1 Kings 2
International Standard Version Par ▾ 

David Instructs Solomon

1As David’s time to die approached, he addressed his son Solomon with these words:

2“I’m headed down the road that everyone who lives on earth travels, so be strong and demonstrate that you’re a grown man 3by keeping the charge that the LORD your God entrusted to you. Live life his way, keep his statutes, his commands, his ordinances, and his testimonies, just as they’re written down in the Law of Moses, so that you may succeed in everything you do and wherever you go,a 4and so that the LORD may fulfill his promise that he spoke about me when he said, ‘If your sons pay attention to how they live by walking truthfully in my presence with all their heart and with all their soul, you will never lack a man on the throne of Israel.’

5“Furthermore, you’re aware of what Zeruiah’s son Joab did to me and to those two commanders of the armies of Israel, Ner’s son Abner and Jether’s son Amasa, whom he killed, and how he shed the blood of wartime during times of peace, staining the very belt he wears around his waist and the sandals he wears on his feet. 6So act consistently with your wisdom, and don’t let him die as a peaceful old man.b 7Be gracious to the descendants of Barzillai the Gileadite, and provide for them in your household,c because they helped me when I had to run from your brother Absalom.

8“Pay attention now! You have with you Gera’s son Shimei the descendant of Benjamin from Bahurim. He cursed me violently that day when I had to leave for Mahanaim. When he visited me at the Jordan River,d I made an oath to the LORD and told him, ‘I won’t execute you with a sword.’ 9But don’t let him off unpunished, since you’re a wise man and you’ll know what you need to do to him. Find a way that he dies in his old agee by shedding his blood.”

David Dies and Solomon Consolidates His Reign

(1 Chronicles 3:4; 29:26-28)

10After this, David died, as hadf his ancestors, and he was buried in the City of David. 11David had reigned over Israel for 40 years. He reigned in Hebron for seven years and in Jerusalem for 33 years. 12Solomon then assumed his father David’s throne, and his kingdom was firmly established.

Adonijah asks for Abishag

13Later, Haggith’s son Adonijah approached Solomon’s mother. “Are you here on a peaceful mission?” she asked.

“Yes,” he replied. 14“I have something to ask you about.”

“Talk,” she told him.

15So he replied, “You know that the kingdom should have come to me, and that everyone in Israel intended to place me as the nextg king. However, the kingdom has turned around and now belongs to my brother, because it went to him from the LORD. 16So now I’m asking one thing from you. Don’t refuse me.”

“Talk,” she told him.

17Then he asked her, “Please talk to King Solomon for me, since he won’t refuse you. Ask him to give me Abishag the Shunammite as a wife.”

18“Okay,” Bathsheba replied. “I’ll talk to the king for you.” 19So Bathsheba went to talk to King Solomon for Adonijah. The king rose to meet her, bowed to her, and sat down on his throne. He ordered a throne be set in place for his mother. She sat on a throne to his right 20and told him,h “I would like to make a minor request of you. Please don’t refuse me.”

“What is your request, mother?” the king asked her. “I won’t turn you down.”

21So she asked him, “Give Abishag the Shunammite to your brother Adonijah as a wife.”

22But King Solomon replied to his mother, “Why are you asking Abishag the Shunammite for Adonijah? Why not ask me to give up the kingdom for him, since he’s my older brother, and why not aski for Abiathar the priest, and for Zeruiah’s son Joab?”

23Then King Solomon took this oath in the name of the LORD: “May God do so to me, and more besides, if Adonijah hasn’t endangered his life by bringing up this subject. 24Now therefore, as the LORD lives, who has established me and set me on the throne of my father David, and who has established a dynasty, just like he promised, Adonijah will surely be executed today.” 25So King Solomon sent for Jehoiada’s son Benaiah, who attacked and killed Adonijah.j

26The king also told Abiathar the priest, “Go home to Anathoth. You deserve to die, but I won’t kill you today, because you carried the ark of the Lord GOD before my father David and because you shared all the troubles that my father went through.” 27So Solomon fired Abiathar as the LORD’s priest, thus fulfilling the promise that the LORD had spoken in Shiloh concerning Eli’s household.k

Joab is Executed

28When Joab learned what had happened, he ran to the LORD’s tent and grabbed hold of the horns of the altar, since Joab had supported Adonijah (though he had not supported Absalom). 29Somebody informed King Solomon, “Joab just ran to the LORD’s tent and now he’s standing beside the altar!”

But Solomon ordered Jehoiada’s son Benaiah, “Go kill him!”

30So Benaiah went into the LORD’s tent and told Joab,l “The king orders you to come out!”

“No,” Joab said, “I’d rather die here!”

So Benaiah went and informed the king, “This is how Joab answered me.”

31The king replied to him, “Do just what he asked. Kill him and bury him so that you may remove from me and from my father’s household the guilt that Joab shed needlessly. 32The LORD will repay him for his bloodshed because, without my father David’s consent he attacked and murdered two men more righteous and better than he, Ner’s son Abner, the commander of Israel’s army and Jether’s son Amasa, commander of Judah’s army. 33May their blood be repaid to Joab and to his descendants forever, and may there be peace shown from the LORD forever to David, to his descendants, to his household, and to his throne.”

34Jehoiada’s son Benaiah then approached Joab, attacked him, killed him, and had him buried at Joab’sm home in the wilderness. 35The king appointed Jehoiada’s son Benaiah in charge of the army to replace Joab and also appointed Zadok the priest to replace Abiathar.

Shimei is Executed

36The king sent for Shimei and told him, “Build yourself a house in Jerusalem and live there, but don’t go anywhere from there. 37If you ever leave and cross the Kidron Brook, you can be sure that you’ll die. You’ll be responsible for your own death.”

38Shimei replied to the king, “What your majesty has decreed is acceptable to me. I’ll do what you’ve said.” So Shimei lived in Jerusalem for quite some time. 39But three years later, two of Shimei’s servants escaped to Maacah’s son Achish, the king of Gath.

Somebody told Shimei, “Look! Your servants went to Gath!” 40So Shimei got up, saddled a donkey, and traveled to Gath to find his servants. He found them and brought them back from Gath.

41Later, Solomon found out that Shimei had left Jerusalem, gone to Gath, and had returned, 42so the king sent for Shimei and asked him, “Didn’t I make a promise to the LORD and warn you, ‘The day you leave and go anywhere else, you can be sure you’ll die’? And you told me, ‘What your majesty has decreed is acceptable to me.’ 43So why haven’t you kept the oath you made to the LORD, and why didn’t you obey my personal order to you?”

44The king also reminded Shimei, “You know all the evil things that you admit you did to my father David. Therefore the LORD is going to repay you forn all of your evil. 45But King Solomon will be blessed, and David’s throne will be established in the presence of the LORD forever.” 46So the king gave orders to Jehoiada’s son Benaiah to go out, attack Shimei, and kill him. That is how the kingdom was established under Solomon’s control.

a 2:3 Lit. turn
b 2:6 Lit. let his gray hair descend to Sheol in peace
c 2:7 Lit. them at your table
d 2:8 The Heb. lacks River
e 2:9 Lit. Bring his gray hair down to Sheol
f 2:10 Lit. David slept with
g 2:15 The Heb. lacks the next
h 2:20 The Heb. lacks to him
i 2:22 The Heb. lacks why not ask
j 2:25 Lit. him
k 2:27 Cf. 1Sam 2:27-36
l 2:30 Lit. him
m 2:34 Lit. his
n 2:44 Lit. repay on your head

The Holy Bible: International Standard Version® Release 2.1
Copyright © 1996-2012 The ISV Foundation

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