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David Gives Orders to Solomon
1The time came near for David to die. So he gave orders to his son Solomon. He said,
2"I'm about to die, just as everyone else on earth does. So be strong. Show how brave you are. 3Do everything the Lord your God requires. Live the way he wants you to. Obey his orders and commands. Keep his laws and rules. Do everything that is written in the Law of Moses. Then you will have success in everything you do. You will succeed everywhere you go.
4"The Lord will keep the promise he made to me. He said, 'Your sons must be careful about how they live. They must be faithful to me with all their heart and soul. Then you will always have a man sitting on the throne of Israel.'
5"You yourself know what Joab, the son of Zeruiah, did to me. You know that he killed Abner, the son of Ner, and Amasa, the son of Jether. They were the two commanders of Israel's armies. He killed them in a time of peace. It wasn't a time of war. Joab spilled the blood of Abner and Amasa. It stained the belt that was around his waist. It also stained the sandals on his feet. 6You are wise. So I leave him in your hands. Just don't let him live to become an old man. Don't let him die peacefully.
7"But be kind to the sons of Barzillai from Gilead. Provide what they need. They were faithful to me when I had to run away from your brother Absalom.
8"Don't forget Shimei, the son of Gera. He's still around. He's from Bahurim in the territory of Benjamin. He called down bitter curses on me. He did it on the day I went to Mahanaim. Later, he came down to welcome me at the Jordan River. At that time I took an oath in the name of the Lord. I promised Shimei, 'I won't put you to death with my sword.' 9But now I want you to think of him as guilty. You are wise. You will know what to do to him. Don't let him live to become an old man. Put him to death."
10David joined the members of his family who had already died. His body was buried in the City of David. 11He had ruled over Israel for 40 years. He ruled for seven years in Hebron. Then he ruled for 33 years in Jerusalem.
12So Solomon sat on the throne of his father David. His position as king was made secure.
Solomon's Kingdom Is Made Secure
13Adonijah was the son of David's wife Haggith. He went to Bathsheba. She was Solomon's mother. She asked Adonijah, "Have you come in peace?"
He answered, "Yes. I've come in peace." 14He continued, "I want to ask you something."
"Go ahead," she replied.
15He said, "As you know, the kingdom belonged to me. The whole nation of Israel thought of me as their king. But now things have changed. The kingdom belongs to my brother. The Lord has given it to him. 16But I have a favor to ask of you. Don't say no to me."
"Go ahead," she said.
17So he continued, "Please ask King Solomon for a favor. He won't say no to you. Ask him to give me Abishag from Shunem to be my wife."
18"All right," Bathsheba replied. "I'll speak to the king for you."
19So Bathsheba went to King Solomon. She went to him to speak for Adonijah. The king stood up to greet her. He bowed down to her. Then he sat down on his throne. He had a throne brought for his mother. She sat down at his right side.
20"I have one small favor to ask of you," she said. "Don't say no to me."
The king replied, "Mother, go ahead and ask. I won't say no to you."
21She said, "Let your brother Adonijah get married to Abishag, the Shunammite."
22King Solomon answered his mother, "Why are you asking for Abishag, the Shunammite, for Adonijah? You might as well ask me to give him the whole kingdom! After all, he's my older brother. And he doesn't want the kingdom only for himself. He also wants it for the priest Abiathar and for Joab, the son of Zeruiah."
23Then King Solomon took an oath and made a promise in the name of the Lord. He said, "Adonijah will pay with his life because of what he has asked for. If he doesn't, may God punish me greatly. 24The Lord has made my position as king secure. I'm sitting on the throne of my father David. The Lord has built a royal house for me, just as he promised. You can be sure that the Lord lives. And you can be just as sure that Adonijah will be put to death today."
25So King Solomon gave the order to Benaiah, the son of Jehoiada. Benaiah struck Adonijah down. And Adonijah died.
26The king spoke to the priest Abiathar. He said, "Go back to your fields in Anathoth. You should really be put to death. But I won't have it done now. That's because you carried the ark of the Lord and King. You did it for my father David. You shared all of his hard times."
27So Solomon wouldn't let Abiathar serve as a priest of the Lord anymore. That's how the message the Lord had spoken at Shiloh came true. He had spoken it about the family of Eli.
28News of what Solomon had done reached Joab. Joab had never made evil plans along with Absalom. But he had joined Adonijah. So he ran to the tent of the Lord. He took hold of the horns that stuck out from the upper corners of the altar for burnt offerings.
29King Solomon was told that Joab had run to the tent. He was also told that Joab was by the altar.
Then Solomon gave the order to Benaiah, the son of Jehoiada. He told him, "Go! Strike him down!"
30So Benaiah entered the tent of the Lord. He said to Joab, "The king says, 'Come on out!' "
But Joab answered, "No. I'd rather die here."
Benaiah told the king what Joab had said to him.
31Then the king commanded Benaiah, "Do what he says. Strike him down. Bury his body. Then I and my family won't be held accountable for the blood Joab spilled. He killed people who weren't guilty of doing anything wrong. 32The Lord will pay him back for the blood he spilled. Joab attacked two men. He killed them with his sword. And my father David didn't even know anything about it.
"Joab killed Abner, the son of Ner. Abner was the commander of Israel's army. Joab also killed Amasa, the son of Jether. Amasa was the commander of Judah's army. Abner and Amasa were better men than Joab is. They were more honest than he is. 33May Joab and his children after him be held forever accountable for spilling the blood of Abner and Amasa.
"But may David and his children after him enjoy the Lord's peace and rest forever. May the Lord also give his peace to David's royal house and kingdom forever."
34So Benaiah, the son of Jehoiada, went up to the Lord's tent. There he struck Joab down. And he killed him. Joab's body was buried on his own land in the desert.
35The king put Benaiah in charge of the army. Benaiah took Joab's place. The king also put the priest Zadok in Abiathar's place.
36Then the king sent for Shimei. He said to him, "Build yourself a house in Jerusalem. Live there. Don't go anywhere else. 37You must not leave the city and go across the Kidron Valley. If you do, you can be sure you will die. And it will be your own fault."
38Shimei replied to the king, "You are my king and master. What you say is good. I'll do it." Shimei stayed in Jerusalem for a long time.
39Three years after Solomon had talked with Shimei, two of Shimei's slaves ran off. They went to Achish, the king of Gath. He was the son of Maacah. Shimei was told, "Your slaves are in Gath." 40When Shimei heard that, he put a saddle on his donkey. Then he went to Achish at Gath to look for his slaves. Shimei found them and brought them back from Gath.
41Solomon was told that Shimei had left Jerusalem. He was told he had gone to Gath and had returned.
42So the king sent for Shimei. He said to him, "Didn't I make you take an oath in the name of the Lord? Didn't I warn you? I said, 'You must not leave the city and go somewhere else. If you do, you can be sure you will die.' At that time you said to me, 'What you say is good. I'll obey your command.' 43So why didn't you keep your oath to the Lord? Why didn't you obey the command I gave you?"
44The king continued, "You know all of the wrong things you did to my father David. In your heart you know them. Now the Lord will pay you back for what you did. 45But I will be blessed. The Lord will make David's kingdom secure forever."
46Then the king gave the order to Benaiah, the son of Jehoiada. Benaiah left the palace and struck Shimei down. And he killed him.
So the kingdom was now made secure in Solomon's hands.
2
1And the days of David were at hand that he should die; and he enjoined Solomon his son saying, 2I go the way of all the earth: be of good courage therefore, and be a man; 3and keep the charge of Jehovah thy God#GodHebrew: Elohim to walk in his ways, to keep his statutes, and his commandments, and his ordinances, 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; 4that Jehovah may confirm his word which he spoke concerning me, saying, If thy sons 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 upon the throne of Israel. 5And thou knowest also what Joab the son of Zeruiah did to me, what he did to the two captains of the hosts of Israel, to Abner the son of Ner, and to 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 upon his sandals that were on his feet. 6And thou shalt do according to thy wisdom, and not let his hoar head go down to Sheol in peace. 7But shew kindness to the sons of Barzillai the Gileadite, and let them be of those that eat at thy table; for so they came up to me when I fled because of Absalom thy brother. 8And behold, there is with thee Shimei the son of Gera, the Benjaminite of Bahurim, who cursed me with a grievous curse in the day that I went to Mahanaim; but he came down to meet me at the Jordan, and I swore to him by Jehovah saying, I will not put thee to death with the sword. 9And now hold him not guiltless; for thou art a wise man, and thou shalt know what thou oughtest to do to him; but bring his hoar head down to Sheol with blood. 10And David slept with his fathers, and was buried in the city of David. 11And the days that David reigned over Israel were forty years: he reigned seven years in Hebron, and he reigned thirty-three years in Jerusalem.
12And Solomon sat on the throne of David his father; and his kingdom was established greatly. 13And Adonijah the son of Haggith came to Bathsheba the mother of Solomon. And she said, Comest thou peaceably? And he said, Peaceably. 14And he said, I have something to say to thee. And she said, Speak. 15And he said, Thou knowest that the kingdom was mine, and all Israel had set their faces on me that I should reign; but the kingdom is turned about and is become my brother's, for it was his from Jehovah. 16And now I ask one petition of thee; refuse me not. And she said to him, Speak. 17And he said, Speak, I pray thee, to Solomon the king — for he will not refuse thee — that he give me Abishag the Shunammite as wife. 18And Bathsheba said, Well, I will speak for thee to the king. 19And Bathsheba went to king Solomon, to speak to him for Adonijah. And the king rose up to meet her, and bowed himself to her, and sat down on his throne; and he caused a throne to be set for the king's mother, and she sat on his right hand. 20Then she said, I desire one small petition of thee; refuse me not. And the king said to her, Ask, my mother, for I will not refuse thee. 21And she said, Let Abishag the Shunammite be given to Adonijah thy brother as wife. 22And king Solomon answered and said to 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. 23And king Solomon swore by Jehovah saying, God#GodHebrew: Elohim do so to me, and more also, — Adonijah has spoken this word against his own life! 24And now as Jehovah liveth, who has established me, and set me on the throne of David my father, and who has made me a house, as he promised, Adonijah shall be put to death this day. 25And king Solomon sent by the hand of Benaiah the son of Jehoiada; who fell on him, that he died.
26And the king said to Abiathar the priest, Go to Anathoth, to thine own fields; for thou art worthy of death; but I will not at this time put thee to death, because thou didst bear the ark of Adonai Jehovah before David my father, and because thou hast been afflicted in all wherein my father was afflicted. 27And Solomon thrust out Abiathar from being priest to Jehovah, to fulfil the word of Jehovah, which he had spoken concerning the house of Eli in Shiloh. 28And the report came to Joab (for Joab had turned after Adonijah, though he had not turned after Absalom); and Joab fled to the tent of Jehovah, and caught hold of the horns of the altar. 29And it was told king Solomon that Joab had fled to the tent of Jehovah; and behold, he is by the altar. And Solomon sent Benaiah the son of Jehoiada, saying, Go, fall on him. 30And Benaiah came to the tent of Jehovah and said to him, Thus saith the king: Come forth. And he said, No; for I will die here. And Benaiah brought the king word again, saying, Thus said Joab, and thus he answered me. 31And the king said to him, Do as he has said, and fall upon him, and bury him; and take away the innocent blood, which Joab shed, from me and from the house of my father. 32And Jehovah shall requite the blood which he shed upon his own head, because he fell upon two men more righteous and better than he, and slew them with the sword, without my father David's knowledge: Abner the son of Ner, captain of the host of Israel, and Amasa the son of Jether, captain of the host of Judah. 33And their blood shall be requited 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 Jehovah. 34And Benaiah the son of Jehoiada went up and fell upon him, and put him to death; and he was buried in his own house in the wilderness.
35And the king put Benaiah the son of Jehoiada in his stead over the host; and Zadok the priest the king put in the stead of Abiathar. 36And the king sent and called for Shimei, and said to him, Build thee a house in Jerusalem, and abide there, and go not forth thence anywhere. 37And it shall be that on the day thou goest forth, and passest over the torrent of Kidron, ...know for certain that thou shalt surely die: thy blood shall be upon thine own head. 38And Shimei said to the king, The saying is good: as my lord the king has said, so will thy servant do. And Shimei dwelt in Jerusalem many days. 39And it came to pass at the end of three years, that two servants of Shimei's ran away to Achish son of Maachah, king of Gath. And they told Shimei saying, Behold, thy servants are in Gath. 40Then 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. 41And it was told Solomon that Shimei had gone from Jerusalem to Gath, and had come again. 42And the king sent and called for Shimei, and said to him, Did I not make thee swear by Jehovah, and protest to thee, saying, Know for certain, that on the day thou goest forth, and walkest abroad anywhere, thou shalt surely die? and thou saidst to me, The word that I have heard is good. 43Why then hast thou not kept the oath of Jehovah, and the commandment that I charged thee with? 44And the king said to Shimei, Thou knowest all the wickedness of which thy heart is conscious, which thou didst to David my father; and Jehovah returns thy wickedness upon thine own head; 45and king Solomon shall be blessed, and the throne of David shall be established before Jehovah for ever. 46And the king commanded Benaiah the son of Jehoiada; who went out and fell upon him, and he died. And the kingdom was established in the hand of Solomon.