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1 David was about to die. He called his son Solomon and gave him his last instructions:

2 »It is my time to die. I go the way of all people of the earth. Be strong and be a man.

3 »Do what Jehovah your God orders you to do. Obey all his laws and commands, as written in the Law of Moses. That way wherever you go you may prosper in everything you do.

4 »‘If you obey Jehovah he will keep the promise he made when he told me, ‘Your descendants will rule Israel as long as they are careful to obey my commands faithfully with all their heart and being.’

5 »Remember what Joab did to me by killing the two commanders of Israel's armies, Abner son of Ner and Amasa son of Jether. You remember how he murdered them in time of peace. This was revenge for deaths they had caused in time of war. He killed innocent men. I bear the responsibility for what he did. I suffer the consequences.

6 »You know what to do. You must not let him die a natural death.

7 »But show kindness to the sons of Barzillai from Gilead and take care of them. They were kind to me when I was fleeing from your brother Absalom.

8 "There is also Shimei son of Gera, from the town of Bahurim in Benjamin. He cursed me with a bitter curse the day I went to Mahanaim. When he met me at the Jordan River, I gave him my solemn promise in the name of Jehovah, saying, ‘I will not have you killed by the sword.’«

9 »However you must not let him go unpunished. You know what to do. You must make sure he is put to death.«

10 David died and was buried in David's City.

11 He was king of Israel for forty years. He ruled seven years in Hebron and thirty-three years in Jerusalem.

12 Solomon succeeded his father David as king. His royal power was firmly established.

13 Adonijah, son of Haggith, went to Bathsheba, Solomon's mother. »Is this a friendly visit?« She asked. »Yes,« he answered.

14 I have something to discuss with you. He said. What is it? She asked.

15 He said: »You know the kingship was mine. All Israel expected me to be their king. But the kingship has been turned over to my brother because Jehovah gave it to him.

16 »I have one request to make to you. Do not say no to me.« She responded: »Tell me.«

17 He said: »Will you go to Solomon the king for he will not say ‘No’ to you. And make my request that he give me Abishag the Shunammite for a wife?«

18 Bathsheba said: »Indeed, I will make your request to the king.«

19 So Bathsheba went to King Solomon to talk to him for Adonijah. The king stood up to meet her and bowed down to her. He took his place on the king's throne and she sat at his right hand on the seat made ready for the king's mother.

20 Then she said: »I have one small request to make of you. Do not say ‘No’ to me.« The king replied: »Speak mother for I will not say no to you.«

21 She said: »Let Abishag the Shunammite be given to Adonijah your brother for a wife.«

22 Then King Solomon answered: »Why are you requesting me to give Abishag the Shunammite to Adonijah? Take the kingdom for him in addition, for he is my older brother, and Abiathar the priest and Joab, the son of Zeruiah, are on his side.«

23 King Solomon took an oath by Jehovah, saying: »May God's punishment be on me if Adonijah does not give payment for these words with his life.

24 »Now by the living God Jehovah who has given me my throne from David my father. He made me one of a line of kings. He gave me his word. Adonijah will be put to death this day.«

25 King Solomon sent Benaiah, the son of Jehoiada to attack and kill him.

26 The king spoke to Abiathar the priest: »Go to your fields at Anathoth. You deserve death. But I will not put you to death now, because you carried the Ark of Jehovah God before David my father. You were with him in all his troubles.«

27 Solomon did not allow Abiathar to be priest any longer. So the word of Jehovah came true concerning the sons of Eli in Shiloh.

28 Joab received news of this for Joab had been one of Adonijah's supporters. He was not on Absalom's side. Then Joab went in flight to the Tent of Jehovah and put his hands on the corners of the altar.

29 When King Solomon heard about this he sent Benaiah son of Jehoiada to kill him.

30 Benaiah went to the Tent of Jehovah and told Joab: Come out. Joab said: »No! Let me die here.« So Benaiah returned to the king and gave him the answer Joab gave him.

31 The king said: »Do as he said. Kill him there and bury him in the earth. This will remove the guilt of his senseless murders from my father’s family and me.

32 »Jehovah will punish Joab for those murders he committed without my father David's knowledge. Joab killed two innocent men who were better men than he: Abner, commander of the army of Israel, and Amasa, commander of the army of Judah.

33 »Jehovah will repay him for the blood Joab shed. The blood will fall on Joab and on his descendants as long as they live. Jehovah will always give success to David's descendants who sit on his throne.«

34 So Benaiah went to the Tent of Jehovah’s presence and killed Joab. He was buried at his home in the wilderness.

35 The king made Benaiah commander of the army in Joab's place and put Zadok the priest in Abiathar's place.

36 The king sent for Shimei and said to him: »Build a house for yourself here in Jerusalem. Live in it and do not leave the city.

37 »If you ever leave and go beyond Kidron Brook, you will die and it will be your fault.«

38 »As you say, Your Majesty,« Shimei answered. »I will do what you say.« So he lived in Jerusalem a long time.

39 Three years later, however, two of Shimei's slaves ran away to the king of Gath, Achish son of Maacah. When Shimei heard that they were in Gath,

40 he saddled his donkey and went to King Achish in Gath, to find his slaves. He found them and brought them back home.

41 When Solomon heard what Shimei did,

42 he sent for him and said: »I made you promise in Jehovah’s name not to leave Jerusalem. I warned you that if you ever did, you would die. Did you not agree to it and say that you would obey me?

43 »Why did you break your promise and disobey my command?

44 »You know very well all the wrong that you did to my father David. Jehovah will punish you for it.

45 »But he will bless me, and he will make David's kingdom secure forever.«

46 The king gave orders to Benaiah son of Jehoiada. He killed Shimei. Solomon was now in complete control.

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