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SOLOMON ON DAVID'S THRONE
I Kings i: 1 to 53.
URING the later years of David's reign he laid up great
treasure of gold, and silver, and brass, and iron, for
the building of a house to the Lord on Mount Moriah.
This house was to be called "The Temple," and it was to
be made very beautiful, the most beautiful building,
and the richest, in all the land. David had greatly
desired to build this house while he was the king of
Israel, but God said to him:
"You have been a man of war, and have fought many
battles, and shed much blood. My house shall be built
by a man of peace. When you die, your son Solomon shall
reign, and he shall have peace, and shall build my
So David made ready great store of precious things for
the temple, also stone, and cedar to be used in the
building. And David said to Solomon, his son:
"God has promised that there shall be rest and peace to
the land while you are king; and the Lord will be with
you, and you shall build a house, where God shall live
among his people."
But David had other sons who were older than Solomon;
and one of these sons, whose name was Adonijah, formed
a plan to make himself king. David was now very old,
and he was no longer able to go out of his palace and
to be seen among the people.
Adonijah gathered his friends; and among them were
Joab, the general of the army, and Abiathar, one of the
two high-priests. They met at a place outside the wall,
and had a great feast, and were about to crown Adonijah
as king, when word came to David in the palace. David,
though old and feeble, was still wise. He said, "Let us
make Solomon king at once, and thus put an end to the
plans of these men."
So, at David's command, they brought out the mule on
which no one but the king was allowed to ride, and they
placed Solomon upon it, and with the king's guards, and
the nobles, and the great men, they brought the young
Solomon down to the valley of Gihon, south of the city.
And Zadok the priest took from the Tabernacle the horn
filled with holy oil that was used for anointing or
pouring oil on the head of the priests when they were
set apart for their work. He poured oil from this horn
on the head of Solomon, and then the priests blew the
trumpets, and all the people cried aloud, "God save
All this time Adonijah, and Joab, and their friends
were not far away, almost in the same valley, feasting
and making merry, intending to make Adonijah king. They
heard the sound of trumpets and the shouting of the
people. Joab said, "What is the cause of all this noise
A moment later Jonathan, the son of Abiathar, came
running in. We read of him in Story 67 as one of
the two young men who brought news from Jerusalem to
David at the river Jordan. Jonathan said to the men who
"Our lord, King David, has made Solomon king, and he
has just been anointed in Gihon; and all the princes
and the heads of the army are with him, and the people
are shouting, 'God save King Solomon!' And David has
sent from his bed a message to Solomon, saying, 'May
the Lord make your name greater than my name has been!
Blessed be the Lord, who has given me a son to sit this
day on my throne!' "
When Adonijah and his friends heard this they were
fear. Every man went at once to his house, except
Adonijah. He hastened to the altar of the Lord, and
knelt before it, and took hold of the horns that were
on its corners in front. This was a holy place, and he
hoped that there Solomon might have mercy on him. And
Solomon said, "If Adonijah will do right and be true to
me as the king of Israel, no harm shall come to him;
but if he does wrong he shall die." Then Adonijah came
and bowed down before King Solomon, and promised to
obey him, and Solomon said, "Go to your own house."
Not long after this David sent for Solomon; and from
his bed he gave his last advice to Solomon. And soon
after that David died, an old man, having reigned in
all forty years, seven years over the tribe of Judah at
Hebron, and thirty-three years over all Israel in
Jerusalem. He was buried in great honor on Mount Zion,
and his tomb remained standing for many years.
THE TOMB OF DAVID AS SHOWN TO-DAY IN JERUSALEM