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By Leon Kauffman
Elder, Condon Community Church 

The Wisdom of King Solomon

 

February 8, 2018



Early in his life after he had taken over as King from his father David, God said to Solomon, “Ask what you wish Me to give you.” (1 Kings 3:5) Solomon replied that because he was young he wanted wisdom to discern between good and evil to be able to act as a judge for his people. God being pleased with his answer gave him great wisdom along with riches and honor that he had refrained from asking for. 1 Kings 10:23-34 says, “So King Solomon became greater than all the kings of the earth in riches and in wisdom. All the earth was seeking the presence of Solomon to hear his wisdom which God had put in his heart.”

On hearing Solomon’s story, we might think to ourselves “I wish God would ask me that question so I could respond in a similar way.” While we may not get that exact thing, we do have access to much of Solomon’s wisdom in the Bible especially in Proverbs. Furthermore, we do not need to wait for God to come and entertain us with a question like he did Solomon.

James 1:5 says, “But if any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God who gives to all generously and without reproach and it will be given to him.”

Reading further in the book of James, we see the importance of belief in receiving wisdom. The wise man is also exhorted to exhibit behavior guided by the wisdom from God. That, unfortunately, is where Solomon fell short.

In 1 Kings chapter 11, we can read of Solomon’s disobedience to God. He did not seem to follow the wisdom he possessed and was influenced to allow idol worship into his kingdom.

By the end of his life though, Solomon seemed to have seen the error of his ways. At the end of the book of Ecclesiastes he writes, “The conclusion when all has been heard is fear God and keep the commandments because this applies to every person. For God will bring every act to judgment, everything which is hidden, whether it is good or evil.”

For the believer, the penalty for our sins has been paid by Jesus’ death on the cross and indeed that is our only means of salvation – not any wise acts. However, seeking after God’s wisdom and putting it into practice will lead to a more meaningful and satisfying life. Do not let Proverbs be one of the Old Testament books that you never read; there is a lot of practical advice there that can benefit your life.

 

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