The Birth of Solomon
2 Samuel 12:24, 25
And David comforted Bathsheba his wife, and went in to her, and lay with her: and she bore a son, and he called his name Solomon…

(References: 1 Kings 1-11; 1 Chronicles 22-29; 2 Chronicles 1-9.; Psalm 72; Proverbs 1:1; Ecclesiastes 1:1; Song of Solomon 1:1.) Where a while ago a dead child lay amidst signs of grief, there now lies a living child amidst signs of gladness. In him David sees a gift of God, an answer to prayer which seemed to be denied, "a pledge of pardon and a sign of hope." In him we see one who was destined to become the wisest of men, the most glorious of monarchs - Solomon (whose name occurs only here and 2 Samuel 5:14, in this book) -

"The lofty light, endow'd
With sapience so profound, if truth be truth,
That with a ken of such wide amplitude
No second hath arisen."

(Dante, 'Par.,' 10.) Notice:

1. His parentage. David, Bathsheba; from whom he inherited physical strength and beauty, mental and moral qualities, a piercing insight, large heartedness, skill in ruling, sensuous susceptibilities, etc., royal rank and privileges. "The history of a man's childhood is the description of his parents' environment" (Carlyle).

2. His birth. After David's fall, repentance, and forgiveness, and the death of his unnamed infant (see, however, 1 Chronicles 3:5); when Rabbah had fallen, peace was established, and prosperity abounded. The time was propitious.

3. His name. (1 Samuel 1:20.) "And he called his name Solomon" (equivalent to "the man of peace," "pacific," Friedrich), "because he regarded his birth as a pledge that he should now become a partaker again of the peace of God" (Keil); or perhaps in allusion to the peaceful condition of the kingdom and "from the wish that peace might be allotted him as a gift of God, in contrast with the wars of his father's life" (Erdmann; 2 Samuel 7:12; 1 Chronicles 22:9). "And Jehovah loved him," and spared his life, in contrast with that of the dead child. "And he [Jehovah] sent by the hand [through] Nathan the prophet; and he [Nathan] called his name Jedid-jah [Jedid equivalent to 'David,' 'darling;' 'beloved of Jab,' his own name being combined with that of Jehovah], because of the Lord," who loved him; "a practical declaration on the part of Jehovah that the Lord loved Solomon, from which David could and was intended to discern that the Lord had blessed his marriage with Bathsheba. Jedidiah, therefore, was not actually adopted as Solomon's name" (Keil). "The pious father, in his happiness, entreated the oracle, through Nathan, to confer on the newborn child some name of lofty import, and Solomon, as his parents called him, received through the prophet the glorious additional name of Jedidiah. The sadness of the fate of his first child rendered the omens under which the second stepped into its place the more auspicious; and we can easily understand that of all his sons this one became the dearest" (Ewald).

4. His education; or the influences that went to form his character; of Nathan, to whom it may have been entrusted; of David, during his declining years; of Bathsheba (2 Samuel 11:3); of a home and court where polygamy prevailed; of all the learning of the age; of the revolt of Absalom, and other public events. "A shepherd life, like his father's, furnished, we may believe, a better education for his kingly calling. Born to the purple, there was the inevitable risk of a selfish luxury. Cradled in liturgies, trained to think chiefly of the magnificent 'palace' of Jehovah, of which he was to be the builder, there was the danger first of an aesthetic formalism, and then of ultimate indifference" (Smith, 'Dict. of the Bible').

5. His prospects, after the death of Absalom, if not even before (2 Samuel 7:12; 1 Chronicles 22:9; 1 Kings 1:13); his accession and eminence.

6. His closing years.

7. His prefigurement, not in personal character but royal office, of "the Prince of Peace" "We must not confine our view to David's personal life and reign. After we have seen him fallen and suffering for sin, we must see him rising again and reviving in a more glorious reign, in Solomon his son, who began to reign while David his father was still alive, in order that the continuity might be more clearly marked. And above all, we must contemplate him as culminating upward and attaining the climax of his glory, which God had revealed to him, and for which he yearned with devout aspiration, in Christ, the Divine David and the Son of David, the Solomon, the Jedidiab, the Builder of the Church visible on earth and glorified in heaven" (Wordsworth). - D.

Parallel Verses
KJV: And David comforted Bathsheba his wife, and went in unto her, and lay with her: and she bare a son, and he called his name Solomon: and the LORD loved him.

WEB: David comforted Bathsheba his wife, and went in to her, and lay with her. She bore a son, and he called his name Solomon. Yahweh loved him;

The Recognition of Departed Friends
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