This sentence is in 2 Samuel 7:14 in the RSV version, “*When he commits iniquity, *I will chasten him with the rod of men, with the stripes of the sons of men”. In regards to the italicized phrase, it seems to suggest that he will commit iniquity. How do we interpret this since we know Jesus did not sin?
The context is that David had wanted to build a temple for the Lord. Through the prophet Nathan the Lord explained to David that it was not he who was to build the temple.
Moreover, the LORD also declares to you that the LORD will make a house for you: when your days have been completed and you rest with your ancestors, I will raise up your offspring after you, sprung from your loins, and I will establish his kingdom. He it is who shall build a house for my name, and I will establish his royal throne forever. I will be a father to him, and he shall be a son to me. If he does wrong, I will reprove him with a human rod and with human punishments; but I will not withdraw my favor from him as I withdrew it from Saul who was before you. Your house and your kingdom are firm forever before me; your throne shall be firmly established forever.
- 2 Samuel 7:11-16
It is understood that this prophecy is firstly referring to Solomon who would build the first temple to the Lord after the death of David. Solomon would sin and be corrected by God but would not lose God’s favor, as promised in this prophecy.
Because the prophecy also contains elements about a throne that lasts forever it took on a secondary meaning as a messianic prophecy which we believe to be fulfilled through Jesus. In the Old Testament there are several prophecies which are considered to have “double fulfillment.” They are fulfilled partially through persons or events that took place reasonably soon after the prophecy but they also contain elements that could only be fulfilled through Jesus.
The part about sinning refers to Solomon who would build a physical temple but would be a sinner. The part about a throne that lasts forever refers to Jesus who built a temple to God through the people of God in the Church.
…The paschal event, the death and resurrection of Jesus, has established a radically new historical context, which sheds fresh light upon the ancient texts and causes them to undergo a change in meaning. In particular, certain texts which in ancient times had to be thought of as hyperbole (e.g. the oracle where God, speaking of a son of David, promised to establish his throne “forever”: 2 Sm. 7:12-13; 1 Chr. 17:11-14), these texts must now be taken literally, because “Christ, having been raised from the dead, dies no more” (Rom. 6:9). Exegetes who have a narrow, “historicist” idea about the literal sense will judge that here is an example of an interpretation alien to the original. Those who are open to the dynamic aspect of a text will recognize here a profound element of continuity as well as a move to a different level: Christ rules forever, but not on the earthly throne of David (cf also Ps. 2:7-8; 110: 1.4)…
…The term (), which is relatively recent, has given rise to discussion. The fuller sense is defined as a deeper meaning of the text, intended by God but not clearly expressed by the human author…
…It has its foundation in the fact that the Holy Spirit, principal author of the Bible, can guide human authors in the choice of expressions in such a way that the latter will express a truth the fullest depths of which the authors themselves do not perceive. This deeper truth will be more fully revealed in the course of time—on the one hand, through further divine interventions which clarify the meaning of texts and, on the other, through the insertion of texts into the canon of Scripture.