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Bible Commentaries
1 Kings 1

Bell's Commentary on the BibleBell's Commentary

Verses 1-53

  1. Intro:
    1. I planted a number of Christmas trees over the years in my yard...I’ve almost gotten rid of most. I realized I love them in the mountains...but I hate them in my yard. Why? because their very acidic.
      1. Pine trees grow best in acid soil. As the tree develops it begins to a create its own environment. Maturing needles drop to the ground, where their slow decay adds acid to the soil. Soon grass beneath them dies and shrubs become stunted.
        1. The writer of Proverbs knew that persons, like trees, need a favorable environment in order to thrive. Walk with the wise and become wise; associate with fools and get in trouble. Prov.13:20
        2. Or, bad company corrupts good character. 1 Cor.15:33
    2. Practical Application: The Book of Kings has many lessons for believers.
      1. We see a warning about the company we keep, and especially in regard to close associations and marriage.
      2. The kings of Israel who, like Solomon, married foreign women exposed themselves and the people they ruled to evil.
      3. As believers in Christ, we must be very careful about whom we choose as friends, business associates, and spouses. Bad company corrupts good character. 1 Cor.15:33
  2. CULMINATION (1-4) of David’s life/reign
    1. ​​​​​​​(1) David a skilled warrior & a man after God’s own heart is now about 70 years old (971bc). Reigned 40 years, 7 in Hebron, 33 in Jerusalem.
    2. (2-4) What do you think of David’s living hot water bottle? Warming up the king.
    3. Not sexual...simply Solomon’s philosophy of Eccl.4:11 if two lie down together, they will keep warm; But how can one be warm alone?
  3. CONSPIRACY (5-10) of Adonijah
    1. ​​​​​​​The Most High God rules in the kingdom of men, and appoints over it whomever He chooses. Daniel 5:21
      1. Have you ever been in a place where someone wanted your job/position?
        1. Maybe you uncovered a scheme to take over your business.
        2. Maybe someone bad mouthing you to the boss because they wanted your position.
      2. In some parts of the world, power struggles result in assassinations, bloody coups, or civil wars. We see power struggles in politics all the time. They also occur in neighborhoods, families, and even in churches.
        1. We embark on a story of a son who thought he should be king.
    2. (5,6) Adonijah was the oldest, since Absalom was dead.
      1. Adonijah hoped to take advantage of the growing power vacuum in Israel. Just like his half-brother Absalom had done before him.
      2. And like Absalom, and Adonijah was handsome, popular, and proud.
    3. I will be king - 1st reminds me of the song in Lion King by Simba, Oh, I just can’t wait to be king. But it also sounds like another boast that ended in judgment.
      1. Is.14:12-15 - i.e. Lucifer, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God.
    4. By going on a royal procession throughout the city, this was a formal declaration of his kingship. (think, Jesus triumphal entry)
    5. (7) Foolishly, Joab and Abiathar joined Adonijah and opposed God’s man, Solomon, and they paid for it. [Ex.23:2 you shall not follow a crowd to do evil]
    6. (9) En Rogel - a spring so of Jerusalem in the Kidron Valley. [border Judah/Benj.]
      1. Remember Gihon spring, we’ll talk about that later.
    7. (10) Sometimes it’s a compliment to not be invited to some parties! :)
    8. 1 of the points of 1 Kings is to show man’s inability to rule himself & the world.
      1. ​​​​​​​Adonijah would have learned so much if he would have sought God on this.
      2. He would have realized, the most powerful position on earth is kneeling before the Lord of the universe.
  4. COUNTERPLOT (11-27) By Nathan
    1. ​​​​​​​Yes the same Nathan that brought the piercing arrow from the Divine bow. [thou art the man]
    2. (11-27) Sometimes leaders must be led, and Nathan and Bathsheba did it wisely.
      1. David had given up the sword (2 Sam.21:15-17) and now he must give up the scepter.
      2. Wise is the leader who knows when to step aside.
    3. From one perspective, the fate of the Davidic kingdom hinged on Nathan; God seemed out of sight. But as we often find in Scripture, when God is not out in the open, He is often working behind the scenes.
  5. COMMANDS (28-37) by David
    1. ​​​​​​​Actually in playing card the king of spades = David. The suit of spades means swords from the Italian spada, represents that of Goliath.
    2. (28) Although David’s body was frail, his mind remained alert, and his spirit strong & resolute.
    3. (31) Bowed - Nose to the ground. (only used twice)
    4. (32) Because Nathan supported the kingship of Solomon, we can be sure that Solomon was also God’s choice for king.
    5. (33) Gihon - a spring outside eastern wall of Jerusalem in the Kidron Valley.
    6. (34) Horn/shofar - used to warn, it was a signaling device (to warn of enemies) not an instrument.
    7. (37) Solomon must ride on David’s own mule (33), be attended by the royal bodyguard (38), and be anointed by priests and prophet (34).
  6. CROWNING (38-40) by Zadok
    1. ​​​​​​​Solomon/shlomo - peace, God is peace.
    2. (40) Because of the natural topography, the jubilant sound of the coronation echoed down the valley to Adonijah, who was just finishing his own coronation fees at En-rogel. (here Gihon)
  7. COMPASSION (38-40) by Solomon
    1. ​​​​​​​(47) The king worshiped on the bed - despite being bedridden, David still showed gratitude.
    2. (48) David decided that the only way to ensure that Solomon would become king after his death was to make co-regent.
      1. One to sit on my throne - from God’s promise to David, back in 2 Sam.7:12 I will set up your seed after you, who will come from your body, and I will establish his kingdom.
    3. (50) Took hold of the horns of the altar - Exodus 29:12 the Mosaic law stipulated that the blood of sacrificial animals was to be rubbed on these horns to symbolize personal atonement for sin.
      1. Adonijah fled to the altar for safety, not for sanctity.
        1. Religion was something he used only for personal profit, like some insincere people today, do the same.
    4. (52,53) Solomon was crowned king, and his first act was one of mercy.
      1. Solomon showed himself to be gracious, but what he most needed was wisdom.
    5. The tidings of this glad event carry comfort and joy into the hearts of all loyal citizens, but dismay into the hearts of traitors.
      1. To the one a savor of life unto life, to others of death unto death.
      2. Just like Jesus’ Triumphal entry we talked about Sunday.
    6. Perhaps you are tempted to look at the world around you and despair that all seems moving toward godlessness.
      1. Let the message of tonight's passage remind you that God is still in control (all the time).
      2. That no act of prayerful and godly faithfulness goes unused in the promise of God's kingdom.
        1. Pray the Lord's Prayer today, focusing especially upon the first 3 petitions: that God would be honored, that His kingdom would come, and that His will would be done in your life and in the world.
    7. Favorite character in our story tonight & why?
    8. What else stands out to you?
    9. What do we learn about God from this?
Bibliographical Information
Bell, Brian. "Commentary on 1 Kings 1". "Bell's Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/cbb/1-kings-1.html. 2017.
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