21 Aug. 1 Kings 1:28-53

21 Aug.  Zadok anoints Solomon as king of Israel

“Then the king [David] said, ‘Tell Bathsheba to come in!’ So she came in and stood before the king. Then the king made this promise, ‘The LORD has saved me from all trouble. As surely as he lives, I will do today what I have promised you in the name of the LORD, the God of Israel. I promised that your son Solomon would be king after me and rule on my throne in my place.’ Then Bathsheba bowed face down on the ground and knelt before the king and said, ‘Long live my master King David!’”

“Then King David said, ‘Tell Zadok the priest, Nathan the prophet and Benaiah son of Jehoiada to come in.’ When they came before the king, he said to them, ‘Take my servants with you and put my son Solomon on my own mule. Take him down to the spring called Gihon.’”

“’There Zadok the priest and Nathan the prophet should pour olive oil on him and make him king over Israel. Blow the trumpet and shout, ‘Long live King Solomon!’ Then come back up here with him. He will sit on my throne and rule in my place, because he is the one I have chosen to be the ruler over Israel and Judah.’”

“Benaiah son of Jehoiada answered the king, ‘Amen! This is what the LORD, the God of my master, has declared! The LORD has always helped you, our king. May he also help Solomon and make King Solomon’s throne an even greater throne than yours.’”

“So Zadok the priest, Nathan the prophet, and Benaiah son of Jehoiada left with the Kerethites and Pelethites [forming the palace guard]. They put Solomon on King David’s mule and took him to the spring called Gihon.”

“Zadok the priest took the container of olive oil from the Holy Tent and poured the oil on Solomon’s head to show he was the king. Then they blew the trumpet, and all the people shouted, ‘Long live King Solomon!’ All the people followed Solomon into the city. Playing flutes and shouting for joy, they made so much noise the ground shook.”

“At this time Adonijah and all the guests with him were finishing their meal. When he heard the sound of the trumpet, Joab asked, ‘What does all that noise from the city mean?’ While Joab was speaking, Jonathan son of Abiathar the priest arrived. Adonijah said, ‘Come in! You are an important man, so you must be bringing good news.’”

“But Jonathan answered, ‘No! Our master King David has made Solomon the new king. King David sent Zadok the priest, Nathan the prophet, Benaiah son of Jehoiada, and all the king’s bodyguards with him, and they have put Solomon on the king’s own mule. Then Zadok the priest and Nathan the prophet poured olive oil on Solomon at Gihon to make him king… All the king’s officers have come to tell King David that he has done a good thing…”

“Then all of Adonijah’s guests were afraid, and they quickly left and scattered. Adonijah was also afraid of Solomon, so he went and took hold of the corners of the altar. Then someone told Solomon, ‘Adonijah is afraid of you, so he is at the altar, holding onto its corners. He says, ‘Tell King Solomon to promise me today that he will not kill me.’…”

“Then King Solomon sent some men to get Adonijah. When he was brought from the altar, he came before King Solomon and bowed down. Solomon told him, ‘Go home.’”

          (1 Kings 1:28-53)



David had previously expressed his wish that his favourite son Solomon should succeed him. When Bathsheba, Solomon’s mother, came to tell David that his eldest remaining son, Adonijah, was claiming the throne with a banquet at En Rogel, David acted quickly.

He ordered Zadok the Priest, Nathan the Prophet and Benaiah to take his personal bodyguard of several hundred foreign soldiers and accompany Solomon to the Spring of Gihon – a public meeting place in the Kidron Valley immediately below the City of David - and anoint Solomon king.

So Zadok the priest and Nathan the prophet conducted a public ceremony at the Gihon Spring, poured olive oil from the Tent of the LORD’s Presence onto him and anointed him king over Israel. They blew the trumpet and shouted, “Long live King Solomon!” (1 Kings 1:39)

At this public proclamation, the people of Jerusalem rejoiced and welcomed their new king. They followed Solomon back into the City of David, playing musical instruments and making a loud, joyful noise. We’re told that all David’s army officers approved of David’s choice of Solomon as his successor (1 Kings 1:47).

When the news was brought a few hundred metres down the Kidron Valley to the feast at En Rogel, those celebrating with Adonijah were filled with panic and fear, and quickly scattered. Adonijah himself returned to the city and pleaded with his brother Solomon for mercy, claiming protection by clasping hold of the corners of the sacrificial altar outside the Tent of the LORD’s presence.

Adonijah was sent home for the time being, but in due course, those who had foolishly supported Adonijah in his bid for the throne would pay a heavy price for going against King David’s wishes.

The photo (by Ricardo Tulio Gandelman) shows archaeological remains of the Gihon Spring and its fortifications in the Kidron Valley immediately below the City of David.

You can read more about Solomon’s accession to the throne @ https://thebiblejourney.org/biblejourney2/31-the-golden-age-of-israel-under-king-solomon/solomon-succeeds-his-father-david/

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