1 Kings 2:26
And unto Abiathar the priest said the king, Get thee to Anathoth, unto thine own fields; for thou art worthy of death: but I will not at this time put thee to death, because thou barest the ark of the Lord GOD before David my father, and because thou hast been afflicted in all wherein my father was afflicted.
Jump to: BarnesBensonBICambridgeClarkeDarbyEllicottExpositor'sExp DctGaebeleinGSBGillGrayGuzikHaydockHastingsHomileticsJFBKDKJTLangeMacLarenMHCMHCWParkerPoolePulpitSermonSCOTTBWESTSK
EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(26) Anathoth is noted, in Joshua 21:18; 1Chronicles 6:60, as a city of the priests in the territory of Benjamin, but a few miles from Jerusalem, and is best known to us as the birthplace of Jeremiah (Jeremiah 1:1; Jeremiah 32:7).

It is notable that it is not Abiathar’s priestly character which protects him, but the remembrance of his long friendship to David in adversity, and probably of that special promise which David made to him, perhaps not without remorse, when he found that his deceit to Ahimelech had drawn down Sauľs bloody vengeance upon him and his family (1Samuel 22:20-23).

1 Kings 2:26-27. Unto Abiathar — said the king, Get thee to Anathoth — This was a city of the priests, (Joshua 21:28,) where he commanded him to lead a private life; either in that part of the suburbs which fell to his share, or in some land which he had purchased. I will not, at this time, put thee to death — He does not fully pardon him, but reserves to himself a liberty of punishing him afterward if he should see occasion. This he does to keep him in awe, that he might not dare to raise or foment discontents or tumults among the people, which otherwise he might have been inclined to do. Because thou didst bear the ark of the Lord before my father — When he thought fit to carry it out with him; and when thou, as high-priest, wast called to attend upon it. Thus Solomon shows his respect to the sacred office. Because thou hast been afflicted, &c. — Exposed to all the hardships David endured all the time of his exile under Saul, 1 Samuel 22:20, &c. Here Solomon mixes mercy with justice, and requites Abiathar’s former kindness to David; hereby teaching princes, that they should not write injuries in marble, and benefits in sand and water, as they have been too often observed to do. So Solomon thrust out Abiathar — Either from his office, or at least from the execution of it. That he might fulfil the word of the Lord — Solomon did not do this that he might fulfil the word of the Lord, but because Abiathar had taken the part of Adonijah. But by Solomon’s being moved to do this on account of Abiathar’s rebellion, the word of the Lord was fulfilled, which he had spoken concerning the house of Eli in Shiloh. And in this sense we are to take the same kind of expressions in the New Testament, where things are frequently said to be done to fulfil certain prophecies.

2:26-34 Solomon's words to Abiathar, and his silence, imply that some recent conspiracies had been entered into. Those that show kindness to God's people shall have it remembered to their advantage. For this reason Solomon spares Abiathar's life, but dismisses him from his offices. In case of such sins as the blood of beasts would atone for, the altar was a refuge, but not in Joab's case. Solomon looks upward to God as the Author of peace, and forward to eternity as the perfection of it. The Lord of peace himself gives us that peace which is everlasting.For Anathoth and the allusions in this verse, see the margin reference. 26, 27. unto Abiathar the priest said the king—This functionary, as the counsellor or accomplice of Adonijah, had deserved to share his fate. But partly from regard to his priestly dignity, and partly from his long associations with the late king, Solomon pronounced on him the mitigated sentence of banishment to his country estate at Anathoth, and thereby, as God's vicegerent, deprived him of his office and its emoluments. The sacred writer notices the remarkable fulfilment, Abiathar's degradation from the high priesthood (see on [293]1Ki 4:4), of the doom denounced against the house of Eli (1Sa 2:30). To Anathoth, a city of the priests, Joshua 21:18, to lead a private life there.

Unto thine own fields; either that part of the suburbs which fell to his share, or other land which he had purchased there. See Jeremiah 32:7.

At this time: he doth not fully pardon him, but only forbears him, and reserves to himself a liberty of punishing him afterwards, if he saw occasion; which he doth to keep him in awe, that he might not dare to raise or foment discontents or tumults among the people, which otherwise he might be prone to do.

Because thou barest the ark of the Lord God before David my father, when he thought fit to carry it out with him; as 2 Samuel 15:24,29 1 Chronicles 15:11,12; when he as high priest was to attend upon it. Thus Solomon showeth his respect to his sacred function.

Thou hast been afflicted in all wherein my father was afflicted: here he mixeth mercy with justice, and requites Abiathar’s former kindness to David; hereby teaching princes that they should not write injuries in marble, and benefits in sand or water, as they have been too oft observed to do.

And unto Abiathar the priest said the king,.... Who was either at court, or he sent for him, and thus addressed him:

get thee to Anathoth; a city of the tribe of Benjamin, given to the priests, Joshua 21:18; of which place Abiathar might be originally, and whither he is bid to return:

unto thine own fields; which belonged to him there, either by inheritance or purchase; and these he was to mind, and not perform the functions of his office, however as high priest, and at Jerusalem, and the tabernacle there, and still less appear at court, or meddle with state affairs, only to attend to his private domestic concerns:

for thou art worthy of death; in joining with Adonijah in the lifetime of David, and setting him up as a king without his knowledge, and in opposition to Solomon, contrary to the will of God, and promise of David, of which he, being high priest, cannot be thought to be ignorant, and for his late confederacy with Adonijah, of which Solomon had knowledge:

but I will not at this time put thee to death; he does not give him a full pardon, only a respite; suggesting, that should he be guilty of any overt act, he would be put to death another time, though not now:

because thou barest the ark of the Lord God before David my father; when he fled from Absalom, 2 Samuel 15:24;

and because thou hast been afflicted in all wherein my father was afflicted; shared with him in all his afflictions under the persecutions of Saul, from the time he slew the priests at Nob, and at the rebellion of Absalom; in each of which he accompanied him, and suffered and sympathized with him.

And unto Abiathar the priest said the king, Get thee to Anathoth, unto thine own fields; for thou art worthy of death: but I will not at this time put thee to death, because thou {m} barest the ark of the Lord GOD before David my father, and because thou hast been afflicted in all wherein my father was afflicted.

(m) When he fled before Absalom, 2Sa 15:24.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
26–27. Punishment of Abiathar (Not in Chronicles)

26. Get thee to Anathoth] This city was in the tribe of Benjamin, and has been identified by Robinson with Anáta at the distance of 1¼ hours N.N.E. of Jerusalem. It is mentioned as a priest’s city with suburbs in Joshua 21:18; 1 Chronicles 6:60, and Jeremiah was sprung from ‘the priests that were in Anathoth’ (Jeremiah 1:1). Here Abiathar must have had some ground, and to this Solomon banished him. We find that the cousin of Jeremiah, Hanameel, possessed land at Anathoth, which Jeremiah purchased (Jeremiah 32:6-12).

worthy of death] Hebrew, a man of death, deserving it. So in 1 Kings 20:42 ‘a man whom I appointed to utter destruction’ is literally ‘the man of my doom,’ i.e. whom I had doomed.

thou barest the ark of the Lord] Abiathar was with David in his flight before Absalom (2 Samuel 15:24-29) when the ark of God was carried away from Jerusalem, and he and Zadok bore it back again according to David’s orders.

hast been afflicted] Abiathar fled from Nob and came to David when he was pursued by Saul (1 Samuel 22:20), and also remained with him in the dangerous days which followed. See 1 Samuel 23:8-9.

Verse 26. - And unto Abiathar the priest [see note on 1 Kings 1:8. The historian now relates the end of Adonijah's confederates] said the king, get thee to Anathoth [The Heb. is extremely curt and authoritative, corresponding well with the anger and determination of the speaker. Anathoth, the home of Abiathar, was also the residence of another high priest, Hilkiah (Jeremiah 1:1). It was in Benjamin, a priests' city, and had suburbs (Jeremiah 21:13, 17, 18). It has been identified by Robinson with Anita, a village 1.25 hrs. N.N.E, of Jerus. The name ( = Answers) according to Gesenius, means, "answers to prayer," but according to the Talmud, "echoes"], unto [עַל is here almost the equivalent of אֶל. Cf. 2 Samuel 15:4, 20, Hebrews etc.] thine own fields [the patrimony of his family] for thou art worthy of death; [Heb. a man of death; LXX. ἀνὴρ θανάτου, i.e., ἔνοχος θανάτου, Matthew 26:66.] but I will not at this time [Heb. in this day] put thee to death [i.e., the sentence of death was deferred during good behaviour. It is hardly correct to say that Abiathar was "spared for a time, but only for a time" (Stanley). More correctly Corn. a Lapide: "Misit eum in patriam ut ibi vitam, quam ei condonabat, quiete tradu-ceret." For aught we know, he died in peace because thou barest the ark of the Lord God before David my father [Thenius, quite needlessly would read for "ark," .... "ephod" (1 Samuel 23:6). Zadok and Abiathar had borne the ark (not of course in person, but per altos, viz., the Levites Uriel, Joel, etc.: 1 Chronicles 15:11), when David brought it up to Jerusalem, and also during his flight from Absalom (2 Samuel 15:24-29). Abiathar had thus been associated both with David's joys and sorrows] and because thou hast been afflicted in all wherein my father was afflicted. [See 1 Samuel 22:17-23; 2 Samuel 15:24, etc.] 1 Kings 2:26Deposition of Abiathar. - The conduct of Solomon towards the high priest Abiathar is a proof how free his actions were from personal revenge or too great severity. Abiathar had also forfeited his life through the part he took in Adonijah's conspiracy; but Solomon simply sent him to Anathoth (i.e., Anata; see at Joshua 18:24), to his own fields, i.e., to his property there, telling him, "Thou art indeed a man of death," i.e., thou hast deserved to die, "but I will not put thee to death to-day, because thou hast borne the ark of Jehovah," namely, both on the occasion of its solemn conveyance to Jerusalem (1 Chronicles 15:11.) and also on David's flight from Absalom (2 Samuel 15:24, 2 Samuel 15:29), that is to say, because of his high-priestly dignity, and because thou didst endure all that my father endured, i.e., thou didst share all his afflictions and sufferings, both in the period of Saul's persecution (1 Samuel 22:20., 1 Samuel 23:8.), and during the rebellion of Absalom (2 Samuel 15:24.). ההוּא בּיּום (to-day) puts a limit upon the pardon, because Solomon could not foresee whether Abiathar would always keep quiet, and not forfeit his life again by fresh crimes.

(Note: There is no meaning in the objection of Thenius, that Abiathar did not carry the ark himself, since this was not the duty of the high priest. For, in the first place, it is questionable whether Abiathar did not lend a helping hand at the removal of the ark during Absalom's conspiracy. And, secondly, the duty binding upon the high priest, to superintend and conduct the removal of the ark, might very well be called carrying the ark. The conjecture, that for ארון we should read אפוד, founders on the preterite נשׂאת; for Abiathar had not only worn the ephod once before, but he wore it till the very hour in which Solomon deposed him from his office.)

Links
1 Kings 2:26 Interlinear
1 Kings 2:26 Parallel Texts


1 Kings 2:26 NIV
1 Kings 2:26 NLT
1 Kings 2:26 ESV
1 Kings 2:26 NASB
1 Kings 2:26 KJV

1 Kings 2:26 Bible Apps
1 Kings 2:26 Parallel
1 Kings 2:26 Biblia Paralela
1 Kings 2:26 Chinese Bible
1 Kings 2:26 French Bible
1 Kings 2:26 German Bible

Bible Hub






1 Kings 2:25
Top of Page
Top of Page