Read I Kings 2:26 -- 4
Soon after Solomon became king, we read: Solomon loved the Lord, walking in the statutes of David his father: only he (compromised and) sacrificed and burned incense in high places (I Kings 3:3). The Tabernacle and the altar of burnt offering were still located at Gibeon, about six miles northwest of Jerusalem (I Chronicles 16:37-40; 21:29). The last major event to take place at Gibeon was Solomon's great dedication service as king, where he made a thousand burnt offerings to the Lord and celebrated the Feast of Tabernacles (II Chronicles 1:1-13; 7:8). On the night of that great sacrifice, Solomon had a remarkable dream in which he asked God for an understanding heart, that I may discern between good and bad (I Kings 3:9). God was trying to get Solomon's attention through a dream to remind him that he needed to meditate upon the Scripture to discern between good and evil (3:7-9). And Solomon awoke; and, behold, it was a dream (3:14-15). But this dream had no lasting effect on his life.
Solomon ignored God's Word concerning the responsibilities of the kings of Israel: He shall not multiply horses . . . nor cause the people to return to Egypt . . . to . . . multiply horses. . . . Neither shall he multiply wives to himself . . . neither shall he greatly multiply to himself silver and gold (Deuteronomy 17:16-17). He not only turned to Egypt for horses, but also took Pharaoh's daughter, and brought her into the city of David (I Kings 3:1).
Solomon offered sacrifices to God, built the world famous Temple, and offered the longest recorded prayer in the Bible; but his disregard for God's Word, his marriages to pagan wives, and his worship at the Canaanite high places were acts of rebellion against God. These actions eventually led him to go after Ashtoreth the goddess of the Zidonians, and after Milcom the abomination of the Ammonites (11:5). Milcom is considered to be Molech, to whom children were sacrificially burned alive. These sins prepared the way for the division of the kingdom upon Solomon's death (11:7-13; compare Deuteronomy 12:1-4).
Solomon refused to follow his father's advice to keep the charge of the Lord . . . and His commandments (I Kings 2:3). He is typical of the brilliant multitalented who compromise biblical principles. Some believe they can run with the wrong crowd, have a drink now and then, and still not lose out with the Lord since they are strong enough to "handle it." But compromise is the first foothold of sin that sooner or later destroys one's spiritual usefulness and influence for Christ.
Near the end of his life, Solomon confessed: I have seen all the works that are done under the sun; and, behold, all is vanity and vexation of spirit (Ecclesiates 1:14). He concludes by confessing: Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep His commandments: for this is the whole duty of man (Ecclesiastes 12:13-14).
Christ Revealed: Through the wisdom which God gave Solomon. We are in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption (I Corinthians 1:30).
Word Studies: 2:44 privy to means which you are aware in your own heart; 3:1 made affinity means made an alliance; 3:19 overlaid it means lay on him; 3:26 her bowels yearned means yearned with compassion; 4:6 tribute means forced labor.
Pray for Bible & Literature Missionary Foundation and Dr. Bob Lemmon, Director · Country: Egypt (67 million) in northeastern Africa · Major languages: Arabic and English · Christians are not permitted to evangelize Muslims · 82% Muslim; 16% Coptic; .6% Protestant; .6% Roman Catholic · Prayer Suggestion: In times of trouble, pray and seek comfort in the Word of God (Psalms 119:50).
Optional Reading: Acts 23
Memory Verse for the Week: Ecclesiastes 12:13-14