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- 1 Kings
by Ger de Koning
The first book of the Kings and the second book of the Kings are one book in the Hebrew Old Testament. They are seen as the continuation of the historical narrative which started in the books of Samuel. In the first book of the Kings and the second book of the Kings we have to do with the end of a history that started in the book of Joshua and is further described in the book of Judges and the following books. The first book of Chronicles and the second book of Chronicles describe a new beginning, together with the book of Ezra and the book of Nehemiah. In it we find a look ahead to the kingdom of peace.
There is a great difference in character between the books of Kings and the books of Chronicles. The books of Kings are written before the exile. The books of Chronicles are written after the exile.
In the first book of the Kings and the second book of the Kings the history is described from the point of view of the responsibility of the kingship, based on the law. There we see the kingship as entrusted to man and through which he is put to the test. That means the fall of the kingship, that especially comes before our attention in the books of Kings in the history of the ten tribes. The judgment consists of the scattering of the ten tribes (722 BC) and having the two tribes (586 BC) carried away into exile. After the fall of Israel (the ten tribes), the fall of Judah (the two tribes), is not long in coming, although in Judah there were times of recovery.
In the books of Chronicles everything is seen from the view point of God’s counsel, from the side of grace, how God likes to think back to history. There the history of the two tribes is described, because there is Jerusalem with the temple as the dwelling place of God. In short, in the books of Chronicles we see the priestly side, while both the books of Kings represent the prophetic side.
The books of Kings, in which the end of the history of God’s people and then mainly the ten tribes kingdom is described, start with a new development. A few things are added to what is already said, but its aim is to introduce the new. What is still said of David is to introduce the new king, Solomon. We also have this history in the books of Chronicles. In the first book of the Kings we see how Solomon becomes king. The dangerous conditions require him to become king quickly. There is a lot of acting of people.
That is different in the first book of Chronicles. There David makes Solomon king (1Chr 23:1) and everything happens in complete peace. The anointing of Solomon also happens in rest, without dangers and revolt, because everything happens according to the intention of God (1Chr 29:22). Thus the Lord Jesus will be introduced into the world entirely according to God’s plan and independent of man.
The history we have in the books of Kings shows the other side, the other viewpoint, which is just as true. The bad deeds of man are the reason for the kingship of Solomon. He becomes king, humanly spoken, by the vigilance of faithful servants of David, his friends. God uses our actions in His ways, so that through our actions what He has intended to do will happen.
the Week of Proper 8 / Ordinary 13