1 Kings 1:28-48 – True Succession

Read 1 Kings 1:28-48

benches surrounded by orange and yellow leaves of fall season

Realizing his own avoidance or possibly forgetfulness, David rises to the occasion here and finally proclaims the new king. We see a climax in this reading as the “true” succession will now take place. David’s other son, Adonijah, will soon learn he jumped the gun and is not the rightful heir to the throne. After all, it is God who gifted the people with a king. It was up to God who was “up next.” David obediently sets up Solomon to be the next king.

David said to his wife, Bathsheba, “As surely as the Lord lives, who has rescued me from every danger, your son Solomon will be the next king and will sit on my throne this very day, just as I vowed to you before the Lord, the God of Israel.” David doesn’t waste any time. He knows he needs to take fast action before the people desert him again and follow Adonijah. It is Solomon’s time to shine.

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1 Kings 1:5-27 – Who Will Be King?

Read 1 Kings 1:5-27

Talk about taking advantage of a situation. We see one of David’s sons, Adonijah, decide to make himself king. Adonijah is not the first of David’s sons to pull a stunt like this. The passage doesn’t say anything about God blessing Adonijah’s plan. David hadn’t reprimanded Adonijah either, but appears he may not have known this was all going on.

Adonijah’s plans become known to the king thanks to his wife, Bathsheba and his trusted prophet, Nathan. Both fear that the king will soon die leaving the throne in the hands of Adonijah. We don’t know Adonijah’s motives, but certainly he is enjoying the attention, the feasting, and tricking everyone to follow him as new king. Didn’t anybody wonder why David was not involved in the announcement? Why do you think some of David’s trusted inner circle chose to help Adonijah?

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1 Kings 1:1-4 – Growing Old

Read 1 Kings 1:1-4

A gray-haired couple walking away from camera with back packs, holding hands

As we approach 1 Kings, it will help if we remember this is history. It’s not just historical facts, figures, and events either. Many people may question whether it’s relevant to us today. After all, these are battles fought long ago in a land far away (for most of us). The book focuses on its first audience and their orientation to God. For us, let’s enjoy the storytelling!

These first few chapters will close out the story of King David. For more on David’s life story, refer to 1 and 2 Samuel. In this passage, we see a very old and fragile King David. Having just spent some time in a nursing home recently with my father, I can just imagine how hard it is for the people to see David declining in this way. Once a mighty warrior, yet always a man seeking after God.

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2 Samuel 24:1-25 – A Sin and a Prayer

Read 2 Samuel 24:1-25

store window with the sign: "Sinners wanted, Inquire Within"

Why in the world would God incite David to do something that would later bring punishment? Clearly, we have no way of understanding God’s motivation here. You might recall when God “hardened Pharoah’s heart” leading to more and more plagues. That’s another example of not truly understanding God’s motives.

This is the final story, and you can see some parallels to the story of punishment in Chapter 21, the bookends to the closing chapters of 2 Samuel. God often works in patterns as we have seen during the time of the judges.

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2 Samuel 23:8-39 – Top of the Class

Read 2 Samuel 23:8-39

Here we go with another list to close out the saga of King David as told in 2 Samuel! This one celebrates David’s top warriors. I thought it interesting that the top 3 are not part of the top 30. I suppose there are different criteria to place you in one group or not at all.

Do you think that David’s men were competitive? I hadn’t really thought about it in terms of the warriors themselves. We’ve certainly seen how the appointed leader, specifically Joab, really took his position seriously and was certainly ruthless when it came to killing others who threatened him. Notice he didn’t make the list of the top 30 or the top 3 for that matter!

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