Section One: Death of King David and Solomon's Consolidation of Power
I Kings 1:1-2:46
"Keep the mandate of the Lord..." (1 Kg 2:3)
With the death of David, Solomon overcomes rival Adonijah for the throne. He is supported by his mother Bathsheba and anointed by the prophet Nathan. He dispatches his rivals and his success shows that God is with him. In a dream, Solomon asks for wisdom. He receives a wise heart, wealth and a long life. In return, Solomon is told to keep the statutes and mandates of the Lord. This becomes the measure of success or failure of each king.
Section Two: Solomon and the Temple
1 Kings 3:1-11:43
"In the four hundred and eightieth year since the Israelites went out from the land of Egypt...he began to build the house of the Lord." (1 Kg 6:1)
After establishing his own wealth and the government over the lands of Israel, Solomon builds both a house for the Lord and one for himself. Solomon proclaims, "I have indeed built you a princely house, the base of your enthronement forever." (1 Kg 8:13) God reminds Solomon that God shall cut the people from their land if they turn to other gods. Solomon impressed the Queen of Sheba with his riches (and wisdom) and gathers many wives.
In his old age, he turns to foreign gods...
Section Three: Rehoboam and the Two Kingdoms and many kings
1 Kings 12:1-16:14
"I will scourge you with scorpions..." (1 Kg 12:11)
The prophet Ahijah reveals God's will that Jeroboam would split the kingdom and take the Northern tribes as punishment for Solomon's worship of foreign gods. Solomon's son, Rehoboam's harsh treatment further alienates the ten Northern tribes. From there, the narrative tells of kings from both the kingdoms, including Jeroboam, Rehoboam, Abijam, Asa, and Nadab. Remember: those who are pious lead successful reigns.
Those who disobey the Lord, do not.
Section Four: Elijah and Ahab
1 Kings 16:15-22:54
"Ahab, son of Omri, did what was evil in the Lord's sight..." (1 Kg 16:30)
King Ahab marries Jezebel, daughter of the king of the Sidonians, and worships Baal. Jezebel slaughters "the prophets of the Lord" (1 Kg 18:4). The last prophet Elijah challenges the prophets of Baal to a contest. Baal is silent, but in response to Elijah's sacrifice, the Lord God brings an end to the kingdom's long drought.
Elijah experiences God's theophany in "a light silent sound". (1 Kg 19:12).
Elisha joins Elijah.
The prophet Micaiah warns Ahab and Jehosaphat against attacking Ramoth-gilead. They don't listen.
Ahab is slain by a rogue arrow.
Conclusion: you should listen to the prophets.
The dogs shall devour Jezebel (1 Kg 21:23)