After the death of Saul, David went to Hebron and became king of the tribe of Judah. The northern tribes of Israel chose to follow Ishbaal, one of Saul’s sons. After a long civil war between the houses of David and Saul, David became the king of all Israel.
House of David
David chose Jerusalem, the city right on the border between Judah and the northern tribes, to be his capital. David brought the Ark of the Covenant to Jerusalem, and thus made Jerusalem not only the political center, but also the religious center of Israel. For the Christians, Jerusalem is the figure of the Catholic Church and of heaven.
As David grew in power, Jerusalem became more like an imperial capital. David was living in a palace built of cedar wood imported from Labanon. However, the Ark of the Covenant was still in a tent. David told the prophet Nathan of his desire to build a house for God.
God told Nathan that David would not build the house, but God Himself would make David a house by making him the founder of a dynasty. It was the son of David who would build the temple that David had planned to build.
King David associated religion with government, and in everything he gave the first place to divine worship. In the Book of Psalms, seventy-three psalms were “Psalm of David”. The psalms are divided into five classes: the psalms of praise, of thanksgiving, of petition, penitential psalms, and the Messianic psalms, which contain prophecies concerning the coming Redeemer.
David expressed his sorrow for sins in the penitential psalms. He committed adultery with Bathsheba, and killed her husband Uriah. Later when his son Absalom revolted against him, David saw this as a punishment from God for his sins.
An author pointed out that David is a type of Christ: “David was born in Bethlehem, so was Christ; David spent his youth in obscurity, Christ spent the first thirty years of His life hidden in Nazareth; David conquered Goliath, Christ conquered Satan; David was persecuted by Saul even after he had saved his life; Christ is persecuted by the sinner after He has redeemed him from sin; David finally prevailed over all his enemies, Christ by His Resurrection gained a glorious victory over all His foes.”
Before his death, David admonished his son, Solomon, to be faithful and obedient to God, and to build the temple.
Solomon prayed for wisdom so that he could rule his people justly. God not only granted his prayer, but also gave him riches and honors.
God granted peace to Solomon so that he could build the temple. Solomon consecrated the temple by having the Ark of the Covenant carried in triumph into the temple, and by offered up a prayer. As human beings, we honor God both interiorly and exteriorly because we are composed of a soul and a body.
Solomon’s reign was glorious because he feared God. However, he became blinded by riches and honors and fell into the sins of multiplying wives and wealth for himself and into idolatry.
Heavy taxes and forced labor made Solomon unpopular among his subjects. After his death, one of Solomon’s top ministers, Jeroboam, and the elders asked Solomon’s son, Rehoboam, to relieve them of some of the burdens Solomon had laid upon them. Rehoboam, however, followed the advice of young and inexperienced friends, said to the elders, “My father made your yoke heavy, I shall make it heavier still! My father controlled you with the whip, but I shall apply a spiked lash!” (1 Kings 12:14)
The result was that ten tribes rebelled and chose Jeroboam as their king. The kingdom was divided!
Bible History Series: http://fll.cc/index.php/component/content/article/789