1 Now when David was settled in his palace, he said to Nathan the prophet, "Here I am living in this beautiful cedar palace, but the Ark of the LORD's covenant is out in a tent!"
2 Nathan replied, "Go ahead with what you have in mind, for God is with you."
3 But that same night God said to Nathan,
4 "Go and tell my servant David, `This is what the LORD says: You are not the one to build me a temple to live in.
5 I have never lived in a temple, from the day I brought the Israelites out of Egypt until now. My home has always been a tent, moving from one place to another.
6 And I never once complained to Israel's leaders,* the shepherds of my people. I have never asked them, "Why haven't you built me a beautiful cedar temple?" '1
7 "Now go and say to my servant David, `This is what the LORD Almighty says: I chose you to lead my people Israel when you were just a shepherd boy, tending your sheep out in the pasture.
8 I have been with you wherever you have gone, and I have destroyed all your enemies. Now I will make your name famous throughout the earth!
9 And I have provided a permanent homeland for my people Israel, a secure place where they will never be disturbed. It will be their own land where wicked nations won't oppress them as they did in the past,
10 from the time I appointed judges to rule my people. And I will subdue all your enemies. " `And now I declare that the LORD will build a house for you--a dynasty of kings!
11 For when you die, I will raise up one of your sons, and I will make his kingdom strong.
12 He is the one who will build a house--a temple--for me. And I will establish his throne forever.
13 I will be his father, and he will be my son. I will not take my unfailing love from him as I took it from Saul, who ruled before you.
14 I will establish him over my dynasty and my kingdom for all time, and his throne will be secure forever.' "
15 So Nathan went back to David and told him everything the LORD had said.
16 Then King David went in and sat before the LORD and prayed, "Who am I, O LORD God, and what is my family, that you have brought me this far?
17 And now, O God, in addition to everything else, you speak of giving me a lasting dynasty! You speak as though I were someone very great,* O LORD God!2
18 What more can I say about the way you have honored me? You know what I am really like.
19 For my sake, O LORD, and according to your will, you have done all these great things and have made them known.
20 "O LORD, there is no one like you--there is no other God. We have never even heard of another god like you!
21 What other nation on earth is like Israel? What other nation, O God, have you redeemed from slavery to be your own people? You made a great name for yourself when you rescued your people from Egypt. You performed awesome miracles and drove out the nations that stood in their way.
22 You chose Israel to be your people forever, and you, O LORD, have become their God.
23 "And now, O LORD, do as you have promised concerning me and my family. May it be a promise that will last forever.
24 And may your name be established and honored forever so that all the world will say, `The LORD Almighty is God over Israel!' And may the dynasty of your servant David be established in your presence.
25 "O my God, I have been bold enough to pray this prayer because you have revealed that you will build a house for me--an eternal dynasty!
26 For you are God, O LORD. And you have promised these good things to me, your servant.
27 And now, it has pleased you to bless me and my family so that our dynasty will continue forever before you. For when you grant a blessing, O LORD, it is an eternal blessing!"