1 Kings 15:4
Nevertheless for David's sake did the LORD his God give him a lamp in Jerusalem, to set up his son after him, and to establish Jerusalem:
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(4) Give him a lamp in Jerusalem.—There is here a brief allusion to the victory recorded in the Chronicles, which obviously was the turning-point in the struggle, saving the “lamp” of the house of David from extinction, and “establishing” Jerusalem in security. “For David’s sake” is, of course, for the fulfilment of the promise to David (2Samuel 7:12-16). In virtue of the continuity of human history, the Divine law always ordains that, in respect of consequences, the good deeds as well as the sins of fathers are “visited on their children.”

1 Kings 15:4. And the Lord gave him a lamp — A son and successor, to perpetuate his name and memory, which otherwise had gone into obscurity. Jerusalem — That he might maintain that city, and temple, and worship, as a witness for himself in the world, against the Israelites and heathen world.15:1-8 Abijam's heart was not perfect with the Lord his God; he wanted sincerity; he began well, but he fell off, and walked in all the sins of his father, following his bad example, though he had seen the bad consequences of it. David's family was continued as a lamp in Jerusalem, to maintain the true worship of God there, when the light of Divine truth was extinguished in all other places. The Lord has still taken care of his cause, while those who ought to have been serviceable thereto have lived and perished in their sins. The Son of David will still continue a light to his church, to establish it in truth and righteousness to the end of time. There are two kinds of fulfilling the law, one legal, the other by the gospel. Legal is, when men do all things required in the law, and that by themselves. None ever thus fulfilled the law but Christ, and Adam before his fall. The gospel manner of fulfilling the law is, to believe in Christ who fulfilled the law for us, and to endeavour in the whole man to obey God in all his precepts. And this is accepted of God, as to all those that are in Christ. Thus David and others are said to fulfil the law.To set up his son - The idolatry of Abijam deserved the same punishment as that of Jeroboam 1 Kings 14:10-14, of Baasha 1 Kings 16:2-4, or of Zimri 1 Kings 16:19, the cutting off of his seed, and the transfer of the crown to another family. That these consequences did not follow in the kingdom of Judah, was owing to the "faithfulness" of David (see the marginal reference), which brought a blessing on his posterity. Few things are more remarkable and more difficult to account for on mere grounds of human reason, than the stability of the succession in Judah, and its excessive instability in the sister kingdom. One family in Judah holds the throne from first to last, during a space but little short of four centuries, while in Israel there are nine changes of dynasty within two hundred and fifty years. 4. for David's sake did the Lord his God give him a lamp—"A lamp" in one's house is an Oriental phrase for continuance of family name and prosperity. Abijam was not rejected only in consequence of the divine promise to David (see on [314]1Ki 11:13-36). A lamp, i.e. a son and successor to perpetuate his name and memory, which otherwise had gone into obscurity. The same phrase is used above, 1 Kings 11:36 2 Kings 8:19 2 Chronicles 21:7.

To establish Jerusalem, i.e. that he might maintain that city, and temple, and worship, as a witness for God in the world against the Israelites and heathen world, who should have inquired after it, and embraced the true religion there established and set up, as a beacon upon a high hill, that all men might take notice of it. Nevertheless, for David's sake did the Lord his God give him a lamp in Jerusalem,.... A kingdom there, as the Targum, splendid and glorious, to be continued in his posterity: to set up his son after him; in it:

and to establish Jerusalem: to continue that in which the temple was, for the sake of which, and the worship of God in it, there was a succession of David's posterity on the throne of Judah.

Nevertheless for David's sake did the LORD his God give him a {b} lamp in Jerusalem, to set up his son after him, and to establish Jerusalem:

(b) Meaning, a son to reign over Judah.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
4. a lamp] Cf. above on 1 Kings 11:36. The LXX. gives κατάλειμμα here = a remnant, thus expressing the sense of the original, instead of translating. Similarly in 1 Kings 11:36 the rendering is θέσις = a position.Verse 4. - Nevertheless [נרךדנוס ,דךס ,תעב כִּי, Gesen. 393] for David's sake did the Lord his God give him a lamp [Better than margin, candle. The word is "always used figuratively of progeny." See note on ch. 2:26; and of 2 Samuel 21:17; Job 18:5, 6; Psalm 132:17] in Jerusalem, to set up his son after him, and to establish Jerusalem [But for David's piety, that is to say, his family would have been dethroned, if not destroyed, as was that of Jeroboam (1 Kings 14:10), of Baasha (1 Kings 16:2), of Ahab (2 Kings 10:11), etc. Abijah was the third prince of that line who had permitted idolatrous worship, so that that dynasty had richly deserved to forfeit its position. The stability of the family of David on the throne for nearly 400 years, amid all the changes and chances of that period, and whilst in Israel there were "nine changes of dynasty within 250 years" is, as Rawlinson remarks, very "difficult to account for on mere grounds of human reason"]: Further particulars are given in 2 Chronicles 11 and 12 concerning the rest of the acts of Rehoboam. "There was war between Rehoboam and Jeroboam the whole time (of their reign)." As nothing is said about any open war between them, and the prophet Shemaiah prohibited the attack which Rehoboam was about to make upon the tribes who had fallen away (1 Kings 11:23.), מלחמה can only denote the hostile feelings and attitude of the two rulers towards one another.
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