King David was living in his palace, and the Lord had given him peace from all his enemies around him.
Then David said to Nathan the prophet, "Look, I am living in a palace made of cedar wood, but the Ark of God is in a tent!"
Nathan said to the king, "Go and do what you really want to do, because the Lord is with you."
But that night the Lord spoke his word to Nathan,
"Go and tell my servant David, 'This is what the Lord says: Will you build a house for me to live in?
From the time I brought the Israelites out of Egypt until now I have not lived in a house. I have been moving around all this time with a tent as my home.
As I have moved with the Israelites, I have never said to the tribes, whom I commanded to take care of my people Israel, "Why haven't you built me a house of cedar?"'
"You must tell my servant David, 'This is what the Lord All-Powerful says: I took you from the pasture and from tending the sheep and made you leader of my people Israel.
I have been with you everywhere you have gone and have defeated your enemies for you. I will make you as famous as any of the great people on the earth.
Also I will choose a place for my people Israel, and I will plant them so they can live in their own homes. They will not be bothered anymore. Wicked people will no longer bother them as they have in the past
when I chose judges for my people Israel. But I will give you peace from all your enemies. I also tell you that I will make your descendants kings of Israel after you.
"'When you die and join your ancestors, I will make one of your sons the next king, and I will set up his kingdom.
He will build a house for me, and I will let his kingdom rule always.
I will be his father, and he will be my son. When he sins, I will use other people to punish him. They will be my whips.
I took away my love from Saul, whom I removed before you, but I will never stop loving your son.
But your family and your kingdom will continue always before me. Your throne will last forever.'"
Nathan told David everything God had said in this vision.
Then King David went in and sat in front of the Lord. David said, "Lord God, who am I? What is my family? Why did you bring me to this point?
But even this is not enough for you, Lord God. You have also made promises about my future family. This is not normal, Lord God.
"What more can I say to you, Lord God, since you know me, your servant, so well!
You have done this great thing because you said you would and because you wanted to, and you have let me know about it.
This is why you are great, Lord God! There is no one like you. There is no God except you. We have heard all this ourselves!
There is no nation like your people Israel. They are the only people on earth that God chose to be his own. You made your name well known. You did great and wonderful miracles for them. You went ahead of them and forced other nations and their gods out of the land. You freed your people from slavery in Egypt.
You made the people of Israel your very own people forever, and, Lord, you are their God.
"Now, Lord God, keep the promise forever that you made about my family and me, your servant. Do what you have said.
Then you will be honored always, and people will say, 'The Lord All-Powerful is God over Israel!' And the family of your servant David will continue before you.
"Lord All-Powerful, the God of Israel, you have said to me, 'I will make your family great.' So I, your servant, am brave enough to pray to you.
Lord God, you are God, and your words are true. And you have promised these good things to me, your servant.
Please, bless my family. Let it continue before you always. Lord God, you have said so. With your blessing let my family always be blessed."