Other comments on this day's readings can be found here.
Reading 1 - 1Ki 1
When David is old and becomes unable to rule effectively, he
delays in designating and installing Solomon as his successor. Adonijah seeks to
take advantage of David's delay, setting out to beat Solomon to the punch by
proclaiming himself to be king (1Ki 1:5). He is a very handsome man, born after
Absalom, and apparently never is told "No" by David (1Ki 1:6). Joab and
Abiathar, the priest, join with Adonijah in his conspiracy. David is finally
persuaded by Bathsheba and Nathan the prophet to publicly appoint Solomon as his
successor to the throne. When Solomon takes the throne of his father, he allows
Adonijah to live (for a time), but he is finally put to death when he seeks once
again to oust Solomon and assume the throne over Israel (by asking to be given
Abishag, David's concubine).
Reading 2 - Jer 28:13,14
"Go and tell Hananiah, 'This is what the LORD says: You have
broken a wooden yoke, but in its place you will get a yoke of iron. This is what
the LORD Almighty, the God of Israel, says: I will put an iron yoke on the necks
of all these nations to make them serve Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, and they
will serve him' " (Jer 28:13,14).
The Jews might throw off the wooden yoke, but they would not
be benefited by the change; in fact, much the reverse! There is a general
principle here. Whenever men say of God and His Anointed, "Let us break their
chains... and throw off their fetters" (Psa 2:3), they may do so if they please;
but instead of the yokes of wood they will be sure to get yokes of iron. If they
will not submit to the government of Christ, they will have to submit to the
tyranny of Sin (Rom 6:16,17,20,23). All men have to wear some yoke, and serve
some master, and if they reject the easy yoke of Christ (Mat 11:30), then there
will be made for them yokes of iron, which they shall neither be able to bear
nor cast off.
Reading 3 - Mar 2:21
"No one sews a patch of unshrunk cloth on an old garment. If
he does, the new piece will pull away from the old, making the tear worse" (Mar
The new way of life (which Christ brings) cannot be torn apart
to patch an old and useless garment. The new "garment" must be used in its
entirety. The old garment (like the fig-leaf coverings for Adam and Eve) must be
put aside completely in favor of the new garment (as in the Garden, skins, which
require the bloodshed of sacrifice).
Paul expresses the same point: "Put off the old man; put on
the new man" (Eph 4:23,24).