1 Kings 10: The Queen of Sheba shows up to meet and test Solomon. We then learn all about Solomon’s amount of wealth. I️ still struggle with this part of the Old Testament considered the fact that wealth doesn’t seem to be as valued in the New Testament.
1 Kings 7: Lots of detail on the palace Solomon built for himself including the furnishings. Also discussion of the furnishings for the temple.
1 Kings 4: Provides an overview of Solomon and all of his people who served him and helped him rule all over the land. It ends with description of his wisdom and how everyone came to listen to him. I’m intrigued by one of the last verses: “He described the botany of trees, whether the cedar in Lebanon or the hyssop that grows out of the wall. He also described cattle, birds, anything that crawls on the ground, and fish” (CEB version; 1 Kings 4.33).
2 Samuel 22: Notes from the NRSV version indicate that this chapter is actually a psalm and is essentially the same as Psalm 18. According to the scholars this was actually written “long after David’s time” (p. 478). Interesting little tidbit. Verses 1-20 focus on God rescuing the psalmist (assuming it’s supposed to be David). Verses 21-51 focus on David’s military activities. Overall the psalmist is thanking and praising God for being there to help.
2 Samuel 19: David mourns Absalom. His general, Joab, confronts David telling him he better focus on his soldiers who were willing to die to save him instead of his enemy who did die trying to defeat him. He then returns to Jerusalem. We see some division emerging between Judah and the rest of Israel at the end of this chapter.
2 Samuel 16: More troubles for David. He is cursed by Shimei, a man from the same clan as Saul’s family. Back in Jerusalem, Absalom asks Ahithophel to give him advice. He tells Absalom to have sex with David’s secondary wives that he left behind in the palace when he fled. He has sex with all of them in a tent on the roof so everyone can see them.
2 Samuel 13: The downward spiral in David’s house continues. In this chapter, his son, Amnon, rapes his half-sister Tamar. He does this because he loves her, but after he rapes her, he despises her. She flees back to her brother, Absalom, who takes her in and protects her. David gets angry with Amnon, but doesn’t do anything. Two years later Absalom tricks Amnon into coming to his house and he kills Amnon. The other princes flee. Absalom fled and hides until David forgives him a few years later.