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The Song of Songs...One of Scripture's 'Wisdom Books'

 

  Who is Solomon?  King Solomon?  He was a king over Israel and a son of King David.  His reign lasted 40 years, the scripture tells us, as had the reign of his father, and as had the reign of the king before David - King Saul.  That is important, I think.  Forty is the classic number denoting a time of trial in scripture.  But let that be another matter.

  What is important about King Solomon?  Many things.  He was an anointed King, meaning he was personally selected by God.  God loved King David, who was a 'man after God's own heart'.  But God also chose Solomon from among David's numerous sons to succeed David as King.   And when Solomon was just beginning his reign, he had a dream, a vision at night in which God came to him and asked Him what gift he would like.  Solomon could have asked for power, or riches, or fame, long life, success in war....who knows what all he could have asked for?  But his decision became a famous one:  he asked for wisdom.  He asked God for wisdom with which to rule over God's chosen people.  Here is the passage, so read about it for yourself if you wish.  It is from the Bible Book called 1 Kings, from Chapter 3, which is fitting, because of those 1st kings of Israel, Solomon was the third!:

 

 Solomon made an alliance with Pharaoh king of Egypt and married his daughter. He brought her to the City of David until he finished building his palace and the temple of the Lord, and the wall around Jerusalem. The people, however, were still sacrificing at the high places, because a temple had not yet been built for the Name of the Lord. Solomon showed his love for the Lord by walking according to the instructions given him by his father David, except that he offered sacrifices and burned incense on the high places.

The king went to Gibeon to offer sacrifices, for that was the most important high place, and Solomon offered a thousand burnt offerings on that altar. At Gibeon the Lord appeared to Solomon during the night in a dream, and God said, “Ask for whatever you want me to give you.”

Solomon answered, “You have shown great kindness to your servant, my father David, because he was faithful to you and righteous and upright in heart. You have continued this great kindness to him and have given him a son to sit on his throne this very day.

“Now, Lord my God, you have made your servant king in place of my father David. But I am only a little child and do not know how to carry out my duties. Your servant is here among the people you have chosen, a great people, too numerous to count or number. So give your servant a discerning heart to govern your people and to distinguish between right and wrong. For who is able to govern this great people of yours?”

10 The Lord was pleased that Solomon had asked for this. 11 So God said to him, “Since you have asked for this and not for long life or wealth for yourself, nor have asked for the death of your enemies but for discernment in administering justice, 12 I will do what you have asked. I will give you a wise and discerning heart, so that there will never have been anyone like you, nor will there ever be. 13 Moreover, I will give you what you have not asked for—both wealth and honor—so that in your lifetime you will have no equal among kings. 14 And if you walk in obedience to me and keep my decrees and commands as David your father did, I will give you a long life.” 15 Then Solomon awoke—and he realized it had been a dream.

He returned to Jerusalem, stood before the ark of the Lord’s covenant and sacrificed burnt offerings and fellowship offerings. Then he gave a feast for all his court.

 

End Quote

 

 

  So, Solomon got off to a very good start with God it seems.  And God blessed him very greatly.  A thousand years later Jesus would say that He was wiser than Solomon....and He was, of course....but other than that, the scripture tells us that among men there would never rise a wiser man than Solomon.  Yet, he erred greatly in his later life because of the many foreign brides he took, and the many accommodations he made for those brides' religions.....little places, there in the land of the true God, where they could go to worship their false gods.  Yet, that is between Solomon and God.  What he also did was to reign during the years when Israel became the wonder of all the known Earth for the glory of Solomon's reign, the wealth that flowed into Israel from everywhere around it, and the glory that this reflected upon their God in the eyes of foreign nations.  But also came Solomon's writings, many of which remain.  There are Psalms written by Solomon.  The Book of Ecclesiastics.  Among other things, Solomon like to write about 'wisdom'!  Here is one on his writings. 


The Bride and the Daughters of Jerusalem
1  The Song of songs, which is Solomon's. 1 Kgs. 4.32
2  Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth:
        
for thy love is better than wine.
3  Because of the savor of thy good ointments
        
thy name is as ointment poured forth,
therefore do the virgins love thee.
4  Draw me, we will run after thee:
        
the King hath brought me into his chambers:
we will be glad and rejoice in thee,
we will remember thy love more than wine:
the upright love thee.
5  I am black, but comely, O ye daughters of Jerusalem,
        
as the tents of Kedar,
as the curtains of Solomon.
6  Look not upon me, because I am black,
        
because the sun hath looked upon me:
my mother's children were angry with me;
they made me the keeper of the vineyards;
but mine own vineyard have I not kept.
7  Tell me, O thou whom my soul loveth, where thou feedest,
        
where thou makest thy flock to rest at noon:
for why should I be as one that turneth aside
by the flocks of thy companions?
8  If thou know not, O thou fairest among women,
        
go thy way forth by the footsteps of the flock,
and feed thy kids beside the shepherds' tents.

The Bride and the Bridegroom
9  I have compared thee, O my love,
        
to a company of horses in Pharaoh's chariots.
10  Thy cheeks are comely with rows of jewels,
        
thy neck with chains of gold.
11  We will make thee borders of gold
        
with studs of silver.
12  While the King sitteth at his table,
        
my spikenard sendeth forth the smell thereof.
13  A bundle of myrrh is my well-beloved unto me;
        
he shall lie all night betwixt my breasts.
14  My beloved is unto me as a cluster of camphire
        
in the vineyards of Enge'di.
15  Behold, thou art fair, my love;
        
behold, thou art fair;
thou hast doves' eyes.
16  Behold, thou art fair, my beloved, yea, pleasant:
        
also our bed is green.
17  The beams of our house are cedar,
        
and our rafters of fir.

 

 

 

 

  

   

 

 

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