Through the Bible – Day 122

Bible text(s)

The LORD appears to Solomon again

1The LORD's temple and Solomon's palace were now finished, and Solomon had built everything he wanted. 2Some time later the LORD appeared to him again in a dream, just as he had done at Gibeon. 3The LORD said:

I heard your prayer and what you asked me to do. This temple you have built is where I will be worshipped for ever. It belongs to me, and I will never stop watching over it.

4You must obey me, as your father David did, and be honest and fair. Obey my laws and teachings, 5and I will keep my promise to David that someone from your family will always be king of Israel.

6But if you or any of your descendants disobey my commands or start worshipping foreign gods, 7I will no longer let my people Israel live in this land I gave them. I will desert this temple where I said I would be worshipped. Then people everywhere will think this nation is only a joke and will make fun of it. 8This temple will become a pile of rocks! Everyone who walks by will be shocked, and they will ask, “Why did the LORD do such a terrible thing to his people and to this temple?” 9Then they will answer, “We know why the LORD did this. The people of Israel rejected the LORD their God, who rescued their ancestors from Egypt, and they started worshipping other gods.”

Other things Solomon did

10It took twenty years for the LORD's temple and Solomon's palace to be built. 11Later, Solomon gave King Hiram of Tyre twenty towns in the region of Galilee to repay him for the cedar, pine, and gold he had given Solomon.

12When Hiram went to see the towns, he did not like them. 13He said, “Solomon, my friend, are these the kind of towns you want to give me?” So Hiram called the region Cabul because he thought it was worthless. 14He sent Solomon only five thousand kilogrammes of gold in return.

15After Solomon's workers had finished the temple and the palace, he ordered them to fill in the land on the east side of Jerusalem, to build a wall around the city, and to rebuild the towns of Hazor, Megiddo, and Gezer.

16Earlier, the king of Egypt had captured the town of Gezer; he burnt it to the ground and killed the Canaanite people living there. Then he gave it to his daughter as a wedding present when she married Solomon. 17So Solomon had the town rebuilt.

Solomon made his workers rebuild Lower Beth-Horon, 18Baalath, and Tamar in the desert of Judah. 19They also built towns where he could keep his supplies and his chariots and horses. Solomon made them build whatever he wanted in Jerusalem, Lebanon, and anywhere in his kingdom.

20-22Solomon did not force the Israelites to do his work. They were his soldiers, officials, leaders, commanders, chariot captains, and chariot drivers. But he did make slaves of the Amorites, Hittites, Perizzites, Hivites, and Jebusites who were living in Israel. These were the descendants of those foreigners the Israelites could not destroy, and they remained Israel's slaves.

23Solomon appointed five hundred and fifty officers to be in charge of his workers and to watch over his building projects.

24Solomon's wife, the daughter of the king of Egypt, moved from the older part of Jerusalem to her new palace. Then Solomon had the land on the east side of Jerusalem filled in.

25Three times a year, Solomon burnt incense and offered sacrifices to the LORD on the altar he had built.

Solomon had now finished building the LORD's temple.

26He also had a lot of ships at Ezion-Geber, a town in Edom near Eloth on the Red Sea. 27-28King Hiram let some of his experienced sailors go to the country of Ophir with Solomon's own sailors, and they brought back about fourteen thousand kilogrammes of gold for Solomon.

The Queen of Sheba visits Solomon

(2 Chronicles 9.1-12)

1The Queen of Sheba heard how famous Solomon was, so she went to Jerusalem to test him with difficult questions. 2She took along several of her officials, and she loaded her camels with gifts of spices, jewels, and gold. When she arrived, she and Solomon talked about everything she could think of. 3He answered every question, no matter how difficult it was.

4-5The Queen was amazed at Solomon's wisdom. She was breathless when she saw his palace, the food on his table, his officials, his servants in their uniforms, the people who served his food, and the sacrifices he offered at the LORD's temple. 6She said:

Solomon, in my own country I had heard about your wisdom and all you've done. 7But I didn't believe it until I saw it with my own eyes! And there's so much I didn't hear about. You are wiser and richer than I was told. 8Your wives and officials are lucky to be here where they can listen to the wise things you say.

9I praise the LORD your God. He is pleased with you and has made you king of Israel. The LORD loves Israel, so he has given them a king who will rule fairly and honestly.

10The Queen of Sheba gave Solomon more than four thousand kilogrammes of gold, many jewels, and more spices than anyone had ever brought into Israel.

11-13In return, Solomon gave her the gifts he would have given any other ruler, but he also gave her everything else she wanted. Then she and her officials went back to their own country.

Solomon's wealth

(2 Chronicles 9.13-28)

King Hiram's ships brought gold, juniper wood, and jewels from the country of Ophir. Solomon used the wood to make steps for the temple and palace, and harps and other stringed instruments for the musicians. It was the best juniper wood anyone in Israel had ever seen.

14Solomon received almost twenty-three thousand kilogrammes of gold a year. 15The merchants and traders, as well as the kings of Arabia and rulers from Israel, also gave him gold.

16Solomon made two hundred gold shields and used almost seven kilogrammes of gold for each one. 17He also made three hundred smaller gold shields, using almost two kilogrammes for each one, and he put the shields in his palace in Forest Hall.

18His throne was made of ivory and covered with pure gold. 19-20The back of the throne was rounded at the top, and it had arm rests on each side. There was a statue of a lion on both sides of the throne, and there was a statue of a lion at both ends of each of the six steps leading up to the throne. No other throne in the world was like Solomon's.

21Since silver was almost worthless in those days, everything was made of gold, even the cups and dishes used in Forest Hall.

22Solomon had a lot of seagoing ships. Every three years he sent them out with Hiram's ships to bring back gold, silver, and ivory, as well as monkeys and peacocks.

23He was the richest and wisest king in the world. 24People from every nation wanted to hear the wisdom God had given him. 25Year after year people came and brought gifts of silver and gold, as well as clothes, weapons, spices, horses, or mules.

26Solomon had one thousand four hundred chariots and twelve thousand horses that he kept in Jerusalem and other towns.

27While he was king, there was silver everywhere in Jerusalem, and cedar was as common as ordinary sycamore trees in the foothills.

28-29Solomon's merchants bought his horses and chariots in the regions of Musri and Kue. They paid about six hundred pieces of silver for a chariot and a hundred and fifty pieces of silver for a horse. They also sold horses and chariots to the Hittite and Syrian kings.

Solomon's unfaithfulness, enemies, and death

Solomon disobeys the LORD

1-2The LORD did not want the Israelites to worship foreign gods, so he had warned them not to marry anyone who was not from Israel.

Solomon loved his wife, the daughter of the king of Egypt. But he also loved some women from Moab, Ammon, and Edom, and others from Sidon and the land of the Hittites. 3-4Seven hundred of his wives were daughters of kings, but he also married three hundred other women.

As Solomon got older, some of his wives led him to worship their gods. He wasn't like his father David, who had worshipped only the LORD God. 5Solomon also worshipped Astarte the goddess of Sidon, and Milcom the disgusting god of Ammon. 6Solomon's father had obeyed the LORD with all his heart, but Solomon disobeyed and did what the LORD hated.

7Solomon built shrines on a hill east of Jerusalem to worship Chemosh the disgusting god of Moab, and Molech the disgusting god of Ammon. 8In fact, he built a shrine for each of his foreign wives, so all of them could burn incense and offer sacrifices to their own gods.

9-10The LORD God of Israel had appeared to Solomon twice and warned him not to worship foreign gods. But Solomon disobeyed and did it anyway. This made the LORD very angry, 11and he said to Solomon:

You did what you wanted and not what I told you to do. Now I'm going to take your kingdom from you and give it to one of your officials. 12But because David was your father, you will remain king as long as you live. I will wait until your son becomes king, then I will take the kingdom from him. 13When I do, I will still let him rule one tribe, because I have not forgotten that David was my servant and Jerusalem is my city.

Hadad becomes an enemy of Solomon

14Hadad was from the royal family of Edom, and here is how the LORD made him Solomon's enemy:

15-16Some time earlier, when David conquered the nation of Edom, Joab his army commander went there to bury those who had died in battle. Joab and his soldiers stayed in Edom six months, and during that time they killed every man and boy who lived there.

17-19Hadad was a boy at the time, but he escaped to Midian with some of his father's officials. At Paran some other men joined them, and they went to the king of Egypt. The king liked Hadad and gave him food, some land, and a house, and even let him marry the sister of Queen Tahpenes. 20Hadad and his wife had a son named Genubath, and the queen let the boy grow up in the palace with her own children.

21When Hadad heard that David and Joab were dead, he said to the king, “Your Majesty, please let me go back to my own country.”

22“Why?” asked the king. “Do you want something I haven't given you?”

“No, I just want to go home.”

Rezon becomes an enemy of Solomon

23Here is how God made Rezon son of Eliada an enemy of Solomon:

Rezon had run away from his master, King Hadadezer of Zobah. 24-25He formed his own small army and became its leader after David had defeated Hadadezer's troops. Then Rezon and his army went to Damascus, where he became the ruler of Syria and an enemy of Israel.

Both Hadad and Rezon were enemies of Israel while Solomon was king, and they caused him a lot of trouble.

The LORD makes a promise to Jeroboam

26Jeroboam was from the town of Zeredah in Ephraim. His father Nebat had died, but his mother Zeruah was still alive. Jeroboam was one of Solomon's officials, but even he rebelled against Solomon. 27Here is how it happened:

While Solomon's workers were filling in the land on the east side of Jerusalem and repairing the city walls, 28Solomon noticed that Jeroboam was a hard worker. So he put Jeroboam in charge of the work force from Manasseh and Ephraim.

29-30One day when Jeroboam was leaving Jerusalem, he met Ahijah, a prophet from Shiloh. No one else was anywhere around. Suddenly, Ahijah took off his new coat and ripped it into twelve pieces. 31Then he said:

Jeroboam, take ten pieces of this coat and listen to what the LORD God of Israel says to you. “Jeroboam, I am the LORD God, and I am about to take Solomon's kingdom from him and give you ten tribes to rule. 32But Solomon will still rule one tribe, since he is the son of David my servant, and Jerusalem is my chosen city.

33“Solomon and the Israelites are not like their ancestor David. They will not listen to me, obey me, or do what is right. They have turned from me to worship Astarte the goddess of Sidon, Chemosh the god of Moab, and Milcom the god of Ammon.

34“Solomon is David's son, and David was my chosen leader, who did what I commanded. So I will let Solomon be king until he dies. 35Then I will give you ten tribes to rule, 36but Solomon's son will still rule one tribe. This way, my servant David will always have a descendant ruling in Jerusalem, the city where I have chosen to be worshipped.

37“You will be king of Israel and will rule every nation you want. 38I'll help you if you obey me. And if you do what I say, as my servant David did, I will always let someone from your family rule in Israel, just as someone from David's family will always rule in Judah. The nation of Israel will be yours.

39“I will punish the descendants of David, but not for ever.”

40When Solomon learnt what the LORD had told Jeroboam, Solomon tried to kill Jeroboam. But he escaped to King Shishak of Egypt and stayed there until Solomon died.

Solomon dies

41Everything else Solomon did while he was king is written in the book about him and his wisdom. 42After he had ruled forty years from Jerusalem, 43he died and was buried there in the city of his father David. His son Rehoboam then became king.

1 Kings 9:1-11:43CEVOpen in Bible reader

About David's son

41Jesus asked, “Why do people say that the Messiah will be the son of King David? 42In the book of Psalms, David himself says,

‘The Lord said to my Lord,

Sit at my right side

43until I make your enemies

into a footstool for you.’

44David spoke of the Messiah as his Lord, so how can the Messiah be his son?”

Jesus and the teachers of the Law of Moses

45While everyone was listening to Jesus, he said to his disciples:

46Guard against the teachers of the Law of Moses! They love to walk around in long robes, and they like to be greeted in the market. They want the front seats in the meeting places and the best seats at banquets. 47But they cheat widows out of their homes and then pray long prayers just to show off. These teachers will be punished most of all.

A widow's offering

1Jesus looked up and saw some rich people tossing their gifts into the offering box. 2He also saw a poor widow putting in two pennies. 3And he said, “I tell you that this poor woman has put in more than all the others. 4Everyone else gave what they didn't need. But she is very poor and gave everything she had.”

The temple will be destroyed

5Some people were talking about the beautiful stones used to build the temple and about the gifts that had been placed in it. Jesus said, 6“Do you see these stones? The time is coming when not one of them will be left in place. They will all be knocked down.”

Warning about trouble

7Some people asked, “Teacher, when will all this happen? How can we know when these things are about to take place?”

8Jesus replied:

Don't be fooled by those who will come and claim to be me. They will say, “I am Christ!” and “Now is the time!” But don't follow them. 9When you hear about wars and riots, don't be afraid. These things will have to happen first, but that isn't the end.

10Nations will go to war against one another, and kingdoms will attack each other. 11There will be great earthquakes, and in many places people will starve to death and suffer terrible diseases. All sorts of frightening things will be seen in the sky.

12Before all this happens, you will be arrested and punished. You will be tried in your meeting places and put in jail. Because of me you will be placed on trial before kings and governors. 13But this will be your chance to tell about your faith.

14Don't worry about what you will say to defend yourselves. 15I will give you the wisdom to know what to say. None of your enemies will be able to oppose you or to say that you are wrong. 16You will be betrayed by your own parents, brothers, family, and friends. Some of you will even be killed. 17Because of me, you will be hated by everyone. 18But don't worry! 19You will be saved by being faithful to me.

Luke 20:41-21:19CEVOpen in Bible reader
Canadian Bible Societyv.4.21.9
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