We're going to take a short pause from the storyline of 1 Kings, because King David will die in the next chapter and before we continue with the Reign of Solomon, there's much to say about this truly great man, David, whose heart beated for Yahuah his whole life. Aside from Moses, David was the closest person to Yahuah, infact so strong was his passion and love for the Living Alahim of Yisharal that Yahuah even used David's life and character to shadow His own, when He would appear as the Word made flesh (Yahusha) the ultimate King and Priest, ushering in what David only symbolised: a new pattern of Praise Behaviour in a new temple housing the Portal of His Presence, made available to all nations who would repent and enter the narrow gate.
Let's dive into some Early Assembly History to discover just how significant David's example of Praise Behaviour shaped Yahusha's New Covenant Assembly. It's a blow-out!
A brief look at Acts 15 is necessary at this time, because it’s at this occasion that “The Tent of David” is specifically spoken of by Luke and then by James.
It was about the year A.D. 50-51 in Early-Assembly History when these events (Acts 15) took place.
According to His promise, Yahusha was building His Assembly but the revelation of that Assembly being like a unified Body of Messiah was not fully realised by the believers yet.
About 18 years earlier Yahusha had poured out His Spirit on the Jews, immersing them into the body of His Assembly, then again about 8 to 10 years later He’d poured out His Spirit upon the Gentiles (anyone in the nation not Jews) in the house of Cornelius, immersing them into the same Body. Peter had been the instrument in both accounts to let both Jew and Gentile into the Kingdom by the Door of belief and obedience, as the Master had promised.
However, the revelation that the Jew and the Gentile were in the ONE ASSEMBLY, the same Body of Messiah, had not yet fully dawned on the early Disciples. So Paul said (in 1 Cor 12:13), "For by one Spirit are we all immersed into one body, whether we be Yahudim or Greeks (Jews or Gentiles), whether we be bond or free, and have been all made to drink into one Spirit."
The problem at the time of Acts 15 was the conflict over the thousands of Jewish and Gentile believers coming into the Assembly of the Master Yahusha. It must also be remembered that the Early Assembly was in a great transitional period, emerging out of the Old Blood-Covenant of physical
circumcision and (what had become) endless man-made (and dead) laws, rituals and traditions of bondage ... and into Yahusha’s New Blood-Covenant which wrote the Everlasting Torah Instructions onto circumcised hearts, bringing them all to life and relevance through Messiah’s final sacrifice.
It looked as if the whole Early Assembly would be divided into two factions, two Assemblies -- a Jewish Assembly and a Gentile Assembly, dividing the Body of Messiah. Certain men had come into the Assemblies declaring that Gentiles should be circumcised, for this was the sign of the Blood-Covenant when given to Abraham and it was confirmed by Moses when Yahuah raised up the Blood-Covenant once again with him.
They also declared that the Gentiles should also keep the 613+ oral and traditional “Laws of Moses”, which involved the Moral, Civil and Ceremonial Laws referring to everything Moses was given at Sinai for the Assembly in the Wilderness. Their argument was that the Gentiles must do these things along with believing in Messiah in order to be delivered. It had become Moses on the one hand and Messiah on the other hand. So it was finally decided upon by the believers that the parties involved should go up to Yerushalim, where the first Assembly had the original Leadership of the Twelve Disciples, and they should all settle the issue.
A temporary Council convened, consisting of the Disciples and Elders to consider this conflict between the Old Covenant Assembly and the New Covenant Assembly. How could the Circumcised and Uncircumcised be reconciled in one Body?
The problem was between the flesh and the Spirit, between dead ritual law and living trust and belief in Yahusha, who'd (again) tweaked those same very laws and written them on hearts instead of merely stone.
Was deliverance with physcial circumcision or without circumcision? Paul and Barnabas circumcised Hebrews, disputed with the Pharisaical Teachers, having Messiah in one hand and Moses in the other hand. There was strong argument, and much struggle as the matter was debated.
It's not hard for us to imagine this is it? What if a Jewish person (or a carpet-bagging teacher) came into your Assembly (or online) and started telling you that you were just `all caught up in the hype' and not really delivered, because you weren't physcially circumcised or doing the shadow traditions of Hebrews with all their feasts and traditions? Is it really any different today?
Anyway the argument was settled by four men: Peter, Barnabas, Paul and finally James got up and stated how Yahusha had poured out His Spirit on both circumcised and uncircumcised alike, proving that race, lineage and bloodlines no longer mattered when a repentant heart is transformed through the new circumcision from a divine source (and therefore no physical circumcision was required, being a "yoke on the neck" that neither Jews then nor their forefathers could bear).
THIS 'YOKE OF SLAVERY' IS NOT REFERRING TO THE TEN COMMANDMENTS WRITTEN ON STONE AND PLACED IN THE ARK, BUT TO THE CUSTOMARY LAWS (SHADOWS) NOW BEING PROPPED UP BY A MAN-MADE RELIGION THAT DENIED AND MURDERED YAHUSHA - THIS WAS THE YOKE) .
After the other guys speak, James gets up and (appealing to their own Scriptures) quotes the Prophet Amos, saying,
“And after this I will return, and rebuild the Tent of David, that has fallen down and I’ll rebuild it’s ruins and set it up, so that a portion of mankind might seek Yahuah, even all the nations, upon whom My Name is called, says Yahuah, who is doing this.”(ACTS 15)
Interstingly it wasn’t Peter's vision of going to the Gentiles or Barnabas and Paul's journeys to the Gentiles, that became the final decision at the Council at Yerushalim, but an Early Scripture spoken by the Prophet Amos. James, by a Word of Wisdom quotes this unusual passage of Scripture concerning the Gentiles, even as Peter on the Day of Pentecost had quoted from the Prophet Joel concerning the outpouring of the Spirit on the Jews.
And the final decision of the council was that the Gentile Assemblies did not have to be physically circumcised or be troubled by the Pharisaical Teachers of the dead traditional oral-laws. There was only four things they do to do:
a. No Idolatry.
b. No Immorality
(sexual behaviour outside the marriage).
c. No eating strangled animals (cruel).
d. No drinking blood (has life in it).
But why did James quote this passage from the Prophet Amos, regarding David's Tent?
It seems to have absolutely nothing to do with the immediate context, either before or after. So what has the rebuilding of the David's Tent got to do with the Gentiles coming into the Reign of Yahuah? What is the Tent of David? Why not have the Gentiles come into the splendor of the Tabernacle of Moses? Or the splendor of Solomon's grand Temple? Didn't David have a palace? So what's this about a silly little Tent? Did Gentiles get into David's Tent? Again, where was David's Tent at this time? If it’s to be built again and its ruins raised up as in the days of old, then what will this building look like? Exactly what happened in the days of old?
BY LOOKING AT THE HEBREW AND THE SCRIPTURE WE WILL GLEAN AN ABSTRACT UNDERSTANDING OF JUST WHAT DAVID, THIS SHEPHERD BOY WHO LOVED PRAISING YAHUAH WITH ALL HIS HEART, REALLY ACHIEVED IN HIS PRIMITIVE (DARKENED) ERA FOR YAHUAH.
The Hebrew Words:
SUKKAH (booth/tent/hut/) were all used (often inter-changeably) to describe a temporary dwelling . . .
. . . a covering, home, tabernacle, tent, hut or booth (having both secular and set-apart uses). Obviously it wasn’t the structure itself but WHO lived in it that transformed it from being secular and common into divine and set-apart.
“DAVID'S OHEL" (tent) was actually Yahuah’s House, Yahuah’s Dwelling Place and Yahuah’s home. The Ark of the Blood-Covenant wasn't placed in David's House, as it had been in Obed-edom's House for three months. It was placed in a OHEL (tent) that had been pitched in Mt. Zion (the city of David), and here Yahuah’s new order of Praise was established and Zion took on a more set-apart meaning, both spiritually and politically.
We all know what the Tabernacle of Moses was (in the wilderness, then finally in Gibeah) and also the grand Temple of Solomon in Yerushalim. But there are a number of Scriptures which speak or allude to a “Tent of David” and that IT will be rebuilt. So what’s that all about ?
Let's look at the five spots it's mentioned :
A. The Prophet Samuel said, “And they brought in the Ark of Yahuah, and set it in His place, in the midst of the Tent that David had pitched for it and David offered Ascending-Near(BURNT) Offerings and Intimate-Peace Offerings before Yahuah(MEANING IN HIS PRESENCE).”(2 SAM 6 BRS)
B. The Prophet Isaiahsaid, “The Throne will be established in kindness and He will sit on it in truth, in the Tent of David judging, and seeking right-ruling, and speeding up righteous behaviour.”(ISAIAH 16 BRS)
C. The Prophet Amossaid, “‘In that day I will raise up the Tent of David that's fallen, and close up it’s breaches and raise up his ruins. And I'll build it up as in the days of old, that they may possess the remnant of Edom, and all the nations, who are called by My Name’, says Yahuah Who does this."(AMOS 9 BRS)
D. The Disciple Stephensaid, “The Tent of Witness (TABERNACLE OF MOSES) was with our fathers in the wilderness as He appointed, instructing Moses to make it according to the pattern that he'd seen, which our fathers, having received it in turn, also brought it with Joshua into the land possessed by the nations, who Alahim drove out before the face of our fathers until the days of David, who found favour before Yahuah and desired to find a dwelling (a tent) for the Alahim of Jacob ... but Solomon built Him a House..."(ACTS 7 BRS)
E. The Disciple Jamessaid, “'And after this I'll return and rebuild the Tent of David, that's fallen down and I’ll rebuild it’s ruins and set it up, so that a portion of mankind might seek Yahuah (even all the nations) on whom My Name is called', says Yahuah, Who's doing all this.”(ACTS 15 BRS)
Remember when David looked around at his lavish palace and desired to build Yahuah a house even more impressive? Yahuah told him that wasn't going to happen (by him anyway) but promised to build David a House (2 SAM 7). How was the House of David actually built? By David himself and his seed. The House of David was both built by him and in-dwelt by him, or else by his successors to his throne (ISAIAH 7:13).
The "OHEL of David" in ISAIAH 16:5 and “SUKKAH of David" in AMOS 9 & ACTS 15 speak of the House which David built and lived in, and which his seed all lived in, establishing David's everlasting Reign.
So does the expression "Tent of David" refer to the Royal House of David and his throne in Mt. Zion? The Palace? Or the tent that David pitched in Zion for a new order of Praise-Behaviour around the Ark of Yahuah?
The "Tent of David" is never actually referred to as MISHKAN (dwelling/tabernacle) because it was simply a tent, not a wooden structure as the Tabernacle of Moses was. However, although the Tent pitched by David in Mt. Zion is OHEL and not MISHKAN, there was A NEW ORDER OF PRAISE-BEHAVIOUR ESTABLISHED THERE AND IN DUE TIME THIS WAS INCORPORATED INTO THE OFFICIAL TEMPLE-ORDER OF SOLOMON and this the ‘House’ of Yahuah (as Stephen called it). So David was actually preparing a new behaviour for the people of Yisharal using a temporary dwelling place for the Ark of the Blood-Covenant, until the Temple, the more permanent House was built by Solomon.
Therefore “David's Tent" is clearly a Scriptural expression pointing to ALL THAT DAVID WAS AND ALL THAT HE DID and it will be seen that it truly involves BOTH David’s role as a sovereign King as well as the new order of Praise-Behaviour that he established in Mt. Zion, serving Yisharal as a Priest ,
(SINCE THE LEVITES HAD ALL BUT BURNT-OUT AND LEFT THEIR CALLING).
IN OUR NEXT STUDY ON `DAVID'S TENT' WE'LL LOOK AT DAVID'S LIFE AND HOW THE WAY HE TRULY FELT ABOUT YAHUAH SET HIM APART !