Day 1

King David’s Last Days

from the 1 & 2 Kings reading plan

1 Kings 1:1-53, 1 Kings 2:1-46, 2 Samuel 7:12-13

BY Melanie Rainer

By whatever stroke of chance or luck (or the-opposite-of-luck), I’ve never had to follow in anyone’s footsteps when starting a new job. I’ve always stepped into an unformed role and had the joy (and challenge) of shaping it to fit the opportunities before me.

But a few months ago, that changed. I took a job that someone had held previously, and the awkwardness of learning to walk in your own shoes on someone else’s tightrope has required more grace and patience than I ever could have expected. It’s like constantly looking in a mirror but the reflection isn’t you. I feel like I’m tipping over all the sacred cows, even as I try to tread lightly while I also prove myself. It’s a mess of idols and pride, and it’s hard.

David was the king. He was King David, a man after God’s own heart. He was King David, who brought the ark of the covenant back to Jerusalem. He was David, to whom God promised a descendant on his throne forever. The shepherd boy who became king, David was the standard against whom all other kings of Israel would be judged. Taking his place would have been daunting, but it would also lead to unprecedented power.

When David was on his deathbed, two men believed they held claim to his throne: Adonijah and Solomon. Both wanted to step into his shoes, lead his people, and claim his fame. Adonijah was David’s oldest surviving son, but David had promised Bathsheba that their son Solomon would be the next king (1 Kings 1:13). Chaos ensued, with back-room conversations and an attempted coup. But David, when told that “the eyes of all Israel are on you to tell them who will sit on the throne” (v.20), affirmed that Solomon was his choice.

Chapter 2 opens with David’s charge to Solomon. It is full of encouragement to “be strong and be a man” (v.2), and admonishes the soon-to-be king to walk in God’s “ways [and] keep his statutes, commands, ordinances, and decrees” (v.3). David then reminds his son of the covenant promise God made to him: “If your sons guard their way to walk faithfully before me with all their heart and all their soul, you will never fail to have a man on the throne of Israel” (v.4).

Our privilege as those who hold the entire canon of the Bible is that we know how this story goes: Solomon didn’t always follow the Lord and His ways. His father David didn’t. Nor did the rest of Israel and Judah’s other kings.

But despite the failures of humankind, our God reigns. In Israel’s time of transition, God reigned. In every second before and every second after, God reigned, is reigning, and will reign forever. While our earthly leaders matter, our ultimate allegiance is to God’s Kingdom and to the perfect King of kings, Jesus. It means we can live lightly but intentionally, resting in the holy, sovereign kingship of the One who will make everything new as we advocate for His Kingdom to grow on earth here and now.

Post Comments (66)

66 thoughts on "King David’s Last Days"

  1. Laura Beth Sumrall says:

    A quote that reminded me of the summary is “God is large and in charge.”

  2. Haley Taylor says:

    loved all of this

  3. Glory Eboh says:

    I love this platform it will help me study the word of God more I have been struggling with my devotion and I hope this platform will help draw me closer to him

  4. Maria Sena says:

    Hello. I am new here. Finding my way back home to God.

    1. Anna Miller says:

      Welcome to your greasiest Journey!

  5. Jennifer Anapol says:

    I love how the author of today’s devotional summarized the passage by reminding us that every earthly leader will fail, but God won’t. He is in charge and His will, will be done. He uses us, but ultimately he is in charge and will accomplish what he has chosen to accomplish. I’m so glad that God is in charge and not our earthly leaders.

  6. Elizabeth Watiri says:

    Hi everyone! I am new on this platform but so excited to be here.

    Also, I have a prayer request. I need a breakthrough to get a job. Its been quite a long wait for me and sometimes I am unable to pray. Am still trusting God though.

    Bless Up

    1. Christina Maddox says:

      Praying for you now Elizabeth – I’m with you. Read this today and it helped me “Exert your faith to ask for big things, and watch in hope for God to work.”

  7. Jolin Washington says:

    I love it thank u

  8. Katie Fleming says:

    Praying for you Sarah! You will make it through!

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