1 Kings 1:1-53
King David is now old, cold, and bed-ridden, but (as we’ll see) he still has some spunk left in him.
Even though Abishag, a beautiful young woman is used as David’s “sweeter-heater,” David seems to see Bathsheba as his most prominent wife, and Solomon as his most significant son, in the sense that he was called to be the next king of Israel.
But, another one of David’s sons named Adonijah exalted himself to be king (1 Kings 1:5). It’s never good when a person exalts himself (see Matthew 23:12) it even sounds ugly, huh? Shouldn’t King David have a say in any of this? What about God? Isn’t He the one who puts people in prominent positions? (Psalm 75:6-7)
When Nathan the prophet found out what Adonijah was doing, it didn’t sit well with him, he spoke with Bathsheba, and together they worked out the best way to approach the king on this matter. Apparently David had given previous word that Solomon would reign after him. Neither Bathsheba or Nathan were demanding, they were simply looking for that clarification and guidance. As Bathsheba said:
1 Kings 1:20 (NKJV) “And as for you, my lord, O king, the eyes of all Israel are on you, that you should tell them who will sit on the throne of my lord the king after him.”
David confirmed and initiated the coronation of Solomon.
1 Kings 1:29–30 (NKJV) “And the king took an oath and said, ‘As the LORD lives, who has redeemed my life from every distress, 30 just as I swore to you by the LORD God of Israel, saying, ‘Assuredly Solomon your son shall be king after me, and he shall sit on my throne in my place,’ so I certainly will do this day.’”
David called Benaiah (his new general) to pave the way for Solomon, to place him on the king’s mule, to have Zadok the priest, and Nathan the prophet anoint him as king; to blow the trumpet with that official and royal declaration, “Long live King Solomon.” Afterwards, David had him sit on the throne to be ruler over Israel and Judah.
Adonijah had exalted himself, but God had exalted Solomon. I found it interesting that we don’t read of Solomon’s suggestions in any of this. He let the Lord do the work.
All Israel rejoiced. We read in:
1 Kings 1:40 (NKJV) “And all the people went up after him; and the people played the flutes and rejoiced with great joy, so that the earth seemed to split with their sound.”
Well, almost all Israel. The one’s with Adonijah were suddenly afraid. The party’s over and Adonijah flees to the sanctuary for safety. Solomon will not be a soft ruler. If Adonjah is submissive, he will survive, but if wickedness is found in him, he would die, for he had already manifested a lack of submission to God. Adonijah also manifested that spirit of Satan, who also was guilty of exalting himself.
The Jewish leaders are much more political than they are spiritual, and again, they arrest God’s ambassadors because the Apostles continue to preach the Name of Jesus and the reality of the resurrection. The enemy doesn’t want us to think of either, and yet we must – yes, there is life after death; the final destination is our choice – with or without God, heaven or hell? We decide. (Joshua 24:15; Matthew 7:13-14; Revelation 20:15).
The enemy might be able to limit our movement, but he can’t stop the way the message moves others, or the move of the Spirit, and after the healing of the lame man the number of believing men comes to a total of 5,000. Did you notice how Peter is a completely different man after Pentecost? He’s bold and blunt, on fire and unafraid!
Acts 4:10-12 (NKJV) “…let it be known to you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead, by Him this man stands here before you whole. ‘This is the ‘stone which was rejected by you builders, which has become the chief cornerstone.’ Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.’”
After this, the religious leaders’ eyes were suddenly opened to a particular truth. Even though Peter and John were untrained and uneducated in their Jerusalem schools, they marveled at their brilliance and boldness, and realized (the key to all ministry) “that they had been with Jesus.” (Acts 4:13) May that be our credential as well – and may it be evident to others.
The religious leaders didn’t know what to do, so they commanded them not to speak at all or teach in the name of Jesus, but Peter and John would not concede. On the contrary, when they gathered together to pray, they prayed for more boldness. It’s absolutely amazing to me that they didn’t even pray for protection…even though they were threatened by the authorities.
How beautiful to see, in the close of the chapter, not coerced communism, but Christian love and care for one another. This sharing was not mandated by anyone, it was purely voluntary because they were of one heart and soul, and they experienced great power and grace (Acts 4:32).
“O Lord, please move mightily in Your church once again; grant us boldness, fill us with Your Spirit, help us to be more interested in Your glory and the salvation of souls, than even our own safety. May none of us lack anything, simply because we have You as our Shepherd, Your work through the church of love and generosity.”
If you’re a believer you should say it, go ahead and say it (out loud) – “If it had not been the LORD who was on our side…we would have been swallowed alive.”
Sometimes I’m struck with the fact that if it weren’t for God’s constant protection, the enemy would have killed and consumed me from day one. The Bible says that Satan is roaming around as a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour (1 Peter 5:8).
But God has protected us from our enemies, God has protected us from Tsunamis, God has protected us from their traps and all of their teeth.
It’s good to sing that Psalm, that song regarding the fact that the Lord is on our side, He’s our helper in life, who happens to be the same One who made heaven and earth!
Does that comfort you at all? I hope so!
Your words are more powerful than you can ever imagine. Your words of truth and encouragement are beneficial to the brethren. As you speak the truth in love, it’s good for the hearers spiritually, emotionally, and even physically!
Derek Kidner, “To say nice things when we can, is a simple benefit we may bring a person, in mind and thence in body.”
Charles Bridges, “Pleasure and health flow from the words of man in the things of God. The eunuch was encouraged by Philip’s exposition of precious Scripture (Acts 8:35–39). The two disciples were refreshed from their conversation with their divine Master on the road to Emmaus (Luke 24:32). When God is the subject and his Spirit the teacher, pleasant indeed will be the words spoken by Christians. This will exceed any earthly enjoyment.”
If you have any questions or comments on today’s reading, or you’d like to share something the Lord showed you, feel free to leave a reply below. I’d love to hear from you as we grow forward in 2021.