HOW SOLOMON BECAME THE RULER OF ISRAEL 121
troubled him by saying, "Why have you done thus and so?" Adonijah was very good-looking and was the next younger son after Absalom. He also had made an agreement with Joab and with Abiathar the priest to help him. But Zadok the priest and Benaiah and Nathan the prophet, as well as Shimei and Rei and David's famous warriors, were not on his side.
Adonijah held a feast and killed for it sheep, oxen, and fat beasts by the Serpent's Stone, which is beside the Fuller's Spring; and he invited to the feast all his brothers and all the royal officials of Judah; but he did not invite the prophet Nathan nor Benaiah nor the famous warriors nor his brother Solomon.
Then Nathan said to Bathsheba the mother of Solomon, "Have you not heard that Adonijah has been made ruler without David our lord knowing it? Now, therefore, let me advise you that you may save your own life and the life of your son Solomon. Go at once to David and say to him, 'Did you not, my lord, solemnly promise your servant that Solomon your son should rule after you ? Why then has Adonijah been made ruler?' While you are still talking with him, I will come in and repeat your words."
So Bathsheba went into David's room; he was very old, and Abishag the Shunamite was caring for him. When David said, "What do you wish?" she said to him, "My lord, you solemnly promised your servant by Jehovah: 'Solomon your son shall rule after me.' But now Adonijah has been made ruler without your knowledge, my lord! Now, my lord, all the Israelites are looking to you, to tell them who shall rule after you. If you do not tell them, then, when my lord dies, I and my son Solomon will be treated as criminals."
While she was still talking with David, Nathan the prophet came in. And they told David, "Nathan the prophet is here." So he came in and bowed before David with his face to the ground. Then Nathan said, "My lord, have you said, 'Adonijah shall rule after me ?' For he has gone down this day and killed many oxen and fat beasts and sheep and has invited all your sons and the commanders of the army and Abiathar the priest; and there they are eating and drinking before him and saying, ' May the new ruler Adonijah live!' But he has not invited me, even me your servant, nor Zadok, the priest, nor Benaiah nor your servant Solomon. If you have done this, my lord, you have failed to show your servants who is to rule after my lord."