw Israel’s future hope in a priest-king.
Chronicler’s Message: Devotion to the temple and its services will secure God’s blessing.
 

5. Transfer of power to Solomon

The Chronicler sometimes describes and records characters and events in ways that recall earlier characters and events. For example, the transfer of leadership from David to Solomon is described in ways that recall the transfer of leadership from Moses to Joshua.
a. Moses and David are both disqualified from achieving their main goals – Moses of entering the land and David of building the Temple – and this is related to the appointment of their successors, who fulfill these goals (Deut.1:37–38; 31:2–8; 1 Chron.22:5–13; 28:2–8).
b. Parallels in genre and even phrases between Joshua’s and Solomon’s accessions. See such phrases as “Be strong and of good courage”; “Do not fear and do not be dismayed”; “The Lord your God is with you”; “He will never leave you nor forsake you”; and the stress on prospering through obeying the law (most of these are in 1 Chronicles 22 and 28, and echo phrases found in Joshua 1).
c. Both Moses and David announce their successors privately first (Deut.1:23; 1 Chron.22:6), then publicly (Deut.31:7–8; 1 Chron.28:20).
d. Both Joshua and Solomon enjoy the immediate and enthusiastic support of the people (Deut.34:9; Josh.1:16–18; 1 Chron.29:23–24).
e. God “magnified” both Joshua and Solomon (Josh.3:7; 4:14; 1 Chron.29:25; 2 Chron.1:1).

Not only is Solomon portrayed as a worthy successor to David in the same way that Joshua is to Moses, he is also portrayed as a “second David” in his own right. This portrayal makes the point that, like David, Solomon too was chosen by God, designated as the king through whom the blessings would follow, and that he was even more blameless than David.

These typologies are not merely inventions by the Chronicler. Rather, his choice of information to communicate and the manner in which he communicates it, reveal a conscious patterning of later figures after earlier ones. This helps him to make the important point that these righteous kings were doing things right, that they were faithful to God and were blessed by God in ways similar to these earlier men, who were paradigms of virtue.[footnote]D M Howard, An Introduction to the Old Testament Historical Books (Chicago: Moody Press, 1993), Electronic Edition.[/footnote]

 

6. Solomon’s reign (2Chr.1:1-9:31)

a Solomon’s wisdom and wealth (2Chr.1:1-17)

b Solomon’s international relations (2Chr.2:1-18)

c Solomon builds the temple (2Chr.3:1-5:1)

d Dedication of the Temple (2Chr.5:2-7:10)

c’ God accepts the temple (2Chr.7:11-22)

b’ Solomon’s international relations (2Chr.8:1-9:12)

a’ Solomon’s wisdom and wealth (2Chr.9:13-28)

  • Solomon’s reign ends (2Chr.9:29-31)

 

7. The idealization of Solomon

As with the reign of David, the Chronicler edits out most negative elements of Solomon’s reign. Whereas the writer of Kings presented the value of Solomon’s reign as well as his failures, he appears to have few if any flaws in Chronicles. The Chronicler omits the power struggle at the beginning of Solomon’s reign, his Egyptian wife and his downfall.

In addition to moral idealization, Chronicles portrays Solomon as an astounding political leader. This aspect of his characterization depended on the widespread support Solomon received…Beyond this, Solomon is also idealized as a religious leader. With the omission of the king’s political struggles and syncretism, the vast majority of Solomon’s reign focuses on his building and organizing the temple. Six of the nine chapters given to Solomon report his cultic activities as demonstrations of his wisdom (2Chron.2:1-7:22). The chronicler’s characterization of Solomon formed a striking contrast with that of his source. Instead of a balanced, round figure, Solomon becomes a one-sided, ideal character. The chronicler viewed Solomon’s reign as a golden era, a time when the people, the king, and the temple were in proper order. For this reason, he presented an idealized Solomon to provide his postexilic readers with a flawless model for their reconstruction efforts.[footnote]L Ryken and T Longman III (Editors), The Complete Literary Guide to the Bible (Grand Rapids; Zondervan, 1993), 197-199.[/footnote]

This idealization of the reigns of David and Solomon could be dismissed as a kind of glorification of the “good old days.” Yet when coupled with the Chronicler’s emphasis on God’s promise to David of an enduring dynasty (1 Chron.17:11-14; 2 Chron.13:5, 8; 21:7; 23:3), the Chronicler’s treatment of David and Solomon reflects a “messianic historiography.” David and Solomon in Chronicles are not just the David and Solomon who were, but the David and Solomon of the Chronicler’s eschatological hope. At a time when Israel was subject to the Persians, the Chronicler still cherished hopes of a restoration of Davidic rule, and he describes the glorious rule of David and Solomon in the past in terms of his hope for the future.[footnote]R Dillard and T Longman III, Introduction to the Old Testament (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1995), 174.[/footnote]

Chronicler’s Message: Solomon’s glorious past reign is a pattern for present reconstruction and for future eschatological hope.
 

8. The extent of Solomon’s kingdom

Solomon’s reign is Israel’s “golden age” of peace and prosperity. His kingdom, covering 50,000 square miles, stretched from Egypt in the south-west to the River Euphrates in the north-east. At the centre of this vast kingdom is the magnificent temple (1Chr.22:5).
Chronicler’s Message: God will bless faithfulness by expanding and securing the borders of Israel as He did with Solomon.
 

9. The centre of Solomon’s kingdom

All of Solomon’s reign is enclosed by the theme of his wisdom (2Chron.1:1-17; 9:13-28). Solomon’s international recognition demonstrates the extent of his wisdom (2Chr.2:1-18; 8:17-9:12). At the heart of the king’s reign, however, is his devotion to construction projects, especially of the temple (2Chr.3:1-5:1; 8:1-15).

Solomon’s temple-building activities are presented, with conscious allusion to David, and thus Solomon’s action is perceived as the faithful completion of David’s initiative. Thus, David is drawn into the building of the temple and its cultic arrangements, so that the cult becomes a memorial of David’s reign. David is the true cult founder, rather than Solomon, who merely carried out his father’s instructions. David had established the conditions of rest that permitted temple building, and the Chronicler is more concerned with the Davidic dynasty’s relation to the temple than with the dynasty itself.[footnote]W J Dumbrell, The Faith of Israel (Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2002), 327.[/footnote]

Chronicler’s Message: Continue in the line and example of David and Solomon in reconstruction of the temple.
 

10. Solomon’s prayer of dedication (2Chron.6:12-42)

This lengthy prayer was uttered on the occasion of the dedication of the Temple in Jerusalem. It is a mature and wide-ranging prayer of praise and petition firmly rooted in the Mosaic and Davidic covenants.
Both the transfer of the ark and the dedication of the temple are marked by divine epiphanies.

Solomon’s prayer (2Chron.6:40-42) is immediately followed by a fire theophany on the altar of burnt offerings (2Chron.7:1). This event is intended to parallel the revelation of Yahweh’s glory on Mount Sinai (Exod.19:18-19; 20:18), and, more specifically, the theophany that answered David’s prayer at I Chronicles 21:26. So Solomon’s prayer had been granted, and just as Solomon had completed Yahweh’s house, so Yahweh had affirmed David’s dynasty.[footnote]W J Dumbrell, The Faith of Israel (Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2002), 327.[/footnote]

Solomon’s prayer established a pattern for future kings to follow as can be seen in the reigns of the first four kings of Judah.

In each case, the kings faced a military threat, called out in prayer, and received God’s blessing: (1) Rehoboam and the nobles of Judah uttered a prayer of repentance during the Shishak invasion (2 Chron.12:6). In response, God blessed Judah with a reprieve from total destruction. (2) During Abijah’s reign, the Judahites “cried out to the LORD” (2Chr.13:14) in battle against Jeroboam and won the victory. (3) Asa offered a lament in his battle against the Cushites (2Chr.14:11) and succeeded. (4) Jehoshaphat “cried out and the LORD helped him” (2Chr.18:31) against the Syrians. He also offered a lengthy public lament before defending Jerusalem against the Moabites, Amonites, and Meunites (2Chr.20:5-12). All but one of these passages (2Chr.18:31) came from the chronicler’s hand. They represent his own effort to show how Solomon’s prayer anticipated future events. The first four kings of Judah demonstrated that praying to God in and toward the temple had dramatic effects on Judah’s history…. The chronicler returned many times to the theme of prayer. Prayer had brought God’s blessing to Judah many times in the past. The hopes of the postexilic community rested on their attention to praying in and toward the temple as well.[footnote]L Ryken and T Longman III (Editors), The Complete Literary Guide to the Bible (Grand Rapids; Zondervan, 1993), 203-204.[/footnote]

The pattern of prayer established by Solomon may also be seen in the lives of Hezekiah (2Chron.32:30) and Manasseh (2Chron.33:12-13).
Chronicler’s Message: Follow the pattern of Solomon’s prayer for community prosperity.
 

11. Covenant Renewal

Blessing came only to those who were faithful to the covenant (2Chr.6:14). After departing from the covenant, God’s people were required to renew and re-affirm their covenant commitments. We see such a renewal in the days of Solomon; but also in the days of Asa (2Chr.15:12), Joash and Jehoiada (2Chr.23:16), Hezekiah (2Chr.29:10) and Josiah (2Chr.34:32). The Chronicler used these past examples of covenant renewal to guide the present people of God in renewing the covenant.
Chronicler’s Message: Follow Solomon’s example by renewing the covenant.

C. New Testament Analysis

1. Religious Assemblies

The Chronicler’s concern with religious assemblies finds fulfillment in Christ and his Kingdom. Jesus came to earth to build his Church, a sanctified assembly belonging to God.

And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it (Mat.16:18).

 

2. Royal observance of worship

King Jesus gives us the perfect example of royal worship.

Christ ushered in the Kingdom of God with a passion for holy worship. Even as a child, he was devoted to the temple practices (Lk.2:46). In his confrontation with Satan, Christ stated triumphantly that the only proper object of worship is God (Mt.4:10). He drove out thieves from the temple courts (Mt.21:12-13; Jn.2:14-15). He explained that genuine worship is not confined to a geographic location, but must be done in Spirit and in truth (Jn.4:20-24).[footnote]Spirit of the Reformation Study Bible (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2003).[/footnote]

 

3. God’s name

Just as Israel could only be strong by drawing upon the power of God’s Name, so the New Testament Church can only be strong by drawing on the power of Christ’s name (Acts 2:21; 4:12).
 

4. Covenant

Christ’s coming instituted the New Covenant, a covenant which built upon the previous Old Testament Covenants with Abraham, Moses and David. The New Covenant was the covenant renewal which post-exilic prophets looked towards. This New Covenant was sealed and ratified by Christ’s blood (Lk.22:20; 1 Cor.11:25; Heb.7:22).
 

III. The Message

Original Message: Israel will prosper if it recognizes God’s selection and ordering of His people, and if they model the new kingdom on the ideal reigns of David and Solomon.
Present Message: The Church will prosper if it recognizes God’s selection and ordering of His people and if they model the new kingdom on the ideal reign of the greatest son of David.