1 Kings 1-2, Psalm 37, 71 & 94: Time and heart

The king is dead! Long live the king.

David passes the crown on to his son Solomon, an event that is not without its share of drama. Adonijah tries to take the crown for himself, then tries to secure a wife in Abishag (the girl who attended to King David in his old age). Of course all of this foolishness ends in his own death.  Then there’s the cleaning up Solomon has to do. Some like Adonijah were a threat to the throne itself. Others, like Abiathar the priest, had betrayed David and needed to be dealt with. Others, like Joab, had justice coming to them. All in all, Solomon had a rocky couple of months after he started wearing the crown.

Allow me to make two points. First, notice what it says about Abiathar’s punishment: “So Solomon banished Abiathar from being the Lord’s priest, and it fulfilled the Lord’s prophesy He has spoken  at Shiloh against Eli’s family.” Remember back at Shiloh (1 Samuel 2) when Eli’s sons were abusing their rights as priests and God had promised to end the line of Eli. This is the final fulfillment of that promise. God carries out his will and his plans, even though it may take a very long time for them to come about (in this case about 100 years). 2 Peter 3:8-9 gives us a reason for this perspective, that God’s definition and understanding of time is limited like ours. It is not uncommon in the Bible to see God’s plans taking a century or more to reach fulfillment. (Psalm 90:4, Habakkuk 2:3 also mention this truth)

Second, pay attention to what David warns Solomon of at the beginning of chapter 2. While Solomon takes all of this time to remove the physical threats to the throne and the kingdom, he must pay attention to the internal threats as well, namely his own heart. If you know Solomon’s story, you know that in the end this is his ultimate downfall. When he hands over the throne, David warns Solomon to take care of his own personal life as the greatest of priorities, his devotion to God as chief above all else.

We would all do well to heed that warning!

Happy reading

  • What was familiar from this passage of scripture?  What was something I already knew?
  • What was new from this piece of scripture? What was something that really stood out for me that I have never paid attention to before?
  • Does Jesus appear in this passage of scripture?
  • How does this passage apply to my life, here and now?  Do I need to do anything about it?
  • What prayer would I offer up to God after reading this piece of scripture?

Tomorrow’s Reading: Psalm 119:1-88

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