The Critique of Solomon in 1 Kings 1–11 and 2 Samuel 9/11–24

Marvin A. Sweeney

in King Josiah of Judah

Published in print March 2001 | ISBN: 9780195133240
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780199834693 | DOI:
The Critique of Solomon in 1 Kings 1–11 and 2 Samuel 9/11–24

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Biblical scholarship has struggled with the two‐fold portrayal of Solomon in 1 Kings 1–11, viz., on the one hand, he is lauded for his wisdom and role as builder of the Jerusalem Temple, but on the other hand, he is condemned for his love of foreign women, who led him to idolatry. Scholars are also perplexed by the so‐called Succession Narrative or Court History in 2 Samuel 9/11–24, which portrays David's adulterous affair with Solomon's mother, Bath Sheba, and the deaths of his older sons. An analysis of this material contends that an earlier Hezekian portrayal of Solomon lauded him as a righteous Davidic monarch, but that the Josianic edition of the DtrH emphasized his marriage to foreign women as the cause of his idolatry, which Josiah had to correct. The portrayal of David's adulterous affair with Bath Sheba and the murder of her husband Uriah indicates that Solomon follows in the footsteps of his father in his love for women and his penchant for spilling the blood of his enemies. Altogether, this critical portrayal of both David and Solomon serves the interests of the Josianic edition of the DtrH by portraying Josiah as the true righteous monarch of the house of David.

Keywords: 1 Kings; 2 Samuel; Bath Sheba; Court History; David; Solomon; Succession Narrative; Uriah

Chapter.  10042 words. 

Subjects: Biblical Studies

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