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David’s Final Instructions to Solomon
1As the time of King David’s death approached, he gave this charge to his son Solomon:
2“I am going where everyone on earth must someday go. Take courage and be a man. 3Observe the requirements of the Lord your God, and follow all his ways. Keep the decrees, commands, regulations, and laws written in the Law of Moses so that you will be successful in all you do and wherever you go. 4If you do this, then the Lord will keep the promise he made to me. He told me, ‘If your descendants live as they should and follow me faithfully with all their heart and soul, one of them will always sit on the throne of Israel.’
5“And there is something else. You know what Joab son of Zeruiah did to me when he murdered my two army commanders, Abner son of Ner and Amasa son of Jether. He pretended that it was an act of war, but it was done in a time of peace,#2:5a Or He murdered them during a time of peace as revenge for deaths they had caused in time of war. staining his belt and sandals with innocent blood.#2:5b As in some Greek and Old Latin manuscripts; Hebrew reads with the blood of war. 6Do with him what you think best, but don’t let him grow old and go to his grave in peace.#2:6 Hebrew don’t let his white head go down to Sheol in peace.
7“Be kind to the sons of Barzillai of Gilead. Make them permanent guests at your table, for they took care of me when I fled from your brother Absalom.
8“And remember Shimei son of Gera, the man from Bahurim in Benjamin. He cursed me with a terrible curse as I was fleeing to Mahanaim. When he came down to meet me at the Jordan River, I swore by the Lord that I would not kill him. 9But that oath does not make him innocent. You are a wise man, and you will know how to arrange a bloody death for him.#2:9 Hebrew how to bring his white head down to Sheol in blood.
10Then David died and was buried with his ancestors in the City of David. 11David had reigned over Israel for forty years, seven of them in Hebron and thirty-three in Jerusalem. 12Solomon became king and sat on the throne of David his father, and his kingdom was firmly established.
Solomon Establishes His Rule
13One day Adonijah, whose mother was Haggith, came to see Bathsheba, Solomon’s mother. “Have you come with peaceful intentions?” she asked him.
“Yes,” he said, “I come in peace. 14In fact, I have a favor to ask of you.”
“What is it?” she asked.
15He replied, “As you know, the kingdom was rightfully mine; all Israel wanted me to be the next king. But the tables were turned, and the kingdom went to my brother instead; for that is the way the Lord wanted it. 16So now I have just one favor to ask of you. Please don’t turn me down.”
“What is it?” she asked.
17He replied, “Speak to King Solomon on my behalf, for I know he will do anything you request. Ask him to let me marry Abishag, the girl from Shunem.”
18“All right,” Bathsheba replied. “I will speak to the king for you.”
19So Bathsheba went to King Solomon to speak on Adonijah’s behalf. The king rose from his throne to meet her, and he bowed down before her. When he sat down on his throne again, the king ordered that a throne be brought for his mother, and she sat at his right hand.
20“I have one small request to make of you,” she said. “I hope you won’t turn me down.”
“What is it, my mother?” he asked. “You know I won’t refuse you.”
21“Then let your brother Adonijah marry Abishag, the girl from Shunem,” she replied.
22“How can you possibly ask me to give Abishag to Adonijah?” King Solomon demanded. “You might as well ask me to give him the kingdom! You know that he is my older brother, and that he has Abiathar the priest and Joab son of Zeruiah on his side.”
23Then King Solomon made a vow before the Lord: “May God strike me and even kill me if Adonijah has not sealed his fate with this request. 24The Lord has confirmed me and placed me on the throne of my father, David; he has established my dynasty as he promised. So as surely as the Lord lives, Adonijah will die this very day!” 25So King Solomon ordered Benaiah son of Jehoiada to execute him, and Adonijah was put to death.
26Then the king said to Abiathar the priest, “Go back to your home in Anathoth. You deserve to die, but I will not kill you now, because you carried the Ark of the Sovereign Lord for David my father and you shared all his hardships.” 27So Solomon deposed Abiathar from his position as priest of the Lord, thereby fulfilling the prophecy the Lord had given at Shiloh concerning the descendants of Eli.
28Joab had not joined Absalom’s earlier rebellion, but he had joined Adonijah’s rebellion. So when Joab heard about Adonijah’s death, he ran to the sacred tent of the Lord and grabbed on to the horns of the altar. 29When this was reported to King Solomon, he sent Benaiah son of Jehoiada to execute him.
30Benaiah went to the sacred tent of the Lord and said to Joab, “The king orders you to come out!”
But Joab answered, “No, I will die here.”
So Benaiah returned to the king and told him what Joab had said.
31“Do as he said,” the king replied. “Kill him there beside the altar and bury him. This will remove the guilt of Joab’s senseless murders from me and from my father’s family. 32The Lord will repay him#2:32 Hebrew will return his blood on his own head. for the murders of two men who were more righteous and better than he. For my father knew nothing about the deaths of Abner son of Ner, commander of the army of Israel, and of Amasa son of Jether, commander of the army of Judah. 33May their blood be on Joab and his descendants forever, and may the Lord grant peace forever to David, his descendants, his dynasty, and his throne.”
34So Benaiah son of Jehoiada returned to the sacred tent and killed Joab, and he was buried at his home in the wilderness. 35Then the king appointed Benaiah to command the army in place of Joab, and he installed Zadok the priest to take the place of Abiathar.
36The king then sent for Shimei and told him, “Build a house here in Jerusalem and live there. But don’t step outside the city to go anywhere else. 37On the day you so much as cross the Kidron Valley, you will surely die; and your blood will be on your own head.”
38Shimei replied, “Your sentence is fair; I will do whatever my lord the king commands.” So Shimei lived in Jerusalem for a long time.
39But three years later two of Shimei’s slaves ran away to King Achish son of Maacah of Gath. When Shimei learned where they were, 40he saddled his donkey and went to Gath to search for them. When he found them, he brought them back to Jerusalem.
41Solomon heard that Shimei had left Jerusalem and had gone to Gath and returned. 42So the king sent for Shimei and demanded, “Didn’t I make you swear by the Lord and warn you not to go anywhere else or you would surely die? And you replied, ‘The sentence is fair; I will do as you say.’ 43Then why haven’t you kept your oath to the Lord and obeyed my command?”
44The king also said to Shimei, “You certainly remember all the wicked things you did to my father, David. May the Lord now bring that evil on your own head. 45But may I, King Solomon, receive the Lord’s blessings, and may one of David’s descendants always sit on this throne in the presence of the Lord.” 46Then, at the king’s command, Benaiah son of Jehoiada took Shimei outside and killed him.
So the kingdom was now firmly in Solomon’s grip.
David’s Instructions to Solomon
1Now #Gen. 47:29; Deut. 31:14the days of David drew near that he should die, and he charged Solomon his son, saying: 2#Josh. 23:14“I go the way of all the earth; #Deut. 31:7, 23; 1 Chr. 22:13be strong, therefore, and prove yourself a man. 3And keep the charge of the Lord your God: to walk in His ways, to keep His statutes, His commandments, His judgments, and His testimonies, as it is written in the Law of Moses, that you may #(Deut. 29:9; Josh. 1:7); 1 Chr. 22:12, 13prosper in all that you do and wherever you turn; 4that the Lord may #2 Sam. 7:25fulfill His word which He spoke concerning me, saying, #(Ps. 132:12)‘If your sons take heed to their way, to #2 Kin. 20:3walk before Me in truth with all their heart and with all their soul,’ He said, #2 Sam. 7:12, 13; 1 Kin. 8:25‘you shall not lack a man on the throne of Israel.’
5“Moreover you know also what Joab the son of Zeruiah #2 Sam. 3:39; 18:5, 12, 14did to me, and what he did to the two commanders of the armies of Israel, to #2 Sam. 3:27; 1 Kin. 2:32Abner the son of Ner and #2 Sam. 20:10Amasa the son of Jether, whom he killed. And he shed the blood of war in peacetime, and put the blood of war on his belt that was around his waist, and on his sandals that were on his feet. 6Therefore do #1 Kin. 2:9; Prov. 20:26according to your wisdom, and do not let his gray hair go down to the grave in peace.
7“But show kindness to the sons of #2 Sam. 19:31–39Barzillai the Gileadite, and let them be among those who #2 Sam. 9:7, 10; 19:28eat at your table, for so #2 Sam. 17:17–29they came to me when I fled from Absalom your brother.
8“And see, you have with you #2 Sam. 16:5–13Shimei the son of Gera, a Benjamite from Bahurim, who cursed me with a malicious curse in the day when I went to Mahanaim. But #2 Sam. 19:18he came down to meet me at the Jordan, and #2 Sam. 19:23I swore to him by the Lord, saying, ‘I will not put you to death with the sword.’ 9Now therefore, #Ex. 20:7; Job 9:28do not hold him guiltless, for you are a wise man and know what you ought to do to him; but #Gen. 42:38; 44:31bring his gray hair down to the grave with blood.”
Death of David
10So #1 Kin. 1:21; Acts 2:29; 13:36David rested with his fathers, and was buried in #2 Sam. 5:7; 1 Kin. 3:1the City of David. 11The period that David #2 Sam. 5:4, 5; 1 Chr. 3:4; 29:26, 27reigned over Israel was forty years; seven years he reigned in Hebron, and in Jerusalem he reigned thirty-three years. 12#1 Kin. 1:46; 1 Chr. 29:23Then Solomon sat on the throne of his father David; and his kingdom was #1 Kin. 2:46; 2 Chr. 1:1firmly established.
Solomon Executes Adonijah
13Now Adonijah the son of Haggith came to Bathsheba the mother of Solomon. So she said, #1 Sam. 16:4, 5“Do you come peaceably?”
And he said, “Peaceably.” 14Moreover he said, “I have something to say to you.”
And she said, “Say it.”
15Then he said, “You know that the kingdom was #1 Kin. 1:11, 18mine, and all Israel had set their expectations on me, that I should reign. However, the kingdom has been turned over, and has become my brother’s; for #1 Chr. 22:9, 10; 28:5–7; (Dan. 2:21)it was his from the Lord. 16Now I ask one petition of you; do not deny me.”
And she said to him, “Say it.”
17Then he said, “Please speak to King Solomon, for he will not refuse you, that he may give me #1 Kin. 1:3, 4Abishag the Shunammite as wife.”
18So Bathsheba said, “Very well, I will speak for you to the king.”
19Bathsheba therefore went to King Solomon, to speak to him for Adonijah. And the king rose up to meet her and #(Ex. 20:12)bowed down to her, and sat down on his throne and had a throne set for the king’s mother; #Ps. 45:9so she sat at his right hand. 20Then she said, “I desire one small petition of you; do not refuse me.”
And the king said to her, “Ask it, my mother, for I will not refuse you.”
21So she said, “Let Abishag the Shunammite be given to Adonijah your brother as wife.”
22And King Solomon answered and said to his mother, “Now why do you ask Abishag the Shunammite for Adonijah? Ask for him the kingdom also—for he is my #1 Kin. 1:6; 2:15; 1 Chr. 3:2, 5older brother—for him, and for #1 Kin. 1:7Abiathar the priest, and for Joab the son of Zeruiah.” 23Then King Solomon swore by the Lord, saying, #Ruth 1:17“May God do so to me, and more also, if Adonijah has not spoken this word against his own life! 24Now therefore, as the Lord lives, who has confirmed me and set me on the throne of David my father, and who has established a house for me, as He #2 Sam. 7:11, 13; 1 Chr. 22:10promised, Adonijah shall be put to death today!”
25So King Solomon sent by the hand of #2 Sam. 8:18; 1 Kin. 4:4Benaiah the son of Jehoiada; and he struck him down, and he died.
Abiathar Exiled, Joab Executed
26And to Abiathar the priest the king said, “Go to #Josh. 21:18; Jer. 1:1Anathoth, to your own fields, for you are deserving of death; but I will not put you to death at this time, #1 Sam. 22:23; 23:6; 2 Sam. 15:14, 29because you carried the ark of the Lord God before my father David, and because you were afflicted every time my father was afflicted.” 27So Solomon removed Abiathar from being priest to the Lord, that he might #1 Sam. 2:31–35fulfill the word of the Lord which He spoke concerning the house of Eli at Shiloh.
28Then news came to Joab, for Joab #1 Kin. 1:7had defected to Adonijah, though he had not defected to Absalom. So Joab fled to the tabernacle of the Lord, and #1 Kin. 1:50took hold of the horns of the altar. 29And King Solomon was told, “Joab has fled to the tabernacle of the Lord; there he is, by the altar.” Then Solomon sent Benaiah the son of Jehoiada, saying, “Go, #1 Kin. 2:5, 6strike him down.” 30So Benaiah went to the tabernacle of the Lord, and said to him, “Thus says the king, #(Ex. 21:14)‘Come out!’ ”
And he said, “No, but I will die here.” And Benaiah brought back word to the king, saying, “Thus said Joab, and thus he answered me.”
31Then the king said to him, #(Ex. 21:14)“Do as he has said, and strike him down and bury him, #(Num. 35:33; Deut. 19:13; 21:8, 9)that you may take away from me and from the house of my father the innocent blood which Joab shed. 32So the Lord #(Gen. 9:6); Judg. 9:24, 57will return his blood on his head, because he struck down two men more righteous #2 Chr. 21:13, 14and better than he, and killed them with the sword—#2 Sam. 3:27Abner the son of Ner, the commander of the army of Israel, and #2 Sam. 20:9, 10Amasa the son of Jether, the commander of the army of Judah—though my father David did not know it. 33Their blood shall therefore return upon the head of Joab and #2 Sam. 3:29upon the head of his descendants forever. #(Prov. 25:5)But upon David and his descendants, upon his house and his throne, there shall be peace forever from the Lord.”
34So Benaiah the son of Jehoiada went up and struck and killed him; and he was buried in his own house in the wilderness. 35The king put Benaiah the son of Jehoiada in his place over the army, and the king put #1 Sam. 2:35; 1 Kin. 4:4; 1 Chr. 6:53; 24:3; 29:22Zadok the priest in the place of #1 Kin. 2:27Abiathar.
Shimei Executed
36Then the king sent and called for #2 Sam. 16:5–13; 1 Kin. 2:8Shimei, and said to him, “Build yourself a house in Jerusalem and dwell there, and do not go out from there anywhere. 37For it shall be, on the day you go out and cross #2 Sam. 15:23; 2 Kin. 23:6; John 18:1the Brook Kidron, know for certain you shall surely die; #Lev. 20:9; Josh. 2:19; 2 Sam. 1:16; Ezek. 18:13your blood shall be on your own head.”
38And Shimei said to the king, “The saying is good. As my lord the king has said, so your servant will do.” So Shimei dwelt in Jerusalem many days.
39Now it happened at the end of three years, that two slaves of Shimei ran away to #1 Sam. 27:2Achish the son of Maachah, king of Gath. And they told Shimei, saying, “Look, your slaves are in Gath!” 40So Shimei arose, saddled his donkey, and went to Achish at Gath to seek his slaves. And Shimei went and brought his slaves from Gath. 41And Solomon was told that Shimei had gone from Jerusalem to Gath and had come back. 42Then the king sent and called for Shimei, and said to him, “Did I not make you swear by the Lord, and warn you, saying, ‘Know for certain that on the day you go out and travel anywhere, you shall surely die’? And you said to me, ‘The word I have heard is good.’ 43Why then have you not kept the oath of the Lord and the commandment that I gave you?” 44The king said moreover to Shimei, “You know, as your heart acknowledges, #2 Sam. 16:5–13all the wickedness that you did to my father David; therefore the Lord will #1 Sam. 25:39; 2 Kin. 11:1, 12–16; Ps. 7:16; Ezek. 17:19return your wickedness on your own head. 45But King Solomon shall be blessed, and #2 Sam. 7:13; (Prov. 25:5)the throne of David shall be established before the Lord forever.”
46So the king commanded Benaiah the son of Jehoiada; and he went out and struck him down, and he died. Thus the #1 Kin. 2:12; 2 Chr. 1:1kingdom was established in the hand of Solomon.