Solomon

Introduction

When we hear the name Solomon, we immediatelythink of wisdom, wealth and the temple. Let’s consider all three.

I. Solomon Established As King

A. Adonijah’s plot fell apart, his support evaporated and he was left pleading for his life (1 Kings 1:1-53).
B. Solomon spared him, but Adonijah still coveted the throne. He asked for the hand of Abishag the Shunammite in marriage. This plan failed also and he was executed (2:13-25).
C. Joab and Shimei were also executed, and Abiathar was exiled (2:26-46). D. Solomon made an alliance with Egypt and married Pharaoh’s daughter (3:1).

II. The Request For Wisdom

A. Solomon loved the Lord and offered sacrifices at Gibeon (3:4).
B. God appeared to Solomon in a dream and said, “Ask what shall I give thee?”
C. In asking for wisdom, Solomon showed his concern for serving God first. Therefore, God blessed him with power, wealth and long life if he remained faithful (3:14).
D. Now, instead of sacrificing at Gibeon (a high place), Solomon offered sacrifices in Jerusalem before the ark of the covenant.

III. Solomon’s Wisdom Displayed

A. Solomon displayed his wisdom in revealing the true mother of the living child (3:16-28).
B. Solomon’s wisdom was greater than the Egyptians and was known worldwide.
C. Appropriate principles.

  1. Our priorities should be to serve God first, others second and ourselves last.
  2. We should worship as God commands.
  3. God gives wisdom and prosperity.

IV. Solomon’s Prosperity

A. Judah and Israel prospered (4:20).
B. Solomon’s reign extended over a wide area (4:21).
C. Gold was imported by the shipload, and silver was so common that it
had no worth (2 Chronicles 9:13-28).
D. God blessed Israel with prosperity through the wisdom of Solomon.

V. Solomon Builds The Temple

A. Before he died, David instructed Solomon to build the temple (5:1-9).
B. Solomon had close ties with Hiram, king of Tyre, as had his father before him.
C. A labor force of Israel went to Lebanon in shifts of 10,000; 70,000 carried burdens, 80,000 quarried stone and 3,300 supervised (5:13-18).
D. The temple was built 480 years after the exodus (6:1).

  1. The length was 60 cubits, the width was 20 cubits and the height was 30 cubits (6:2).
    a) The porch was 20 cubits x 10 cubits (6:3).
    b) There were windows with narrow, beveled frames (6:4).
    c) There were compartments outside the walls of the temple proper (6:5-6).
    d) The house was built of stone prepared at the quarry site (6:7).
    e) The house was covered with beams and planks of cedar (6:9).
    f) Each side chamber was five cubits high (6:10).
  2. God gave a promise during the building of the temple (6:11-13; cf. 2 Samuel 7:12-16).
  3. Internal arrangements of the temple building.
    a) The walls were made of cedar and the floors of cypress (6:15).
    b) The inner sanctuary or the Most Holy Place was 20 cubits (6:16).
    c) The Holy Place was 40 cubits (6:17).
    d) The inside of the temple was cedar (6:18).
    e) The Most Holy Place was a perfect cube, overlaid with gold and contained the ark of the covenant (6:19-20).
    f) The inside of the house was overlaid with gold, along with the altar (6:21-22).
    g) Two cherubim were in the inner sanctuary (6:23-28).
    h) The walls, floor and doors were also heavily ornamented (6:29-35).

E. The temple was completed according to specifications (6:37-38).

Conclusion

Although Solomon fell away from God later in his years, he was richly blessed with wisdom and wealth, and was able to build a house for the Lord which was used to worship God for 400 years.

Questions:

  1. Why was Gibeon called the “great high place” (2 Chronicles 1:3; 1 Chronicles 21:29)?
  2. What attitudes did Solomon’s prayer reflect? Describe God’s response.
  3. How is 1 Kings 4:20 related to Genesis 22:17; 32:12? How is 1 Kings 4:21 related to Genesis 15:18-21?
  4. Why was Adonijah’s request for Abishag the Shunammite a threat to Solomon’s authority?
  5. Why was Joab executed (2 Samuel 3:22-30; 20:8-12; 1 Kings 1:7), Shimei told to stay in Jerusalem (1 Kings 2:8-9; 2 Samuel 16:5-14) and Abiathar exiled? How was this a fulfillment of God’s word (1 Samuel 2:31-36)?
  6. Comment on wisdom as it relates to the following passages (Job 28:1-28; Proverbs 1:20-2:22; 1 Corinthians 1:19-21; James 1:5).
  7. Jesus said, “… a rich man shall hardly enter into the kingdom of heaven” (Matthew 19:23-24). How does wealth affect us (cf. Proverbs 30:7-9; Luke 12:13-21; Mark 12:43-44).
  8. What was the significance of the temple (1 Kings 8:13; 27-30; 9:3)?
  9. Describe Israel’s worship in the early years of Solomon’s reign. What were the “high places” (1 Kings 3:2; cf. Leviticus 17:1-9; Deuteronomy 12:2-5, 13-14). Some people feel that they can worship God anywhere. Is it important to assemble with the saints to worship?