Brief Type Study of David

David is one of the most iconic Old Testament characters. A serious filmmaker could write an incredible screenplay based on his life. It really has all the intrigue and interesting facets of a fantastic story – love interests, war, a very admirable protagonist from humble beginnings, unique moral issues, etc.

As an aside, what I mean by “type” study is that I’m looking at the scriptures and pointing out patterns that amplify and resonate with one another. God’s language in the scriptures above and beyond the plain sense are the many harmonious patterns and repetitions of the same events in different circumstances, such as Jesus mirroring every aspect of the Passover Lamb of Exodus short of physically being a lamb.

History does truly repeat itself, and it is obvious that it does when God is annotating it.

The Pattern & Progression of Sin

The Book of Genesis records that through deception & unbelief, Eve & Adam doomed humanity to the prospects of death, sweat, labor, and pain. However, as later patterns bear out, the sin of Eve wasn’t as severe as the sin of Adam. Eve’s sin didn’t carry generational consequences:

Rom 5:12-14 ESV – Therefore, just as sin came into the world through one man, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men because all sinned– for sin indeed was in the world before the law was given, but sin is not counted where there is no law. Yet death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over those whose sinning was not like the transgression of Adam, who was a type of the one who was to come.

This is part of the explanation as to how Jesus could be a sinless, perfect sacrifice when he was “born of a woman.” Theoretically, the sin of Adam was transmitted from man to child, not from woman to child. Adam’s sin was one of treason, whereas Eve’s was one of deception. Adam’s dereliction of his responsibility to guard for and atone for his wife properly resulted in his blaming Eve for his own sin (and, indirectly, blaming God for placing Eve in the garden with him), and the rest of the biblical account is God showing men the consequences of betrayal and the path back to him.

So the nature of the sin is entirely different between Adam and Eve. Catholics have their own explanation for the issue of Mary, which I am still wrestling with.

One might argue that they were “one flesh” and therefore the “one man” part of it implies both were equally as culpable. I disagree, as the man was charged with certain major responsibilities in which he was derelict, regardless how you understand “one flesh.” This is no different than the fact that the trinity espouses three persons in one Godhead.

Eve’s sin was the complete biblical concept of deceiving sin:

1Jo 2:15-16 ESV – Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world–the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride of life–is not from the Father but is from the world.

Gen 3:6 ESV – So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate, and she also gave some to her husband who was with her, and he ate.

The primary avenues deception enters humanity is through their desires for experiential pleasures (desires of the flesh), perceived pleasures (desires of the eyes), and the power to live as we wish without repercussion (pride of life).

Similarly, the difference between Peter’s sin and Judas’ sin was that Peter’s was a matter of being deceived into thinking he was stronger than he was, that he could handle the knowledge of good and evil and still always decide to be good. He would surely go to death for Jesus.

Judas’ was an overt betrayal after having seen Jesus perform miracles, after receiving direct instruction and explanation of parables from Jesus, after seeing what Jesus said come true over and over, and after knowing what the scriptures said about Messiah and how Jesus fit those patterns. Judas chose to approach the Chief Priests and Elders who had rejected Jesus as Messiah, and finding no redemption, cast the thirty pieces of silver into the temple and hung himself. Peter eventually returned to Christ and was restored. Immediate death came from Judas’ sin, whereas Peter’s eventual death was unto God.

Sins in deception have a progression; they produce sins of treason or unbelief. Sarah’s deception into thinking they could fulfill the promises of God with Hagar produced a treasonous act by Abraham – adultery. Similarly, when Saul was told by Samuel to wait for him in to perform sacrifice yet did it without him because of his fear, he was deceived into thinking it was the same thing or just as good as obedience to the command. Sarah was deceived into thinking that a surrogate was sufficient to actually having a child herself.

Adam blamed Eve (and by extension, God who placed her in the garden with him) when God confronted him, so the act was partially treasonous to her. The story of original sin is the original redpill story; man acts within the woman’s frame despite his better judgment, then blames her for his lack of leadership and steadfastness.

Sin causes a man to be treasonous to everyone around him. This resulted in generations of treason, via Ishmael, Esau, and most of Israel after the Assyrian and Babylonian diasporas.

David was at fault in a few areas:

  1. David followed the desires of the flesh in wanting to kill Nabal, but was prevented by Abigail (1 Sa 25).
  2. Bathsheba/Uriah. The scriptures remind you of this event in many places where it seems strange to mention – it was a permanent black mark on David and his family:

[1Ki 15:5 ESV] 5 because David did what was right in the eyes of the LORD and did not turn aside from anything that he commanded him all the days of his life, except in the matter of Uriah the Hittite.

[Mat 1:6 ESV] 6 and Jesse the father of David the king. And David was the father of Solomon by the wife of Uriah,

David followed the desires of his eyes & the pride of life by adultery with Bathsheba, insisting that Uriah go home and sleep with his wife shortly after he impregnated her (so the timing of a child would not have been strange), and finally having Uriah the Hittite killed indirectly to cover his own sin. It was egregious enough for David to be told:

[2Sa 12:10 ESV] 10 Now therefore the sword shall never depart from your house, because you have despised me and have taken the wife of Uriah the Hittite to be your wife.

David’s sins produced chaos in his family. Even Absalom, his own son, rebelled against him to take the throne (David also multiplied wives against the Torah, and had a political marriage with the daughter of a foreigner: Talmai, king of Geshur, an Aramean/Syrian Kingdom, from which Absalom came). This came about because David refused to appropriately punish his son, Amnon, for rape. It is possible his conscience was not clear because he knew his own faults and also that his moral authority was in shambles. Absalom used David’s inability to act as a judge and connect with the people as a just ruler to turn much of Israel against David:

[2Sa 15:2-6 ESV] 2 And Absalom used to rise early and stand beside the way of the gate. And when any man had a dispute to come before the king for judgment, Absalom would call to him and say, “From what city are you?” And when he said, “Your servant is of such and such a tribe in Israel,” 3 Absalom would say to him, “See, your claims are good and right, but there is no man designated by the king to hear you.” 4 Then Absalom would say, “Oh that I were judge in the land! Then every man with a dispute or cause might come to me, and I would give him justice.” 5 And whenever a man came near to pay homage to him, he would put out his hand and take hold of him and kiss him. 6 Thus Absalom did to all of Israel who came to the king for judgment. So Absalom stole the hearts of the men of Israel.

Rise of a Contender Because of Unbelief, and Restoration by a True King

Going back to the period of the Judges and Samuel, David’s kingdom comes from Israel’s own disbelief and demand for a king from Samuel “like the other nations”, as Jesus’ coming was because of Israel’s own unbelief, and as they did not see him for what he was because they expected a king like the other nations.

Much of Israel still wanted a Saul at the time of Jesus, not a David. A “Saul” would be someone who looked the part, smashed Rome, and established a kingdom by military means. Israel had its justifications in the scriptures for this, but that was only half of what the promised Messiah would be.

Self Defense: David chose not to destroy Saul and take the kingdom by force, even given ways he could have justified it. Saul harassed David and sought to kill him. Jesus also said that he could have requested 12 legions of angels had he wished to defend himself. David respected Saul’s anointing so much that he thought it worthy of risking his life, despite Saul’s repeated attempts to kill him:

1Sa 24:10 ESV – Behold, this day your eyes have seen how the LORD gave you today into my hand in the cave. And some told me to kill you, but I spared you. I said, ‘I will not put out my hand against my lord, for he is the LORD’s anointed.’

Samuel’s Anointing: Jesus was approved and baptized by John the Baptist, which was a powerful enough testimony since John was accepted as a prophet as Samuel was. It is also interesting that Saul was “troubled by a spirit” very shortly after David was anointed by Samuel, and Jesus’ opposition began as soon as he was anointed by John the Baptist. When David began to rise, Saul began to grow worse. Similarly, when Jesus began to rise in esteem, resistance increased.

Popular support for David and against Saul: David was known to Israel as a mighty warrior, so much so that even the Philistines had heard of the songs the young women had sung about him:

1Sa 29:4-5 ESV – But the commanders of the Philistines were angry with him. And the commanders of the Philistines said to him, “Send the man back, that he may return to the place to which you have assigned him. He shall not go down with us to battle, lest in the battle he become an adversary to us. For how could this fellow reconcile himself to his lord? Would it not be with the heads of the men here? Is not this David, of whom they sing to one another in dances, ‘Saul has struck down his thousands, and David his ten thousands’?”

David was known by deed through song, having slain Goliath and having been given prominent roles among the ruling elite (initially the king’s minstrel, also married the daughter of Saul by delivering one hundred foreskins of the Philistines) before his falling out with Saul. It would have been possible to take the kingdom by force as Saul grew more erratic and the state of the war with the Philistines grew worse and worse. It can reasonably be theorized that had Saul allowed David to rise without persecuting him, he and his family would not have suffered the way that they did, given that David had nothing but success against the Philistines when he was under Saul, and David had no desire to execute Saul’s children when he took power (as was customary in many kingdoms).

Saul was immediately jealous of David the songs the women sang about David when Goliath was defeated:

1Sa 18:6-9 ESV – As they were coming home, when David returned from striking down the Philistine, the women came out of all the cities of Israel, singing and dancing, to meet King Saul, with tambourines, with songs of joy, and with musical instruments. And the women sang to one another as they celebrated, “Saul has struck down his thousands, and David his ten thousands.” And Saul was very angry, and this saying displeased him. He said, “They have ascribed to David ten thousands, and to me they have ascribed thousands, and what more can he have but the kingdom?” And Saul eyed David from that day on.

Saul feared for the state of his kingdom as David rose to prominence. When David was anointed (and Samuel did so in secret for fear of Saul), an evil spirit troubled Saul. Saul used violence against David to maintain his kingdom until he finally ceded David’s life and died going against the Philistines.

Likewise, as soon as John the Baptist arose, a conflict of kingdoms had begun and the ruling Jewish elite would be required to use violence to maintain their worldly status as the heirs of Israel’s eventual kingdom:

Mat 11:11-14 ESV – Truly, I say to you, among those born of women there has arisen no one greater than John the Baptist. Yet the one who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he. From the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven has suffered violence, and the violent take it by force. For all the Prophets and the Law prophesied until John, and if you are willing to accept it, he is Elijah who is to come.

Their jealousy began as soon as they saw Jesus called the Lamb of God by John the Baptist. Their violence in putting Jesus forth to be killed cemented their status as “cut off” and set up the eventual transference of power and authority into his hands (remember, even Jesus recognized that the Pharisees sat in Moses’ seat):

Mat 28:18 ESV – And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.

Even after the Saul issue is removed by God, Israel will not unite around David’s kingdom (Jesus). Only Judah clung to David at first. After seven years, the rest of Israel was united around him.

Rom 10:18-21 ESV – But I ask, have they not heard? Indeed they have, for “Their voice has gone out to all the earth, and their words to the ends of the world.” But I ask, did Israel not understand? First Moses says, “I will make you jealous of those who are not a nation; with a foolish nation I will make you angry.” Then Isaiah is so bold as to say, “I have been found by those who did not seek me; I have shown myself to those who did not ask for me.” But of Israel he says, “All day long I have held out my hands to a disobedient and contrary people.”

The disciples themselves thought Jesus would restore the physical kingdom of Israel in his lifetime and then again after his resurrection:

Act 1:6 ESV – So when they had come together, they asked him, “Lord, will you at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?”

Likewise, David’s men entreated him to let them kill Saul:

1Sa 26:8-9 ESV – Then Abishai said to David, “God has given your enemy into your hand this day. Now please let me pin him to the earth with one stroke of the spear, and I will not strike him twice.” But David said to Abishai, “Do not destroy him, for who can put out his hand against the LORD’s anointed and be guiltless?”

Jesus also had to deny attempts to make him the king prematurely:

Jhn 6:15 ESV – Perceiving then that they were about to come and take him by force to make him king, Jesus withdrew again to the mountain by himself.

In this vein, Jesus also makes an interesting statement about the kingdom of heaven:

Mat 11:11-14 ESV – Truly, I say to you, among those born of women there has arisen no one greater than John the Baptist. Yet the one who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he. From the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven has suffered violence, and the violent take it by force. For all the Prophets and the Law prophesied until John, and if you are willing to accept it, he is Elijah who is to come.

Jesus doesn’t initially take the kingdom by violence (although he does confirm it with an iron rod later):

Heb 10:12-13 ESV – But when Christ had offered for all time a single sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of God, waiting from that time until his enemies should be made a footstool for his feet.

This references Jesus. Jesus and Peter directly impute the Psalm as referring to Jesus when the original verse referred to David.

Psa 110:1 ESV – A Psalm of David. The LORD says to my Lord: “Sit at my right hand, until I make your enemies your footstool.”

Luk 20:41-44 ESV – But he said to them, “How can they say that the Christ is David’s son? For David himself says in the Book of Psalms, “‘The Lord said to my Lord, “Sit at my right hand, until I make your enemies your footstool.”‘ David thus calls him Lord, so how is he his son?”

Act 2:34-35 ESV – 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.”‘

This all circles back to the Church & Israel. To unite both of them, David (Jesus) cannot wage all out war up front. He has to prove that he wants a real collaboration and a real unity among the various tribes, not one by force. This was nearly made impossible because of Joab’s thoughtless revenge in killing Abner over his brother. However, David was able to demonstrate publicly that it was not his will for that to occur:

2Sa 3:35-37 ESV – Then all the people came to persuade David to eat bread while it was yet day. But David swore, saying, “God do so to me and more also, if I taste bread or anything else till the sun goes down!” And all the people took notice of it, and it pleased them, as everything that the king did pleased all the people. So all the people and all Israel understood that day that it had not been the king’s will to put to death Abner the son of Ner.

David continued this approach, even when two men attempted to capitalize on the situation by killing Ishbosheth son of Saul, the ruler of Israel to deliver the kingdom to David by force:

2Sa 4:9-12 ESV – But David answered Rechab and Baanah his brother, the sons of Rimmon the Beerothite, “As the LORD lives, who has redeemed my life out of every adversity, when one told me, ‘Behold, Saul is dead,’ and thought he was bringing good news, I seized him and killed him at Ziklag, which was the reward I gave him for his news. How much more, when wicked men have killed a righteous man in his own house on his bed, shall I not now require his blood at your hand and destroy you from the earth?” And David commanded his young men, and they killed them and cut off their hands and feet and hanged them beside the pool at Hebron. But they took the head of Ish-bosheth and buried it in the tomb of Abner at Hebron.

David knew recognition of his legitimacy had to come from within Israel, or it would be no different than ungodly kingdoms where the will to power is all that matters and each new regime kills off the families of the prior kingdom. This would have to be a kingdom that bore God’s own legitimacy.

2Sa 5:1-3 ESV – Then all the tribes of Israel came to David at Hebron and said, “Behold, we are your bone and flesh. In times past, when Saul was king over us, it was you who led out and brought in Israel. And the LORD said to you, ‘You shall be shepherd of my people Israel, and you shall be prince over Israel.'” So all the elders of Israel came to the king at Hebron, and King David made a covenant with them at Hebron before the LORD, and they anointed David king over Israel.

Likewise, there will be a time when the remnant of Israel will recognize who Jesus is and join the church in worship of him.

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