The text of 1 Kings 1:11-53 tells us of the outcome of Adonjah’s bold and pride-filled push for the throne. When Nathan the prophet and Bathsheba broke the news to the dying old, King David, he acted swiftly, authorising the coronation of the rightful King, Solomon. There will always be those who push forward counterfeit kings and saviours. It has been the devil’s plan from the very beginning to do this, but there is only one true King that God wants us to serve as He says in Psalm 2:6 … and that King is His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ.
The book of 1 Kings opens with the final days of King David and tracks the succession of Solomon to the throne. According to 1 Kings 1:1-10, not everything went smoothly – especially when Solomon’s brother, Adonijah, took it upon himself to take hold of the throne. We don’t need a king like Adonijah – one who acts out of pride and self-interest! We need a King who will put His people before Himself! But where would we find a King who would do that? Oh wait … according to Philippians 2:1-11, Jesus did just that didn’t He? What a King!
From July 2018: When the would-be king, David, was spurned by the foolish Nabal in 1 Samuel 25:1-44, he saw red. In his anger, David made up his mind to put an end to Nabal’s life. If it wasn’t for the actions of Nabal’s wife, Abigail (who in some small way points us to Jesus), David would have fallen into serious sin. Anger does that, which is why the Bible teaches that we should ‘be angry’, but ‘do not sin’ (Ephesians 4:30).
In the chapters leading up to the events of the death and resurrection of Jesus in Matthew’s gospel, Matthew 26:1-16 follows on directly after the Olivet Discourse. In these chapters, Matthew sets out clearly the events that led up to the the death of Jesus, beginning with the plot the Jewish religious leaders hatched to put Him to death and ending (in these verses) with the desire of Judas to betray Him. But in the midst of those two events is the wonderful act of love completed by Mary. While the men in this text are clearly walking in darkness, she, on the other hand, is walking in the light.
Given that followers of Jesus have become citizens of heaven, Philippians 4:5 reminds the church to live God’s way. Reasonableness is so important for maintaining community and Christians should seek to what is best for everyone, especially in light of the fact that Jesus will surely return as judge.
One theme stands out in Paul’s first letter to the Thessalonians, and that is the close relationship that Paul had with these believers. This is reflected in so many ways, but is eviden mainly in the language Paul uses to describe the depths of his feelings towards them. In 1 Thessalonians 3:6-13, it is apparent that Paul truly loved these people and was encouraged that they loved each other and those around them. This kind of love can never be taken for granted, when it is the kind of fruit that Jesus taught his disciples that would show the reality of the gospel to the whole world.
When the Apostle Paul wrote his first letter to the church at Thessalonica, he was full of praise for the way in which these people had received and welcomed the gospel. Their lives had been transformed from worshipping idols to turn and wait for Jesus to return from heaven. In 1 Thessalonians 2:13-3:5, in describing the characteristics that pleased the Apostle about these believers Paul paints a ‘portrait’ so to speak of what people transformed by the gospel look like. His ‘portrait’ therefore asks us the question, are we ‘gospel people’ in this sense?
There’s an awful ring to the story recorded in 2 Kings 6:24-7:20. Not only is the prophet Elisha in danger – this time from the king of Israel! – the whole nation has hot rock-bottom due to the siege laid by the surrounding armies of Syria. Inside the captial, Samaria, things are a mess. Awful. There’s famine, desperation, hopelessness and unbelief. But then God did something. Having tried His people to an extremity, He then acted to save them and drive the enemy away, leaving it very clear that none else but He was the Saviour of His people, and reminding us that the grace of God is far greater than we can imagine.