Useful Bible Studies > 1 Kings Commentary > chapter 4

Solomon appoints his government officials

1 Kings 4:1-5

Solomon had shown great wisdom in his legal judgments. That caused people to trust him to make wise decisions about the organisation of the country. So, from early in his rule, he was able to appoint men whom he approved of to be his government officials.

That was different from David’s rule. During David’s whole rule, he had to accept the authority of certain powerful leaders in the country. It was such men who chose to appoint David as king (2 Samuel 3:17 and 5:3). David even needed another group of important leaders to invite him back after Absalom’s revolution (2 Samuel 19:11-12). David was the king, but he depended on them.

David could not even choose some of the most important men in his government. Joab, his chief army commander, was an evil man who kept his job by acts of cruelty (2:5-7). Abiathar became chief priest because his father had been chief priest before him – but in the end, he too was not loyal to David.

One of Solomon’s first decisions was to replace Joab and Abiathar with better and more loyal men (2:35). Benaiah, the new chief army commander, was the brave man who formerly led Israel’s best soldiers (2 Samuel 20:23 and 23:20-23). Zadok the chief priest formerly had responsibility for the tabernacle, the holy tent that Moses had made, at Gibeon (1 Chronicles 16:39). Zadok’s son would become chief priest after him. Jehoshaphat and Adoniram (also called Adoram) continued to have the responsibilities in the government that David had given them (2 Samuel 20:24). In addition to these men, Solomon also chose some other men to serve as the chief officials in his government.

Next part: Adoniram (1 Kings 4:6)


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