More for kids

More for kids June 19, 2012

Some more chants and outlines of the Old Testament. The books of Judges and 1-2 Samuel narrate the transition from the Mosaic to the Davidic covenants, from the age of priests to the age of kings, from the age of the ox to the age of the lion. As so often in the Bible:

God tears down the world so He can build an oth er .

Bad as the time of Judges was, it was not the end of the age of the ox. At the end of Judges, the tabernacle stll stands at Shiloh. The early chapters of 1 Samuel describe the end of the priestly age.

1-2 Samuel has a whole can be outlined simply with the three major characters of the book:

Sam uel, Saul , and Da vid

The age of the ox comes to an end because of the sins of the priests: Hoph ni and Phin ehas sleep with the wo men and steal from God ; and E li does not stop them

With the tabernacle in disarray, Israel demands a king from God, and they get Saul. He begins well, but he sins and his three sins correspond to the three areas of the original creation: garden, land and world.

Saul sins in the gar den, Saul sins in the land , Saul sins in the world

What are Saul’s three sins? He sins against God and Samuel by not waiting to offering sacrifice, against his “brother” Jonathan when he tries to kill him, and in his relation to the Gentiles when he refuses to kill the Amalekite king Agag.

He does n’t wait to sac ri fice , he tries to kill Jo na than , he does n’t kill A gag

David, on the other hand, reverses these sins of Saul. He trusts his Father to fight Goliath; he doesn’t try to kill Saul, even though Saul is trying to kill him; and just before he ascends to the throne, he beats the Amalekites that Saul failed to defeat fully. David shows faithfulness to God, to his “brother” Saul, and in his relation to the Gentiles. He rises to the throne because he is faithful in the garden, in the land, and in the world.

Da vid trusts in Yah weh; Da vid saves king Saul ; Da vid beats A mal e kites

I haven’t figured out a decent chant for the reign of David yet.

1-2 Kings is organized into two halves. The first half describes the establishment of three principal dynasties/kingdoms, the continuation of the Davidic dynasty with Solomon, the establishment of the northern kingdom by Jeroboam, and the northern dynasty of Omri (that includes Ahab):

So lo mon , Je ro bo am, Om ri

Solomon builds the temple. This is the kingly/lion reestablishment of the house of God. It’s like the tabernacle, but is bigger and permanent. Besides, it has several new pieces of furniture:

Wa ter char iots, great bronze sea , two huge che ru bim

Solomon violates all the laws of kingship. In Deuteronomy 17, Yahweh instructed Israel’s kings not to multiply horses and chariots, gold and silver, or wives. With my own children, I’ve tried to come up with a variation of this list for every letter of the alphabet. Here is a sampling:

Bombs, baubles, bimbos

Guns, gold, girls

Weapons, wealth, women

The founder or some prominent member of each of the dynasties/kingdoms sins and causes the eventual downfall of the kingdom. Each successive dynasty is worse than the previous one.

Sol omon’s heart turns to id ols; Je ro bo am makes gol den calves ; Ah ab wor ships Baal

In the second half of kings, these three dynasties/kingdoms fall in reverse order: The Omride dynasty, Jeroboam’s northern kingdom, Solomon’s kingdom of Judah. Each time a dynasty falls, a temple is destroyed and the Davidic kingdom is threatened. But each time Yahweh rescues the Davidic king and the Davidic dynasty from final destruction. We can summarize this with:

Jo ash is hid den in the tem ple at the end of Om ri’s king dom

Hez e ki ah is saved from As syr ia af ter the fall of the nor thern king dom

Je hoi achin is en throned in Ba bylon

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