1 Kings 1-2, Psalm 37, 71, 94
Click here for today’s reading –IT WILL TAKE TWO SEPARATE CLICKS — for some reason I could not get the reading to all come under one link.
Today we have a lot of information cover…so hang on… here we go…
1 Kings 1-2 — We begin the reading with a UNITED kingdom. David died at the age of 70 but not before Solomon was crowned King at 19. We read a brief description of David’s blessings upon Solomon and the Nation of Israel in the last chapter of 2 Samuel. However, 1 Kings 1-2 gives us a little more information of what “else” was going on….and it was major!
Adonijah was David’s oldest surviving son (but actually his 4th son). I am sure he ASSUMED he would be able to take the throne as the next in line. so we can naturally understand why he would have thought/desired this role. However, he KNEW that Solomon had been appointed by David AND BY GOD. His actions were very wrong and he was being totally deceitful (look at ALL the people he left OUT of his “party” invitation.) And look who joined his team (Joab — DAVID’s military general and commander in chief; and Abiathar–one of DAVID’s two priests!!!!) WHAT were these two men thinking??? Weren’t they part of the Nation of Israel when David blessed the nation and appointed Solomon publicly in 2 Samuel 24??? I think so!!
AND, when Adonijah was asking for permission to marry Abishag (David’s “heating pad” in his old age…I’m serious… read it for yourself in 1 Kings 1:1) it was NOT about love!!! We are told she was a virgin, she served David, and David had “no intimate relations with her;” BUT she was still considered part of David’s Harem. Therefore, when Adonijah asked Bathsheba to ask Solomon if he could have Abishag….THIS was a BIG political move on his part. THIS WAS THE SAME AS TAKING THE THRONE!! Taking a king’s woman was a power play move. It would have been a LOUD statement for the kingdom to hear!! Remember when Absalom and David were fighting and David left all his concubines at the castle then Absalom went to the castle and had sex on the ROOF TOP in the day light for ALL to see?? Absalom was making a BIG statement about being in control and taking ALL David had…publicly. Well, Adonijah was making the SAME power play but tried to make it appear so innocent. Solomon was wise and KNEW what Adonijah was trying to do. Solomon had no choice but to kill him. (But also KNOW that she was BEAUTIFUL because we will read about her again in Song of Songs/Solomon.)
Nathan was David’s prophet and Solomon’s teacher growing up. Actually, back in 2 Samuel 12:25, Nathan called Solomon Jedidiah meaning “The Lord’s Darling.” Nathan remained loyal to David and to Solomon. Interesting how he encouraged Bathsheba to advise David of all Adonijah was doing in making himself King, and knew to come in to emphasis the truth of what she was saying. I am sure Nathan KNEW if he had not of done this then David would have allowed it to happen based on his past lack of discipline with his son and with Joab.
Did you begin to feel as if you were reading a story of the “Jewish Mafia” with people being killed off? BUT KNOW it was necessary!! In past books we read chapter after chapter of the Lord saying “do not associate with idol worshippers, or be sure to kill ALL the people in the land I have told you to possess?” Well, Solomon, wiser than David, was actually doing it. Why did Solomon choose to take the lives of certain people and not others? Let’s look at a few.
Joab was David’s highly skilled, ruthless commander in chief/military general. We have seen his loyalty to David….ummmmmmm….until this chapter when he joins forces with Adonijah!! We have seen his hot temper, his extreme desire for power when he killed Abner and Amasa (each of who would have replaced Joab’s posiition) so Joab killed them both. Joab made quick power decisions some beneficial to David in conquering the land for unity. He followed orders without question as when he followed David’s orders to have Uriah killed (Bathsheba’s husband). He also killed people when DIRECTLY advised by David NOT to do so, like Abner and Absalom. NOW, Joab had made his final political/power play scheme and joined Adonijah’s team…..”the other side.” Solomon did something David should have done LONG ago…had Joab killed while he was clutching the horns of the altar in hopes that his location would prevent his death….NOT!!
Abithar the High Priest, also went to side with Adonijah. He was from the family of Eli. Eli was the priest into whose hands Hannah placed her very young Samuel in order to keep the Nazarite vow she had made to God for blessing her with Samuel. In 1 Samuel 2:31 there was a prophecy declaring that this priestly line of Eli would END forever. In Kings 1:26-27 this prophecy was fulfilled. (hint–hint—hint: ALL prophecy is fulfilled!!!) Solomon did not have Abithar killed but he removed him from the priesthood, had him sent away, and replaced him.
There are 2 different Shimei in this chapter. A good Shimei, and the one bad one. Do you remember the Shimei, the Benjamite, who threw rocks and sand at David and his men as well as cursed them? Well, the “bad Shimei’s” time was up.
Solomon built his staff with loyal men like Zadok (the priest who had been loyal to David remained loyal to Solomon and was a descendant of AARON) and Benaiah (he was one of David’s mighty men, –2 Samuel 23:20-23– and captain of David’s bodyguard.) I’d say Solomon is off to a great start!! The chapter ends “The Kingdom was firmly established in Solomon’s hands.”
Psalm 37 — was written by David and has a theme of trusting in The Lord and waiting on HIM. Sounds simple enough…but not always easy!! Verse 4: “Delight yourself in The Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart.” When I was just born again I thought this meant that if I delighted myself in The Lord then HE would give me all the desires of my heart…..in due time. Unfortunately not all my desires had pure motives or were in line with God’s plans… for example desiring the next promotion for an increase in power and position rather than as a way to share more of God with others through the income increase and through my actions. As I have matured I have come to understand a much deeper meaning of this, and that meaning you ask? The more I read the Word, the more my heart’s desires come in line with God’s ways…not worldly things (not that I don’t still desire some worldly things…but I bet you know what I am trying to say). And the more in line I am with God’s ways…the more my heart’s desires are in line with who He is….and there is peace and joy when I see those desires become a real part of my life.
Psalm 71 was written by an anonymous author with the theme that God is our constant, permanent helper — regardless of age. NO where in the bible does it say that God only answers the prayers of the young, or that HE only takes care of people up to a certain age. Age is irrelevant to God. He sees our hearts. He actually encourages all of us to be like children in the same way they so purely and openly trust and love and believe and keep hope…and ..and…and…. Don’t get me wrong he wants us to grow and mature in our knowledge and wisdom of him which means we are obedient to HIS word and take action when we should (like tithing, taking care of the poor, needy, widows, the sick, the helpless, etc.) However, in our growth He desires that our trust, faith, love, hope, and belief in HIM grow deeper, stronger, fuller …as we see when we look at young children living in loving homes….
Psalm 94 — another Psalm written by an anonymous author with a theme of God protecting and redeeming HIS people. We are reminded that God disciplines those HE loves. If you are a parent or in a position of raising children, you KNOW how hard it is to discipline your children. It requires consistency, persistence, and sometimes following through with things that we don’t desire to do but know if we don’t the children will NEVER learn (just think about David’s children…Absalom turned against his father and wanted to kill him as well as be king, Absalom killed his brother for raping his sister, Adonijah simply decided to make himself king knowing he was doing the wrong thing.) Don’t get me wrong… there are some children who are so head strong that I know parents’ who have done ALL they could do but the child refused to listen and that is not what I am speaking of. I am specifically speaking of parents who simply do not discipline, they allow a 2 year old to make all the decisions in the house and that behavior is hard to “undo.”
I loved verse 19–“When anxiety was great within me, YOUR consolation brought joy to my soul.” Somedays in life…ALL we have to depend on is our Abba Father’s (Daddy God’s) consolation, favor, refuge, grace, mercy, love, and blessings. The GREAT news is HE IS ALWAYS WITH US…regardless of circumstances, regardless of how we feel, regardless of losses…HE IS FAITHFUL.
Sharing HIS love,