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1 Kings 2:1-18 (The Message)

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1 When David's time to die approached, he charged his son Solomon, saying, 2 "I'm about to go the way of all the earth, but you - be strong; show what you're made of! 3 Do what God tells you. Walk in the paths he shows you: Follow the life-map absolutely, keep an eye out for the signposts, his course for life set out in the revelation to Moses; then you'll get on well in whatever you do and wherever you go. 4 Then God will confirm what he promised me when he said, 'If your sons watch their step, staying true to me heart and soul, you'll always have a successor on Israel's throne.' 5 "And don't forget what Joab son of Zeruiah did to the two commanders of Israel's army, to Abner son of Ner and to Amasa son of Jether. He murdered them in cold blood, acting in peacetime as if he were at war, and has been stained with that blood ever since. 6 Do what you think best with him, but by no means let him get off scot-free - make him pay. 7 "But be generous to the sons of Barzillai the Gileadite - extend every hospitality to them; that's the way they treated me when I was running for my life from Absalom your brother. 8 "You also will have to deal with Shimei son of Gera the Benjaminite from Bahurim, the one who cursed me so viciously when I was on my way to Mahanaim. Later, when he welcomed me back at the Jordan, I promised him under God, 'I won't put you to death.' 9 But neither should you treat him as if nothing ever happened. You're wise, you know how to handle these things. You'll know what to do to make him pay before he dies." 10 Then David joined his ancestors. He was buried in the City of David. 11 David ruled Israel for forty years - seven years in Hebron and another thirty-three in Jerusalem. 12 Solomon took over on the throne of his father David; he had a firm grip on the kingdom. 13 Adonijah son of Haggith came to Bathsheba, Solomon's mother. She said, "Do you come in peace?" 14 And then, "May I say something to you?" "Go ahead," she said, "speak." 15 "You know that I had the kingdom right in my hands and everyone expected me to be king, and then the whole thing backfired and the kingdom landed in my brother's lap - God's doing. 16 So now I have one request to ask of you; please don't refuse me." "Go ahead, ask," she said. 17 "Ask King Solomon - he won't turn you down - to give me Abishag the Shunammite as my wife." 18 "Certainly," said Bathsheba. "I'll speak to the king for you."
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