When God Says “NO” (Part 2)

Now it was in the heart of David my father to build a house for the name of the Lord, the God of Israel. But the Lord said to David my father, “Whereas it was in your heart to build a house for my name, you did well that it was in your heart. Nevertheless, it is not you who shall build the house, but your son who shall be born to you shall build the house for my name.” (2 Chronicles 6:7-9 ESV).

Let me refresh your memory a bit. Yesterday we began this little series concerning those times when God tells us “no.” The thoughts are born out of my preparation for a message that I will preach in February at Gospel City Church in Arlington. At this writing, the pastor, Mark Mangrem, is preaching a series dealing with the life of David. In his absence one Sunday, I am continuing that series with this experience of David when God told him he could not build the Temple. This might have been the loneliest moment of David’s life.

Make no mistake; it was a good dream. As David sat in his palace, he felt guilty that he lived in the lap of such luxury when the presence of God lived inside of a tent.  David believed that a God of such glory should have a house befitting His majesty. Our reading today is from the dedication of the Temple after Solomon, David’s son, finished the work; and, in it we are shown with certainty that David’s dream was a good desire. David is not asking for anything at this point, his desire is not to receive, but to give.  He wants to give something back to the God who has given him everything.  That ought to be the desire of all of us.  We could never possibly repay the Lord for all that He has done for us.  And thankfully he hasn’t asked us to even attempt that! But, there should be a desire within us to see Him honored and glorified, regardless of the cost.  David had no ulterior motives in wanting to build the Lord a house.  His desire was to see the Lord glorified and honored.  He wanted God to be exalted and he wanted the Lord to receive the glory and honor that He deserved.  David possessed a godly desire.

It is ALWAYS good to have a dream!  We do need to be certain that our dreams are from the Lord.  While David had a good dream, his dream was not God’s dream.  He is even encouraged to follow the dream by the prophet Nathan (cf. 2 Samuel 7:3). He didn’t even pray about it.  It sounded good to him, and he thought the dream was of the Lord too. Apparently, David’s dream had all the earmarks of a desire impressed upon him by the Lord.  But, his dream turned out to be his own creation and not the will of the Lord. The incredible grace of God is so apparent here. God does not tell David he cannot build the Temple because of some sin or failure in his life. He has plenty of those, but God had long since forgiven him. God told him “no” because he had a much greater “yes.” God’s plan for our lives is always better than we can think ourselves. His call is for trust. That’s difficult sometimes; however, it is always better!