King Solomon was a very gifted man, and under his reign Israel becomes a wealthy and powerful nation. Solomon built the temple that his father, King David, had dreamed of building to honour God. He also built his own palace, stables to house his many horses and chariots. He also rebuilt many city walls. Both his palace and the the temple were elaborate and beautiful.
Solomon had employed talented craftsman to do this and they took many years to complete the task.
The temple is God’s house but only symbolically as Solomon says as he prayers at the Temple’s dedication, “But is it possible that God would really live on earth? Why, even the skies and the highest heavens cannot contain you, much less this Temple I have built!“ During Solomon's reign there was peace and security, plenty to eat and generally, people were happy.
King Solomon’s success was legendary! Kingdoms around his kingdom heard of him and a queen, who ruled over a place called Sheba, was very interested to meet him. So the Queen of Sheba visited King Solomon in the great city of Jerusalem and she did not come alone! She came with many many camels, loaded with many many gifts, accompanied by many many people! The gifts included precious stones, gold and special spices available in the country she came from. The queen wanted to ask Solomon hard questions and he spent time with her answering them all. Because of his great wisdom, nothing was too hard for him to explain. Although she had heard all about the king she was in awe of all she had seen and heard and said, ”Praise the Lord your God, who delights in you and has placed you on the throne of Israel. Because of the Lord’s eternal love for Israel, he has made you king so you can rule with justice and righteousness.”
King Solomon gave the Queen of Sheba many gifts too and then she returned back to her own country.
I wonder if you would have liked to meet King Solomon, the Queen of Sheba or visited the great city of Jerusalem?
I wonder what questions might you have asked him?
I wonder if there would be anything you could take as a gift now, thousands of years later, that he would appreciate?
More about King Solomon next time.