The Hebrew title of this book is named Malakim which is plural for “kings” or “angels”. Malak is Hebrew and singular for “king” or “angel”. First Kings is the first half of a single book that was divided into two parts. These books continue the history of Ysrayl.
The book of 1 Kings has three parts. The first part (1-2) tells about the last years of King David’s life and how his son Solomon became the king of Ysrayl The exact age of Solomon becoming king is not written in the bible but it is thought he was around 20 years old or younger because he was David’s baby boy so they based this on chronological order/history. Solomon also said in 1 Kings 3:7 when he was asking for wisdom, “I am but a little child”. Solomon could have been as young as 12 years old when he became a king filled with wisdom. Yahoshua was 12 years old and filled with wisdom in Luke 2:40-50. David told Solomon to show yourself to be a man because Solomon was young when he died. Bathsheba had a throne next to Solomon’s because Solomon was young when he took the throne. Solomon’s name in Hebrew was Shlomo, a form of the word peace, shalom. Shlomo may have been given to him as a name to describe his character. Yahoshua was also called Shiloh to describe his peaceful character when he walked the earth, Genesis 49:10, Isaiah 9:6 the prince of peace and Isaiah 52:7 the bringer of peace or good news. *According to the prophet Zechariyah, Yahoshua will re-build the temple and the counsel of peace shall be there, Zechariyah 6:12-13. Yah named Solomon, Yedidiyah, the beloved of Yah. The second part (3-11) includes events from Solomon’s rule and tells how famous and rich he was. Under Solomon’s leadership Ysrayl rises to the peak of her size and esteem. Solomon’s great accomplishments, including the unsurpassed splendor of the temple which he constructs in Yahrushalom (Yah’s city of peace), brings him worldwide fame and respect. However, Solomon’s zeal for Yah diminishes in his later years, as pagan wives turn his heart away from worship in the temple of Yah. As a result, the king with the divided heart leaves behind a divided kingdom. Much of the second part of the book (12-22) reports what happened after Solomon’s death, the northern tribes rebelled against Rehoboam his son and the nation of Ysrayl was divided into two separated kingdoms: Yahudah and Benyamin in the south and Ysrayl in the north. The Levites were technically in both kingdoms but mostly in Yahudah territory. This part of 1 Kings includes stories about the kings of these two kingdoms. The book concludes with the rule of King Yahoshaphat of Yahudah and King Ahaziyah of Ysrayl.
Each king in the book is judged according to his faithfulness to Yah. If the king was faithful and obeyed Yah’s law, he was praised as being obedient but if he disobeyed and did wrong, he was condemned as being evil. All the kings of Ysrayl were judged to be evil because they rejected Yah and worshiped idols. However, most of the kings of Yahudah were judged to be obedient because they followed the example of their ancestor King David and worshiped Yah.
First Kings also includes the familiar stories about Yliyah the prophet who opposed the evil King Ahab and Queen Jezebel (Isabel) of the northern kingdom. Yliyah warned the people of Ysrayl to obey Yah and not to worship the gods. Yliyah wanted to prove that Yah was the one true power and so he arranged a contest (or showdown at Mount Carmyl) between Yah and the pagan god Baal. Yliyah and the prophets of Baal would offer a sacrifice to their own mighty one but the fire on their altars would not be lit. Yliyah explained to the people:
…”How long will you falter between two opinions? If Yah is Almighty, follow Him but if Baal, follow him…Then you call on the name of your gods and I will call on the name of Yah and Yah who answers by fire, He is the Almighty”. 1 Malakim 18:21, 24
Chapter 1: David is Advanced in Age and Can Not Stay Warm: Abishag Keeps David Warm
1 Now King David was old, advanced in years and they put covers on him but he could not get warm. 2 Therefore, his servants said to him, “Let a young woman, a virgin, be sought for our master the king and let her lie in your bosom, that our master the king may be warm”. 3 So they sought for a lovely young woman throughout all the territory of Ysrayl and found Abishag the Shunammite and brought her to the king. 4 The young woman was very lovely and she cared for the king and served him but the king did not know her.
*I have a relative that we affectionately call ‘the heater’ and ‘the heating pad’ and ‘the blanket’. If my hands are cold, I ask her to warm my hands between hers. She eats a lot of cinnamon and cinnamon is known to warm the body. The fat on a woman’s body may keep us warmer too.
Adoniyah Arrogantly Presumes He is the King of Ysrayl: Yoab and Abiathar the Priest and Some of David’s Sons Join Adoniyah: Zadok the Priest, Beniayah, Nathan the Prophet, Shimei, Rei, the Mighty Men and Solomon are not with Adoniyah
5 Then Adoniyah the son of Haggith exalted himself saying, “I will be king” and he prepared for himself chariots and horsemen and fifty men to run before him. 6 And his father had not rebuked him at any time by saying, “Why have you done so”? He was also very good-looking, His mother had borne him after Absalom. 7 Then he conferred with Yoab the son of Zeriuyah and with Abiathar the priest and they followed and helped Adoniyah. 8 But Zadok the Priest, Beniayah the Ben of Yehoiada, Nathan the prophet, Shimei, Rei and the mighty men who belonged to David were not with Adoniyah. 9 And Adoniyah sacrificed sheep and oxen and fattened cattle by the stone of Zoheleth, which is by En Rogyl. He also invited all his brothers, the king’s sons and all the men of Yahudah, the king’s servants. 10 But he did not invite Nathan the prophet, Benaiyah, the mighty men or Solomon his brother. *Adoniyah is the 4th son of David, 2 Shemuyah 3:4.
The Prophet Nathan Gives Bathsheba Advice to Save the Lives of Her and Her Son Solomon
11 So Nathan spoke to Bathsheba the mother of Solomon saying, “Have you not heard that Adoniyah the son of Haggith has become king and David our master does not know it? 12 Come, please, let me now give you advice, that you may save your own life and the life of your son Solomon. 13 Go immediately to King David and say to him, ‘Did you not, my master, O king, swear to your maidservant saying, Assurdly your son Solomon shall reign after me and he shall sit on my throne”? Why then has Adoniyah become king’? 14 Then, while you are still talking there with the king, I also will come in after you and confirm your words”.
Bathsheba Goes Before King David
15 So Bathsheba went into the chamber to the king. Now the king was very old and Abishag the Shunammite was serving the king. 16 And Bathsheba bowed and did homage to the king. Then the king said, “What is your wish”? 17 Then she said to him, “My master, you swore by Yah your Almighty to your maidservant saying, ‘Assuredly Solomon your son shall reign after me and he shall sit on my throne”. 18 So now look! Adoniyah has become king and now, my master the king, you do not know about it. 19 He has sacrificed oxen and fattened cattle and sheep in abundance and has invited all the sons of the king, Abiathar the priest and Yoab the commander of the army but Solomon your servant he has not invited. 20 And as for you, my master, O king the yes of all Ysrayl are on you, that you should tell them who will sit on the throne of my master the king after him. 21 Otherwise, it will happen, when my master the king rests with his fathers, that I and my son Solomon will be counted as offenders”.
Nathan the Prophet Goes Before King David
22 And just then, while she was still talking with the king, Nathan the prophet also came in. 23 So they told the king saying, “Here is Nathan the prophet”. And when he came in before the king, he bowed down before the king with his face to the ground. 24 And Nathan said, “My master, O king, have you said ‘Adoniyah shall reign after me and he shall sit on my throne’? 25 For he has gone down today and has sacrificed oxen and fattened cattle and sheep in abundance and has invited all the king’s sons and the commanders of the army and Abiathar the priest and look! They are eating and drinking before him and they say, ‘Long live King Adoniyah’! 26 But he has not invited me, me your servant nor Zadok the priest nor Beniayah the son of Yehoiada nor your servant Solomon. 27 Has this thing been done by master the king and you have not told your servant who should sit on the throne of my master the king after him”?
David Proclaims Solomon King of Ysrayl
28 Then King David answered and said, “Call Bathsheba to me”. So she came into the king’s presence and stood before the king. 29 And the king took an oath and said, “As Yah lives, who has redeemed my life from every distress–30 Just as I swore to you by Yah Almighty of Ysrayl saying, ‘Assuredly Solomon your son shall be king after me and he shall sit on my throne in my place’ so I certainly will do this day”. 31 Then Bathsheba bowed with her face to the earth and paid homage to the king and said, “Let my master King David live forever”!
Arrangements are made for Solomon to be Announced King of Ysrayl
32 And King David said, “Call to me Zadok the priest, Nathan the prophet and Beniayah the Ben of Yehoiada”. So they came before the king. 33 The king also said to them, “Take with you the servants of your master and have Solomon my son ride on my own mule and take him down to Gihon. 34 There let Zadok the priest and Nathan the Prophet anoint him king over Ysrayl and blow the horn and say, ‘Long live King Solomon’! 35 Then you shall come up after him and he shall come and sit on my throne and he shall be king in my place. For I have appointed him to be ruler over Ysrayl and Yahudah”. 36 Beniayah the son of Yehoiada answered the king and said, “Amein (Hebrew: so let it be)! May Yah Almighty of my master the king, say so too. 37 As Yah has been with my master the king, even so may He be with Solomon and make his throne greater than the throne of my master King David”.
Solomon Makes a Triumphal Ride on David’s Donkey By Way of the City of Gihon and is Praised as King: Also Yahoshua Made a Triumphal Ride into the City of Yahrushalom on a Donkey and was Praised as King
38 So Zadok the priest, Nathan the prophet, Benaiyah the son of Yehoiada, the Cherethites and the Pelethites went down and had Solomon ride on King David’s mule and took him to Gihon. 39 Then Zadok the priest took a horn of oil (anointing oil) from the tabernacle and anointed Solomon. And they blew the horn and all the people said, “Long live King Solomon”! 40 And all the people went up after him and the people played the flutes and rejoiced with great joy so that the earth seemed to split with their sound.
*See John 12:12-16 and Zechariyah 9:9.
*03-26-2016: Book of Yasher chapter 49, the people played music at Yoseph’s rulership ceremony.
Adoniyah and Yoab Inquire About the Uproar in the City and are Told Solomon is King: Adoniyah’s Guests are Afraid and Leave Him
41 Now Adoniyah and all the guests who were with him heard it as they finished eating. And when Yoab heard the sound of the horn he said, “Why is the city in such a noisy uproar”? 42 While he was still speaking, there came Yahanathan, the son of Abiathar the priest. And Adoniyah said to him, “Come in, for you are a prominent man and bring good news”. 43 Then Yahanathan answered and said to Adoniyah, “No! Our master King David has made Solomon King. 44 The king has sent with him Zadok the priest, Nathan the prophet, Benaiyah the son of Yehoiada, the Cherethites and the Pelethites and they have made him ride on the king’s mule–45 So Zadok the priest and Nathan the prophet have anointed him king at Gihon and they have gone up from there rejoicing, so that the city is in an uproar. This is the noise that you have heard. 46 Also Solomon sits on the throne of the kingdom. 47 And moreover, the king’s servants have gone to bless our master King David saying, ‘May Yah make the name of Solomon better than your name and may He make his throne greater than your throne’. Then the king bowed himself on the bed. 48 Also the king said thus, ‘Blessed be Yah Almighty of Ysrayl, who has given one to sit on my throne this day, while my eyes see it”! 49 So all the guests who were with Adoniyah were afraid and arose and each one went his way.
Adoniyah Flees to the Horns of the Altar and Begs King Solomon for Mercy: Solomon Grants Him Mercy with Conditions
50 Now Adoniyah was Afraid of Solomon, so he arose and went and took hold of the horns of the altar. 51 And it was told Solomon saying, “Indeed Adoniyah is afraid of King Solomon for look, he has taken hold of the horns of the altar saying, ‘Let King Solomon swear to me today that he will not put his servant to death with the sword’.” 52 Then Solomon said, ‘If he proves himself a worthy man, not one hair of him shall fall to the earth but if wickedness is found in him, he shall die”. 53 So King Solomon sent them to bring him down from the altar. And he came and fell down before King Solomon and Solomon said to him, “Go to your house”.
Chapter 2: David’s Instructions to Solomon: Prove Yourself a Man: David Tells Solomon What to do Concerning Yoab, Shimei, Barzillai
1 Now the days of David drew near that he should die and he charged Solomon his son saying: 2 “I go the way of all the earth. Be strong, therefore and prove yourself a man. 3 And keep the charge of Yah your Almighty: to walk in His ways, to keep His statues, His commandments, His judgments and His testimonies, as it is written in the Law of Moshe, that you may prosper in all that you do and wherever you turn. 4 That Yah may fulfill His word which He spoke concerning me saying, ‘If your sons take heed to their way, to walk before Me in truth with all their heart and with all their soul’. He said, ‘you shall not lack a man on the throne of Ysrayl’.” 5 “Moreover, you know also what Yoab the son of Zeruiyah did to me and what he did to the two commanders of the armies of Ysrayl, to Abner the son of Ner and Amasa the son of Yether, whom he killed. And he shed the blood of war in peacetime and put the blood of war on his belt that was around his waist and on his sandals that were on his feet. 6 Therefore, do according to your wisdom and do not let his gray hair go down to the grave in peace. 7 But show kindness to the sons of Barzilla the Gileadite and let them be among those who eat at your table, for so they came to me when I fled from Absalom your brother. 8 And see, you have with you Shimei the son of Gera, a Benyamite from Bahurim, who cursed me with a malicious curse in the day when I went to Mahanaim. But he came down to meet me at the Yordan and I swore to him by Yah saying, ‘I will not put you to death with the sword’. 9 Now therefore, do not hold him guiltless, for you are a wise man and know what you ought to do to him but bring his gray hair down to the grave with blood”.
The Death of David
10 So David rested with his fathers and was buried in the City of David. 11 The period that David reigned over Ysrayl was forty years: Seven years he reigned in Hebron and in Yahrusahlim he reigned thirty-three years. 12 Then Solomon sat on the throne of his father David and his kingdom was firmly established.
Adoniyah Asks Bathsheba to Ask Solomon for Abishag the Shunammite as Wife
13 Now Adoniyah the son of Haggith came to Bathsheba the mother of Solomon. So she said, “Do you come peaceably”? And he said, “Peaceably”. 14 Moreover he said, “I have something to say to you”. And she said, “Say it”. 15 Then he said, “You know that the kingdom was mine and all Ysrayl had set their expectations on me, that I should reign. However, the kingdom has been turned over and has become my brother’s, for it was his from Yah. 16 Now I ask one petition of you. Do not deny me” And she said to him, “Say it”. 17 Then he said, “Please speak to King Solomon, for he will not refuse you, that he may give me Abishag the Shunammite as wife”. 18 So Bathsheba said, “Very well, I will speak for you to the king”.
Bathsheba Sat at The Right Hand of Solomon’s Throne
19 Bathsheba therefore went to King Solomon, to speak to him for Adoniyah. And the king rose up to meet her and bowed down to her and sat down on his throne and had a throne set for the king’s mother, so she sat at his right hand.
*Solomon bowed to his mother when she entered the room. The Israylites bowed to the gray-haired elderly when they entered a room, Leviticus 19:32. She was not being worshiped here.
Solomon Sends Benaiyah to kill Adoniyah
20 Then she said, “I desire one small petition of you. Do not refuse me”. And the kings said to her, “Ask it, my mother, for I will not refuse you”. 21 So she said, “Let Abishag the Shunammite be given to Adoniyah your brother as wife”. 22 And King Solomon answered and said to his mother, “Now why do you ask Abishag the Shunammite for Adoniyah? Ask for him the kingdom also–for he is my older brother– for him and for Abiathar the priest and for Yoab the son of Zeriuyah”. 23 Then King Solomon swore by Yah saying, “May Yah do so to me and more also, if Adoniyah has not spoken this word against his own life! 24 Now therefore, as Yah lives, who has confirmed me and set me on the throne of David my father and who has established a house (that is, a royal dynasty) for me, as He promised, Adoniyah shall be put to death today”! 25 So King Solomon sent by the hand of Benaiyah the son of Yehoiada and he struck him down and he died.
*Adoniyah was plotting and planning. Solomon found wickedness in him.
Abiathar is Exiled
26 And to Abiathar the priest the king said, “Go to Anthoth, to your own fields, for you are deserving of death but I will not put you to death at this time, because you carried the ark of Yah before my father David and because you were afflicted every time my father was afflicted”. 27 So Solomon removed Abiathar from being priest to Yah, that he might fulfill the word of Yah which He spoke concerning the house of Yli at Shiloh. (See 1 Shemuyah 2:31-36, Yah put a curse on Yli’s descendants).
Yoab is Executed by Benaiyah
28 Then news came to Yoab, for Yoab had defected to Adoniyah, though he had not defected to Absalom. So Yoab fled to the tabernacle of Yah and took hold of the horns of the altar. 29 And King Solomon was told, “Yoab has fled to the tabernacle of Yah. There he is, by the altar”. Then Solomon sent Benaiyah the son of Yehoiada saying, “Go, strike him down”. 30 So Benaiyah went to the tabernacle of Yah and said to him, “Thus says the king, ‘Come out’! And he said, “No but I will die here”. And Benaiyah brought back word to the king saying, “Thus said Yoab and thus he answered me”. 31 Then the king said to him, “Do as he has said and strike him down and bury him, that you may take away from me and from the house of my father the innocent blood which Yoab shed–32 Soo Yah will return his blood on his head because he struck down two men more righteous and better than he and killed them with the sword–Abner the son of Ner, the commander of the army of Ysrayl and Amasa the son of Yether, the commander of the army of Yahudah, though my father David did not know it. 33 Their blood shall therefore return upon the head of Yoab and upon the head of his descendants forever. But upon David and his descendants, upon his house and his throne, there shall be peace forever from Yah”. 34 So Benaiyah the son of Yehoiada went up and struck and killed him and he was buried in his own house in the wilderness.
Benaiyah Becomes Commander of Solomon’s Army and Zadok Becomes Priest
35 The king put Benaiyah the son of Yehoiada in his place over the army and the king put Zadok the priest in the place of Abiathar.
Solomon Gives Shimei Travel Restrictions
36 Then the king sent and called for Shimei and said to him, “Build yourself a house in Yahrushalim and dwell there and do not go out from there anywhere. 37 For it shall be, on the day you go out and cross the Brook Kidron, know for certain you shall surely die. Your blood shall be on your own head”. 38 And Shimei said to the king, “The saying is good. As my master the king has said, so your servant will do”. So Shimei dwelt in Yahrushalim many days.
Shimei is Executed by Benaiyah
39 Now it happened, at the end of three years, that two slaves of Shimei ran away to Achish the son of Maachah, the king of Gath. And they told Shimei saying, “Look, your slaves are in Gath”! 40 So Shimei arose, saddled his donkey and went to Achish at Gath to seek his slaves. And Shimei went and brought his slaves from Gath. 41 And Solomon was told that Shimei had gone from Yahrusalim to Gath and had come back. 42 Then the king sent and called for Shimei and said to him, “Did I not make you swear by Yah and warn you saying, ‘Know for certain that on the day you go out and travel anywhere, you shall surely die? And you said to me, ‘The word I have heard is good’.” 43 “Why then have you not kept the oath of Yah and the commandment that I gave you”? 44 The king said moreover to Shimei, “You know, as your heart acknowledges, all the wickedness that you did to my father David. Therefore, Yah will return your wickedness on your own head. 45 But the King Solomon shall be blessed and the throne of David shall be established before Yah forever”. 46 So the king commanded Benaiyah the son of Yehoiada and he went out and struck him down and he died. Thus the kingdom was established in the hand of Solomon. *See 1 Kings 2:8-9.