Aged David Makes Solomon King

1 Kings 1 and Psalm 50

Psalm 50 spoke to me this morning:

But to the wicked person, God says: “What right have you to recite my laws or take my covenant on your lips? You hate my instruction and cast my words behind you…”Psalm 50:16-17

The psalm compares those who are good, striving to serve God and beginning in verse 16, those who are wicked. Currently, our nation is divided because of our elected president. Many people who claim to be Christ followers have taken sides. When I read the quote above I see there are many that fall into this camp, casting God’s words behind them. Simply makes me sad. Should I be mad as well? Should I join the throngs that march?

Sacrifice thank offerings to God, fulfill your vows to the Most High, and call on me in the day of trouble; I will deliver you, and you will honor me.Psalm 50:14-15

Lord, give me wisdom to offer thanks to you, to fulfill the vows to honor and give you all the glory.

David Makes Solomon King

David is so old that his attendants have to have someone sleep with him to keep him warm (not a sexual advance). He’s coming to the end of his days and everyone knows the time is nearly come.

Adonijah, the next son in succession after Absalom, takes it upon himself to become David’s successor. He doesn’t ask, but David hasn’t actually said anything in rebuke, so Adonijah presses on. He quite intentionally doesn’t invite Nathan (the prophet) and others close to David, but he does get the support of Joab and Abiathar the priest, so they head off to begin establishing themselves by offering sacrifices.

Nathan hears about this and confers with Bathsheba (Solomon’s mother). He advises her to go to David and tell him what is going on, assuming David doesn’t know, and remind him of his promise to the Lord that Solomon would become king after David. Nathan assures her he will follow right behind so David gets a one-two punch reminder of his oath.

Bathsheba goes in and reminds David, followed by Nathan. David doesn’t miss a beat. He recalls Bathsheba and proclaims “Solomon your son shall be king after me, and he will sit on my throne in my place.” 1 Kings 1:30 Further, David gave instructions for Solomon’s anointing and presentation to the people.

Blow the trumpet and shout, ‘Long live King Solomon!’ Then you are to go up with him, and he is to come and site on my throne and reign in my place.1 Kings 1:34-35

Meanwhile, Adonijah’s party hears the commotion and wonders what’s happening. Abiathar’s son Jonathan comes to give a report, not the news they wanted to hear, “Not at all!” (1 Kings 1:43) I’m sure he remembered that messengers bringing bad news to kings had fatal results, so Jonathan lets them know up front: I have bad news to tell!! He’s careful to report accurately without gloating or emotion, facts.

At this, all Adonijah’s guests rose in alarm and dispersed. 1 Kings 1:49

We’re outta here! Everyone, including Adonijah, is afraid of what’s next (although there’s no hint that Joab is concerned). He asks Solomon to swear that he will not be harmed. Solomon, already wise, even before asking for the blessing of wisdom replies:

If he shows himself to be worthy, not a hair of his head will fall to the ground; but if evil is found in him, he will die. 1 Kings 53

Adonijah comes and bows before Solomon and Solomon sends him home. The conclusion of this thread is in the next chapter. Spoiler alert: not so good for those who crossed David in the past!

And so we have the introduction to the Kings beyond David and the drama begins to unfold. I’ve never watched Game of Thrones, only seen ads and snippets, but it seems like it could be based on narratives such as this (okay, loosely based, but you get what I mean). Up and down. Lies and deceit. May we learn what was said in Psalm 50 and give God the honor and glory.

Thoughts about serving others

This link includes a list of posts about Serving the Least, the Lost, and the Lonely.

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Let the Word evoke words. May your life encourage lives.

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