Recall Ruth and Boaz of Bethlehem had a son named Obed and Obed had a son named Jesse. The story continues when Jesse was visited by Samuel the prophet. These events happened about half way between Abraham and the birth of Christ.
“Now the LORD said to Samuel…I am sending you to Jesse the Bethlehemite. For I have provided Myself a king among his sons.” 1 Samuel 16:1
Jesse presented seven of his sons to Samuel. Samuel’s response:
“‘The LORD has not chosen these…Are all the young men here?’ Then he (Jesse) said, ‘There remains yet the youngest, and there he is, keeping the sheep.’” 1 Samuel 16:10-11
“…And the LORD said, ‘Arise, anoint him; for this is the one!’ …and the Spirit of the LORD came upon David from that day forward…” 1 Samuel 16:12-13
David was in fact anointed as the King of Israel and served as king for forty years beginning in 1010 BC. During his tenure as king God made a wonderful promise to David through the prophet Nathan.
“‘When your days are fulfilled and you rest with your fathers, I will set up your seed after you…and I will establish his kingdom…and your house and your kingdom shall be established forever before (me). Your throne shall be established forever.’” 2 Samuel 7:12-16
Writers of the Psalms would later confirm the covenant that God made with David.
“The LORD has sworn in truth to David…‘I will set upon your throne the fruit of your body…Their sons also shall sit upon your throne forevermore.’” Psalm 132:11-12
“‘I have made a covenant with My chosen, I have sworn to My servant David: Your seed I will establish forever…My covenant I will not break…Once I have sworn by My holiness; I will not lie to David: His seed shall endure forever…’” Psalm 89:3-4, 34-36
Several centuries later the prophets reminded the Jews of the promise God made to King David concerning his Offspring as well as His ancestry.
“There shall come forth a Rod from the stem of Jesse, and a Branch shall grow out of his roots. The Spirit of the LORD shall rest upon Him, the Spirit of wisdom and understanding, the Spirit of counsel and might…” Isaiah 11:1
The birth and even the birthplace of the future King was announced prior to the event.
“For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given; and the government will be upon His shoulder…Of the increase of His government and peace there will be no end, upon the throne of David and over His kingdom, to order it and establish it with judgment and justice from that time forward, even forever.” Isaiah 9:6-7
“But you, Bethlehem…though you are little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of you shall come forth to Me the One to be Ruler in Israel…” Micah 5:2
The coming King was closely associated with governing the future nation of Israel.
“Thus says the Lord GOD; ‘Surely I will take the children of Israel from among the nations, wherever they have gone, and will gather them from every side and bring them into their own land…David My servant (David’s descendant) shall be king over them…Then they shall dwell in the land that I have given to Jacob My servant…and My servant David shall be their prince forever.’” Ezekiel 37:21-25
Then during the life of Christ, the Jews were contending over the person and origin of Jesus. They remembered the Old Testament prophecies.
“Has not the Scripture said that the Christ comes from the seed of David and from the town of Bethlehem, where David was?” John 7:42
Thus far the scriptures quoted relate primarily to governance both of Israel and all nations. But note the following statement made by ‘David’s Righteous Branch’ to the churches.
“‘I, Jesus, have sent My angel to testify to you these things in the churches. I am the Root and the Offspring of David…’” Revelation 22:16
It appears that the concept of separation of church and state will be replaced with a single Head over both.
Just for interests’ sake, try counting the number of times the word ‘forever’ is found in this column.