What you do, how you live is your responsibility. No one but you is responsible for your choices. Your choices have consequences. A small lie can cause great damage. The devil didn’t make you do it, you chose to do it. Sin has a price that must be paid. That price s death, but the great news is Jesus paid the price for us and He freely gives eternal life to those who ask. (Romans 6:23).
As David neared the end of his life, he called Solomon to him and gave him some instructions for his reign. Some of his instructions are expected and understandable but some are quite shocking, until we remember that David is a man after God’s own heart and God is a God of justice. (1 Samuel 13:14, Acts 13:21-23, Deuteronomy 32:3-4). How could a king or a god be called just unless he dealt with wrongdoing? In verses 1-3 David counsels his son to always be obedient to God.
“When David's time to die drew near, he commanded Solomon his son, saying, 2 “I am about to go the way of all the earth. Be strong, and show yourself a man, 3 and keep the charge of the Lord your God, walking in his ways and keeping his statutes, his commandments, his rules, and his testimonies, as it is written in the Law of Moses, that you may prosper in all that you do and wherever you turn,”
It is manly to follow God. It takes strength and virility to obey Him and stay in the way of God rather than go the way of fleshly desires. Obedience to God comes with a promise to prosper in all our endeavors. Not endeavors for selfishness but endeavors which glorify the Lord, endeavors which further the Kingdom of Heaven. What is to prosper? It is to succeed. It is to bear fruit or get results, to flourish and thrive. Psalm 1:1-4 says,
“Blessed is the man
who walks not in the counsel of the wicked,
nor stands in the way of sinners,
nor sits in the seat of scoffers;
2 but his delight is in the law of the Lord,
and on his law he meditates day and night.
3 He is like a tree
planted by streams of water
that yields its fruit in its season,
and its leaf does not wither.
In all that he does, he prospers.
4 The wicked are not so,
but are like chaff that the wind drives away.”
David followed this with the promise God had made to him and which he had to pass on to his son and his descendants. Verse 4 reads,
“that the Lord may establish his word that he spoke concerning me, saying, ‘If your sons pay close attention to their way, to walk before me in faithfulness with all their heart and with all their soul, you shall not lack a man on the throne of Israel.”
David’s progenies would rule for about 400 years with 21 kings. They were Solomon, Rehoboam, Abijah, Asa, Jehoshaphat, Jehoram, Ahaziah, Athaliah, Joash, Amaziah, Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, Hezekiah, Manasseh, Amon, Joshiah, Jehoahaz, Jehoiakim, Jehoiachin and Zedekiah. (Goodnews Christian Ministry, 2007). That isn’t forever! So what could that mean? Did God break a promise? No, He was faithful, even though many of the kings were wicked. Jesus, David’s offspring sat on the throne, then and He remains now. Jesus, our Savior was King from the beginning and He is King still. He will always sit on the throne. Psalm 9:7-8 reads,
“But the Lord sits enthroned forever;
he has established his throne for justice,
8 and he judges the world with righteousness;
he judges the peoples with uprightness.”
And because God is just and because He judges with righteousness, David told Solomon he would have to take care of some injustices that still existed. David had spared certain men, he had promised that he would not kill them. But that didn’t mean they would escape punishment. The chapter list those who still had to face judgement for their sedition and betrayal, Joab, Shimei, Adonijah, and Abiathar. David also made sure that Solomon would show kindness to those who had helped him. He told Solomon in verse 7,
“But deal loyally with the sons of Barzillai the Gileadite, and let them be among those who eat at your table, for with such loyalty they met me when I fled from Absalom your brother.”
David trusted that Solomon would act wisely. (Verse 6). Even before God blessed him with more wisdom than any other man, Solomon was wise. After David died, Solomon established his reign by following through on the justice David has asked of him. Adonijah came to Bathsheba and requested the beautiful Shunammite Abishag who had served David in his old age to be his wife. He came with a lie, a twisted version of history, and said, “Give me Abishag the Shunammite as my wife, I did after all give Solomon the throne that I had.” That was not what had happened and Solomon was not fooled by the distorted words of his older brother. (Paraphrased). Verses 23-25 read,
“Then King Solomon swore by the Lord, saying, “God do so to me and more also if this word does not cost Adonijah his life! 24 Now therefore as the Lord lives, who has established me and placed me on the throne of David my father, and who has made me a house, as he promised, Adonijah shall be put to death today.” 25 So King Solomon sent Benaiah the son of Jehoiada, and he struck him down, and he died.”
Solomon knew who had given him the throne. Solomon knew that it was the Lord, not his brother who had made him king. So he had to do the right thing. Furthermore Solomon expelled Abiathar the priest from priesthood for his support of Adonijah. He had Joab killed for his treachery. Joab thought he could appeal to Solomon’s love of the Lord, but Solomon knew better. Verses 28-31 say,
“When the news came to Joab—for Joab had supported Adonijah although he had not supported Absalom—Joab fled to the tent of theLord and caught hold of the horns of the altar. 29 And when it was told King Solomon, “Joab has fled to the tent of the Lord, and behold, he is beside the altar,” Solomon sent Benaiah the son of Jehoiada, saying, “Go, strike him down.” 30 So Benaiah came to the tent of the Lord and said to him, “The king commands, ‘Come out.’” But he said, “No, I will die here.” Then Benaiah brought the king word again, saying, “Thus said Joab, and thus he answered me.”31 The king replied to him, “Do as he has said, strike him down and bury him, and thus take away from me and from my father's house the guilt for the blood that Joab shed without cause.”
Joab, in his cowardice tried to lie and “repented” not because he was sorry but because he didn’t want to face justice. Verses 32-33 contain Solomon’s reasoning and prophetic words.
“The Lord will bring back his bloody deeds on his own head, because, without the knowledge of my father David, he attacked and killed with the sword two men more righteous and better than himself, Abner the son of Ner, commander of the army of Israel, and Amasa the son of Jether, commander of the army of Judah. 33 So shall their blood come back on the head of Joab and on the head of his descendants forever. But for David and for his descendants and for his house and for his throne there shall be peace from the Lord forevermore.”
Finally came Shimei’s punishment. He could live as long as he stayed in Jerusalem and didn’t go beyond certain borders. He agreed and made an oath to that effect. But after 3 years Shimei left to chase after two runaway servants. When Solomon found out, he had him killed for breaking his oath to the Lord. Verses 44-46 read,
“The king also said to Shimei, “You know in your own heartall the harm that you did to David my father. So the Lord will bring back your harm on your own head. 45 But King Solomon shall be blessed, and the throne of David shall be established before the Lord forever.” 46 Then the king commanded Benaiah the son of Jehoiada, and he went out and struck him down, and he died.
So the kingdom was established in the hand of Solomon.”
Our actions have consequences. Our sins affect people for the worse. Jesus paid the price for our sin but often lets the natural consequences happen. But He took away our condemnation or our blame and sentence. Our sin is not on our heads, it is on Jesus! He, our perfect and good Savior became sin, He took our sin onto Himself and paid the price we owe! (1 Peter 2:21-25). We deserve to die, but Jesus gives us life. He is established as King forever. We owe Him our faithfulness and loyalty forever. 1 Timothy 6:11-16 reads,
“But as for you, O man of God, flee these things. Pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, steadfastness, gentleness. 12 Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called and about which you made the good confession in the presence of many witnesses. 13 I charge you in the presence of God, who gives life to all things, and of Christ Jesus, who in his testimony before Pontius Pilate made the good confession, 14 to keep the commandment unstained and free from reproach until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ, 15 which he will display at the proper time—he who is the blessed and only Sovereign, the King of kings and Lord of lords, 16 who alone has immortality, who dwells in unapproachable light, whom no one has ever seen or can see. To him be honor and eternal dominion. Amen.”
Goodnews Christian Ministry. (2007, June 5). The Davidic dynasty - King David, his royal lineage and relation to the Messiah, Jesus. Retrieved from Goodnews Christian Ministry: http://goodnewspirit.com/pdf4518davidicdynasty.pdf