Where 1 and 2 Kings and 1 and 2 Samuel were historical accounts, Chronicles written by Ezra, after the Babylonian Exile, is a commentary on the history of Israel from the Kings to the Exile. He wrote it to encourage the Jews returning from 70 years of exile, including everything good from God’s point of view. Next up in King David’s royal linage is his son, Solomon, known for what? His WISDOM! Why? We find out in this chapter. Let’s dig in…
2 Chronicles 1 – Solomon Asks for Wisdom
Solomon son of David took firm control of his kingdom, for the Lord his God was with him and made him very powerful.
2 Solomon called together all the leaders of Israel—the generals and captains of the army, the judges, and all the political and clan leaders. 3 Then he led the entire assembly to the place of worship in Gibeon, for God’s Tabernacle was located there. (This was the Tabernacle that Moses, the Lord’s servant, had made in the wilderness.)
4 David had already moved the Ark of God from Kiriath-jearim to the tent he had prepared for it in Jerusalem. 5 But the bronze altar made by Bezalel son of Uri and grandson of Hur was there at Gibeon in front of the Tabernacle of the Lord. So Solomon and the people gathered in front of it to consult the Lord. 6 There in front of the Tabernacle, Solomon went up to the bronze altar in the Lord’s presence and sacrificed 1,000 burnt offerings on it.
7 That night God appeared to Solomon and said, “What do you want? Ask, and I will give it to you!”
8 Solomon replied to God, “You showed great and faithful love to David, my father, and now you have made me king in his place. 9 O Lord God, please continue to keep your promise to David my father, for you have made me king over a people as numerous as the dust of the earth! 10 Give me the wisdom and knowledge to lead them properly, for who could possibly govern this great people of yours?”
11 God said to Solomon, “Because your greatest desire is to help your people, and you did not ask for wealth, riches, fame, or even the death of your enemies or a long life, but rather you asked for wisdom and knowledge to properly govern my people— 12 I will certainly give you the wisdom and knowledge you requested. But I will also give you wealth, riches, and fame such as no other king has had before you or will ever have in the future!”
13 Then Solomon returned to Jerusalem from the Tabernacle at the place of worship in Gibeon, and he reigned over Israel.
14 Solomon built up a huge force of chariots and horses. He had 1,400 chariots and 12,000 horses. He stationed some of them in the chariot cities and some near him in Jerusalem. 15 The king made silver and gold as plentiful in Jerusalem as stone. And valuable cedar timber was as common as the sycamore-fig trees that grow in the foothills of Judah. 16 Solomon’s horses were imported from Egypt and from Cilicia; the king’s traders acquired them from Cilicia at the standard price. 17 At that time chariots from Egypt could be purchased for 600 pieces of silver and horses for 150 pieces of silver. They were then exported to the kings of the Hittites and the kings of Aram.2 Chronicles 1 NLT
2 Chronicles 2 NLT
Solomon decided to build a Temple to honor the name of the Lord, and also a royal palace for himself. 2 He enlisted a force of 70,000 laborers, 80,000 men to quarry stone in the hill country, and 3,600 foremen.
3 Solomon also sent this message to King Hiram at Tyre:
“Send me cedar logs as you did for my father, David, when he was building his palace. 4 I am about to build a Temple to honor the name of the Lord my God. It will be a place set apart to burn fragrant incense before him, to display the special sacrificial bread, and to sacrifice burnt offerings each morning and evening, on the Sabbaths, at new moon celebrations, and at the other appointed festivals of the Lord our God. He has commanded Israel to do these things forever.
5 “This must be a magnificent Temple because our God is greater than all other gods. 6 But who can really build him a worthy home? Not even the highest heavens can contain him! So who am I to consider building a Temple for him, except as a place to burn sacrifices to him?
7 “So send me a master craftsman who can work with gold, silver, bronze, and iron, as well as with purple, scarlet, and blue cloth. He must be a skilled engraver who can work with the craftsmen of Judah and Jerusalem who were selected by my father, David.
8 “Also send me cedar, cypress, and red sandalwood logs from Lebanon, for I know that your men are without equal at cutting timber in Lebanon. I will send my men to help them. 9 An immense amount of timber will be needed, for the Temple I am going to build will be very large and magnificent. 10 In payment for your woodcutters, I will send 100,000 bushels of crushed wheat, 100,000 bushels of barley, 110,000 gallons of wine, and 110,000 gallons of olive oil.”
11 King Hiram sent this letter of reply to Solomon:
“It is because the Lord loves his people that he has made you their king! 12 Praise the Lord, the God of Israel, who made the heavens and the earth! He has given King David a wise son, gifted with skill and understanding, who will build a Temple for the Lord and a royal palace for himself.
13 “I am sending you a master craftsman named Huram-abi, who is extremely talented. 14 His mother is from the tribe of Dan in Israel, and his father is from Tyre. He is skillful at making things from gold, silver, bronze, and iron, and he also works with stone and wood. He can work with purple, blue, and scarlet cloth and fine linen. He is also an engraver and can follow any design given to him. He will work with your craftsmen and those appointed by my lord David, your father.
15 “Send along the wheat, barley, olive oil, and wine that my lord has mentioned. 16 We will cut whatever timber you need from the Lebanon mountains and will float the logs in rafts down the coast of the Mediterranean Sea to Joppa. From there you can transport the logs up to Jerusalem.”
17 Solomon took a census of all foreigners in the land of Israel, like the census his father had taken, and he counted 153,600. 18 He assigned 70,000 of them as common laborers, 80,000 as quarry workers in the hill country, and 3,600 as foremen.2 Chronicles 2 NLT
What Do You Want? Wisdom.
The time of Solomon’s kingdom was the Golden Age of Israel. When God asked Solomon what he wanted, he answered, “Wisdom.”
Pastor Sandy Adams explains…
Solomon chooses wisely – he asked for wisdom. Hey, here’s the solution to all your problems… wisdom! Whether you are king of a nation, or king of your castle – you need wisdom to apply God’s Word – to walk in His ways and will. Rather than more stuff, we need wisdom to enjoy what we have, make right choices, and succeed in relationships.
God not only gives Solomon wisdom – He gives him everything else he could have asked for but didn’t… riches, honor, victory over his enemies, long life. Here’s a truth we need to understand… Until our priorities in life are set the blessings of life can get in the way. When a heart is fixated on material stuff – the stuff becomes a distraction to seeking the Lord and growing in Him. The blessings become more important than the “Blessor” – and crowd out God. The Lord wants to bless us, but only after we’ve devoted ourselves fully to Him.Sandy Adams
Like Jesus told us in Matthew 6 where He mentioned His ancestor….
19 “Don’t store up treasures here on earth, where moths eat them and rust destroys them, and where thieves break in and steal. 20 Store your treasures in heaven, where moths and rust cannot destroy, and thieves do not break in and steal. 21 Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be.
22 “Your eye is like a lamp that provides light for your body. When your eye is healthy, your whole body is filled with light. 23 But when your eye is unhealthy, your whole body is filled with darkness. And if the light you think you have is actually darkness, how deep that darkness is!
24 “No one can serve two masters. For you will hate one and love the other; you will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and be enslaved to money.
25 “That is why I tell you not to worry about everyday life—whether you have enough food and drink, or enough clothes to wear. Isn’t life more than food, and your body more than clothing? 26 Look at the birds. They don’t plant or harvest or store food in barns, for your heavenly Father feeds them. And aren’t you far more valuable to him than they are? 27 Can all your worries add a single moment to your life?
28 “And why worry about your clothing? Look at the lilies of the field and how they grow. They don’t work or make their clothing, 29 yet Solomon in all his glory was not dressed as beautifully as they are. 30 And if God cares so wonderfully for wildflowers that are here today and thrown into the fire tomorrow, he will certainly care for you. Why do you have so little faith?
31 “So don’t worry about these things, saying, ‘What will we eat? What will we drink? What will we wear?’ 32 These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers, but your heavenly Father already knows all your needs. 33 Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.Matthew 6:19-33 NLT
Notice, He said NEED, not want! I want a 2022 Ford Mustang convertible. Do I NEED it, no. I can live with my little, 8-year-old Fiat convertible.
I once heard someone say that the difference between wisdom and knowledge is this… knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit and wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad. That’s one of the problems I have with Artificial Intelligence — Ai — It may know a lot, but it lacks wisdom and common sense. That can be said, too, of our leaders.
So, what about you? What do you want? Wisdom?
Well, it starts with a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, your Lord and Savior.