Bible Study Moment – Samuel, Kings & Chronicles

The books of 1 & 2 Samuel and 1 & 2 Kings is a 4 volume history of the Israelites from the birth of Samuel through the southern kingdom (Judah) ending with the Babylonian exile.

1 Samuel goes through the reign of King Saul, the first king of the united kingdom. So David & Goliath is in 1 Samuel 17.

2 Samuel covers the reign of King David.

1 Kings covers the reign of King Solomon.

2 Kings goes from the kingdom splitting into the northern kingdom of Israel with 10 tribes and the southern kingdom with 2 tribes, Judah and Benjamin through the time of the Judah being carried into exile. It covers hundreds of years while the other 3 are one lifetime. And it can be confusing to follow since the reference points are tied to what is happening in the other kingdom, e.g. in the fifth year of this king of Israel this other person becomes king in Judah.

1 & 2 Chronicles is a 2 volume history covering basically the same time period. Obviously this is a shorter history with fewer details, at least some of the time. For example in Chronicles the transition from David to Solomon is nice and neat. In 1 Kings 1 it is not nearly as straightforward.

Mark Phillips