From Zenith To Zero: A Historical-Theological Analysis Of The Demise Of The Kingdom Of David And Solomon -- By: Dan Lioy

Journal: Conspectus
Volume: CONSPECTUS 09:1 (Mar 2010)
Article: From Zenith To Zero: A Historical-Theological Analysis Of The Demise Of The Kingdom Of David And Solomon
Author: Dan Lioy


From Zenith To Zero: A Historical-Theological Analysis Of The Demise Of The Kingdom Of David And Solomon

Dan Lioy1

Abstract

This journal article undertakes a historical-theological analysis of the demise of the kingdom of David and Solomon. Fresh insight into this investigation is obtained by making modified use of the five stages of decline appearing in Jim Collins’s study titled How the Mighty Fall. Concededly, the author’s evidence-based research deals with the underlying reasons why major corporations implode. That said, when the conceptual framework put forward by Collins is used to assess the collapse of the Davidic-Solomonic kingdom, it helps to shed light on what brought about the defeat and captivity of God’s chosen people, as reported in the books of Samuel, Kings, and Chronicles.

This essay affirms that the nation’s journey from zenith to zero approximately corresponds to the five successive stages delineated by Collins. First, the kingdom experienced arrogance as a result of its unparalleled power and wealth. Second, this hubris emboldened the nation to plunge into an undisciplined pursuit of seizing even more worldly success. Third, the kingdom’s obsession to prolong its greatness clouded the moral judgment of its leaders and resulted in them denying they were taking the covenant community down a treacherous path. Fourth, as the storm clouds of disaster began to appear on the nation’s horizon, the civil and religious centers of power resorted to desperate measures to save the kingdom. Fifth, due to a series of God-ordained misfortunes and reversals, the covenant community became dispirited, lost all hope, and were eventually brought down by external forces they could neither control nor defeat.

1. Preface

Jim Collins has spent several decades studying all sorts of companies, ranging from those that are newly created to distinguished firms that have existed over a hundred years. The list includes organizations located on a spectrum from great to good as well as from weak to insolvent (Collins 2007). Even though much of his evidence-based research has focused on investigating the reasons for corporate success, in How the Mighty Fall (2009), he turned his attention to the question of why some companies, despite achieving preeminence in the marketplace, eventually succumb to failure. As a result of Collins’s inquiry, he has set forth five stages of institutional decline to explain the preceding phenomenon.

A synopsis of the author’s findings is presented in the second section and used as a framework to assess the demise of the kingd...

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