1 When the queen of Sheba heard about Solomon, she came to test him with hard questions. 2 She traveled to Jerusalem with a large group of servants and camels carrying spices, jewels, and much gold. When she came to Solomon, she talked with him about all she had in mind, 3 and Solomon answered all her questions. Nothing was too hard for him to explain to her. 4 The queen of Sheba learned that Solomon was very wise. She saw the palace he had built, 5 the food on his table, his many officers, the palace servants, and their good clothes. She saw the servants who served him at feasts and the whole burnt offerings he made in the Temple of the Lord. All these things amazed her. 6 So she said to King Solomon, "What I heard in my own country about your achievements and wisdom is true. 7 I could not believe it then, but now I have come and seen it with my own eyes. I was not told even half of it! Your wisdom and wealth are much greater than I had heard. 8 Your men and officers are very lucky, because in always serving you, they are able to hear your wisdom. 9 Praise the Lord your God, who was pleased to make you king of Israel. The Lord has constant love for Israel, so he made you king to keep justice and to rule fairly." 10 Then she gave the king about nine thousand pounds of gold and many spices and jewels. No one since that time has brought more spices than the queen of Sheba gave to King Solomon. 11 (Hiram's ships brought gold from Ophir, as well as much juniper wood and jewels. 12 Solomon used the juniper wood to build supports for the Temple of the Lord and the palace, and to make harps and lyres for the musicians. Such fine juniper wood has not been brought in or been seen since that time.) 13 King Solomon gave the queen of Sheba everything she wanted and asked for, in addition to what he had already given her of his wealth. Then she and her servants returned to her own country. 14 Every year King Solomon received about fifty thousand pounds of gold. 15 Besides that, he also received gold from the traders and merchants, as well as from the kings of Arabia and governors of the land. 16 King Solomon made two hundred large shields of hammered gold, each of which contained about seven and one-half pounds of gold. 17 He also made three hundred smaller shields of hammered gold, each of which contained about four pounds of gold. The king put them in the Palace of the Forest of Lebanon. 18 The king built a large throne of ivory and covered it with fine gold. 19 The throne had six steps on it, and its back was round at the top. There were armrests on both sides of the chair, and each armrest had a lion beside it. 20 Twelve lions stood on the six steps, one lion at each end of each step. Nothing like this had ever been made for any other kingdom. 21 All of Solomon's drinking cups, as well as the dishes in the Palace of the Forest of Lebanon, were made of pure gold. Nothing was made from silver, because silver was not valuable in Solomon's time. 22 King Solomon also had many trading ships at sea, along with Hiram's ships. Every three years the ships returned, bringing back gold, silver, ivory, apes, and baboons. 23 So Solomon had more riches and wisdom than all the other kings on earth. 24 People everywhere wanted to see King Solomon and listen to the wisdom God had given him. 25 Every year those who came brought gifts of silver and gold, clothes, weapons, spices, horses, and mules. 26 Solomon had fourteen hundred chariots and twelve thousand horses. He kept some in special cities for the chariots, and others he kept with him in Jerusalem. 27 In Jerusalem Solomon made silver as common as stones and cedar trees as common as the fig trees on the western hills. 28 He imported horses from Egypt and Kue. His traders bought them in Kue. 29 A chariot from Egypt cost about fifteen pounds of silver, and a horse cost nearly four pounds of silver. Solomon's traders also sold horses and chariots to all the kings of the Hittites and the Arameans.
1 King Solomon loved many women who were not from Israel. He loved the daughter of the king of Egypt, as well as women of the Moabites, Ammonites, Edomites, Sidonians, and Hittites. 2 The Lord had told the Israelites, "You must not marry people of other nations. If you do, they will cause you to follow their gods." But Solomon fell in love with these women. 3 He had seven hundred wives who were from royal families and three hundred slave women who gave birth to his children. His wives caused him to turn away from God. 4 As Solomon grew old, his wives caused him to follow other gods. He did not follow the Lord completely as his father David had done. 5 Solomon worshiped Ashtoreth, the goddess of the people of Sidon, and Molech, the hated god of the Ammonites. 6 So Solomon did what the Lord said was wrong and did not follow the Lord completely as his father David had done. 7 On a hill east of Jerusalem, Solomon built two places for worship. One was a place to worship Chemosh, the hated god of the Moabites, and the other was a place to worship Molech, the hated god of the Ammonites. 8 Solomon did the same thing for all his foreign wives so they could burn incense and offer sacrifices to their gods. 9 The Lord had appeared to Solomon twice, but the king turned away from following the Lord, the God of Israel. The Lord was angry with Solomon, 10 because he had commanded Solomon not to follow other gods. But Solomon did not obey the Lord's command. 11 So the Lord said to Solomon, "Because you have chosen to break your agreement with me and have not obeyed my commands, I will tear your kingdom away from you and give it to one of your officers. 12 But I will not take it away while you are alive because of my love for your father David. I will tear it away from your son when he becomes king. 13 I will not tear away all the kingdom from him, but I will leave him one tribe to rule. I will do this because of David, my servant, and because of Jerusalem, the city I have chosen." 14 The Lord caused Hadad the Edomite, a member of the family of the king of Edom, to become Solomon's enemy. 15 Earlier, David had defeated Edom. When Joab, the commander of David's army, went into Edom to bury the dead, he killed all the males. 16 Joab and all the Israelites stayed in Edom for six months and killed every male in Edom. 17 At that time Hadad was only a young boy, so he ran away to Egypt with some of his father's officers. 18 They left Midian and went to Paran, where they were joined by other men. Then they all went to Egypt to see the king, who gave Hadad a house, some food, and some land. 19 The king liked Hadad so much he gave Hadad a wife -- the sister of Tahpenes, the king's wife. 20 They had a son named Genubath. Queen Tahpenes brought him up in the royal palace with the king's own children. 21 While he was in Egypt, Hadad heard that David had died and that Joab, the commander of the army, was dead also. So Hadad said to the king, "Let me go; I will return to my own country." 22 "Why do you want to go back to your own country?" the king asked. "What haven't I given you here?" "Nothing," Hadad answered, "but please, let me go." 23 God also caused another man to be Solomon's enemy -- Rezon son of Eliada. Rezon had run away from his master, Hadadezer king of Zobah. 24 After David defeated the army of Zobah, Rezon gathered some men and became the leader of a small army. They went to Damascus and settled there, and Rezon became king of Damascus. 25 Rezon ruled Aram, and he hated Israel. So he was an enemy of Israel all the time Solomon was alive. Both Rezon and Hadad made trouble for Israel. 26 Jeroboam son of Nebat was one of Solomon's officers. He was an Ephraimite from the town of Zeredah, and he was the son of a widow named Zeruah. Jeroboam turned against the king. 27 This is the story of how Jeroboam turned against the king. Solomon was filling in the land and repairing the wall of Jerusalem, the city of David, his father. 28 Jeroboam was a capable man, and Solomon saw that this young man was a good worker. So Solomon put him over all the workers from the tribes of Ephraim and Manasseh. 29 One day as Jeroboam was leaving Jerusalem, Ahijah, the prophet from Shiloh, who was wearing a new coat, met him on the road. The two men were alone out in the country. 30 Ahijah took his new coat and tore it into twelve pieces. 31 Then he said to Jeroboam, "Take ten pieces of this coat for yourself. The Lord, the God of Israel, says: 'I will tear the kingdom away from Solomon and give you ten tribes. 32 But I will allow him to control one tribe. I will do this for the sake of my servant David and for Jerusalem, the city I have chosen from all the tribes of Israel. 33 I will do this because Solomon has stopped following me and has worshiped the Sidonian god Ashtoreth, the Moabite god Chemosh, and the Ammonite god Molech. Solomon has not obeyed me by doing what I said is right and obeying my laws and commands, as his father David did. 34 "'But I will not take all the kingdom away from Solomon. I will let him rule all his life because of my servant David, whom I chose, who obeyed all my commands and laws. 35 But I will take the kingdom away from his son, and I will allow you to rule over the ten tribes. 36 I will allow Solomon's son to continue to rule over one tribe so that there will always be a descendant of David, my servant, in Jerusalem, the city where I chose to be worshiped. 37 But I will make you rule over everything you want. You will rule over all of Israel, 38 and I will always be with you if you do what I say is right. You must obey all my commands. If you obey my laws and commands as David did, I will be with you. I will make your family a lasting family of kings, as I did for David, and give Israel to you. 39 I will punish David's children because of this, but I will not punish them forever.'" 40 Solomon tried to kill Jeroboam, but he ran away to Egypt, to Shishak king of Egypt, where he stayed until Solomon died. 41 Everything else King Solomon did, and the wisdom he showed, is written in the book of the history of Solomon. 42 Solomon ruled in Jerusalem over all Israel for forty years. 43 Then he died and was buried in Jerusalem, the city of David, his father. And his son Rehoboam became king in his place.