1 Kings 1; 1 Kings 2; Psalm 37; Psalm 71; Psalm 94

1 King David was now very old. He couldn't keep warm even when blankets were spread over him. 2 So his servants spoke to him. They said, "You are our king and master. Please let us try to find a young virgin to help you. She can take care of you. She can lie down beside you. Then you can keep warm." 3 So David's servants looked all over Israel for a beautiful young woman. They found Abishag. She was from the town of Shunem. They brought her to the king. 4 The woman was very beautiful. She took care of the king and served him. But the king didn't have sex with her. 5 Adonijah was the son of David and his wife Haggith. He came forward and announced, "I'm going to be the next king." So he got chariots and horses ready. He also got 50 men to run in front of him. 6 His father had never tried to stop him from doing what he wanted to. His father had never asked him, "Why are you acting the way you do?" Adonijah was also very handsome. Now that Absalom was dead, Adonijah was David's oldest son. 7 Adonijah talked things over with Joab, the son of Zeruiah. He also talked with the priest Abiathar. They agreed to help him. 8 But the priest Zadok and Benaiah, the son of Jehoiada, didn't join Adonijah. The prophet Nathan didn't join him. Shimei and Rei didn't join him. And neither did David's special guard. 9 Adonijah sacrificed sheep, cattle and fat calves. He sacrificed them at the Stone of Zoheleth near En Rogel. He invited all of his brothers, the king's sons, and all of the men of Judah who were royal officials. 10 But he didn't invite Benaiah or the prophet Nathan. He didn't invite the special guard or his brother Solomon either. 11 Nathan spoke to Solomon's mother Bathsheba. He asked, "Haven't you heard? Adonijah, the son of Haggith, has made himself king. And King David doesn't even know about it. 12 "So let me tell you what to do to save your life. It will also save the life of your son Solomon. 13 Go in and see King David. Say to him, 'You are my king and master. You took an oath. You promised me, "You can be sure that your son Solomon will be king after me. He will sit on my throne." If that's really true, why has Adonijah become king?' 14 "While you are still talking to the king, I'll come in. I'll tell him that what you have said is true." 15 So Bathsheba went to see the old king in his room. Abishag, the Shunammite, was taking care of him there. 16 Bathsheba bowed low. She got down on her knees in front of the king. "What do you want?" the king asked. 17 She said to him, "My master, you took an oath in the name of the LORD your God. You promised me, 'Your son Solomon will be king after me. He will sit on my throne.' 18 "But now Adonijah has made himself king. And you don't even know about it. 19 He has sacrificed large numbers of cattle, fat calves and sheep. He has invited all of the king's sons. He has also invited the priest Abiathar and Joab, the commander of the army. But he hasn't invited your son Solomon. 20 "You are my king and master. All of the people of Israel are watching to see what you will do. They want to find out from you who will sit on the throne after you. 21 If you don't do something, I and my son Solomon will be treated like people who have committed crimes. That will happen as soon as you join the members of your family who have already died." 22 While she was still speaking with the king, the prophet Nathan arrived. 23 The king was told, "The prophet Nathan is here." So Nathan went to the king. He bowed down with his face toward the ground. 24 Nathan said, "You are my king and master. Have you announced that Adonijah will be king after you? Have you said he will sit on your throne? 25 Today he has gone down outside the city. He has sacrificed large numbers of cattle, fat calves and sheep. He has invited all of the king's sons. He has also invited the commanders of the army and the priest Abiathar. Even now they are eating and drinking with him. They are saying, 'May King Adonijah live a long time!' 26 "But he didn't invite me. He didn't invite the priest Zadok or Benaiah, the son of Jehoiada. He didn't invite your son Solomon either. 27 "King David, have you allowed all of that to happen? Did you do it without letting us know about it? Why didn't you tell us who is going to sit on your throne after you?" 28 King David said, "Tell Bathsheba to come in." So she came and stood in front of the king. 29 Then the king took an oath and made a promise. He said, "The LORD has saved me from all of my troubles. You can be sure that he lives. 30 And you can be just as sure that I will do today what I promised in the name of the Lord. He is the God of Israel. I promised you that your son Solomon would be king after me. He will sit on my throne in my place." 31 Then Bathsheba bowed low with her face toward the ground. She got down on her knees in front of the king. She said, "King David, you are my master. May you live forever!" 32 King David said, "Tell the priest Zadok and the prophet Nathan to come in. Also tell Benaiah, the son of Jehoiada, to come." So they came to the king. 33 He said to them, "Take my officials with you. Put my son Solomon on my own mule. Take him down to the Gihon spring. 34 Have the priest Zadok and the prophet Nathan anoint him as king over Israel there. Blow a trumpet. Shout, 'May King Solomon live a long time!' 35 Then come back up to the city with him. Have him sit on my throne. He will rule in my place. I've appointed him ruler over Israel and Judah." 36 Benaiah, the son of Jehoiada, answered the king. "Amen!" he said. "May the LORD your God make it come true. 37 You are my king and master. The LORD has been with you. May he also be with Solomon. King David, may the LORD make Solomon's kingdom even greater than yours!" 38 So the priest Zadok and the prophet Nathan left the palace. Benaiah, the son of Jehoiada, went with them. So did the Kerethites and Pelethites. They put Solomon on King David's mule. And they brought him down to the Gihon spring. 39 The priest Zadok had gotten an animal horn that was filled with olive oil. He had taken it from the sacred tent. He anointed Solomon with the oil. The trumpet was blown. All of the people shouted, "May King Solomon live a long time!" 40 Then they went up toward the city. Solomon was leading the way. The people were playing flutes. They were filled with great joy. The ground shook because of all of the noise. 41 Adonijah and all of his guests heard it. They were just finishing their meal. Joab heard the sound of the trumpet. So he asked, "What does all of that noise in the city mean?" 42 While Joab was still speaking, Jonathan arrived. Jonathan was the son of the priest Abiathar. Adonijah said, "Come in. I have respect for you. You must be bringing good news." 43 "No! I'm not!" Jonathan answered. "Our master King David has made Solomon king. 44 David sent the priest Zadok and the prophet Nathan along with Solomon. He also sent Benaiah, the son of Jehoiada, with him. He sent the Kerethites and Pelethites with him too. They put him on the king's mule. 45 They took him down to the Gihon spring. There the priest Zadok and the prophet Nathan anointed him as king. Now they've gone back up to the city. They were cheering all the way. The city is filled with the sound of it. That's the noise you hear. 46 "And that's not all. Solomon has taken his seat on the royal throne. 47 The royal officials came to give their blessing to our master King David. They said, 'May your God make Solomon's name more famous than yours! May he make Solomon's kingdom greater than yours!' "While King David was sitting on his bed, he bowed in worship. 48 He said, 'I praise the Lord. He is the God of Israel. He has let me live to see my son sitting on my throne today as the next king.' " 49 When all of Adonijah's guests heard that, they were terrified. So they got up and scattered. 50 Adonijah was afraid of what Solomon might do to him. So he went and grabbed hold of the horns that stuck out from the upper corners of the altar for burnt offerings. 51 Then Solomon was told, "King Solomon, Adonijah is afraid of you. He's holding onto the horns of the altar. He says, 'I want King Solomon to take an oath today. I want him to promise that he won't kill me with his sword.' " 52 Solomon replied, "Let him show that he's a man people can respect. Then not even one hair on his head will fall to the ground. But if I find out he's done something evil, he will die." 53 King Solomon got some men to bring Adonijah down from the altar. He came and bowed down to King Solomon. Solomon said, "Go on home."
1 The time came near for David to die. So he gave orders to his son Solomon. He said, 2 "I'm about to die, just as everyone else on earth does. So be strong. Show how brave you are. 3 Do everything the LORD your God requires. Live the way he wants you to. Obey his orders and commands. Keep his laws and rules. Do everything that is written in the Law of Moses. Then you will have success in everything you do. You will succeed everywhere you go. 4 "The LORD will keep the promise he made to me. He said, 'Your sons must be careful about how they live. They must be faithful to me with all their heart and soul. Then you will always have a man sitting on the throne of Israel.' 5 "You yourself know what Joab, the son of Zeruiah, did to me. You know that he killed Abner, the son of Ner, and Amasa, the son of Jether. They were the two commanders of Israel's armies. He killed them in a time of peace. It wasn't a time of war. Joab spilled the blood of Abner and Amasa. It stained the belt that was around his waist. It also stained the sandals on his feet. 6 You are wise. So I leave him in your hands. Just don't let him live to become an old man. Don't let him die peacefully. 7 "But be kind to the sons of Barzillai from Gilead. Provide what they need. They were faithful to me when I had to run away from your brother Absalom. 8 "Don't forget Shimei, the son of Gera. He's still around. He's from Bahurim in the territory of Benjamin. He called down bitter curses on me. He did it on the day I went to Mahanaim. Later, he came down to welcome me at the Jordan River. At that time I took an oath in the name of the Lord. I promised Shimei, 'I won't put you to death with my sword.' 9 But now I want you to think of him as guilty. You are wise. You will know what to do to him. Don't let him live to become an old man. Put him to death." 10 David joined the members of his family who had already died. His body was buried in the City of David. 11 He had ruled over Israel for 40 years. He ruled for seven years in Hebron. Then he ruled for 33 years in Jerusalem. 12 So Solomon sat on the throne of his father David. His position as king was made secure. 13 Adonijah was the son of David's wife Haggith. He went to Bathsheba. She was Solomon's mother. She asked Adonijah, "Have you come in peace?" He answered, "Yes. I've come in peace." 14 He continued, "I want to ask you something." "Go ahead," she replied. 15 He said, "As you know, the kingdom belonged to me. The whole nation of Israel thought of me as their king. But now things have changed. The kingdom belongs to my brother. The LORD has given it to him. 16 But I have a favor to ask of you. Don't say no to me." "Go ahead," she said. 17 So he continued, "Please ask King Solomon for a favor. He won't say no to you. Ask him to give me Abishag from Shunem to be my wife." 18 "All right," Bathsheba replied. "I'll speak to the king for you." 19 So Bathsheba went to King Solomon. She went to him to speak for Adonijah. The king stood up to greet her. He bowed down to her. Then he sat down on his throne. He had a throne brought for his mother. She sat down at his right side. 20 "I have one small favor to ask of you," she said. "Don't say no to me." The king replied, "Mother, go ahead and ask. I won't say no to you." 21 She said, "Let your brother Adonijah get married to Abishag, the Shunammite." 22 King Solomon answered his mother, "Why are you asking for Abishag, the Shunammite, for Adonijah? You might as well ask me to give him the whole kingdom! After all, he's my older brother. And he doesn't want the kingdom only for himself. He also wants it for the priest Abiathar and for Joab, the son of Zeruiah." 23 Then King Solomon took an oath and made a promise in the name of the Lord. He said, "Adonijah will pay with his life because of what he has asked for. If he doesn't, may God punish me greatly. 24 The LORD has made my position as king secure. I'm sitting on the throne of my father David. The LORD has built a royal house for me, just as he promised. You can be sure that the LORD lives. And you can be just as sure that Adonijah will be put to death today." 25 So King Solomon gave the order to Benaiah, the son of Jehoiada. Benaiah struck Adonijah down. And Adonijah died. 26 The king spoke to the priest Abiathar. He said, "Go back to your fields in Anathoth. You should really be put to death. But I won't have it done now. That's because you carried the ark of the LORD and King. You did it for my father David. You shared all of his hard times." 27 So Solomon wouldn't let Abiathar serve as a priest of the LORD anymore. That's how the message the LORD had spoken at Shiloh came true. He had spoken it about the family of Eli. 28 News of what Solomon had done reached Joab. Joab had never made evil plans along with Absalom. But he had joined Adonijah. So he ran to the tent of the Lord. He took hold of the horns that stuck out from the upper corners of the altar for burnt offerings. 29 King Solomon was told that Joab had run to the tent. He was also told that Joab was by the altar. Then Solomon gave the order to Benaiah, the son of Jehoiada. He told him, "Go! Strike him down!" 30 So Benaiah entered the tent of the Lord. He said to Joab, "The king says, 'Come on out!' " But Joab answered, "No. I'd rather die here." Benaiah told the king what Joab had said to him. 31 Then the king commanded Benaiah, "Do what he says. Strike him down. Bury his body. Then I and my family won't be held accountable for the blood Joab spilled. He killed people who weren't guilty of doing anything wrong. 32 The LORD will pay him back for the blood he spilled. Joab attacked two men. He killed them with his sword. And my father David didn't even know anything about it. "Joab killed Abner, the son of Ner. Abner was the commander of Israel's army. Joab also killed Amasa, the son of Jether. Amasa was the commander of Judah's army. Abner and Amasa were better men than Joab is. They were more honest than he is. 33 May Joab and his children after him be held forever accountable for spilling the blood of Abner and Amasa. "But may David and his children after him enjoy the LORD's peace and rest forever. May the LORD also give his peace to David's royal house and kingdom forever." 34 So Benaiah, the son of Jehoiada, went up to the LORD's tent. There he struck Joab down. And he killed him. Joab's body was buried on his own land in the desert. 35 The king put Benaiah in charge of the army. Benaiah took Joab's place. The king also put the priest Zadok in Abiathar's place. 36 Then the king sent for Shimei. He said to him, "Build yourself a house in Jerusalem. Live there. Don't go anywhere else. 37 You must not leave the city and go across the Kidron Valley. If you do, you can be sure you will die. And it will be your own fault." 38 Shimei replied to the king, "You are my king and master. What you say is good. I'll do it." Shimei stayed in Jerusalem for a long time. 39 Three years after Solomon had talked with Shimei, two of Shimei's slaves ran off. They went to Achish, the king of Gath. He was the son of Maacah. Shimei was told, "Your slaves are in Gath." 40 When Shimei heard that, he put a saddle on his donkey. Then he went to Achish at Gath to look for his slaves. Shimei found them and brought them back from Gath. 41 Solomon was told that Shimei had left Jerusalem. He was told he had gone to Gath and had returned. 42 So the king sent for Shimei. He said to him, "Didn't I make you take an oath in the name of the Lord? Didn't I warn you? I said, 'You must not leave the city and go somewhere else. If you do, you can be sure you will die.' At that time you said to me, 'What you say is good. I'll obey your command.' 43 So why didn't you keep your oath to the Lord? Why didn't you obey the command I gave you?" 44 The king continued, "You know all of the wrong things you did to my father David. In your heart you know them. Now the LORD will pay you back for what you did. 45 But I will be blessed. The LORD will make David's kingdom secure forever." 46 Then the king gave the order to Benaiah, the son of Jehoiada. Benaiah left the palace and struck Shimei down. And he killed him. So the kingdom was now made secure in Solomon's hands.
1 Don't be upset because of sinful people. Don't be jealous of those who do wrong. 2 Like grass, they will soon dry up. Like green plants, they will soon die. 3 Trust in the LORD and do good. Then you will live in the land and enjoy its food. 4 Find your delight in the Lord. Then he will give you everything your heart really wants. 5 Commit your life to the Lord. Here is what he will do if you trust in him. 6 He will make your godly ways shine like the dawn. He will make your honest life shine like the sun at noon. 7 Be still. Be patient. Wait for the LORD to act. Don't be upset when other people succeed. Don't be upset when they carry out their evil plans. 8 Keep from being angry. Turn away from anger. Don't be upset. That only leads to evil. 9 Sinful people will be cut off from the land. But it will be given to those who put their hope in the Lord. 10 In a little while, there won't be any more sinners. Even if you look for them, you won't be able to find them. 11 But those who are free of pride will be given the land. They will enjoy great peace. 12 Sinful people make plans to harm those who do what is right. They grind their teeth at them. 13 But the Lord laughs at those who do evil. He knows the day is coming when he will judge them. 14 Sinners pull out their swords. They bend their bows. They want to kill poor and needy people. They plan to murder those who lead honest lives. 15 But they will be killed with their own swords. Their own bows will be broken. 16 Those who do what is right may have very little. But it's better than the wealth of many sinners. 17 The power of those who are evil will be broken. But the LORD takes good care of those who do what is right. 18 Every day the LORD watches over those who are without blame. What he has given them will last forever. 19 When trouble comes to them, they will have what they need. When there is little food in the land, they will still have plenty. 20 But sinful people will die. The LORD's enemies will be like flowers in the field. They will disappear like smoke. 21 Sinful people borrow and don't pay back. But those who are godly give freely to others. 22 The LORD will give the land to those he blesses. But he will cut off those he puts a curse on. 23 If the LORD is pleased with the way a man lives, he makes his steps secure. 24 Even if the man trips, he won't fall. The Lord's hand takes good care of him. 25 I once was young, and now I'm old. But I've never seen godly people deserted. I've never seen their children begging for bread. 26 The godly are always giving and lending freely. Their children will be blessed. 27 Turn away from evil and do good. Then you will live in the land forever. 28 The LORD loves those who are honest. He will not desert those who are faithful to him. They will be kept safe forever. But the children of sinners will be cut off from the land. 29 Those who do what is right will be given the land. They will live in it forever. 30 The mouths of those who do what is right speak words of wisdom. They say what is honest. 31 God's law is in their hearts. Their feet do not slip. 32 Those who are evil hide and wait for godly people. They are trying to kill them. 33 But the LORD will not leave the godly in their power. He will not let them be found guilty when they are brought into court. 34 Wait for the LORD to act. Live as he wants you to. He will honor you by giving you the land. When sinners are cut off from it, you will see it. 35 I saw a mean and sinful person. He was doing well, like a green tree in its own soil. 36 But he soon passed away and was gone. Even though I looked for him, I couldn't find him. 37 Think about those who are without blame. Look at those who are honest. A man who loves peace will have a tomorrow. 38 But all sinners will be destroyed. Those who are evil won't have a tomorrow. They will be cut off from the land. 39 The LORD saves those who do what is right. He is their place of safety when trouble comes. 40 The LORD helps them and saves them. He saves them from sinful people because they go to him for safety.
1 Lord, I have gone to you for safety. Let me never be put to shame. 2 You do what is right. Save me and help me. Pay attention to me and save me. 3 Be my rock of safety that I can always go to. Give the command to save me. You are my rock and my fort. 4 My God, save me from the power of sinners. Save me from the hands of those who are mean and evil. 5 You are the King and the Lord. You have always been my hope. I have trusted in you ever since I was young. 6 From the time I was born I have depended on you. You brought me out of my mother's body. I will praise you forever. 7 To many people I am an example of how much you care. You are strong. You are my place of safety. 8 My mouth is filled with praise for you. All day long I will talk about your glory. 9 Don't push me away when I'm old. Don't desert me when my strength is gone. 10 My enemies speak against me. Those who want to kill me get together and make evil plans. 11 They say, "God has deserted him. Go after him and grab him. No one will save him." 12 God, don't stay so far away from me. My God, come quickly and help me. 13 May those who bring charges against me die in shame. May those who want to harm me be covered with shame and dishonor. 14 But I will always have hope. I will praise you more and more. 15 I will say that what you have done is right. All day long I will talk about how you have saved your people. It is more than I can understand. 16 LORD and King, I will come and announce your mighty acts. I will announce that you alone do what is right. 17 God, ever since I was young you have taught me about what you have done. To this very day I tell about your wonderful acts. 18 God, don't leave me even when I'm old and have gray hair. Let me live to tell my children about your power. Let me tell all of them about your mighty acts. 19 God, your saving acts reach to the skies. You have done great things. God, who is like you? 20 You have sent many bitter troubles my way. But you will give me new life. Even if I'm almost in the grave, you will bring me back. 21 You will honor me more and more. You will comfort me once again. 22 My God, I will use the harp to praise you because you are always faithful. Holy One of Israel, I will use the lyre to sing praise to you. 23 My lips will shout with joy when I sing praise to you. You have saved me. 24 All day long my tongue will say that you have done what is right. Those who wanted to harm me have been put to shame. They have not been honored.
1 Lord, you are the God who punishes. Since you are the one who punishes, come and show your anger. 2 Judge of the earth, rise up. Pay back proud people for what they have done. 3 Lord, how long will those who are evil be glad? How long will they be full of joy? 4 Proud words pour out of their mouths. All those who do evil are always bragging. 5 Lord, they crush your people. They beat down those who belong to you. 6 They kill outsiders. They kill widows. They murder children whose fathers have died. 7 They say, "The LORD doesn't see what's happening. The God of Jacob doesn't pay any attention to it." 8 You who aren't wise, pay attention. You foolish people, when will you become wise? 9 Does he who made the ear not hear? Does he who formed the eye not see? 10 Does he who corrects nations not punish? Does he who teaches human beings not know anything? 11 The LORD knows what people think. He knows that their thoughts don't amount to anything. 12 Lord, blessed is the man you correct. Blessed is the person you teach from your law. 13 You give him rest from times of trouble, until a pit is dug to trap sinners. 14 The LORD won't say no to his people. He will never desert those who belong to him. 15 He will again judge people in keeping with what is right. All those who have honest hearts will follow the right way. 16 Who will rise up for me against sinful people? Who will stand up for me against those who do evil? 17 Suppose the LORD had not helped me. Then I would soon have been lying quietly in the grave. 18 I said, "My foot is slipping." But Lord, your love kept me from falling. 19 I was very worried. But your comfort brought joy to my heart. 20 Can you have anything to do with rulers who aren't fair? Can those who make laws that cause suffering be friends of yours? 21 They join together against those who do what is right. They sentence to death those who aren't guilty of doing anything wrong. 22 But the LORD has become like a fort to me. My God is my rock. I go to him for safety. 23 He will pay them back for their sins. He will destroy them for their evil acts. The LORD our God will destroy them.
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