1 Kings 1
First Kings begins with the death of David and the succession of Solomon.
Solomon was, except for a period of sinfulness; a type of Jesus Christ, while Solomon’s kingdom was a type of the kingdom of God. Solomon’s reign knew mostly peace; and he was also the wealthiest king and the wisest man who ever lived, apart from Jesus Christ.
Solomon became the King of Israel. “Then Solomon sat on the throne of his father David; and his kingdom was firmly established.” (1 Kings 2:12).
Jesus Christ is the King of Kings. “And He has on His robe and on His thigh a name written: KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS.” (Rev. 19:16).
Solomon’s kingdom knew a time of unprecedented peace (1 Kings 4:24,25). This time of physical peace eventually ended with Solomon’s son because of sin (1 Kings 11:14,23,26); but the reign of Messiah the Christ will last forever.
Solomon was rich with yearly tax revenue equaling 39,960 pounds of gold. plus much silver and other income of animals and grain, and income from trade (1 Kings 10:14, (see all of 1 Kings 10). He had an opulent palace and many building projects, the pinnacle of which was Solomon’s temple (1 Kings 6:14-22), and the wisdom of Solomon is legendary.
In the immediate future Jesus Christ will begin to rule the whole earth bringing in an era of peace, wisdom and spiritual and physical prosperity never before known.
1 Kings 1:1 Now king David was old and stricken in years; and they covered him with clothes, but he gat no heat.
David was old and failing fast and always feeling cold as he lay upon his death bed. It was determined, because his wives were also old, to bring in a young girl to warm the king with body heat. At this point, although this was not intended by the Creator,; polygamy [and divorce] was permitted because of the hardness of men’s hearts.
1:2 Wherefore his servants said unto him, Let there be sought for my lord the king a young virgin: and let her stand before the king, and let her cherish him, and let her lie in thy bosom, that my lord the king may get heat. 1:3 So they sought for a fair damsel throughout all the coasts of Israel, and found Abishag a Shunammite, and brought her to the king.
The damsel did her best to warm David with her embrace.
1:4 And the damsel was very fair, and cherished the king, and ministered to him: but the king knew her not (did not consummate the relationship) .
Then Adonijah the king’s son sought to take the throne. Higgith was the mother of Adonijah, the fourth of David’s sons, born (according to 2 Samuel 3) in Hebron.
The story of Saul and David is an allegory of the kingship of Satan over this earth and Satan’s struggle to avoid being replaced by the called out of God after having disqualified himself by his failure to obey God.
The story of Adonijah trying to seize the kingdom from Solomon is an allegory of Satan trying to usurp the coming King of kings and to stop Messiah the Christ from replacing Satan as the king of this world.
1:5 Then Adonijah the son of Haggith exalted himself, saying, I will be king: and he prepared him chariots and horsemen, and fifty men to run before him.
David did not discourage Adonijah, being weak, ill and close to death, perhaps even being unaware of the situation.
In the order of David’s sons Adonijah was born fourth, after Maachah bore David’s third son Absalom
1:6 And his father had not displeased [discouraged] him at any time in saying, Why hast thou done so? and he also was a very goodly man; and his mother bare him after Absalom. 1:7 And he conferred with Joab the son of Zeruiah, and with Abiathar the priest: and they following Adonijah helped him.
The prophet, the priesthood and certain other leading men knowing that David had promised Solomon to be king, were against Adonijah
1:8 But Zadok the [the always loyal high priest, who is promised the great reward of the millennial physical priesthood of the New Covenant by God, Ezekiel 44:15] priest, and Benaiah the son of Jehoiada, and Nathan the prophet, and Shimei, and Rei, and the mighty men which belonged to David, were not with Adonijah.
Adonijah threw a campaign party to make himself king, but God’s prophet and his high priest and some of David’s mighty men were not called to the feast.
1:9 And Adonijah slew sheep and oxen and fat cattle by the stone of Zoheleth, which is by Enrogel, and called all his brethren the king’s sons, and all the men of Judah the king’s servants: 1:10 But Nathan the prophet, and Benaiah, and the mighty men, and Solomon his brother, he called not.
Then Nathan spoke to Bathsheba informing her that their lives were endangered because if Adonijah became king he would surely slay his rival Solomon and all of Solomon’s supporters. Today, if Satan were to remain king of this world and overcome Christ, Satan would surely slay his rivals.
1:11 Wherefore Nathan spake unto Bathsheba the mother of Solomon, saying, Hast thou not heard that Adonijah the son of Haggith doth reign, and David our lord knoweth it not? 1:12 Now therefore come, let me, I pray thee, give thee counsel, that thou mayest save thine own life, and the life of thy son Solomon.
Nathan tells Bathsheba to appeal to David and promises to follow her to confirm her words to David as the prophet of God.
1:13 Go and get thee in unto king David, and say unto him, Didst not thou, my lord, O king, swear unto thine handmaid, saying, Assuredly Solomon thy son shall reign after me, and he shall sit upon my throne? why then doth Adonijah reign? 1:14 Behold, while thou yet talkest there with the king, I also will come in after thee, and confirm thy words.
Bathsheba did as Nathan advised and came to remind the dying David of his oath.
1:15 And Bathsheba went in unto the king into the chamber: and the king was very old; and Abishag the Shunammite [the damsel found to serve the king] ministered unto the king.
Bathsheba reminded David of his oath and promise to her and to Solomon.
1:16 And Bathsheba bowed, and did obeisance unto the king. And the king said, What wouldest thou? 1:17 And she said unto him, My lord, thou swarest by the LORD thy God unto thine handmaid, saying, Assuredly Solomon thy son shall reign after me, and he shall sit upon my throne. 1:18 And now, behold, Adonijah reigneth; and now, my lord the king, thou knowest it not: 1:19 And he hath slain oxen and fat cattle and sheep in abundance, and hath called all the sons of the king, and Abiathar the priest, and Joab the captain of the host: but Solomon thy servant hath he not called. 1:20 And thou, my lord, O king, the eyes of all Israel are upon thee, that thou shouldest tell them who shall sit on the throne of my lord the king after him. 1:21 Otherwise it shall come to pass, when my lord the king shall sleep with his fathers, that I and my son Solomon shall be counted offenders.
Nathan the prophet confirms her words.
1:22 And, lo, while she yet talked with the king, Nathan the prophet also came in.
1:23 And they told the king, saying, Behold Nathan the prophet. And when he was come in before the king, he bowed himself before the king with his face to the ground.
Bathsheba withdrew and waited to hear what had become of Nathan’s appeal to David.
1:24 And Nathan said, My lord, O king, hast thou said, Adonijah shall reign after me, and he shall sit upon my throne? 1:25 For he is gone down this day, and hath slain oxen and fat cattle and sheep in abundance, and hath called all the king’s sons, and the captains of the host, and Abiathar the priest [Abiathar the priest and Joab the chief commander supported Adonijah as king]; and, behold, they eat and drink before him, and say, God save king Adonijah. 1:26 But me, even me thy servant, and Zadok the priest, and Benaiah the son of Jehoiada, and thy servant Solomon, hath he not called. 1:27 Is this thing done by my lord the king, and thou hast not shewed it unto thy servant, who should sit on the throne of my lord the king after him?
1:28 Then king David answered and said, Call me Bathsheba. And she came [back into] into the king’s presence, and stood before the king. 1:29 And the king sware, and said, As the LORD liveth, that hath redeemed my soul out of all distress, 1:30 Even as I sware unto thee by the LORD God of Israel, saying, Assuredly Solomon thy son shall reign after me, and he shall sit upon my throne in my stead; even so will I certainly do this day.
Then Bathsheba fell before her husband the king to thank him.
1:31 Then Bathsheba bowed with her face to the earth, and did reverence to the king, and said, Let my lord king David live for ever.
David instructs the high priest and the prophet of God to anoint Solomon king.
1:32 And king David said, Call me Zadok the priest, and Nathan the prophet, and Benaiah the son of Jehoiada. And they came before the king. 1:33 The king [David] also said unto them, Take with you the servants of your lord, and cause Solomon my son to ride upon mine own mule, and bring him down to Gihon:
From that time on it became the custom for the kings of Israel to ride on a mule or donkey to their coronations, the king being anointed at the Gihon springs. The Gihon Springs were the main source of water for the City of David and a type of the Living Waters which are to flow from the Ezekiel Temple.
1:34 And let Zadok the priest and Nathan the prophet anoint him there king over Israel: and blow ye with the trumpet, and say, God save king Solomon.
After anointing Solomon king and sounding the trumpets before him, they escorted Solomon to David’s throne and sat him upon it.
1:35 Then ye shall come up after him, that he may come and sit upon my throne; for he shall be king in my stead: and I have appointed him to be ruler over Israel and over Judah.
1:36 And Benaiah the son of Jehoiada answered the king, and said, Amen: the LORD God of my lord the king say so too. 1:37 As the LORD hath been with my lord the king, even so be he with Solomon, and make his throne greater than the throne of my lord king David.
1:38 So Zadok the priest, and Nathan the prophet, and Benaiah the son of Jehoiada, and the Cherethites, and the Pelethites, went down, and caused Solomon to ride upon king David’s mule, and brought him to Gihon.
Solomon was anointed at Gihon the water source for the city. This was a reference that the coming King of kings will come down from the Mount of Olives to Gihon and then enter the city riding on the foal of an ass (Zech 9:9).
1:39 And Zadok the priest took an horn of oil out of the tabernacle, and anointed Solomon. And they blew the trumpet; and all the people said, God save king Solomon. 1:40 And all the people came up after him, and the people piped with pipes, and rejoiced with great joy, so that the earth rent [the land resounded] with the sound of them.
1:41 And Adonijah and all the guests that were with him heard it as they had made an end of eating. And when Joab [Joab the commander in chief of the army had supported Adonijah.] heard the sound of the trumpet, he said, Wherefore is this noise of the city being in an uproar? 1:42 And while he yet spake, behold, Jonathan the son of Abiathar the priest came; and Adonijah said unto him, Come in; for thou art a valiant man, and bringest good tidings.
1:43 And Jonathan answered and said to Adonijah, Verily our lord king David hath made Solomon king.
1:44 And the king hath sent with him Zadok the priest, and Nathan the prophet, and Benaiah the son of Jehoiada, and the Cherethites, and the Pelethites, and they have caused him to ride upon the king’s mule: 1:45 And Zadok the priest and Nathan the prophet have anointed him king in Gihon: and they are come up from thence rejoicing, so that the city rang again. This is the noise that ye have heard.
1:46 And also Solomon sitteth on the throne of the kingdom.
1:47 And moreover the king’s servants came to bless our lord king David, saying, God make the name of Solomon better than thy name, and make his throne greater than thy throne. And the king bowed himself upon the bed.
1:48 And also thus said the king [David], Blessed be the LORD God of Israel, which hath given one to sit on my throne this day, mine eyes even seeing it.
1:49 And all the guests that were with Adonijah were afraid, and rose up, and went every man his way. 1:50 And Adonijah feared because of Solomon, and arose, and went, and caught hold on the horns of the altar.
1:51 And it was told Solomon, saying, Behold, Adonijah feareth king Solomon: for, lo, he hath caught hold on the horns of the altar, saying, Let king Solomon swear unto me today that he will not slay his servant with the sword.
1:52 And Solomon said, If he will shew himself a worthy man, there shall not an hair of him fall to the earth: but if wickedness shall be found in him, he shall die.
1:53 So king Solomon sent, and they brought him down from the altar. And he came and bowed himself to king Solomon: and Solomon said unto him, Go to thine house.
1 Kings 2
Securing the Throne
David gives his last instructions to Solomon. These are also God’s instructions to all who would be godly leaders, including all those who are Called Out to become kings and priests of the spiritual New Covenant. This is the duty of all elders, all leaders and all brethren in the Ekklesia.
Ecclesiastes 12:13 Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man. 12:14 For God shall bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether it be good, or whether it be evil.
1 Kings 2:1 Now the days of David drew nigh that he should die; and he charged Solomon his son, saying, 2:2 I go the way of all the earth: be thou strong therefore, and shew thyself a man; 2:3 And keep the charge of the LORD thy God, to walk in his ways, to keep his statutes, and his commandments, and his judgments, and his testimonies, as it is written in the law of Moses, that thou mayest prosper in all that thou doest, and whithersoever thou turnest thyself: 2:4 That the LORD may continue his word which he spake concerning me, saying, If thy children take heed to their way, to walk before me in truth with all their heart and with all their soul, there shall not fail thee (said he) a man on the throne of Israel.
Then David gets into specifics about what Solomon should do politically, and the first thing is to render justice against Joab for supporting Adonijah against Solomon. This was just and also politically required because Joab was a very powerful opponent.
It is the duty of kings and priests, and the duty of the brethren and their leaders to rule and dispense godly justice when they receive their kingdoms.
2:5 Moreover thou knowest also what Joab the son of Zeruiah did to me, and what he did to the two captains of the hosts of Israel, unto Abner the son of Ner, and unto Amasa the son of Jether, whom he slew, and shed the blood of war in peace, and put the blood of war upon his girdle that was about his loins, and in his shoes that were on his feet. 2:6 Do therefore according to thy wisdom, and let not his hoar [render justice and destroy the traitor] head go down to the grave in peace.
David extends kindness to his friend Barzillai who being 80 years old, still came out to help David when he fled from Absalom.
2:7 But shew kindness unto the sons of Barzillai the Gileadite, and let them be of those that eat at thy table: for so they came to me when I fled because of Absalom thy brother.
David who had withheld his wrath on Shimei for his cursing of David because of Shemei’s apparent repentance and David’s oath of peace towards him; now advises Solomon to destroy Shemei. It may be that Shemei later again resisted king David and David could not take action because of his vow.
2:8 And, behold, thou hast with thee Shimei the son of Gera, a Benjamite of Bahurim, which cursed me with a grievous curse in the day when I went to Mahanaim: but he came down to meet me at Jordan, and I sware to him by the LORD, saying, I will not put thee to death with the sword. 2:9 Now therefore hold him not guiltless: for thou art a wise man, and knowest what thou oughtest to do unto him; but his hoar head bring thou down to the grave with blood.
2:10 So David slept with his fathers, and was buried in the city of David. 2:11 And the days that David reigned over Israel were forty years: seven years reigned he in Hebron [over Judah], and thirty and three years reigned he in Jerusalem [over a united Israel].
2:12 Then sat Solomon upon the throne of David his father; and his kingdom was established greatly.
Then Adonijah the eldest surviving son of David went to Bathsheba with a request.
In those days it was the custom that all the wives of the dead king, having been one with the dead king they could never marry another and therefore they came under the protection of the new king; in the sense that they were considered as “mothers’ of the new king. Therefore, for Adonijah to ask to take Abishag [who’s marriage to David was never consummated] was symbolic of making Adonijah like a father to [and therefore above] Solomon in the eyes of the people.
2:13 And Adonijah the son of Haggith came to Bathsheba the mother of Solomon. And she said, Comest thou peaceably? And he said, Peaceably.
2:14 He said moreover, I have somewhat to say unto thee. And she said, Say on. 2:15 And he said, Thou knowest that the kingdom was mine [because he was the eldest surviving son], and that all Israel set their faces on me, that I should reign: howbeit the kingdom is turned about, and is become my brother’s: for it was his from the LORD [YHVH].
2:16 And now I ask one petition of thee, deny me not. And she said unto him, Say on. 2:17 And he said, Speak, I pray thee, unto Solomon the king, (for he will not say thee nay,) that he give me Abishag the Shunammite to wife.
Bathsheba was taken in by this political stratagem.
2:18 And Bathsheba said, Well; I will speak for thee unto the king. 2:19 Bathsheba therefore went unto king Solomon, to speak unto him for Adonijah. And the king rose up to meet her, and bowed himself unto her, and sat down on his throne, and caused a seat to be set for the king’s mother; and she sat on his right hand.
2:20 Then she said, I desire one small petition of thee; I pray thee, say me not nay. And the king said unto her, Ask on, my mother: for I will not say thee nay. 2:21 And she said, Let Abishag the Shunammite be given to Adonijah thy brother to wife.
Solomon then said that his older brother is for death like Joab; why should he be given joint rule over the kingdom?
2:22 And king Solomon answered and said unto his mother, And why dost thou ask Abishag the Shunammite for Adonijah? ask for him the kingdom also; for he is mine elder brother; even for him, and for Abiathar the priest, and for Joab the son of Zeruiah.
Solomon who was willing to let his brother live after his first attempt to take the throne, then pronounced sentence on his brother for this second attempt to usurp the throne.
2:23 Then king Solomon sware by the LORD, saying, God do so to me, and more also, if Adonijah have not spoken this word against his own life. 2:24 Now therefore, as the LORD liveth, which hath established me, and set me on the throne of David my father, and who hath made me an house, as he promised, Adonijah shall be put to death this day.
So Solomon killed Adonijah for his attempts to take the throne.
2:25 And king Solomon sent by the hand of Benaiah the son of Jehoiada; and he fell upon him that he died.
Then Solomon banished Abiathar the priest for backing Adonijah for the succession. Thus was fulfilled the curse on the family of Eli (1 Sam 2).
2:26 And unto Abiathar the priest said the king, Get thee to Anathoth, unto thine own fields; for thou art worthy of death: but I will not at this time put thee to death, because thou barest the ark of the LORD God before David my father, and because thou hast been afflicted in all wherein my father was afflicted. 2:27 So Solomon thrust out Abiathar from being priest unto the LORD; that he might fulfil the word of the LORD, which he spake concerning the house of Eli in Shiloh.
Then Solomon dealt with Joab who had supported Adonijah’s claims for the throne. Adonijah being dead and Abiathar banished, Joab fled for his life into the tabernacle and took hold of the altar of burnt offerings.
2:28 Then tidings came to Joab: for Joab had turned [followed] after Adonijah, though he turned not [did not join Absalom’s rebellion] after Absalom. And Joab fled unto the tabernacle of the LORD, and caught hold on the horns of the altar.
Solomon then sent his executioner to Joab, and the man reported back to Solomon the difficulty of Joab being in the tabernacle.
2:29 And it was told king Solomon that Joab was fled unto the tabernacle of the LORD; and, behold, he is by the altar. Then Solomon sent Benaiah the son of Jehoiada, saying, Go, fall upon him. 2:30 And Benaiah came to the tabernacle of the LORD, and said unto him, Thus saith the king, Come forth. And he said, Nay; but I will die here. And Benaiah brought the king word again, saying, Thus said Joab, and thus he answered me.
Then Solomon commanded that the wicked Joab would not find refuge in the tabernacle, but must pay for his murders. Today we say that we are God’s church and that therefore the tribulation will not fall on us. Trust not in lying words, for God will require an accounting from every person for their deeds of sin, regardless of what they call themselves or claim with their lips.
Jeremiah 7:3 Thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, Amend your ways and your doings, and I will cause you to dwell in this place. 7:4 Trust ye not in lying words, saying, The temple of the Lord, The temple of the Lord, The temple of the Lord, are these.
1 Kings 2:31 And the king said unto him, Do as he hath said, and fall upon him, and bury him; that thou mayest take away the innocent blood, which Joab shed, from me, and from the house of my father.
2:32 And the LORD shall return his blood upon his own head, who fell upon two men more righteous and better than he, and slew them with the sword, my father David not knowing thereof, to wit, Abner the son of Ner, captain of the host of Israel, and Amasa the son of Jether, captain of the host of Judah. 2:33 Their blood shall therefore return upon the head of Joab, and upon the head of his seed for ever: but upon David, and upon his seed, and upon his house, and upon his throne, shall there be peace for ever from the LORD.
2:34 So Benaiah the son of Jehoiada went up, and fell upon him, and slew him: and he was buried in his own house in the wilderness.
Then Banaiah was made commander of the armies of Israel, replacing Joab; and faithful Zadok was made high priest, replacing Abiathar.
2:35 And the king put Benaiah the son of Jehoiada in his room over the host: and Zadok the priest did the king put in the room of Abiathar.
Then Solomon gives Shemei the curser of David a test to prove him as to his obedience and the sincerity of his repentance.
In the same way, we are being continually tried and tested as to the sincerity of our own repentance and our faithful obedience to the whole Word of God; and today we are failing and doing what we think is right instead of living by every Word of God.
2:36 And the king sent and called for Shimei, and said unto him, Build thee an house in Jerusalem, and dwell there, and go not forth thence any whither. 2:37 For it shall be, that on the day thou goest out, and passest over the brook Kidron, thou shalt know for certain that thou shalt surely die: thy blood shall be upon thine own head.
Shemei agrees to remain in Jerusalem close to the king; just as we have agreed to remain close to our God!
2:38 And Shimei said unto the king, The saying is good: as my lord the king hath said, so will thy servant do. And Shimei dwelt in Jerusalem many days.
Then Shemei forgot his commitment and left Jerusalem for his own gain; just like most of us today have forgotten who we have committed ourselves to zealously follow and obey, and we have left off from any zeal for living by every Word of God for our own perceived needs and gain.
2:39 And it came to pass at the end of three years, that two of the servants of Shimei ran away unto Achish son of Maachah king of Gath. And they told Shimei, saying, Behold, thy servants be in Gath. 2:40 And Shimei arose, and saddled his ass, and went to Gath to Achish to seek his servants: and Shimei went, and brought his servants from Gath.
Shemei returned to Jerusalem but was found to have broken his commitment to the king. Even so we call ourselves God’s people today, but we have left off following and obeying the whole Word of God to do as we think best.
2:41 And it was told Solomon that Shimei had gone from Jerusalem to Gath, and was come again.
The king called Shemei and judged him for his failure to keep his vow to obey the king and remain in Jerusalem. Even so, we shall be judged by our LORD when we depart from our baptismal commitment to live by every Word of God and to follow God in all things.
2:42 And the king sent and called for Shimei, and said unto him, Did I not make thee to swear by the LORD, and protested unto thee, saying, Know for a certain, on the day thou goest out, and walkest abroad any whither, that thou shalt surely die? and thou saidst unto me, The word that I have heard is good.
2:43 Why then hast thou not kept the oath of the LORD, and the commandment that I have charged thee with? 2:44 The king said moreover to Shimei, Thou knowest all the wickedness which thine heart is privy to, that thou didst to David my father: therefore the LORD shall return thy wickedness upon thine own head; 2:45 And king Solomon shall be blessed, and the throne of David shall be established before the LORD for ever.
The eternal kingdom of God will also be established and the unrepentant who turn to their own ways and rebel against the King of kings; being without zeal to learn and live by every Word of the God the Father, the Great King of the Universe, will ultimately be destroyed!
ONLY the sincerely repentant will have the sacrifice of Jesus Christ the Lamb of God applied to them and ultimately be changed to spirit receiving the gift of eternal life!
2:46 So the king commanded Benaiah the son of Jehoiada; which went out, and fell upon him, that he died. And the kingdom was established in the hand of Solomon.