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this (Roin. xiii. 4; Gen. ix. 6).–Ver. 6. Gray hairs, | a wicked man often goes a long tima onunished if found in the way of righteousness, are a crown for his deeds, but divine justice d s nut fail to of glory (Prov. xvi. 31), adorned with which a man overtake him finally, ere he is ar vre.-It requires may go the way of all flesh in peace and comfort; wisdom to punish; a premature ill-judge chasbut an old sinner, whom even gray hairs have not tisement does more harm than good. brought to repentance, goes down to the grave Vers. 10–12. David's death: (a) He slept with without solace or peace.—Ver. 7. A noble heart his fathers (STARKE: The death of believers is a does not forget what was done for him in times sleep, and being gathered to their fathers, who of trouble especially, and thinks of it even in the also still live with God, and await the coming reshour of death. The world is ungrateful. A bless- urrection to eternal lite, Isai. xxvi. 19); (b) they rest ing rests on deeds of faithfulness and self-sacri- in the grave. (Rest is good to those who have fieing disinterested love, and it descends to children borne the burden and heat of the day forty years and children's children.-Vers. 8, 9. A curse rests long—that rest which God has promised to those on those who curse the "powers” which are God's who strive after eternal life with patient continuministers, instead of praying for them, and they are ing in good works. Rom. ii. 7; Isai. lvii. 2).—Da. made, sooner or later, to feel the curse (1 Peter ii. 17, vid's grave is a pledge that the memory of the just 6). The Lord prayed for those who cursed Him; but is blessed (Prov. xl. 7; Acts ii. 29), and that the when they did not repent and become converted, blessing of the father builds the children's houses divine judgment came down on them. No doubt | (ver. 12; Ecclesiasticus iii. 11).
C.-Solomon's course with the opposers of his accession to the throne.
CHAP. II. 13-46. 13 AND Adonijah the son of Haggith came to Bath-sheba the mother of Solo14 mon.' And she said, Comest thou peaceably? And he said, Peaceably.
He 15 said moreover, I have somewhat to say unto thee. And she said, Say on. And
he said, Thou knowest that the kingdom was mine, and that all Israel set their
faces on me, that I should reign : how beit the kingdom is turned about, and is 16 become my brother's: for it was his from the Lord [Jehovah]. And now I ask 17 one petition of thee, deny me not. And she said unto him, Say on. And he said,
Speak, I pray thee, unto Solomon the king, (for he will not say thee nay,) that 18 he give me Åbishag the Shunammite to wife. And Bath-sheba said, Well; I
will speak for thee unto the king. 19 Bath-sheba therefore went unto king Solomon, to speak unto him for Adoni.
jah. And the king rose up to meet her, and bowed himself unto her, and sat
down on his throne, and caused a seat to be set for the king's mother; and she 20 sat on his right hand. Then she said, I desire one small petition of thee; I pray
thee, say me not nay. And the king said unto her, Ask on, my mother; for I 21 will not say thee nay. And she said, Let Abishag the Shunammite be given 22 to Adonijah thy brother to wife. And king Solomon answered and said unto
his mother, And why dost thou ask Abishag the Shunammite for Adonijah ?
ask for him the kingdom also; for he is mine elder brother; even for him, and 23 for * Abiathar the priest, and for Joab the son of Zeruiah. Then king Solomon
sware by the Lord [Jehovah), saying, God do so to me, and more also, if Ado24 nijah hath not spoken this word against his own life. Now therefore, as the
Lord [Jehovah] liveth, which hath established me, and set me on the throne of
David my father, and who bath made me a house, as he promised, Adonijah 25 shall be put to death this day. And king Solomon sent by the hand of Benaiali
the son of Jehoiada; and he fell upon him that he died. 26 And unto Abiathar the priest said the king, Get thee to Anathoth, unto
thine own fields; for thou art worthy of death: but I will not at this time* put thee to death, because thou barest the ark of the Lord [Jehovah] God before Da
vid my father, and because thou hast been afflicted in all wherein my father was 27 afflicted. So Solomon thrust out Abiathar from being priest unto the Lord (Je
hovah]; that he might fulfil the word of the Lord [Jehovah), which he spake
concerning the house of Eli in Shiloh. 28 Then tidings came to Joab: for Joab had turned after Adonijah, though he
turned not after Absalom.' And Joab fled unto the tabernacle of the Lord [Je 29 hovah), and caught hold on the horns of the altar. And it was told king Solomon that Joab was fled unto the tabernacle of the Lord [Jehovah); and, behold,
he is by the altar. Then Solomon sent Benaiah the son of Jehoiada, saying, 30 Go, fall upon him.' And Benaiah came to the tabernacle of the Lord [Jehovah),
and said unto him, Thus saith the king, Come forth. And he said, Nay; but I
will die here. And Benaiah brought the king word again, saying, Thus said 31 Joab, and thus he answered me. And the king said unto him, Do as he hath said,
and fall upon him, and bury him; that thou mayest take away' the innocent 32 [omit| blood, which Joab shed (without cause], from me, and from the house of
my father. And the Lord [Jehovah) shall return his blood " upon his own head, who fell upon two men more righteous and better than he, and slew them with
the sword, [and] my father David not knowing thereof [knew it not "'], to wit, 33 Abner the son of Ner, captain of the host of Israel, and Amasa the son of Jether,
captain of the host of Judah. Their blood shall therefore return upon the head of Joab, and upon the head of his seed for ever: but upon David, and upon his
seed, and upon his house, and upon his throne, shall there be peace for ever from 34 the Lord [Jehovah]. So Benaiah the son of Jehoiada went up, and fell upon him, and slew him: and he was buried in his own house in the wilderness.
And the king put Benaiah the son of Jehoiada in his room over the host : and Zadok the priest did the king put in the room of Abiathar." 36 And the king sent and called for Shimei, and said unto him, Build thee an
house in Jerusalem, and dwell there, and go not forth thence any whither, 37 For it shall be, that on the day thou goest out, and passest over the brook
Kidron, thou shalt know for certain that thou shalt surely die: thy blood shall 38 be upon
thine own head." And Shimei said unto the king, The saying is good: as my lord the king hath said, so will thy servant do. And Shimei dwelt in 39 Jerusalem many days. And it came to pass at the end of three years, that
two of the servants of Shimei ran away unto Achish son of Maachah king of 40 Gath. And they told Shimei, saying, Behold, thy servants be in Gath. And
Shimei arose, and saddled his ass, and went to Gath to Achish to seek his ser41 vants: and Shimei went, and brought his servants from Gath. And it was told
Solomon that Shimei had gone from Jerusalem to Gath, and was come again. 42 And the king sent and called for Shimei, and said unto him, Did I not make
thee to swear by the Lord [Jehovah], and protested unto thee, saying, Know for a certain, on the day thou goest out, and walkest abroad any whither, that thou
shalt surely die ? and thou saidst unto me, The word that I have heard is good. 43 Why then hast thou not kept the oath of the Lord [Jehovah), and the command44 ment that I have charged thee with ? The king said moreover to Shimei, Thou
knowest all the wickedness which thine heart is privy to, that thou didst to
David my father; therefore the Lord [Jehovah] shall return thy wickedness upon 45 thine own head: and king Solomon shall be blessed, and the throne of David 46 shall be established before the Lord [Jehovah] for ever. So the king commanded
Benaiah the son of Jehoiada ; which went out, and fell upon him, that he died. And the kingdom was established in the hand of Solomon.
TEXTUAL AND GRAMMATICAL,
1 Ver. 18.—[The Sept. adds kai poderúvnOev avtý (Al. avthv).
: Ver. 22.– All the VV. here give a sense which seems based on the supposition that before Abiathar and before Joab is pleonastic; but for this there is no authority. Thus the Vulg.: "et habet Abiathar," etc. Sept.: Kai aúto 'ABıátap K.T.A. Similarly Syr, and Arab. The Chald.: "nonne in consilio fuerunt ille et Abiathar," etc.
+ Ver. 26.-[The Sept., without authority, alters the place of the conjunction so as to read avnp Bavátov el où er quépg vartas war die Vatican) and Syr. cariously substitute here the name of Solomon for that of Absalom. Tho Arab. attempts to reconcile both by translating "neither did he love Solomon."
• Ver. 29.-['The Sept, add " And king (Alex. omit king) Solomon sent to Joab, saying, What has been done to thoe that thou hast fled to the altar? And Joab said, Because I was afraid of thee, and I fled to the Lord.”
? Ver. 29.-[The Sept. add “and bury him." See ver. 31. & Ver. 30.– [One Ms., followed by the Sept.
, Vulg., and Syr., adds XIX after Ms. • Ver. 31.- [The Sept. add onmepov and translate 39 accurately " without cause." The Chald. gives both senses. The Vatican Sept. omits the name of Joab.
10 Ver. 82.-(Sept. = the blood of his iniquity.
11 Ver. 32.—[There is no reason for onnitting the conjunction and changing the preterite of the Hebr, which are preserved in the Sept. and the Chald.
19 Ver. 85.-(The Sept, add kai n Baguheia katwpłoūto év 'lepovoadnu. Of. ver. 46.
"Ver. 85.-[The Sept. asid kai Salwuwv viòs Aavid éßaciaevo ev eni 'lopana xai 'lovda ev 'lepovoadnu. (Thns far Alez. omits) και έδωκε κύριος φρόνησιν τω Σαλωμών και σοφίαν πολλήν σφόδρα και πλάτος καρδίας ως η άμμος και παρά την Bádaccar. (See iv. 29.) Then follows the first verse of chap. iii. much altered, and a long interpolation which may be thus translated : " And the wisdom of Solomon was increased grently above the wisdom of all the ancients and above all the Wise men of Egypt (see iv. 80), and he (iii. 1) took Pharaoh's daughter, and brought her into the city of David, until he had made an end of building his own house and the house of the Lord in the first place, and the wall of Jerusalem round aboat; in seven years he marle and finished them." V. 15 follows then. "And Solomon made the sea and the bases and the great lavers and the pillars and the fountain of the court and the brazen sea. And he built the citadel and battleinents upon it, he divided the city of David. So Pharaoh's danghter went up from the city of David into her own house which he built for her. Then he built the citadel. And three times in the year Solomon offerod whole burnt-offerings and peace-offerings upon the altar which he built to the Lord, and he offered incense before the Lord, and finished the house. And these were the chiefs (v. 16) which were set orer the works of Solomon: three thousand and six hundred rulers of the people that wrought in the work. And he built Asshur and Magdo and Gezer (ix. 10, 17, 18) and Bethhoron the upper and Ballath. Besides his building the house of the Lord and the wall of Jerusalem round about, after these he buili these cities." Then follows, with some variations, ii. 8, 9, which form the junction again with ver. 36.
11 Ver. 37. The Sept. add xai wprugev avtov ò Baouleus iv tñ nuepu ékeivy. Cf. vers. 42, 43.
18 Ver. 42.-- The Vatican Sept. omits the rest of ver. 42. The last clause is sonetimes pointed, “The word is good: I have heard."
16 Ver. 46.—[Here follows in the Sept. a passage made up of extracts from chap. iv. and containing about one-fourtb of that chapter, most of which is onnitted froin its placo.-F. G.]
EXEGETICAL AND CRITICAL
her was not literally a throne, but only a particu
lar seat of honor. The seat at the right hand was Ver. 13. And Adonijah .. to Bath-Sheba, the one of highest distinction (Ps. cx. 1; Joseph., &c. What Adonijah really aimed at in his peti- Antiq. vi. xi. 9). Bath-Sheba calls her petition a tion to Bath-Sheba is made apparent in ver. 22. small one, because she thought it was only about He did not care about the fair Abishag, but about a love-affair, and did not think of its political rethe kingdom, which he hoped to acquire through sults. possession of her. In the ancient East, after a Vers. 22–25. And King Solomon answered, king died, or his kingdom passed from him, &c. Solomon instantly detected the intrigue. He the harem fell to the new ruler. On the other says, in asking Abishag for Adonijah, you indirectly hand, also, he who took to himself the king's request the kingdom for him too. He is my elder wives, was regarded as having taken to himself brother, and thinks that the kingdom belongs to the rights of the king. The claim to the posses- him on that account; if he gets Abishag as wife, sion of the women of the harem was understood to he will be further strengthened in his imaginary mean the claim to the throne. It was so also claims, and his entire party will have a firm footwith the Persians (Herodot. iii. 68; Justin 1. 2: ing. The is beginning the concluding statement occiso Cyro Aspasiam pellicem ejus rex Artaxerxes in matrimonium acceperat. Hanc patrem cedere in ver. 22, cannot be understood otherwise than sibi, sicuti regnum Darius postulaverat). When Ab- the preceding is, and the in the following words salom went, according to Ahithophel's advice, into the king's harem and to his concubines in is this then: In asking the kingdom for him, thou
must consequently mean the same. The meaning the sight of all the people, it was a public, practi- askest it at the same time for Abiathar and Joab; cal announcement that he had assumed the king's they who have joined themselves to him, would rights (2 Sam. xvi. 20-23 ; comp. xii. 11). When; reign with and through him; but they are well therefore, Adonijah demanded Abishag for his known to be my enemies. It follows, then, that wife, ostensibly from love to her, it was a secret both are included in Adonijah's plan. We cannot, claim to the throne ; for Abishag was looked on by therefore, translate like the Sept.: kaì avrõ'Aßtabap the nation as David's last wife, although he had not kai airo 'Iwàß éraipos, or with the Vulg.: et habet known her. He did not venture to make his request Abiathar et Joab; there is therefore no reason to personally to Solomon, but, as Grotius says: aggre. ditur mulierem, ut regnandi ignaram, ita amoribus strike out, with Thenius, the 5 before Abiathar and facilem. He plays, before Bath-Sheba, the part of
Joab. Solomon's anger, which appears in ver. an humble saint who has been set aside—who is resigned to God's will, thus softening her woman's 23, was the more natural, because Adonijah had heart. His assertion that all Israel wished him The oath, which means : may God punish me con
dared to gain over and abuse the queen-mother, for their king, if not exactly a lie, showed great tinually if Adonijah be not, &c., is a usual one self-deception and boasting. He very wisely and
(Ruth i. 17; 1 Sam. xiv. 44; xx. 13; Jer xxii. 5). — prudently says, instead of: through thy interces. The words' of ver. 24: and who hath made me sion my brother became king (chap. i. 17)--the an house, are not to be understood, with Keil and kingdom is turned about, and it was his from the others, as if Solomon had then had issue (his marLord, which he of course did not believe, because riage did not occur till afterwards, chap. iii
. 1); the he wished himself to be king. Bath-Sheba may meaning is this rather : Adonijah demands have thought that a discontented subject might be Abishag to wife, to found a dynasty through his satisfied by granting his request, and the kingdom union with her; but Jehovah has determined that made thus more secure to her son. Vers. 19-21. Bath-Sheba therefore went unto from me (2 Sam. vii. 11 sq.).—The execution of
David's dynasty and line of kings shall come king Solomon, &c., ver. 19. Solomon received
Adonijah was performed by Benaiah, as captain his mother as 1772(chap. xv. 13). The queen- of the Cherethites and Pelethites (chap. i. 38),
does not mean exactly with “his own hand " mother was in great honor; and therefore the name of the king's mother is always expressly given in (Thenius), but only that Benaiah was charged with the account of the commencement of a new king's the execution. Comp. vers. 34–46. Capital pun. reign (chap. xiv. 21. xv. 2, &c.). The XD2 offered | ishment was executed in Egypt, and also in Babço
lon, by the king's guard, the captain of which was omon) would be guilty of desecrating the al. therefore called Dingo (27) , Gen. xxxvii. 36; Dent. xix. 11-13), the altar was only an asylum
But according to the law (Ex. xxi. 14; 2 Kings xxv. 8; Dan. ii. 14.
for those who had killed unwittingly, and Joab Vers. 26–27. And unto Abiathar the priest, was no such person. He had sinned grievously &c. The proceedings now commenced against against Israel and Judah by a double assassination Abiathar and Joab, were no doubt caused by the (ver. 32), and yet had gone hitherto unpunished. share both had taken in the new plans of Adoni. This guilt could not rest upon David and his jah to usurp the kingdom.-Anathoth, a priests' house, if the kingdom was to continue in his line town in the tribe of Benjamin (Josh. xxi. 18; (ver. 33). Not to add the utmost disgrace to the 1 Chron. vi. 45), about one hour and a quarter's punishment (chap. xiv. 11; 2 Kings ix. 35; Jer. vii. distance northeast of Jerusalem (Robinson, Pales- 33; xxii. 19), and in consideration of his military tine, vol. i. p. 437–8). Abiathar had possessions achievements, Solomon commanded that Joab there.—To strike out the , before Dive with should be buried with his fathers in the wilderness Thenius (according to the Sept.), and place it of Judah, which was not far from Bethlehem, near before xs, is unnecessary: the meaning remains
Tekoa, and was a rocky district containing some the same.--Bearing the Ark, on the occa
towns (Josh. xv. 61; Judges i. 16). sion of David's flight from Absalom (2 Sam. xvfor Shimei, &c., ver. 36.
Vers. 36-46. And the king sent and called 24). That Abiathar and Zadok went with David faction had made such repeated efforts to seize
As Adonijah and his then, bearing the ark of the covenant, showed the helm of state, Solomon deemed it needful to great veneration and fidelity, upon their part, keep a watch on all suspected persons. Now the to him. Of course they did not carry the ark restless Shimei was the principal of these; ho themselves; but it was borne by the levites, whose office it was to do so (Num. iv. 15; 1 Chron. was a close adherent of the house of Saul, and xvi. 15), and who did it at their command. It is in order to keep him in sight, and test his obedience,
a bitter foe of David's house. Solomon, therefore, therefore quite unnecessary to read, with Thenius, ordered him to settle in Jerusalem, and to leave it TIDN instead of pinx.—It does not follow from only under penalty of death. The brook Kidron is the banishment of Abiathar, that every king has scarcely named as the exact limit of his confinement the right to set up and depose a high-priest at (Ewald); but Shimei was not to cross it, because, pleasure. This case was a peculiar one. A high- in doing so, he went towards Bahurim, in his priest who had repeatedly conspired against the native district, where he had most influence anointed of Jehovah, had thereby become incapable (2 Sam. xix. 16 sq.).—Thy blood, &c.—the usual of filling his office, and, strictly speaking, deserved mode of the death sentence, Levit. xx. 9–16.
Shimei declared he was satisfied to observe the death. —xbps is an addition of the narrator, not king's command, for he knew right well that the intention of Solomon; it is the iva 72.mpwon of according to the ideas of that time, no king, not the New Testament. The divine threatenings upon even Solomon, need feel himself bound by the Eli's house, from which Abiathar was (through promise of his predecessor (2 Sam. xix. 23), (Ewald, Ithamar) descended, were now fulfilled; for when Gesch. Isr., iii. s. 271).—The Philistine king Achish, Saul slew the priests, Abiathar alone, of all his of Gath (Josh. xiii. 3; 1 Sam. v. 8), may be the house, escaped (1 Sam. xxii. 20). With his deposi- same who is mentioned in 1 Sam. xxi. 11; xxvii. tion the hereditary high-priesthood passed over to 2; he must have certainly attained a great age; Eleazar's house, to which Zadok belonged (Numb. if so, Shimei, then, in spite of his solemn vow, Xxv. 13; 1 Chron. xxiv. 5–6).
not only left Jerusalem for his native place, not Vers. 28–35. Then tidings came to Joab, &c. distant, but even went into the far-off land of the The parenthesis means that Joab, who was for- Philistines, thus giving proof of his disobedience merly such a decided enemy of Absalom, who pro- and obstinacy. Solomon now reproaches him with mised much more than his brother, had twice con- his old crime, and says to him: thy measure is spired with the pretender, Adonijah, and now full; the Lord has turned thy curse into a bless. feared for his own life, as he heard of his death, ing, as David hoped (2 Sam. xvi, 12).—The Vuland of Abiathar's punishment. All old trans- gate, Thenius, Bunsen, and others place the conlations, except the Chaldee, have Solomon including sentence of ver. 46 at the commencement stead of “Absalom," and Ewald and Thenius of chap. iii.: "and when the kingdom was estabdeclare the former to be the right reading; this, lished in the hand of Solomon, he made affinity," however, is not sustained by any Hebrew MS., &c.; it seems, however, to refer back to ver. 12, and would, besides, make the sentence superfluous; and in the manner of Semitic histories, as Keil re. for when Joab was on Adonijah's side, it follows marks, concludes the whole section of Solomon's of course that he was not on that of Solomon.—If throne-ascension. Thus the kingdom was estabJoab, who had been unpunished for his share in lished in the hand of Solomon, i. e., under him. the first conspiracy, had felt free from all share in the second, he would not have fled to a place of refuge (chap. i. 50).—The Sept. adds, before
HISTORICAL AND ETHICAL. Solomon's words, ver. 29: “What has happened to thee, that thou hast fled to the altar? And 1. The repeated attempt of Adonijah to gain the Joab said: I was afraid of thee, and have fled to throne throws real light on his character. Though Lord.” Surely this is only a gloss; but it explains his enterprise came to a lamentable and disgrace. the passage.
When Joab saw that Benaiah did ful end, he immediately began to concoct new not venture to kill him at the altar, he defied him, plans in spite of the favor and the warning he had either because he hoped that Solomon would not received. As he once sought to obtain his purpose dare to give the order, or that if he did, he (Sol- ! by collecting chariots, horsemen, and soldiers,
through making fortified places, in short, by grand low this custom, but showed forgiveness and genand showy preparations, he now pursued the op- erosity; in fact, he avoided all persecution of posite plan of fawning and artifice. He steals Adonijah's partisans. Only when Adonijah, conalone to Bath-sheba, placing his hopes on wo- trary to his word, and notwithstanding his humble man's influence. When she is astonished at his homage (chap. 51), again appeared as pretender visit, he utters the most peaceful sentiments, acts to the throne, and sought to reach his end by deas one deeply disappointed, but now humoly and ceit and hypocrisy, did he order the affixed pun. piously resigned to God's will, and as an unhappy ishment. He had allowed Abiathar, too, to go un. lover. If anything deserves the name of a “ha- punished at first, which scarcely any other eastern rem intrigue," through which, according to Dunc- prince would have done. But when the repeated ker, Solomon came to the throne (see above), it attempt of Adonijah to seize the kingdom was disis Adonijah's device. He could not have shown covered, Abiathar could no longer be passed over. more clearly that he was not the chosen of Jehovah Yet instead of inflicting death on him, he deprived (Deut. xvii. 15). What would have become of him of his influential office, and let him live at libthe kingdom which David had at last brought erty on his estate, on account of his former good to tranquillity and its proper position, if a mau like behavior. Here was no severity, but gratitude, Adonijah had succeeded him?
kindness, and generosity. Joab was the most 2. Adonijah and his faction show the truth of formidable opponent, because of his position at what is often found, namely, that revolutionary the head of the entire army, and his well-known men are not discouraged by the failure of their military roughness and unscrupulousness; he was plans, and even disgraceful defeat, but they al- also unpunished after Adonijah's first attempt, and ways brood over the means of attaining their am- the last was certainly not planned without liis conbitious views and gratifying their thirst for power. sent, but more likely, as some suppose, originated Pardon and forbearance do not change them, but by him. The fact that he instantly fled to the generally harden and embolden them. If they do horns of the altar, on hearing of Adonijah's death, cot succeed by open force, they choose deceitful shows that he knew himself to have deserved ways, notwithstanding all the promises they may death. Besides this, the guilt of a double murder bave given; and they feign submission until they rested on him, and should be washed out. “When think their opportunity has arrived. Every one, this was superadded," says Ewald (s. 271), “Sol. however, to whom God has confided the govern- omon did not venture to show him any further nent, should hear the words of David to Solomon grace," and adds in the note with great truth: “A (chap. ii. 2) : " be thou strong, therefore, and show superficial observer alone can charge Solomon with thyself a man!” for weakness is, in this respect, sin needless cruelty here.” Finally, with regard to against God and man. The old Würtemburg sum- Shimei, nothing was more natural than that Solomaries say: " let authorities learn from Solomon to mon, in the circumstances attending the beginning punish such crimes severely, if they wish to have of his reign, should have kept especial guard over a happy, peaceful, and lasting reign. If they wink such a restless, suspected person, who one day at such things, God's anger and punishments come cursed the king, calling him a bloody man, and the down on them, on their land and people." next fawned upon and flattered him, and who be.
.3. Solomon's treatment of his foes, has often sides was not without partisans (2 Sam. xvi. 7, comp. been called great cruelty, or at least extreme se with xix. 16-20). Shimei was himself quite content verity. “Solomon," says Duncker, began his with his confinement to Jerusalem, and Solomon let reign with bloody deeds.
He first prom- him live there many days" (ver. 38), placing his ised Adonijah he should be spared, then had him fate in his own hand. After three years (not beslain by Benaiah. Joab fled to the sanctuary and fore), (ver. 39), when Shimei broke his solemn promcaught hold of the horns of the altar. Benaiah ise, what his king had threatened him with upon trembled to stain the altar with blood, but Solo- oath came upon him. “Surely, every one must mon tells him to go and stah him there!
at that time have seen in such fatal oblivion of the Benaiah also killed Shimei at Solomon's com- oath which the old arch-traitor had sworn against mand.” In reading this imperfect and detestable David, a divine sign, that that old sin still rested view of the circumstances, we must remember on him and that he must be punished; otherwise that there is not to be found in the forty years of he would not have acted with such defiance of God Solomon's reign, one single trace of barbarvus tyr- and with such madness. Solomon had him also anny or cruelty, such as are here said to have executed, evidently not out of revenge nor any characterized him, though these qualities rather other passion, but from the lief that the last of strengthen than otherwise with age. We cannot those who had sinned greatly against David, should judge Solomon any more than David in the light fall under divine Providence (Ewald, s. 272). of the sermon on the mount, but should recollect How weak and forgetful of his word would tho what the time and circumstances were. The vital king have seemed to all the people if he had lot point was to establish the kingdom, and in order Shimei now go free, particularly with the notions to avert the dangers that threatened it, “every then entertained about a king! (Prov. xvi. 12-15; firm and sagacious ruler had to act so, for the xx. 2, 26). It is worthy of remark that the settleartificial means now used in similar cases, for in- ment of Shimei at Jerusalem was coincident with stance, imprisonment for life, were wliolly un- Solomon's elevation to the throne; that his punish known" (Ewald). As to Adonijah, the whole ment did not at once follow that of Adonijahı and East knew but one punishment for such plans as Joab, but was three years later. We cannot there. he cherished, viz., death. Had his enterprise fore possibly reckon this among the "bloody succeeded he would doubtless (see above, on chap. deeds." with which Solomon is said to have begun i. 11) have destroyed Solomon and his principal his reign. The union of mildness and firmness, adherents, in accordance with the usual practice generosity and official justice, in the conduct of the hitherto. Solomon, on the contrary, did not fol-l young sovereign, must have deeply impressed tre