Useful Bible Studies > 1 Kings Commentary > chapter 2

Barzillai’s sons

1 Kings 2:7

As David was dying, he remembered his duties to God. He saw that he had neglected certain important matters during his rule. This was now his last opportunity to give Solomon instructions about these matters.

So, there were judgments that David had neglected to make against Joab and Shimei. However, David saw that he also had a duty to be grateful to certain people. In particular, he remembered how Barzillai had helped him. After David escaped from Absalom, Barzillai provided for David, as his (Barzillai’s) guest, for several months (2 Samuel 19:32).

David had urged Barzillai to return to Jerusalem with him. Barzillai refused, but he sent Kimham with David (2 Samuel 19:33-38). So, Kimham returned to be David’s guest at the palace. He was probably one of Barzillai’s sons - but he may have been a favourite servant. It seems from Jeremiah 41:17 that he did not remain in the palace - rather, he made his home in Bethlehem.

David considered that Barzillai’s sons deserved a better reward than that. Their actions to support David showed them to be loyal, responsible and generous people. David told Solomon to give them the right to eat with him, at his table. To do that was more than an honour. They would hear the king’s private conversations; they would become his advisers and members of his government (compare 1 Samuel 20:25).

Next part: The unwise promise to Shimei (1 Kings 2:8-9)


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