READ: 1 Kings 1-2
BACKGROUND: This section details David’s passing of the Kingdom to Solomon – per God’s wishes – and some of the early challenges that Solomon’s kingship faced. Chapter 2 gets fairly violent. It almost reads like the closing scene of The Godfather where Michael Corleone is settling all of his father’s scores. However, it is important to see, here, that every single one of those guys was given multiple chances. All of them had grace extended to them, but each – in their own way – expressly tried to undermine God by going against his wishes for the kingdom of Israel and usurping Solomon. Each had a history of ignoring God’s wishes and trying to unseat the true king, and when they acted on that – knowing they were already on parole in a sense – Solomon had to be wise in his actions in order to protect God’s kingdom against those who would destroy it for selfish ambition. That’s a brief explanation, but you should feel free to ask any questions you might have by posting a comment.
THINK: F.B. Meyer writes, of 1 Kings 2:2-4:
How strongly David held to God’s promise! It was deeply graven in his soul. How could he forget the word which guaranteed the succession of his race upon the throne of Israel! At the same time he distinctly recognized that the fulfillment was conditional. There was an if in it. It was only in so far as his children took heed to walk before God in truth that God was bound to place them on the throne of Israel; therefore he urged Solomon to keep the charge of the Lord, that the Lord might continue His word. We also must obey the threefold condition if we would enjoy a continuance of God’s helpful care.
1. Be thou strong.— The strength which is in Jesus Christ waits to make us strong. In the Lion of the tribe of Judah there is the boldness which will not swerve in the face of the foe. Timid women and little children in the days of persecution have waxed valiant in the fight, and have not flinched from death, because Jesus was beside them.
2. Keep the charge of the Lord thy God.— He has committed to our care many a sacred deposit, in return for our deposit with Him (2 Timothy 1:12-14) They are His holy Gospel, the Rest Day, the doctrines of the Evangelical Faith, and the Inspired Word. Let us watch them until we see them weighed out in the temple as were the sacred vessels which Ezra committed to the priests for transport across the desert (Ezra 8:33)
3. Keep His statutes and commandments.— We must obey with reverent care the one great law of love, which includes all the rest. Acting thus, we shall put ourselves in the way of enjoying a continuance of that favor which God has promised.
PRAY: Ask God to help you be strong and obey his commands today. Thank him for his faithfulness to us.