Also the Lord tells you that He will make you a house. 2 Samuel 7:11
David’s first official act as king over Israel was to recover the Ark of the Covenant. His second official act was going to be to build God a Temple that would house the Ark. David’s heart was in the right place, his desire was biblically sound, and he had the spiritual support of the prophet Nathan, but what he didn’t have was God’s approval. Through Nathan, God would in effect tell David, “Did I ask you to build Me a house? I anointed you as king because you’re a shepherd, not a builder. I have a builder in mind and you ain’t him!” We might think this would be upsetting to David.
God Never Says No
Or more accurately, God never says just no. In other words if our Father seemingly vetoes our plans, it is only because He has something better in store for us. That’s a very good thing to remember when we pray. The fact of the matter that David was not qualified to build the temple because of the blood on his hands is not relevant—God had bigger plans for David since time began and the good news is that He has bigger plans for us also.
But What About Psalm 37:4
Didn’t David write in the Psalm, “Delight yourself also in the Lord, And He shall give you the desires of your heart,” and wasn’t building God’s Temple the desire of David’s heart? It most certainly was his desire. But the reality is that when we pray and when God rejects our plans, we better learn to pray according to God’s will. The lesson David learned was that his desire (initially) was not God’s desire. Twenty four hours later, when David got the word from Nathan, he knew God’s heart as it pertained to this matter and as a result he was ecstatic.
“Who am I, O Lord God? And what is my house, that You have brought me this far…what more can David say to You? For You, Lord God, know Your servant. For Your word’s sake, and according to Your own heart, You have done all these great things, to make Your servant know them…You are great…there is none like You, nor is there any God besides You…For You have made Your people Israel Your very own people forever; and You, Lord, have become their God…O Lord God, the word which You have spoken concerning Your servant and concerning his house, establish it forever and do as You have said…let Your name be magnified forever…O Lord God, You are God, and Your words are true, and You have promised this goodness to Your servant” 2 Samuel 7:18-28 (abridged)
Does this sound like a man whose desires and plans were rejected by God? Absolutely not! David got it; he saw the bigger picture. God didn’t tell David ‘No,’ He told him, “I’ve got better things for you my son!” The truth is that God has better things for us too, regardless of how He responds to our prayers. Like David, He wants to build a house for us as well! Check this out…
…As living stones, are being built up a spiritual house…no longer strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, having been built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ Himself being the chief corner stone, in whom the whole building, being joined together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord, in whom you also are being built together for a dwelling place of God in the Spirit. 1 Peter 2:5a + Ephesians 2:19-21
If you’re not fired up, you should be. God’s building a house for Himself and we are that house! Like David, we should proclaim to Him, “Who am I, O Lord God? And what is my house, that You have brought me this far!”