And God gave Solomon wisdom and understanding beyond measure, and breadth of mind like the sand on the seashore, so that Solomon’s wisdom surpassed the wisdom of all the people of the east and all the wisdom of Egypt. (1 Kings 4:29 ESV)
On his death bed, David bypassed the traditional succession of kings in the ancient world by appointing Solomon instead of his eldest living son, Adonijah.
Born to David by Bathsheba, Solomon was beloved by the LORD from his birth. In fact, God sent Nathan to David upon Solomon’s birth to give him a second name, Jedidiah, which means beloved of the LORD.
So from the beginning of his life, Solomon had favor with God.
In 1 Kings 3, God comes to Solomon in dream, saying that because he loved the LORD like David did, the LORD would give him anything he asked. The new king humbly asks God for wisdom to lead the people of Israel. The LORD loves this answer and declares that because he did not ask for longevity, riches, or safety, God would give those to him anyway.
And God did as He promised.
Solomon became wise without equal, and he became rich. The king was so wealthy that he is still considered one of the richest men to ever live. And the LORD finished by giving Solomon’s reign forty years of peace, which is still unheard of in Israel today!
But though God greatly blessed and used Solomon to build the temple, he was still not the perfect fulfillment of the promise that God made to David. As we will read tomorrow, for all of his wisdom, even Solomon could not overcome the curse of sin.
Like Solomon, James tells us, “If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him.” Therefore, make your prayer today for God-granted wisdom.