Fake Election: Adonijah Edition

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This week’s Torah portion includes a reading from Kings I, 1:1-31. In it we learn that King David is elderly and frail. He has not yet selected a successor formally, but we know that he has previously promised the kingship to his wise and good son, Solomon. Meanwhile his evil son, Adonijah, plots a coup to overthrow King David by assuming the trappings of the kingship, even without being formally appointed.

Adonijah brings together Joab the general and Abiathar the priest and calls the other influencers together to declare himself King. As he does so he excludes King David’s loyalists: the prophet Nathan, Benaiahu son of Jehoiada, Solomon, and others. He slaughters animals as if to declare a joyous event. But none of it is authentic.

Frantic, Nathan summons Queen Bathsheba, and urges her to save her own life, and the life of Solomon, by approaching King David. For Nathan knows that if Adonijah proceeds uninterrupted, there will be war, and the truth is that Adonijah will likely win in the absence of a clear declaration from the king as to his intentions for the future.

In the end, both of them approach the king. Nathan tells him of his son’s rebellion, a painful message to have to impart. King David calls for Bathsheba and swears to her that Solomon will have the throne, to which Bathsheba replies:

“Let my lord King David live forever.” (1 Kings 1:31)

The events of the Bible are written down not just for their historical value, but because we know they serve as a template for future events. Thus modern “election fraud” is actually nothing new. It didn’t start with one election or one political party either.

Why do people pretend to high office? Basically, they are in love with themselves. In their arrogance, they tell themselves they are entitled to the office they are stealing.

To make the fraud seem true, they cast the “fog of war” around the process of leadership transition; surround themselves with bootlickers; wear the “kingly robes”; and overall exert themselves as though they are entitled to it all.

But just as in the Bible, at some point people recognize what they are doing, and they avail themselves of the recourse that they have: not vigilantism, but speaking the truth, pursuing legal action and praying to God that justice will prevail.

With prayers for Redemption.

By Dr. Dannielle Blumenthal (Dossy). All opinions are the author’s own. Public domain.