Premonitions of Wrath
1 Kings 11:14-25
And the LORD stirred up an adversary to Solomon, Hadad the Edomite: he was of the king's seed in Edom.…

Though the full weight of the judgment of God upon the sin of Solomon was not to come upon him in his lifetime, yet did he not, in this world, go altogether without punishment. The foreknowledge of the evils to come upon his family and people was in itself a heavy affliction. But in addition to this, the evening of his days was doomed to be disturbed. To this end -


1. In themselves these were inconsiderable.

(1) Hadad the Edomite! What can he do? He is indeed of the seed royal of Edom, but then Edom is tributary to Solomon, and Hadad in an exile in Egypt.

(2) Rezon the Syrian! What can he do? He was only a captain under Hadadezer, king of Zobah, whom David defeated, and who fled with his men, over whom he seems to have acted as a chief of banditti.

2. But they have been quietly acquiring influence.

(1) Hadad, who was a lad when he fled from David, has now attained to man's estate; is in high favour with Pharaoh, and has become brother-in-law to the monarch of the Nile.

(2) Rezon also, taking advantage of the apathy of Solomon, who is too much engaged in the seraglio to pay close attention to the affairs of his distant provinces, is already in Damascus and on the throne of Syria.

3. With God behind them they are now formidable.

(1) The fly is a feeble creature, but let God send it forth as a plague, and Egypt is in agony. So Hadad, again amongst his Edomites, is by a competent Providence enabled to work "mischief" even to Solomon!

(2) Rezon also is in a position to gratify his abhorrence of Israel "all the days of Solomon," or to the end of those days.

(3) Let us see the hand of God in all the events of life. Let the discernment of symptoms of His displeasure lead us to repentance and reformation. Let us never despise the day of small things, for the great hand of God may be in it. It is difficult to distinguish the trifling from the momentous.


1. They were reminded of the sufferings of their people.

(1) When David conquered Edom there was a fearful carnage. For six months Joab was engaged in cutting off all the males, until, no natives surviving, Israel had to bury the slain (vers. 15, 16). This slaughter was sufficiently dreadful, though it may only have extended to those old enough to bear arms. Hadad was not an infant then, but (נער קטן) a little boy - of sufficient age to see what was going on and make his escape with the servants. Rezon was of an age and in a position to estimate the miseries which the Syrians suffered when "David slew" them, which sufficiently accounts for the manner in which he "abhorred Israel." Wars are the cradles of resentments.

(2) These terrible massacres have their justification in the sins of the people who suffered them. In executing the wrath of God upon Edom, David fulfilled the famous prophecy of Balaam (see Numbers 24:17-19). But in this David was the type of Christ, the true Star of Jacob and Prince of Israel, whose anger will sweep His enemies to extermination.

2. They were persuaded that the opportunity was ripe for revenge.

(1) They heard that the warriors were dead (ver. 21). They were no longer paralyzed by the sound of the once terrible names of David and Joab.

(2) As for Solomon, he never was a warrior. And now he is stupefied by idolatry, and enervated in the harem.

(3) Consequently they put on a bold front, and from different points harassed and distracted Solomon, apparently with impunity. For the king of Israel knew that God was angry, and "conscience makes cowards of us all." Who can afford to have God for his enemy? Solomon could not afford it. Can we? Who would not make peace with such an antagonist? He proposes His own terms. Why do we not repent and believe the gospel? - M.

Parallel Verses
KJV: And the LORD stirred up an adversary unto Solomon, Hadad the Edomite: he was of the king's seed in Edom.

WEB: Yahweh raised up an adversary to Solomon, Hadad the Edomite: he was of the king's seed in Edom.

Divine Impulses
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