1King David was now a very old man, and though wrapped in bedclothes he could not keep warm. 2So his servants said to him, 'Let us find a young girl for my lord the king, to wait on the king and lookafter him; she wil lie close beside you and this wil keep my lord the king warm.' 3Having searched for a beautiful girl throughout the territory of Israel, they found Abishag of Shunem andbrought her to the king. 4The girl was very beautiful. She looked after the king and waited on him but the king did not haveintercourse with her. 5Now Adonijah son of Haggith was growing pretentious and saying, 'I shal be king!' Accordingly, heprocured a chariot and team with fifty guards to run ahead of him. 6Never once in his life had his father crossed him by saying, 'Why are you behaving like that?' He wasvery handsome too; his mother had given birth to him after Absalom. 7He conferred with Joab son of Zeruiah and with the priest Abiathar, who both ral ied to Adonijah's cause; 8but neither Zadok the priest, nor Benaiah son of Jehoiada, nor the prophet Nathan, nor Shimei and Rei,nor David's champions, supported Adonijah. 9One day when Adonijah was sacrificing sheep, oxen and fattened calves at the Sliding Stone which isbeside the Ful er's Spring, he invited al his brothers, the royal princes, and al the men of Judah in the king'sservice; 10but he did not invite the prophet Nathan, or Benaiah, or the champions, or his brother Solomon. 11Nathan then said to Bathsheba, Solomon's mother, 'Have you not heard that, unknown to our lordDavid, Adonijah son of Haggith has become king? 12Wel , this is my advice to you if you want to save your own life and the life of your son Solomon. 13Go straight in to King David and say, "My lord king, did you not make your servant this promise onoath: Your son Solomon is to be king after me; he is the one who is to sit on my throne? How is it, then, thatAdonijah is king?" 14And while you are stil there talking to the king, I shal come in after you and confirm what you say.' 15So Bathsheba went to the king in his room (he was very old and Abishag of Shunem was in attendanceon him). 16She knelt, prostrated herself before the king, and the king said, 'What do you want?' 17'My lord,' she replied, 'you swore to your servant by Yahweh your God, "Your son Solomon is to beking after me; he is the one who is to sit on my throne." 18And now here is Adonijah king, and you, my lord king, knowing nothing about it! 19He has sacrificed quantities of oxen, fattened calves and sheep, and invited all the royal princes, thepriest Abiathar, and Joab the army commander; but he has not invited your servant Solomon. 20Yet you are the man, my lord king, to whom al Israel looks, to tel them who is to succeed my lord theking. 21And when my lord the king fal s asleep with his ancestors, Solomon and I shal be made to suffer forthis.' 22She was stil speaking to the king when the prophet Nathan came in. 23The king was told, 'The prophet Nathan is here'; and he came into the king's presence and prostratedhimself on his face before the king. 24'My lord king,' said Nathan, 'is this, then, your decree, "Adonijah is to be king after me; he is the onewho is to sit on my throne"? 25For he has gone down today and sacrificed quantities of oxen, fattened calves and sheep, and invitedal the royal princes, the army commanders, and the priest Abiathar; and they are there now, eating and drinkingin his presence and shouting, "Long live King Adonijah!" 26He has not, however, invited me your servant, Zadok the priest, Benaiah son of Jehoiada, or yourservant Solomon. 27Can it be that this is done with my lord the king's approval and that you have not told those loyal to youwho is to succeed to the throne of my lord the king?' 28King David then spoke. 'Cal Bathsheba to me,' he said. And she came into the king's presence andstood before him. 29Then the king swore this oath, 'As Yahweh lives, who has delivered me from all adversity, 30just as I swore to you by Yahweh, God of Israel, that your son Solomon should be king after me andtake my place on my throne, so I shal bring it about this very day.' 31Bathsheba knelt down, prostrated herself on her face before the king and said, 'May my lord KingDavid live for ever!' 32Then King David said, 'Summon Zadok the priest, the prophet Nathan and Benaiah son of Jehoiada.'So they came into the king's presence. 33'Take the royal guard with you,' said the king, 'mount my son Solomon on my own mule and escort himdown to Gihon. 34There Zadok the priest and the prophet Nathan are to anoint him king of Israel; then sound the trumpetand shout, "Long live King Solomon!" 35Then you are to escort him back, and he is then to assume my throne and be king in place of me, forhe is the man whom I have appointed as ruler of Israel and of Judah.' 36Benaiah son of Jehoiada answered the king. 'Amen!' he said. 'And may Yahweh, God of my lord theking, confirm it! 37As Yahweh has been with my lord the king, so may he be with Solomon and make his throne evengreater than the throne of my lord King David!' 38Zadok the priest, the prophet Nathan, Benaiah son of Jehoiada, and the Cherethites and Pelethitesthen went down; they mounted Solomon on King David's mule and escorted him to Gihon. 39Zadok the priest took the horn of oil from the Tent and anointed Solomon. They sounded the trumpetand all the people shouted, 'Long live King Solomon!' 40The people al escorted him back, with pipes playing and loud rejoicing and shouts to split the earth. 41Adonijah and his guests, who had by then finished their meal, al heard the noise. Joab too heard thesound of the trumpet and said, 'What is that noise of uproar in the city?' 42While he was stil speaking, Jonathan son of Abiathar the priest arrived. 'Come in,' Adonijah said, 'youare an honest man, so you must be bringing good news.' 43'The truth is,' Jonathan answered, 'our lord King David has made Solomon king. 44With him, the king sent Zadok the priest, the prophet Nathan, Benaiah son of Jehoiada and theCherethites and Pelethites; they mounted him on the king's mule, 45and Zadok the priest and the prophet Nathan have anointed him king at Gihon; and they have goneback again with shouts of joy and the city is now in an uproar; that was the noise you heard. 46What is more, Solomon is seated on the royal throne. 47And further, the king's officers have been to congratulate our lord King David with the words, "May yourGod make the name of Solomon more glorious than yours, and his throne more exalted than your own!" And theking bowed down on his bed, 48and then said, "Blessed be Yahweh, God of Israel, for setting one of my own sons on the throne while Iam stil alive to see it!" ' 49At this, all Adonijah's guests, taking fright, got up and made off in their several directions. 50Adonijah, in terror of Solomon, got up and ran off to cling to the horns of the altar. 51Solomon was told, 'You should know that Adonijah is terrified of King Solomon and is now clinging tothe horns of the altar, saying, "Let King Solomon first swear to me that he will not have his servant executed." ' 52'Should he bear himself honourably,' Solomon answered, 'not one hair of his shal fal to the ground;but if he proves difficult, he shal die.' 53King Solomon then sent for him to be brought down from the altar; he came and threw himselfprostrate before King Solomon; Solomon said to him, 'Go to your house.'
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