Settling scores…

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1 Kings 2:5 (King David said to his son Solomon as he was about to die) “Moreover you know also what Joab son of Zeruiah did to me, how he dealt with the two commanders of the armies of Israel, Abner son of Ner, and Amasa son of Jether, whom he murdered, retaliating in time of peace for blood that had been shed in war, and putting the blood of war on the belt around his waist, and on the sandals on his feet. 6 Act therefore according to your wisdom, but do not let his gray head go down to Sheol in peace… 8 There is also with you Shimei son of Gera, the Benjaminite from Bahurim, who cursed me with a terrible curse on the day when I went to Mahanaim; but when he came down to meet me at the Jordan, I swore to him by the LORD, ‘I will not put you to death with the sword.’ 9 Therefore do not hold him guiltless, for you are a wise man; you will know what you ought to do to him, and you must bring his gray head down with blood to Sheol.” 

In the classic movie “The Godfather”, Vito Corleone (played by Marlon Brando), died and his son Michael Corleone (played by Al Pacino) took over as godfather. ** Spoiler alert!! *** At the end of the movie Michael Corleone settles many scores in one day – killing rivals both outside of his family and inside his family. It’s a simultaneously brutal and poignant scene. A similar scene occurs in the sequel, Godfather Part II.

King David was a man of great faith, but he was not above holding a grudge. And in this chapter he gives his son Solomon instructions to settle a number of scores, paying back evil for evil and consolidating Solomon’s claim to the throne at the same time. It’s a marked contrast from the times in his youth when David refused to settle scores on his own, in the case of King Saul for instance, but waited for the Lord to bring justice.

 

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