In 1 Kings 2, Solomon takes vengeance on his father’s enemies. God does not condone or condemn it, He just tells us what happened. I wonder if the Lord might be giving us a prophetic picture of what is to come when the Lord Jesus ascends to the throne and takes out all the enemies of the kingdom. For example …
1. Abiathar, the priest.
David said he wanted Solomon to be king but that wasn’t the proper protocol. The law of succession said David’s oldest son should be king. Solomon was not the oldest and, in fact, wasn’t even a legitimate son. Abiathar tried to follow the law and keep Solomon from the throne. He only wanted to obey the law but by doing so he was putting it above the expressed will of the king. Abiathar’s life was spared but he lost his priesthood – ability to minister before the Lord.
Will there be those who inherit eternal life but are not permitted to minister to the Lord because they insisted on clinging to the law refusing to embrace grace? Hmmm … I wonder.
2. Joab, the commander of David’s armies.
Joab was put to death. Joab had ruthlessly murdered two other men chosen by David to lead the army. Joab also disobeyed an outright order by David and unnecessarily killed Absalom.
Will there be those who appeared to be friends, even fought battles for the Lord, but who regularly disobeyed and did whatever they wanted – clearly showing they saw themselves as the true king of their life? Hmmmm … I wonder.
“Not everyone who says to me, `Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, `Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?’ Then I will tell them plainly, `I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’
Matthew 7:21-23 3.
This guy “kicked” David while he was down, cursing him and throwing dirt at David as he fled from Absalom. David showed great mercy and spared his life. Solomon also mercifully spared his life with one stipulation – if Shimei ever left the city of Jerusalem he would be killed.
Things went well until two of Shimei’s slaves ran away – outside Jerusalem. Should Shimei show them the same mercy he had been shown or risk his own life and pursue them outside the walls of Jerusalem? Shimei chose foolishly. He left Jerusalem to re-enslave these men and ended up losing his own life for disobeying Solomon.
Shimei experienced the grace and forgiveness of God but then refused to extend the same liberty to others. His insistence on keeping the slaves in bondage resulted in his own death. When King Jesus establishes His throne will there be those who received forgiveness from God but nullify that by their own refusal to extend the same grace to others? Hmmmm … I wonder.
In anger his master turned him over to the jailers to be tortured, until he should pay back all he owed. “This is how my heavenly Father will treat each of you unless you forgive your brother from your heart.”
These are some pretty sobering stories. Are they a picture of the Lord coming to His throne and destroying those who oppose Him? I can’t say for sure but one thing I am certain of is I do not want to live with the law triumphing over grace as Abiathar, pretending to obey but actually doing my own thing as Joab or failing to extend to others the grace that I have received as Shimei did.
Live a life worthy of the Lord …
Ephesians 4:1; Philippians 1:27; Colossians 1:10; 1 Thessalonians 2:12; 2 Thessalonians 1:5