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23_Fri_Nov_21_2008 - Old Testament 11 Ellen Davis Looking...

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Old Testament 11 Ellen Davis November 21, 2008 Looking at Kings And how to connect Samuel to the Psalms Psalm 72: O God, your justice give to a king… Let him crush the one who oppresses: The ideal of kingship:  the guaranteeor of God’s justice.  The mountains and the hills are the  place from which God’s justice flows. Never give up on that ideal of kingship.  At the same time, they cause us to raise the question  over and over again:  how far are these ideals being realized in the political systems that exist in  Jerusalem, in Israel, in Judea, and how far do these ideals exist in our own political systems? We’ve seen that the Deuteronomical history that the kingship is anything but starry eyed. Let’s look at Solomon’s kingship as reflected in the beginning of Kings.  (A single book artificially  divided, like Samuel, into two books.) Solomon is predominantly associated with wisdom.  The two prostitutes and the one baby, The  Queen of Sheba affirming his reputation (“blessed are your wives!”) and the prayer for wisdom.  Interesting because they represent his wisdom both nationally and internationally.  And wisdom is  one of the ideal attributes of kingship.  If you look at the very first mention of wisdom (look at  beginnings and endings carefully). If you look at the first place that Solomon’s wisdom is lifted up as attribute, it’s David on his  deathbed on Ch 2:  How to secure the throne in his own hand when David is gone.  His  instructions deal specifically with how to deal with his enemies, especially the enemies that he  inherits to his father: You know what Joab did, he shed the blood of the innocent in peacetime (allies of Saul and  enemies of David)  verse 6:  You shall act according to your wisdom, and you shall not let his  grey head go down in peace to Sheol.   Page 1 of 8 November 21, 2008
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You have to ask, what kind of wisdom does this represent?  Is it Godly wisdom or the wisdom of  the world?  This is the kind of question that is going to occur to us again and again as we read the  story. Verse 8:   5 "Now you yourself know what Joab son of Zeruiah did to me—what he did to the two commanders of Israel's armies, Abner son of Ner and Amasa son of Jether. He killed them, shedding their blood in peacetime as if in battle, and with that blood stained the belt around his waist and the sandals on his feet. 6 Deal with him according to your wisdom, but do not let his gray head go down to the grave [ a ] in peace. 7 "But show kindness to the sons of Barzillai of Gilead and let them be among those who
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23_Fri_Nov_21_2008 - Old Testament 11 Ellen Davis Looking...

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