The Expository Files

Old Testament Kingdom Prophecies Fulfilled

Number 4 of 12 in the Second Coming Series

"As to this salvation, the prophets who prophesied of the grace that would come to you made careful search and inquiry, seeking to know what person or time the Spirit of Christ within them was indicating as He predicted the sufferings of Christ and the glories to follow" (I PETER 1:10,11). The prophets of the Old Testament spoke about the mission of Christ. The New Testament announces that these things have been fulfilled in Jesus (I PETER 1:12). The King has come, and is reigning over His kingdom. Many in the religious world deny this saying that He will establish and reign over His kingdom only when He returns. They say that the kingdom has been postponed and these prophecies have yet to be fulfilled; that Jesus is not yet on His throne.

The prophets employed many figures and symbols to illustrate the Messianic Kingdom. The New Testament affirms that they have already been fulfilled in Jesus.

(Spoken to David) "When your days are complete and you lie down with your fathers, I will raise up your descendant after you, who shall come forth from you, and I will establish His kingdom...I will establish the throne of His kingdom forever..." (II SAMUEL 7:12-17). Is this prophecy about the establishment of the eternal kingdom and throne yet to be fulfilled? Or has it been accomplished? According to many, Jesus will come again to fulfill this prophecy. But according to the New Testament, He has already fulfilled it.

This prophecy is quoted in ACTS 2:30 as being fulfilled when Jesus was raised from the dead and was exalted to God's right hand; "He looked ahead and spoke of the resurrection of Christ" (ACTS 2:29-33). The Father has announced that His Son has taken His rightful place on His throne; "But of the Son He says, 'Thy throne, O God, is forever and ever, and the righteous scepter is the scepter of His kingdom" (HEBREWS 1:8).

"But as for Me, I have installed My King upon Zion, My holy mountain...Thou art My Son, Today I have begotten Thee...Ask of Me and I will surely give the nations as Thine inheritance..." (PSALM 2:6-9). Again, many look to a future age when Jesus will come back to fulfill this prophecy. They believe He will be made king on literal Mount Zion and will rule from there over the nations of the world. But the New Testament affirms that this prophecy has been fulfilled by the resurrection of Jesus; "that God has fulfilled this promise to our children in that He raised up Jesus, as it is also written in the second Psalm, 'Thou art My Son, this day I have begotten Thee" (ACTS 13:30-33). It is the gospel which has been "made known to all the nations, leading to the obedience of faith" that has given Jesus an inheritance of all the nations (ROMANS 16:25,26).

"And the wolf will dwell with the lamb...lion will eat straw like an ox...They will not hurt nor destroy in all My holy mountain, for the earth will be full of the knowledge of the Lord...Then it will come about in that day that the nations will resort to the root of Jesse...(ISAIAH 11:6-10). Several things will happen "in that day". Some say that they know for sure that this prophecy has yet to be fulfilled. Certainly a literal fulfillment was not intended, but rather this passage is speaking of the peace between former enemies that is to take place under the Messiah. In fact, again the New Testament pronounces this passage fulfilled and applies it to the peace between Jew and Gentile, former enemies made one in Jesus, "Wherefore, accept one another just as Christ also accepted us to the glory of God...and again Isaiah says, 'There shall come the root of Jesse, He who arises to rule over the Gentiles, In Him the Gentiles hope.'...(ROMANS 15:7-13; EPHESIANS 2:13-18).

"Then I will set the key to David's house on his shoulder...(ISAIAH 22:22). This prophecy has to do with the Lord giving Eliakim authority in Jerusalem. He was to be given responsibility and authority in Isaiah's day. Whether it is Messianic or not is hard to tell, but it is interesting to note that Jesus affirms that He has been given "the key of David..." (REVELATION 3:7). This signifies that He has been given the rule and authority that had been promised Him.

"To raise up the tribes of Jacob, and to restore the preserved ones in Israel; I will also make you a light of the nations, so that My salvation may reach to the ends of the earth" (ISAIAH 49:6). It is spiritual Israel now that fulfills this prophecy; not physical Israel in the future. Paul and Barnabas spoke of this passage being fulfilled in the preaching of the gospel to the Gentiles (ACTS 13:47,48).

"So they will fear the name of the Lord from the west...and a Redeemer shall come to Zion..." (ISAIAH 59:19,20). This and other prophecies like it speak of a renewal in Zion. Many look to the future when they believe that Jesus will return to literal Israel and literal Mount Zion to fulfill this promise. But again, the New Testament pronounces it already fulfilled in spiritual Zion or Israel; the church (ROMANS 11:25-27). The Israel in this passage is spiritual Israel. Of this there can be no doubt because that is one of the more significant points of the Letter to the Romans. It is not the physical descendants of Israel that are God's people, but children of faith. (ROMANS 9:6-8; 2:28-29).

The prophecies have been fulfilled. The kingdom has come. We look for Jesus' coming not to fulfill these prophecies, but to deliver His kingdom back to God in heaven (I CORINTHIANS 15:23-26).

By Jon W. Quinn
From Expository Files 6.4; April 1999