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The first book of the Kings : with map, introduction and notes online

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Cbileab (called Daniel, 1 Chron. iii. 1), we have no notice hi Scripture.

chariots and horsemen &c] Compare the similar conduct of
Absalom (2 Sam. xv. 1) at the time of bis conspiracy against bis
father. The words refer to a kingly retinue which should attend
him wherever he went. By such a step Adonijah let his inten-
tion be known and found out who were likely to be on his side.
6. had not displeased him at any time] Had never administered
a rebuke whatever wrong act he might have done. a very

goodly man] A fine and commanding figure was no small re-
commendation for an aspirant to a throne. and his mother
bare him after Absalom] The English of the A.V. here might be
taken to mean that Absalom and Adonijah were both sons of
Haggith, whereas Absalom's mother (2 Sam. iii. 3) was Maacab,
daughter of Talmai, king of Geshur. It is better to render and
he was born, thus avoiding any ambiguity. 7. Juab the
son of Zeruiah] Zeruiah was David's sister, and Joab the eldest of
her three sons. He became captain of the host after the conquest
of Jebus (1 Chron. xi. 6), and served David faithfully in the main
until this time. But he held David's secret in the matter of Uriah,
and accordingly defied him, when it suited his purpose. Abiathar
the 2»'iest] This was the son of that Ahimeleeh who, with all bis
family except Abiathar, was put to death by Saul (1 Sam. xxi., xxii.).
Abiathar then escaped to David and had remained with him through
all his troubles. they following Adonijah ht Ipt d him] Both no
doubt felt that by their conduct, if it were successful, they were
making Adonijah for evermore their debtor. 8. But Zadok
the priest] He was the son of Ahitub. and descended from Eleazar,
the son of Aaron. Zadok's duties appear (1 Chron. xvi. H\Y) to have
been at the tabernacle in Gibeon, and Abiathar had charge of the
ark in Jerusalem. But in consequence of the events described in
this chapter Abiathar was thrust out of his office, and Zadok became
the sole higlrpriest. Benaiah the son of Jehoiada This man,
though of the tribe of Levi, became captain of David's body-guard
of Cherethites and Pelethites (see below on verse 38), and was
made, when Joab was dead, commander-in-chief of Solomon'fl Army.



I. KINGS, I. 9—14. 11

of Jehoiada, and Nathan the prophet, and Shirnei, and Kei,
and the mighty men which belonged to David, were not with
Adonijah. And Adonijah slew sheep and oxen and fat cattle 9
by the stone of Zoheleth, which is by En-rogel, and called all
his brethren the king's sons, and all the men of Judah the
king's servants : but Nathan the prophet, and Benaiah, and 10
the mighty men, and Solomon his brother, he called not.

Wherefore Nathan spake unto Bath-sheba the mother of n
Solomon, saying, Hast thou not heard that Adonijah the son
of Haggith doth reign, and David our lord knoweth it not?
Now therefore come, let me, I pray thee, give thee counsel, 12
that thou mayest save thine own life, and the life of thy son
Solomon. Go and get thee in unto king David, and say unto 13
him, Didst not thou, my lord king, swear unto thine hand-
maid, saying, Assuredly Solomon thy son shall reign after me,
and he shall sit upon my throne? why then doth Adonijah
reign ? Behold, while thou yet talkest there with the king, I u



Nathan the prophet] He was prominent in David's reign, giving
the king advice concerning the building of the Temple. After
Solomon was proclaimed king we hear no more of Nathan.

and Rei] not mentioned elsewhere. the mighty men which

belonged to David] See 2 Sam. xxiii. 8 — 39, and compare 1 Chron.
xi. 10 — 47. 9. Adonijah slew &c] The verb is that which is

constantly used for sacrificing. And here there was no doubt
intended to be a certain solemnity connected with the feast held in
honour of Adonijah's proclamation. by the stone of Zoheleth,

which is by En-rogeT] The name En-rogel signifies the ' fountain
of the fuller,' a name probably given to it from the use to which the
Avater was applied. From the other places where it is mentioned
(Josh. xv. 7; xviii. 16 ; 2 Sam. xvii. 17) it is clear that En-rogel lay
on the south-east of Jerusalem, and formed one of the landmarks
between the tribes of Judah and Benjamin. Of the 'stone of
Zoheleth ' we have no notice but in this passage. 10. Solomon

his brother'] Doubtless Adonijah was well acquainted with David's
intention that Solomon should be his successor. called] i.e.

invited to be present at the feast which he was about to make.

11. Bath-sheba] She who had before been the wife of Uriah the
Hittite. doth reign] As though the work were already com-

pleted. 12. save thine own life, and the life of thy son Solomon]

Because it has ever been the policy of an Oriental usurper, as soon
as ever he had power enough, to put out of the way those who were
likely to oppose him, and so make his throne more secure.

13. Didst not thou. ..swear unto thine handmaid] She uses terms
of great humility, even though she be pleading the king's former
solemn promise. shall reign after me, and he shall sit upon my

throne] The fuller phrase seems intended to imply that Solomon
should be in all respects the equal of his father. The pronoun ' he '
is emphatically expressed in the original as also in verses 24, 30 and
35. In each case the force is 'he and no other.' 14. and con-



12 I. KINGS, I. 15—25.

15 also will come in after thee, and confirm thy words. And
Bath-sheba went in unto the king into the chamber : and the
king was very old ; and Abishag the Shunammite ministered

16 unto the king. And Bath-sheba bowed, and did obeisance
unto the king. And the king said, What wouldest thou?

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.

18 And now behold, Adonijah reigneth ; and now, my lord the

19 king, thou knowest it not : 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

20 host : but Solomon thy servant hath he not called. And thou,
my lord king, the eyes of all Israel are upon thee, that thou
shouldest tell them who shall sit on the throne of my lord the

-21 king after him. Otherwise it shall come to pass, when my
lord the king shall sleep with his fathers, that I and my sou

22 Solomon shall be counted offenders. And lo, while she yet

23 talked with the king, Nathan the prophet also came in. And
they told the king, saying, Behold Nathan the prophet. And
when he was come in before the king, he bowed himself

24 before the king with his face to the ground. And Nathan
said, My lord king, hast thou said, Adonijah shall reign

25 after me, and he shall sit upon my throne? 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 cap-

firm thy words] Lit. 'fill up' thy words. Nathan knew of the ex-
pressions of God's will which had been communicated unto David.
15. and the Icing was very old] This sentence is in explanation
why Bath-sheba went into the bedchamber of the king. 16. bo teed
and did obeisance'] After the fashion of Orientals in the presence of
a monarch. 18. Adonijah reigneth] i.e. Is being set up for

king, and will be accepted, unless some word from David go forth
to prevent it. With the commander-in-chief and the highpriest
Abiathar on his side Adonijah's following might well seem powerful.

21. counted offenders] Bath-sheba does not go so far as Nathan,
and say that the lives of herself and her son are in peril, but leaves
the king to think what the lot of those offenders would be whom
Adonijah knew to have aspired to the throne.

22. Nathan the •prophet uUo came in] Apparently at first into an
outer room, and Bath-sheba went out before his coming into the
bedchamber.

24. hast thou said] There is nothing in the Hebrew to mark the
question. It must have been indicated by the tone. It would come
with much force from Nathan, as he knew all the circumstances
of God's promise that Solomon should he king after David.
25. For he is gone down] The site of the fountain, near which
Adonijah's banquet was made, was in the valley below Jerusalem.



I. KINGS, I. 26—33. 13

taius of the host, and Abiathar the priest ; and behold, they
eat and drink before him, and say, God save king Adonijah.
But me, even me thy servant, and Zadok the priest, and
Benaiah the son of Jehoiada, and thy servant Solomon, hath 26
he not called. Is this thing done by my lord the king, and
thou hast not shewed it unto thy servant, who should sit on 27
the throne of my lord the king after him ? Then king David
answered and said, Call me Bath-sheba. And she came into 28
the king's presence, and stood before the king. And the king
sware, and said, As the Lord liveth, that hath redeemed my 29
soul out of all distress, even as I sware unto thee by the Lord 30
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 Bath-sheba bowed with 31
her face to the earth, and did reverence to the king, and said,
Let my lord king David live for ever.

And king David said, Call me Zadok the priest, and Nathan 32
the prophet, and Benaiah the son of Jehoiada. And they
came before the king. The king also said unto them, Take 33
with you the servants of your lord, and cause Solomon my son
to ride upon mine own mule, and bring him down to Gihon :



God save king Adonijah] The Heb. is 'Let king Adonijah live' i.e.
live long and happily. 27. shelved it unto thy servant] There

was a special reason why Nathan should know of all that was done
in respect of the succession, which did not apply to the rest of
David's court.

28. Call me Bath-sheba] The queen had not been present during
Nathan's interview. 29. And the king sivare] i.e. Solemnly

renewed the oath which he had before (see ver. 13) made unto
Bath-sheba. As the Lord liveth] The expression is equivalent

to 'As surely as the Lord liveth,' 'the Lord is living, of that there is
no doubt, and as certainly shall that come to pass which is prefaced
by this solemn assertion.' that hath redeemed, &c] And it is

not without reason that David thinks of the termination of his
distresses in connexion with Solomon, for the birth of that son
marked the time when he became at peace not only with men but
with God. 30. the Lord God of Israel] R.V. 'the Lord, the

God of Israel.' 31. Let my lord king David live for ever] On

this common Oriental hyperbole, compare Dan. ii. 4, iii. 9, v. 10,
&c. Bath-sheba implied thereby that in her zeal for Solomon's
succession there was no desire for David's death, but only that the
promise made to her concerning Solomon should not be broken.
32. Zadok the priest] Who must anoint king Solomon. and

Nathan the prophet] Who had gone aside when Bath-sheba was
called. 33. Take with you the servants of your lord] Judging

from a similar order given by David (2 Sam. xx. 6, 7) these words
imply a considerable body of armed men. Where Joab was of the
other side it was needful to be prepared for fighting. upon



14 I. KINGS, I. 34—38.

34 and let Zadok the priest and Nathan the prophet anoint him
there king over Israel : and blow ye with the trumpet, and say,

35 God save king Solomon. 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

36 Israel and over Judah. And Benaiah the son of Jehoiada
answered the king, and said, Amen : the Lord God of my lord

37 the king say so too. As the Lord hath been with my lord the
king, even so be he with Solomon, and make his throne greater

38 than the throne of my lord king David. So Zadok the priest,
and Nathan the prophet, and Benaiah the son of Jehoiada,
and the Cherethites, and the Pelethites, went down, and



mine own mule] To ride in the chariot or on the beast which car-
ried the king was a mark of special distinction. So Pharaoh (Gen.
xli. 13) made Joseph 'ride in the second chariot which he had.'
bring him down to Gihori] From the direction here given this place
must have been in the lower ground near Jerusalem. This agx - ees
with the mention made of it in 2 Chron. xxxiii. 14. Both parties
chose a place where there was water (see v. 9) for the anointing.
34. anoint him there] The anointing was the most solemn portion
of the ceremonies connected with the installation of a new king.
We only read of its being done on some very marked occasions.
But though unmentioned it may have been performed in other
cases. For 'anointing' is mentioned even in Jotham's parable
(Jud. ix. 8), where the trees will choose them a king. The cere-
mony is intended to symbolize the outpouring of gifts from above
upon the new monarch. blow ye with the trumpet"} Thus did

Jehu's companions after his anointing (2 Kings ix. 13). 35. come
up after hint] That is, as his supporters and body-guard. to

he ruler over Israel] A better rendering is 'prince.' The title-
was that given by God specially to those who should lead His
people. 36. and said, Antra] Expressing as usual a prayer,

' So let it be ; ' but at the same time expressing concurrence with all
the king had said. Thus the word implies also, ' So it shall be.' But
there is immediately subjoined, 'the Lord God of my lord the king
sa;i so too,' implying that though David might plan and his servants
labour for this end it would not be brought about except with God's
•will. the Lord i


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Online LibraryJoseph Rawson LumbyThe first book of the Kings : with map, introduction and notes → online text (page 2 of 18)