1. Solomon was the last son of David – not the natural first choice for succession to the King
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It’s quite common for the eldest son to inherit the throne, both in biblical times and today, which is why for a long time, another of David’s sons, Absalom, was thought to become his successor.
Absalom was the one who killed his half-brother, Amnon, the eldest son of David, because Amnon raped their sister. With the death of Amnon, Absalom became the eldest son and actually attempted to overthrow David at one point. He was unsuccessful.
Solomon, the son of David’s favorite wife, Bathsheba, was chosen as the next king of Israel and was likely a teenager when he assumed the throne.
2. Solomon almost didn't become king
When David was on his deathbed, one of his son’s, Adonijah, anointed himself king with the aid of a few priests. It was obviously underhanded – Adonijah invited royal officials, his brothers (except for Solomon), and priests to the event. He did not, however, invite David, Solomon, or Nathan the prophet.
When news traveled to David, he gave instructions to Nathan on how to go about anointing Solomon as the one true king. It was done right and with David’s blessing, establishing Solomon as king, instead of Adonijah.
Photo Courtesy: Unsplash/Matthew Dix