1 Chronicles 29 – The End of David’s Reign
A. David’s offering for the temple.
1. (1-5) David’s gifts to build the temple.
Furthermore King David said to all the assembly: “My son Solomon, whom alone God has chosen, is young and inexperienced; and the work is great, because the temple is not for man but for the LORD God. Now for the house of my God I have prepared with all my might: gold for things to be made of gold, silver for things of silver, bronze for things of bronze, iron for things of iron, wood for things of wood, onyx stones, stones to be set, glistening stones of various colors, all kinds of precious stones, and marble slabs in abundance. Moreover, because I have set my affection on the house of my God, I have given to the house of my God, over and above all that I have prepared for the holy house, my own special treasure of gold and silver: three thousand talents of gold, of the gold of Ophir, and seven thousand talents of refined silver, to overlay the walls of the houses; the gold for things of gold and the silver for things of silver, and for all kinds of work to be done by the hands of craftsmen. Who then is willing to consecrate himself this day to the LORD?”
a. The work is great, because the temple is not for man but for the LORD God: One reason David did so much to prepare for the building of the temple was because he knew that the work was great and required great resources – more than a young and inexperienced king like Solomon could be expected to gather on his own.
i. The work was great because it was for God. Before a great God there are no small works; everything should be done for the glory of God (Colossians 3:22).
b. Now for the house of my God I have prepared with all my might: This was certainly true. When we consider all that David did to provide security, a location, the land, money, materials, supervisory staff, workers, plans, and an organized team to run the temple, it is evident that David gave this work of preparation all of his might.
c. Moreover, because I have set my affection on the house of my God, I have given to the house of my God: David gave all he gave because he loved the house of God. We naturally give to and support that which we love. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also (Matthew 6:21).
i. David specifically used the phrase house of my God to emphasize the personal connection; this was more personal than saying merely the house of God. Because God was David’s God in a personal sense, David loved the house of God.
ii. Over and above all that I have prepared for the holy house: David loved the house of his God so much that he gave over and above what he gave before. David did an enormous amount of preparation and resource gathering to build the temple; but now he gave more, even giving over and above.
d. Who then is willing to consecrate himself this day to the LORD? David brought up his giving – especially the over and above giving – he used it as an occasion to challenge his fellow Israelites to also consecrate themselves to the LORD.
i. Given the massive amount that David gathered for the building of the temple, it might be argued that the gifts of the people were unnecessary. Yet David knew that it was important to give the people an opportunity to give, for their sake more than for the sake of the building project itself. Their giving was a legitimate and important way to consecrate themselves to God.
ii. “The king’s appeal for each giver to ‘consecrate himself’ reads literally ‘to fill his hand.’ This was a technical phrase used to describe ordination to the priesthood; and Scripture, significantly, places the act of giving on this same level of devotion.” (Payne)
2. (6-9) The giving of other Israelites.
Then the leaders of the fathers’ houses, leaders of the tribes of Israel, the captains of thousands and of hundreds, with the officers over the king’s work, offered willingly. They gave for the work of the house of God five thousand talents and ten thousand darics of gold, ten thousand talents of silver, eighteen thousand talents of bronze, and one hundred thousand talents of iron. And whoever had precious stones gave them to the treasury of the house of the LORD, into the hand of Jehiel the Gershonite. Then the people rejoiced, for they had offered willingly, because with a loyal heart they had offered willingly to the LORD; and King David also rejoiced greatly.
a. Then the leaders…offered willingly: The people found it easy to give when they saw the greatness and the value of the project and when they had good examples of over and above giving like King David.
b. Then the people rejoiced, for they had offered willingly, because with a loyal heart they had offered willingly to the LORD: The people found that it was a joyful thing to give so generously to God. They fulfilled the later New Testament idea of the cheerful giver (2 Corinthians 9:7).
B. David’s Psalm blesses God before the people.
1. (10-12) David exalts the LORD.
Therefore David blessed the LORD before all the assembly; and David said:
“Blessed are You, LORD God of Israel, our Father, forever and ever.
Yours, O LORD, is the greatness,
The power and the glory,
The victory and the majesty;
For all that is in heaven and in earth is Yours;
Yours is the kingdom, O LORD,
And You are exalted as head over all.
Both riches and honor come from You,
And You reign over all.
In Your hand is power and might;
In Your hand it is to make great
And to give strength to all.
a. Therefore David blessed the LORD before all the assembly: The generous giving made David rejoice and praise God. It wasn’t for the sake of the wealth itself, but because it demonstrated that the hearts of the people were really interested in God and in His house.
b. Blessed are You, LORD God of Israel, our Father, forever and ever: This is the first time in the Bible that God is addressed directly as a Father over His people.
i. Jesus taught His disciples to pray beginning with this phrase, our Father (Matthew 6:9-13). Jesus may have had this passage in mind when teaching His disciples about prayer because there are other similarities between the two passages.
ii. “This verse supplies the conclusion to the Lord’s Prayer: ‘For thine is the kingdom’ (Matthew 6:13, KJV).” (Payne)
c. Both riches and honor come from You: David could say this as a man who had a life full of both riches and honor. David knew that those things came from God and not from himself.
2. (13-15) David expresses thanks for the privilege of giving
“Now therefore, our God,
We thank You
And praise Your glorious name.
But who am I, and who are my people,
That we should be able to offer so willingly as this?
For all things come from You,
And of Your own we have given You.
For we are aliens and pilgrims before You,
As were all our fathers;
Our days on earth are as a shadow,
And without hope.
a. Who am I, and who are my people, that we should be able to offer so willingly as this? David knew that both the ability and the heart to give were themselves gifts from God. He was actually humbled by having such a heart to give, both in himself and in the people of Israel as a group.
i. David knew this was true because he knew that all things come from God, and whatever they gave to God was His own to begin with.
ii. “That thou shouldst give us both such riches out of which we should be able to make such an offering, and such a willing and free heart to offer them; both of which are thy gifts, and the fruits of thy good grace and mercy to us.” (Poole)
b. Our days on earth are as a shadow, and without hope: By emphasizing the weakness of man, David recognizes the greatness of God. He can take hopeless, alien pilgrims and shadows and use them to build a great house to a great God.
i. “A shadow seemeth to be something, when indeed it is nothing; so is man’s life: and the longer this shadow seemeth to be, the nearer the sun is to setting.” (Trapp)
3. (16-19) David commits the offering received from the people to God.
“O LORD our God, all this abundance that we have prepared to build You a house for Your holy name is from Your hand, and is all Your own. I know also, my God, that You test the heart and have pleasure in uprightness. As for me, in the uprightness of my heart I have willingly offered all these things; and now with joy I have seen Your people, who are present here to offer willingly to You. O LORD God of Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, our fathers, keep this forever in the intent of the thoughts of the heart of Your people, and fix their heart toward You. And give my son Solomon a loyal heart to keep Your commandments and Your testimonies and Your statutes, to do all these things, and to build the temple for which I have made provision.”
a. In the uprightness of my heart I have willingly offered all these things: David knew that it was important to emphasize that his offering had been made willingly. He gave because he wanted to, not merely as a demonstration to induce the people to give. David therefore also knew that the people made their offering willingly to God.
b. Keep this forever in the intent of the thoughts of the heart of Your people, and fix their heart toward You: David knew that the people of Israel were in a godly, wonderful place on this day of offering to the temple.
i. “Praise then merged into prayer that the state of mind in which they had given might be maintained; and for Solomon, that he might be kept with a perfect heart to complete the work of Temple building. It was a fitting and glorious ending to a great reign.” (Morgan)
c. And give my son Solomon a loyal heart to keep Your commandments: David knew that this was the key to the lasting health of the kingdom of Israel and the security of his dynasty.
4. (20) David leads the congregation in praise to God.
Then David said to all the assembly, “Now bless the LORD your God.” So all the assembly blessed the LORD God of their fathers, and bowed their heads and prostrated themselves before the LORD and the king.
a. Now bless the LORD your God: When it came time to bless the LORD, it wasn’t enough for the people to have a feeling in their heart. They had to do something to demonstrate their heart towards God, and they bowed their heads and prostrated themselves before the LORD.
C. The end of David’s reign.
1. (21-25) The nation rejoices as Solomon is enthroned.
And they made sacrifices to the LORD and offered burnt offerings to the LORD on the next day: a thousand bulls, a thousand rams, a thousand lambs, with their drink offerings, and sacrifices in abundance for all Israel. So they ate and drank before the LORD with great gladness on that day. And they made Solomon the son of David king the second time, and anointed him before the LORD to be the leader, and Zadok to be priest. Then Solomon sat on the throne of the LORD as king instead of David his father, and prospered; and all Israel obeyed him. All the leaders and the mighty men, and also all the sons of King David, submitted themselves to King Solomon. So the LORD exalted Solomon exceedingly in the sight of all Israel, and bestowed on him such royal majesty as had not been on any king before him in Israel.
a. A thousand bulls, a thousand rams, a thousand lambs, with their drink offerings, and sacrifices in abundance: This was a special day, probably celebrated after the death of David when Solomon formally took the throne. These sacrifices were used to feed the people of Israel, and they ate and drank before the LORD in a great feast of communion with God and one another.
b. They made Solomon the son of David king the second time: This was undoubtedly the enthronement after the rebellion of Adonijah had been defeated (1 Kings 1-2).
i. “For the first time (1 Kings 1:38-39) it was done hastily, suddenly, and in [an irregular manner], by reason of Adonijah’s sedition; but this here was done with good respite and great solemnity, but whether before or after David’s death is questionable.” (Trapp)
ii. Submitted themselves to King Solomon: “After Adonijah’s death they all submitted themselves to Solomon the king. Hebrew, Gave the hand under Solomon the king; haply they laid their hand under his thigh – that ancient ceremony (Genesis 24:2, and 47:29), and sware to be faithful to him.” (Trapp)
c. Then Solomon sat on the throne of the LORD as king: “On the throne of the Lord, i.e. on the throne of Israel, which is called the throne of the Lord, either more generally, as all thrones are the Lord’s, by whom kings reign, Proverbs 8:15, and magistrates are ordained, Romans 13:1-2…signifies which the Lord gave him.” (Poole)
d. And bestowed on him such royal majesty as had not been on any king before him in Israel: This was true, but the wise reader understands that this was only because David had made this possible. The majesty of Solomon was really inherited from the work and wisdom and godliness and prayers of his father.
2. (26-30) The end of King David’s reign.
Thus David the son of Jesse reigned over all Israel. And the period that he reigned over Israel was forty years; seven years he reigned in Hebron, and thirty-three years he reigned in Jerusalem. So he died in a good old age, full of days and riches and honor; and Solomon his son reigned in his place. Now the acts of King David, first and last, indeed they are written in the book of Samuel the seer, in the book of Nathan the prophet, and in the book of Gad the seer, with all his reign and his might, and the events that happened to him, to Israel, and to all the kingdoms of the lands.
a. The period that he reigned over Israel was forty years: Other kings over Israel or Judah had reigns longer, more secure, or more prosperous than David’s reign – but none were more glorious or godly. David remains Israel’s model king, pointing us to Jesus the Messiah, Israel’s greatest king.
b. So he died in a good old age, full of days and riches and honor: David was a great king and his greatness is especially seen in his connection with the Messiah. One of the great titles of Jesus is, Son of David.
i. “Albeit he swam to the throne through a sea of sorrows; and so must all saints to the kingdom of heaven.” (Trapp)
ii. “By birth, a peasant; by merit, a prince; in youth, a hero; in manhood, a monarch; and in age, a saint. The matter of Uriah and Bath-sheba is his great but only blot! There he sinned deeply; and no man ever suffered more in his body, soul, and domestic affairs, than he did in consequence. His penitence was as deep and as extraordinary as his crime; and nothing could surpass both but that eternal mercy that took away the guilt, assuaged the sorrow, and restored this most humbled transgressor to character, holiness, and happiness. Let the God of David be exalted forever!” (Clarke)