I Kings

1.  How does Solomon become king of Israel?  How does he secure his place on the throne? Why does Solomon first spare Adonijah and then later kill him?

2.  What do you make of David's instructions to Solomon in Chapter 2?  Why does David have Solomon do these things?

3.  Chapters 3 and 4 describe Solomon at his best.  What does the author find admirable in Solomon?  Is there a hint of future trouble?

4.  What is the main purpose of building the temple?  Does the building serve any political purpose?  Are there any drawbacks to building this temple?

5.  Why does Solomon build such a lavish palace for himself?  What are the advantages/disadvantages of such a work?

6.  Note the ceremony around the dedication of the temple and the exchange between Solomon and God in chapter 9.  How is this similar to earlier Hebrew covenants?  How different?

7.  What do you think of Solomon as a diplomat?  How does he maintain good relationships with Hiram of Tyre and his other neighbors?

8.  What is Solomon's major weakness?  Why is he unable to set Israel on a course of lasting peace and prosperity?

9.  Why does Rehoboam lose the kingdom of Israel?  How does Jeroboam manage to usurp his place?  Why does Jeroboam set up the golden calves?  Is his reasoning valid?

10.  How does the author deal with the very difficult task of writing the political history of two closely related but separate nations?

11.  Note the role of the prophets in I Kings, particularly the "man of God" in chapter 13, Adonijah, and Elijah.  How would the presence of such men affected political affairs in Israel?  Are there drawbacks to having men claiming to be prophets around?

12.  In the view of the author of I Kings, how does God intervene in human affairs, particularly political affairs?  Are their any truly miraculous occurrences in this book?

13.  Why are the Israelites so quick to return to the worship of Baal?  What are the consequences of their doing so?

14.  Does it seem to you that I Kings is written by the same man who wrote I and II Samuel?  What are the similarities and differences between the books?  What are the authorís sources?