1 Kings 11:1-13

Solomon’s Wives

1 King Solomon, however, loved many foreign women besides Pharaoh’s daughter—Moabites, Ammonites, Edomites, Sidonians and Hittites.
2 They were from nations about which the LORD had told the Israelites, “You must not intermarry with them, because they will surely turn your hearts after their gods.” Nevertheless, Solomon held fast to them in love.
3 He had seven hundred wives of royal birth and three hundred concubines, and his wives led him astray.
4 As Solomon grew old, his wives turned his heart after other gods, and his heart was not fully devoted to the LORD his God, as the heart of David his father had been.
5 He followed Ashtoreth the goddess of the Sidonians, and Molek the detestable god of the Ammonites.
6 So Solomon did evil in the eyes of the LORD; he did not follow the LORD completely, as David his father had done.
7 On a hill east of Jerusalem, Solomon built a high place for Chemosh the detestable god of Moab, and for Molek the detestable god of the Ammonites.
8 He did the same for all his foreign wives, who burned incense and offered sacrifices to their gods.
9 The LORD became angry with Solomon because his heart had turned away from the LORD, the God of Israel, who had appeared to him twice.
10 Although he had forbidden Solomon to follow other gods, Solomon did not keep the LORD’s command.
11 So the LORD said to Solomon, “Since this is your attitude and you have not kept my covenant and my decrees, which I commanded you, I will most certainly tear the kingdom away from you and give it to one of your subordinates.
12 Nevertheless, for the sake of David your father, I will not do it during your lifetime. I will tear it out of the hand of your son.
13 Yet I will not tear the whole kingdom from him, but will give him one tribe for the sake of David my servant and for the sake of Jerusalem, which I have chosen.”

1 Kings 11:1-13 Meaning and Commentary

INTRODUCTION TO 1 KINGS 11

This chapter relates the false steps Solomon took, notwithstanding all his wisdom, in marrying strange wives, and worshipping other gods, 1Ki 11:1-8 upon which the Lord threatens him to rend the kingdom in his son's time, 1Ki 11:9-13 and he raised up adversaries against him, Hadad, Rezon, and Jeroboam, 1Ki 11:14-26 of which last an account is given, and of his being assured by Ahijah the prophet of his having ten of the tribes of Israel given to him; which Solomon having notice of sought to slay him, 1Ki 11:27-40 and the chapter is concluded with an account of Solomon's death and burial, 1Ki 11:41-43.

1 Kings 11:1-13 In-Context

1 King Solomon, however, loved many foreign women besides Pharaoh’s daughter—Moabites, Ammonites, Edomites, Sidonians and Hittites.
2 They were from nations about which the LORD had told the Israelites, “You must not intermarry with them, because they will surely turn your hearts after their gods.” Nevertheless, Solomon held fast to them in love.
3 He had seven hundred wives of royal birth and three hundred concubines, and his wives led him astray.
4 As Solomon grew old, his wives turned his heart after other gods, and his heart was not fully devoted to the LORD his God, as the heart of David his father had been.
5 He followed Ashtoreth the goddess of the Sidonians, and Molek the detestable god of the Ammonites.
6 So Solomon did evil in the eyes of the LORD; he did not follow the LORD completely, as David his father had done.
7 On a hill east of Jerusalem, Solomon built a high place for Chemosh the detestable god of Moab, and for Molek the detestable god of the Ammonites.
8 He did the same for all his foreign wives, who burned incense and offered sacrifices to their gods.
9 The LORD became angry with Solomon because his heart had turned away from the LORD, the God of Israel, who had appeared to him twice.
10 Although he had forbidden Solomon to follow other gods, Solomon did not keep the LORD’s command.
11 So the LORD said to Solomon, “Since this is your attitude and you have not kept my covenant and my decrees, which I commanded you, I will most certainly tear the kingdom away from you and give it to one of your subordinates.
12 Nevertheless, for the sake of David your father, I will not do it during your lifetime. I will tear it out of the hand of your son.
13 Yet I will not tear the whole kingdom from him, but will give him one tribe for the sake of David my servant and for the sake of Jerusalem, which I have chosen.”
14 Then the LORD raised up against Solomon an adversary, Hadad the Edomite, from the royal line of Edom.
15 Earlier when David was fighting with Edom, Joab the commander of the army, who had gone up to bury the dead, had struck down all the men in Edom.
16 Joab and all the Israelites stayed there for six months, until they had destroyed all the men in Edom.
17 But Hadad, still only a boy, fled to Egypt with some Edomite officials who had served his father.

Cross References 22

  • 1. S ver 3; S Exodus 34:16; Deuteronomy 17:17; Nehemiah 13:26
  • 2. 1 Kings 14:21,31
  • 3. S Exodus 34:16; 1 Kings 16:31; Deuteronomy 7:3-4
  • 4. S Genesis 22:24; S Esther 2:14
  • 5. ver 1; Deuteronomy 17:17; Nehemiah 13:26; Proverbs 31:3
  • 6. S Exodus 34:16
  • 7. S 1 Kings 8:61; 1 Kings 9:4; S 1 Chronicles 29:19
  • 8. ver 33; S Judges 2:13; 2 Kings 23:13
  • 9. ver 7; S Leviticus 18:21; Isaiah 57:9; Zephaniah 1:5
  • 10. S Deuteronomy 4:25
  • 11. 2 Kings 23:13
  • 12. S Numbers 21:29; Judges 11:24
  • 13. S Leviticus 18:21; Leviticus 20:2-5; Acts 7:43
  • 14. ver 2-3; S 1 Kings 3:5; 1 Kings 9:2
  • 15. S 1 Kings 9:6
  • 16. 1 Kings 6:12
  • 17. S Leviticus 18:4
  • 18. ver 31; S 1 Samuel 15:27; 1 Kings 12:15-16; 2 Kings 17:21; Matthew 21:43
  • 19. Psalms 89:33
  • 20. 1 Kings 12:20
  • 21. S 2 Samuel 7:15
  • 22. Deuteronomy 12:11