This week's Haftorah reading is from I Kings 2:1-12. Join Dr. Jeffery Myers as he focuses on 3 main characters in King David's life, how they were interwoven into his life and how through this experience, ELIHOM used it to bring froth establishment not only for the handover to Solomon's Kingdom, but it also provided foresight into the establishment of YESHUA'S Kingdom, in the future!
Follow along in the AUDIO PODCAST, by clicking on the play button below, and reading along with the notes, as you listen to today's Haftorah Portion:
Lion of Judah Speaks: Haftorah Portion – I Kings 2:1-12
As we look at this haftorah portion it will be better for all of us to look at some of the main characters from King David’s life. We will understand the narrative better if we understand these people and how they are woven into his life.
We see 3 main people in I Kings 2…Joab, Barzillai and Shimei. We see that Joab was in charge of the army for most of David’s reign and was commander-in-chief for his armed forces. After the death of Saul, David came back from exile, and was made king only over his own tribe of Judah.
One of Saul’s sons survived that fateful battle and became king of the northern tribes but over time the other 11 were persuaded to have David as their king. The war ended and the nation was united. However, Joab was too hot-headed to be in charge because of his actions based on his own feelings against a few people- so David reshuffled his cabinet and removed Joab as commander-in-charge of the army.
Let’s now look at the other two characters of importance: Barzillai and Shimei. These both feature in another turbulent period of David’s reign. For a short time, David’s son Absalom tried to steal the throne. He set himself up in Jerusalem as the king, lived in the palace, and David had to flee the city by night. As he left, Shimei followed him throwing stones at the sad procession of refugees and shouted curses at David. Upon reaching their destination, Barzillai came out to meet them. He’d brought a mobile campsite. Tents. Beds. All kinds of food and drink to refresh the people.
Eventually, Absalom is defeated and David is able to return to his capital city. The first to welcome him back is Shimei, and he is full of apologies for his abuse. He asks David’s forgiveness and David swears an oath that he would not die. David offers Barzillai a place in the palace, and he declines because of his age. He would rather spend his final days on his family land. So, now we have the back story to help us with some understanding of what Elohim is doing.
When we look around, we see this world is a mess. Can we even be sure of our own happy-ending in life? Our lives are so full of problems. Will Elohim be able to bring everything to a good conclusion? Will Elohim’s will be done in the passing of the torch from David to Solomon?
There is more going on here than David doing a handover. Elohim is at work. He wants Solomon’s kingdom to be secure, established, and prosperous. He doesn’t want things to fall apart and the people to suffer. So, through this handover, Elohim is establishing Solomon’s Kingdom.
In I Kings 2:12 it says, “So Solomon sat on the throne of his father David, and his rule was finally established.” But who made it secure? I Kings 2:24 says, “Solomon says, ‘And now, as surely as Adonai lives, He who has established me securely on the throne of my father David….” Solomon recognizes; it’s Elohim who establishes his reign. And then Solomon carries our David’s advice, and so the chapter concludes professing the blessing on Solomon and that David’s throne will remain secure before Adonai forever. The end of verse 46 proclaims, “The Kingdom was now established in Solomon’s hands.”
How does Elohim make sure that the Kingdom is established and secure for Solomon? There would need to come another king, greater than Solomon! This king would be King Yeshua HaMashiach, our Messiah, Anointed One, the Son of David!
When Messiah Yeshua returns His Kingdom will be secure! Elohim will establish it on the earth where shalom will dwell…amen and halleluyah! According to I Kings 2 it tells us how Elohim establishes the kingdom of Solomon and how He establishes the Kingdom of Elohim. There are 4 ingredients needed to establish this Kingdom. We need a King with 4 qualities:
First, we need a king who will be faithful to Elohim. I Kings 2:2 says, “I am about to go the way of all the earth. So be strong, act like a man, and observe what Adonai your Elohim requires: walk in obedience to Him, and keep His decrees and commands, laws and regulations, as written in the Torah of Moses. Do this so that you may prosper in all you do and wherever you go and that Adonai may keep His promise to Me: ‘If your descendants watch how they live, and if they walk faithfully before Me with all their heart and soul, you will never fail to have a successor on the throne of Israel.”
It is the opposite today for today’s culture- they prefer a king who was strategic, politically sharp and charismatic. However, Elohim really only wants one thing- he must be faithful to Elohim! Why? Because the king doesn’t create the rules. He’s a king under Elohim’s authority. His job is to govern according to what Elohim says realizing Elohim put him in position. The minute he starts trying to create things himself, it will all go wrong—ask Solomon!
Second, we need a king who will be just with wrongdoers. We see this in I Kings 2:5 with Joab- shedding blood in peacetime as if in battle. Joab crossed the line and David should have dealt with it then but as the kingdom is handed over to Solomon…it’s time to right those wrongs. We need a king who will be just with wrongdoers, punishing them when necessary.
Third, we need a king who will remove his enemies. We now arrive at the man Shimei. But why now do we set things straight? Because Elohim needed to establish Solomon’s kingdom. Shimei’s problem was that he wasn’t really on David’s or Solomon’s side. As long as there were people in the kingdom who weren’t really onside, it could all fall apart from within. The way Solomon dealt with him was genius…look it up!
Again Yeshua, when He returns will take care of all the weeds that grew with the wheat (Matt. 13:40-43). Yeshua spoke about this many times- everyone who is not on His side will be banished. It is the only way His Kingdom can be secured and established for those who are in it.
Fourthly, we need a king who will reward loyalty. It’s time to look at Barzillai. David wants to make sure Solomon rewards him for his service and loyalty. He and his household are basically given a pension. They’d get somewhere to live in the royal city of Jerusalem. They’d get a daily portion of food assigned for them. They’d even get to eat with the King. They’d keep these benefits for life.
Now here is the final thing we need. We don’t just need a king who deals with the problems- punishing wrong and removing enemies. We need a king who rewards loyalty. A king who looks after those who choose to go through life on His side. People who choose to stand up for their king, even if it’s at great personal cost.
Solomon was such a king…Yeshua is such a King as well! Yeshua said in Matt 10:32, “Whoever acknowledges Me before others, I will acknowledge before My Father in heaven.” We need to put ourselves on Yeshua’s side in life. He’s a King who will make sure you won’t regret it!
We have a king who is faithful to Elohim in every respect; we have a King who is just, and who will punish wrongdoers. We have a King who will remove and banish His enemies. This means the only safe place in life is to be in His Kingdom and to set our lives to follow Yeshua. This means it’s a good thing that we also have a King who will reward loyalty!
Shabbat Shalom Mishpocha,
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Have a great and powerful Sabbath. See you at the altar!