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Solomon, Rise and Fall

Summary of I Kings, Chapters 1-11, with focus on King Solomon's Rise and Fall.
by

Corey Berman

on 23 September 2011

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Transcript of Solomon, Rise and Fall

King Solomon:
RISE AND FALL
I Kings, Chapters 1-11 1:38-40
Zadok the Kohen, Nathan the prophet, Benaiah son of Jehoiada, and the archers and slingers went down, mounted Solomon on David's mule, and led him to Gihon. They anointed him in front of Israel, and all the people proclaimed, "Long live King Solomon!" They ascended after him, playing flutes, and rejoicing with great joy. 2:12- "Solomon sat on the throne of his father David, and his kingship was firmly established." 2:10- King David died. Solomon's first challenge as king:
Chapter 2- Adonijah (who had formerly proclaimed himself prince, next in line for the kingship,) asks Solomon's mother, Bathsheba, to ask the king if he (Adonijah) can have Abishag the Shunnamite, David's attendant. Solomon recognizes this as insurrection, and has Adonijah killed. Abishag, Bathsheba, Solomon, and Nathan tend to the aging David Throughout the rest of Chapter 2, Solomon affirms his power as king by dismissing Abiathar the Kohen, taking care of Joab, and putting Shimei on notice before having him killed as well. In the words of 2:46, "...The kingdom was thus established in the hand of Solomon." 3:1
"Solomon made a marriage alliance with Pharaoh, king of Egypt; he took Pharaoh's daughter in marriage and brought her to the City of David..."

To further consolidate his reign, Solomon married a princess from the neighboring superpower. (Malbim) 3:1
"Solomon made a marriage alliance with Pharaoh, king of Egypt; he took Pharaoh's daughter in marriage and brought her to the city of David..."

To further consolidate his reign, he married this foreign princess from a fellow superpower in the area. (Malbim) 3:6-15
Solomon prays for wisdom in order to rule the kingdom well. God is so pleased with the request-that Solomon requested only wisdom, as opposed to old age or riches- that he grants him much more. Not only does Solomon get wisdom beyond compare, but also riches, honor, and old age. 3:16-28
Solomon is successful as a judge With this, Solomon affirms his intelligence to the masses, proving his God-given wisdom. 4:1-19
Solomon appoints a full cabinet, consisting of ministers, secreatries, Kohanim, commissioners, chamberlains, tax organizers, etc. Thus, Solomon builds his monarchy. 4:20
"Judah and Israel were numerous, like the sand that is by the sea for multitude, eating, drinking, and rejoicing."

Solomon's kingship brought national pride and prosperity to the nation.
Chapter 5 describes the extent of Solomon's kingdom. He ruled "over all the kingdoms, from the [Euphrates] River [to] the land of the Philistines, until the border of Egypt..." (5:1)
Chapter 5-
Hiram, king of Tyre, sends his servants to Solomon, and soon is donating cedar and cypress wood to the beginnings of the construction of the Temple. Soon, armies of workers were drafted by Solomon to travel to Lebanon, get wood, come back, and start building. Chapter 5-
Hiram, king of Tyre, communicates with Solomon. Soon, Hiram is preparing cedar and cypress wood for Solomon, with which Solomon will orchestrate the building of the Temple. Solomon begins to draft men to go to Lebanon, get the wood, bring it back, and start building. 6:1-
"In the 480th year after the Children of Israel's exodus from the land of Egypt - in the 4th year of Solomon's reign over Israel...he built the Temple for Hashem." 6:11-13
God's Promise to Solomon
"The word of Hashem then came to Solomon, saying, 'This Temple that you build - if you follow My decrees, perform My statutes, and observe all My commandments, to follow them, I shall uphold My word with you that I spoke to David your father. I shall dwell among the Children of Israel, and I sahll not forsake My people Israel.'" Chapter 7- Solomon builds his palace, including a hall for his throne and for justice. The entire palace was built with "precious materials" and "valuable stones". After this, Solomon makes all the furnishings for the Temple, including the golden Altar, the Table for the showbread, the candelabra, jugs, musical instruments, bowls, spoons, pans, and doors. Chapter 8- Solomon leads the nation in dedicating the Temple.

The whole nation gathers in Jerusalem. The Ark of the Covenant of Hashem is brought into the Holy of Holies in the Inner Sanctum of the Temple. Solomon speaks to the nation about the dedication and his father David's now fulfilled desire. He prays to Hashem a prayer for the Davidic dynasty and for the acceptance of Jewish prayer. He asks for justice, proper rain, and acceptance of prayer. He asks for Hashem's help in war, and for him to forgive Israel when they repent. He then goes on to bless the people and bring many offerings to Hashem, and creates a 14 day celebration (partly consisting of Sukkot) for the nation. After greatly impressing the queen of Sheba (Chapter 10), who is vastly overwhelmed by his magnificence, we are told (11:1) that Solomon had many wives (foreign) who he married. These 700 wives "swayed his heart after the gods of others, and his heart was not as perfect with Hashem his God as [had been] the heart of his father David." (11:4) Solomon begins to go after the gods of Sidon, Ammon, and Moab, for example. In addition, the book states that Solomon had exceedingly large numbers of horses, chariots, and money (10:21-29) In Deuteronomy 17:16-17, a king is commanded not to have too many wives, horses, gold, or silver. Solomon sins in all of these categories. He collects 666 talents of gold every year (I Kings 10:14, a very large sum for a nation of Israel's size. He also gathers many horses from Egypt, just as Deuteronomy warns against, lest Israel return to Egypt. And lastly, Solomon marries hundreds of foreign women who turn him to other gods. 11:9-12
Hashem punishes Solomon for his sins.
"So Hashem became angry with Solomon, for his heart had strayed from Hashem, the God of Israel...so Hashem said to Solomon, 'Since...you have not kept My covenant and My decrees that I have commanded you, I shall surely tear away the kingship from you and give it to your servant. In your days, however, I will not do it, because of your father David; from the hand of your son I will tear it away." Soon, a man named Hadad antagonizes Solomon, and Rezon joins him shortly after. Next, Jeroboam son of Nebat also protests against the king. Finally, Ahijah the Shilonite gives a prophecy that 10 of the 12 tribes will be given to Jeroboam, and Solomon's family will only keep 2. 11:43- The death of Solomon
"Solomon lay with his forefathers, and was buried in the City of David his father." Solomon's son Rehoboam takes over, but his kingship is not as strong as David's or Solomon's, and Jeroboam soon is able to stir up dissent and form his own kingdom. The Book that began with glory has soon turned to disgrace.
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