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What We Learn About God from An Old Testament Prayer

Do you treasure books of the Bible like 1 Chronicles? If you follow a Bible reading plan you’ll read through the Old Testament. But there’s a difference between having to read something and feeling like you get to read something. And for many, certain Old Testament books feel obligatory rather than delightful to read. But it doesn’t have to be this way. There is so much gold here, something I recently learned while reading through one of King David’s prayers.

Old testament prayer

The prayer I have in mind is 1 Chronicles 29:10-22. It’s right before David’s death, right before he passes the throne to his son. In David’s prayer, we learn many things about the Lord. Here are a few of them.

1. The Lord is blessed forever.

Verse 10: “Therefore David blessed the Lord in the presence of all the assembly. And David said: ‘Blessed are you, O Lord, the God of Israel our father, forever and ever.'”

2. Everything in heaven and on earth belongs to the Lord.

Verse 11: “Yours, O Lord, is the greatness and the power and the glory and the victory and the majesty, for all that is in the heavens and in the earth is yours. Yours is the kingdom, O Lord, and you are exalted as head above all.”

Verse 14: “But who am I, and what is my people, that we should be able thus to offer willingly? For all things come from you, and of your own have we given you”

Verse 16: “O Lord our God, all this abundance that we have provided for building you a house for your holy name comes from your hand and is all your own.”

3. All things come from the Lord, and he rules over all.

Verse 12: “Both riches and honor come from you, and you rule over all. In your hand are power and might, and in your hand it is to make great and to give strength to all.”

4. The Lord’s name is glorious.

Verse 13: “And now we thank you, our God, and praise your glorious name.”

5. The Lord tests the heart, and takes pleasure in uprightness.

Verse 17: “I know, my God, that you test the heart and have pleasure in uprightness. In the uprightness of my heart I have freely offered all these things, and now I have seen your people, who are present here, offering freely and joyously to you.”

6. The Lord is able to change hearts.

Verse 18: “O Lord, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, our fathers, keep forever such purposes and thoughts in the hearts of your people, and direct their hearts toward you. 19 Grant to Solomon my son a whole heart that he may keep your commandments, your testimonies, and your statutes, performing all, and that he may build the palace for which I have made provision.”

I fear that books of the Bible like Chronicles and Obadiah and Nahum and so forth are overlooked. In a day where some question the relevance of the Old Testament and still some speak out against it entirely, I would love to see these 39 canonical books read more often and taken more seriously.

If you take time to read some of these neglected books of Scripture — and if you take the time to read the footnotes in your study Bible for the passages you don’t understand — you will find many glorious truths about our glorious Lord. I encourage you not to skip over this part of the Bible when you read it. Indeed, I hope you come to cherish and love the Old Testament. After all, if it is good enough for Jesus, it should be good enough for you too.

You may also like: 

  1. What I’ve Learned About Leviticus After Studying it for Over a Decade 
  2. Is the Old Testament Still Relevant Today? 


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