Thursday, July 20, 2017

Thursday - 2nd Chronicles 9 - The End of Solomon

Solomon, for better and for worse, was the last monarch to rule over the unified kingdom of Israel... that is, over all 12 tribes. When he died (1st Kings 11:43 & 2nd Chronicles 9:31), his kingdom was quickly divided into 2 nations.  But, before we get to that, let's wrap up a few loose ends from the life of King Solomon.

In his day, Solomon was known around the world as a spectacularly wise and successful king. Many monarchs came to meet him (I Kings 10:24), but one specific sovereign ended up with her visit being recorded in the Scripture; she was the queen of Sheba. She interrogated the great king until she had exhausted her questions... yet, she did not exhaust his answers (2nd Chronicles 9:2). Not only that, when this queen had observed the habits of his court, the food he ate, the attitude of his servants and the clothing that everyone wore, she simply lost all suspicion (2nd Chronicles 9:4). She was totally convinced that all of the fame of Solomon was legitimate. Above all, she concluded that God was the source of Solomon's success.

Now, just to get a small glimpse of the extravagant wealth of Solomon, we are given a portrait of his ivory and gold throne with a dozen sculpted lions standing on the steps leading up to that throne.  It must have been both beautiful and intimidating. And, that is only a place to start in describing this man's luxurious life. In possessions, influence, fame and experience, he was a one-of-a-kind man. God poured out upon him more goodies than any of us can really even begin to imagine. Anything Solomon wanted, he got it (Ecclesiastes 2:10 & 6:2). Yet, in the end, he didn't take it with him. He perished, was replaced.  Others used and squandered his collection of wealth. 

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