Wisdom in marriage

Besides his great wisdom, Solomon is known for the number of wives he had.

“King Solomon fell in love with many foreign women (besides Pharaoh’s daughter), including Moabites, Ammonites, Edomites, Sidonians, and Hittites. They came from nations about which the Lord had warned the Israelites, “You must not establish friendly relations with them! If you do, they will surely shift your allegiance to their gods.” But Solomon was irresistibly attracted to them. He had 700 royal wives and 300 concubines; his wives had a powerful influence over him.” (1 Kings 11:1-3 NET)

Perhaps it should not surprise us then, with all this experience of being married, that Solomon’s proverbs talk about husbands and wives and their relationship with each other. Despite his having so many wives, his advice to his son is that he should “rejoice in the wife you married in your youth … may you be captivated by her love always” (Proverbs 5:18-19). Even though he did not practice what he wrote, what he wrote is good wisdom! Continue reading “Wisdom in marriage”

The wisdom of Solomon

When we think of Solomon’s wisdom, three incidents from his life would readily come to mind as well as the book he wrote that we call ‘Proverbs’. If you recall, he asked for wisdom from God when he began his reign – and God answered that request. We see his wisdom when two women were claiming the same baby. The third incident is the visit by the Queen of Sheba.

“When the queen of Sheba heard about Solomon, she came to challenge him with difficult questions … Solomon answered all her questions; there was no question too complex for the king.” (2 Chronicles 9:1-2 NET) Continue reading “The wisdom of Solomon”

Solomon’s love song

When we think of Solomon there are probably two things that come quickly to mind. We think of his wisdom, which he asked God for, and we think of his wealth. We might also remember that he built the first temple for the glory and worship of God.

What often does not come to mind was that he was a prolific writer and in particular, a writer of Hebrew poetry. We have recorded that “He composed 3,000 proverbs and 1,005 songs. He produced manuals on botany, describing every kind of plant, from the cedars of Lebanon to the hyssop that grows on walls. He also produced manuals on biology, describing animals, birds, insects, and fish” (1 Kings 4:32-33 NET). Sadly, we don’t have most of these writings preserved. Continue reading “Solomon’s love song”

A house for God

When we think of worshipping God we usually think about a building for this to take place. For many these buildings of worship take on a ‘holy’ status. I know people who believe that the best place to pray to God is in a ‘church building’. Somehow, they believe that by being there they are closer to God and perhaps God will listen more to them in that setting.

The religious Jews in Israel today still have this view of the Western Wall: as this wall was once connected with the temple, where God lived, the closest they can now get to that is the wall. They write out prayers and put them in the cracks between the stones of the wall and, when near the wall, they touch it believing it puts them into closer contact with God. Continue reading “A house for God”

Faithfully serving God

David was nearing the end of his life. Although he had wanted to build the temple for God, he had not been allowed to because he was a warrior (1 Chronicles 28:2-3). Instead, he drew up the plans and what needed to be made, as well as organizing the Levites and priests to serve in the temple (see 1 Chronicles 28:11-21).

God had chosen David’s son Solomon to be David’s successor and rule for God in Israel. “He said to me, ‘Solomon your son is the one who will build my temple and my courts, for I have chosen him to become my son and I will become his father. I will establish his kingdom permanently, if he remains committed to obeying my commands and regulations, as you are doing this day’” (1 Chronicles 28:6-7). Continue reading “Faithfully serving God”

The need to be good parents

When a king neared the end of his life it was customary to designate who would succeed him. David was now an old man (1 Kings 1:1). He had yet to publicly state who would succeed him as king. His surviving oldest son was Adonijah, who expected to become the next king.

“Now Adonijah, son of David and Haggith, was promoting himself, boasting, ‘I will be king!’ He managed to acquire chariots and horsemen, as well as fifty men to serve as his royal guard. (Now his father had never corrected him by saying, ‘Why do you do such things?’ He was also very handsome and had been born right after Absalom. ) He collaborated with Joab son of Zeruiah and with Abiathar the priest, and they supported him” (1 Kings 1:5-7 NET). Continue reading “The need to be good parents”

When did the Exodus happen?

One of the debates among Old Testament scholars centres around when the Exodus happened. There are two main dates debated – in the 1400s BC and in the 1200s BC.

To date the Exodus we need to go to King Solomon, due to some statements we find concerning his reign. Solomon’s reign is dated as 976-931 BC (there was some overlap with David’s reign). This is based on checking dates in what is known as “the Davidic Dynasty” with datable Babylonian and Assyrian records at a few points of intersection. This has allowed archaeologists to place the dates of David and Solomon into a reliable framework. The most widely used chronology is based on the work of Edwin R. Thiele (more information on this can be found in Wikipedia under the article on Solomon, for those who might be interested). Continue reading “When did the Exodus happen?”