The Wise King
Where in the Bible?
The Books of Samuel, Chronicles, Kings, Nehemiah and Psalms
Did You Know
Solomon was apparently both wise and extremely foolish. God had blessed him greatly, and Solomon squandered it all by disobeying God’s commandments.
Bio – Solomon
c. 10th century BC
As the son of King David, Solomon had a hard act to follow. Without doubt, he started off on the right note, for when God came to him in a dream and asked him what he wanted, Solomon did not request wealth or honour or long life, but the wisdom to rule over God’s people as they deserved. God was pleased with his humility and good intentions, and promised to not only give Solomon what he had asked for, but also what he had not asked for, and so in his lifetime Solomon was blessed with power, riches, great victories and alliances, and longevity.
His method of determining who was the true mother of a disputed child was unorthodox, yet showed great wisdom and understanding of human nature. But the pinnacle of Solomon’s reign was undoubtedly the building of a magnificent temple for God that was undertaken with great care and attention to detail.
Other rulers admired Solomon both for his wealth and for his wisdom—he was visited by the Queen of Sheba who was amazed at what she saw, having thought that the reports must have been exaggerated, yet concluding after her visit that they did not, in fact, do him justice.
But over time Solomon made some bad decisions. To seal a political alliance, he married the daughter of the Egyptian Pharaoh, and he later went on to take many foreign wives, which angered God and inevitably led Solomon astray. The king even allowed altars to be built in Jerusalem to foreign gods.
Because of Solomon’s fall into sinfulness, God told him that only one of the tribes of Israel would follow his son—and that was only for David’s sake. After his reign, the kingdom of Israel would be torn in two.
Solomon’s tale is a lesson to all those who start off with great ambitions and pure hearts, and yet allow themselves to be led astray, to seek bad company, and turn from God. The ending is as important as the beginning. Solomon was apparently both wise and extremely foolish. God had blessed him greatly, and Solomon squandered it all by disobeying God’s commandments. Yet still he is renowned for his wisdom—and also for his writing, for he wrote much of the book of Proverbs, the Song of Solomon, and the book of Ecclesiastes—the verses of which seem to show that he truly did repent before his death. Despite all his sins, Solomon loved the Lord greatly.
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Bible Verses About Solomon
2 Samuel 12:24-25
So she bore a son, and he called his name Solomon. Now the Lord loved him, and He sent word by the hand of Nathan the prophet: So he called his name Jedidiah, because of the Lord.
(Jedidiah means “beloved of the Lord” or “friend of God”).
1 Chronicles 28:20
And David said to his son Solomon, “Be strong and of good courage, and do it; do not fear nor be dismayed, for the Lord God—my God—will be with you. He will not leave you nor forsake you, until you have finished all the work for the service of the house of the Lord.
1 Chronicles 29:25
So the Lord exalted Solomon exceedingly in the sight of all Israel, and bestowed on him such royal majesty as had not been on any king before him in Israel.
1 Kings 3:9
“Give to Your servant an understanding heart to judge Your people, that I may discern between good and evil. For who is able to judge this great people of Yours?”
1 Kings 11:9
So the Lord became angry with Solomon, because his heart had turned from the Lord God of Israel.
“Did not Solomon king of Israel sin by these things? Yet among many nations there was no king like him, who was beloved of his God; and God made him king over all Israel.”
Give the king Your judgments, O God,
And Your righteousness to the king’s Son.
He will judge Your people with righteousness,
And Your poor with justice.
Blessed be the Lord God, the God of Israel,
Who only does wondrous things!
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