Readings: 2 Samuel 7:18-19; Psalm 131/132; Mark 4:21-25
It is a privilege to be admitted to the prayer of another person and this is what happens with the first reading today. We are allowed to eavesdrop on King David as he prays. He gives thanks to God for what He has done already for David and asks God's blessing for the future. In a few simple words we find the foundation of faith and hope in David's thoughts: 'you are God .. your words are true ..you have made this generous promise to your servant'. Such simple convictions establish and express the virtues of faith and hope.
So what about charity? That God is love and that He wishes to share the love that God is with all people? We must await a Son of David who will appear in that long time that lies ahead and of which King David also speaks in that prayer.
Another way of approaching this is to point to the name David gives God here: 'your name will be forever great .. 'the Lord of Hosts is God of Israel'. The 'Lord of Hosts' or 'God of Armies': we still call God by this name, every day, in the Eucharist. He is the Lord, God of Hosts, Deus Sabaoth. But we know now that he is also Saviour, Redeemer, Mercy, Friend, Bridegroom, Father, Servant, even Slave, of His people, Abba, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, Jesus, the Son of David and the Son of God.
This is the mystery hidden from before all time, and later revealed, that 'God is Love'. In these subsequent revelations God is faithful to His promise and answers the prayer of David. God sustained and blessed the House of David and gave him a kingdom that continued. But in the longer term God has done this in a way that completely transcends King David's expectations.
When he prayed for the blessing of his house into the long distant future, there is no way that David could have known the nature of the Son of David who was to come. But a Son of the House of David has revealed to us that God is Love. Jesus has taught us that the Father's intention was not simply to establish a terrestrial house or dynasty for King David, and so give glory to God's name as Lord of Hosts. The far-reaching intention of God was to enable the House of David, and all the people of Israel, and all the nations of the earth, to share God's own life of love, in a heavenly kingdom, forever. And to give glory forever to the name that is above all other names, Jesus, Son of David, Son of God.