Son of David

Why did the Messiah have to be a descendant of David?

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Answer

I think it is because of the covenant relationship between God and David. I think that is very, very important and significant in this sense, and I think it is also resonant with African culture in the sense that kings and chiefs are supposed to come from a particular family or descendant. So we have the royal family as well, and so all the chiefs are supposed to come from that lineage. And I think that's, you know, what happened with David as well when God entered into a covenant with him and decided that the Messiah would have to come from David's lineage. And I think that's how come that lineage was kept through the Scripture. And so you go to the New Testament, at times some of them try to point that out. So you have the lineage over there and this person gives birth to this person and so on and so forth. They try to trace that back also to show that God is a faithful God who keeps his promises as well. So he kept that promise that he made with David, and so it's also up to David and his descendants to also keep their part of the covenant as well. So I think it is because of the covenant that God had with David and also the promise he made to David. That played a role in the Messiah coming out of David. And I think for Africans it's well understood that it means David is from a royal family. So being the Messiah and King of Kings also coming from that lineage, it makes sense to Africans who also have the king coming from a particular lineage which they can also trace back to their ancestors as well.

Answer by Rev. Dr. Humphrey Akogyeram

Rev. Dr. Humphrey Akogyeram is a professor at Good News Theological Seminary in Accra, Ghana.