1 Chronicles 28:1-29:30 – David Transfers the Kingdom and Charges Solomon
SummaryThe account of David's final preparations for the temple resumes the theme of chapter 22 after the digression of chapters 23-27.
The Chronicler has used his account of David's transfer of the kingdom and Solomon's enthronement as the occasion for bringing to a conclusion his primary concern in 1 Chronicles: the preparations for the construction of the temple. Both aspects bear further investigation:
- This account of the transition from David to Solomon is totally at odds with the account in 1 Kings 1-2. Only the summary of David's reign remains the same (1 Chronicles 29:27; compare 1 Kings 2:11). Instead of a frail, spent king, a vigorous David is the center of attention in Chronicles. There is no controversy over who will be king, no mention of Nathan, Bathsheba, or Adonijah. Solomon has no one killed and does not engage in the palace intrigues that occupy the initial chapters of 1 Kings. In fact, David's appointment of Solomon as his successor is met with great joy by all Israel (1 Chronicles 29:9, 22b). Of greatest importance, however, is the repeated notice that God has chosen Solomon to sit on the throne of Israel and to build the temple (28:5, 6, 10; 29:1; compare 22:10).
- But the Chronicler's real concern in these chapters is the temple. In his address to the leaders, David rehearses God's promise to David (1 Chronicles 17) in which Solomon was designated as the chosen temple builder and David's role was one of preparation (28:2-8; compare 22:7-16, where David shared this information with Solomon). The rest of chapter 28 finds David encouraging his son in the task of temple building and momentously handing him the actual plans for its construction. Like Moses and Ezekiel before him, David received these plans directly from God (vv. 11-19; compare Moses and the tabernacle in Exodus 25:9, 40; 26:30; and Ezekiel and the ideal temple of Ezekiel 40-48.) In chapter 29 the people generously (and willingly) contribute to the building fund, for which David offers a prayer of thanksgiving.
Thus, 1 Chronicles closes with a picture of unanimous, generous, enthusiastic support of the Jerusalem temple by all the people and their divinely designated leaders, David and Solomon. Yet, with all the energy that has been expended on the temple, we are left with the strong impression that Israel's' God is the true center of the picture, since it is worship of God that is of the very essence of the temple.