1:1 And Solomon the son of David was strengthened in his kingdom, and the LORD his God [was] with him, and magnified him exceedingly.
The Argument - This second book contains in brief the contents of the two books of the kings: that is, from the reign of Solomon to the destruction of Jerusalem and the Babylonian captivity. In this story some things are told in more detail than in the books of the kings and therefore help greatly in the understanding of the prophets. Three things are chiefly to be considered here: First, that when the godly kings saw the plagues of God prepared against their country for sin, they turned to the Lord and by earnest prayer were heard, and the plagues removed. Secondly, while the good rulers always loved the prophets of God and were zealous to set forth his religion throughout their dominions, it offended God greatly that the wicked hated his ministers, deposed them and set up idolatry and attempted served God according to the fantasy of men. Thus we have the chief acts from the beginning of the world to the rebuilding of Jerusalem in the 32nd year of Darius, in total 3568 years and six months. 1:2 Then Solomon a spake unto all Israel, to the captains of thousands and of hundreds, and to the judges, and to every governor in all Israel, the chief of the fathers.
(a) That is, he proclaimed a solemn sacrifice and commanded that all should attend. 1:3 So Solomon, and all the congregation with him, went to the high place that [was] at b Gibeon; for there was the tabernacle c of the congregation of God, which Moses the servant of the LORD had made in the wilderness.
(b) Read ( 1 Kings 3:4 ). 1:5 Moreover the d brasen altar, that Bezaleel the son of Uri, the son of Hur, had made, he put before the tabernacle of the LORD: and Solomon and the congregation sought unto it.
(c) So called, because by it God showed signs of his presence to the congregation.
(d) Which was for the burnt offerings, ( Exodus 27:1 ). 1:9 Now, O LORD God, let thy promise unto David my father be e established: for thou hast made me king over a people like the dust of the earth in multitude.
(e) Perform your promise made to my father concerning me. 1:10 Give me now wisdom and knowledge, that I may f go out and come in before this people: for who can judge this thy people, [that is so] great?
(f) That I may govern this people, ( 1 Chronicles 27:1 ; 1 Kings 3:7 ). 1:11 And God said to Solomon, Because this was in thine heart, and thou hast not asked riches, wealth, or honour, nor the g life of thine enemies, neither yet hast asked long life; but hast asked wisdom and knowledge for thyself, that thou mayest judge my people, over whom I have made thee king:
(g) That is, to be avenged on your enemies. 1:14 And Solomon gathered chariots and horsemen: and he had a thousand and four hundred chariots, and twelve thousand horsemen, which he placed in the h chariot cities, and with the king at Jerusalem.
(h) Which were cities appointed to keep and maintain the chariots. 1:15 And the king made silver and gold at Jerusalem [as plenteous] as i stones, and cedar trees made he as the sycomore trees that [are] in the vale for abundance.
(i) He caused so great plenty that it was valued no more than stones. 1:16 And Solomon had horses brought out of Egypt, and linen yarn: k the kings merchants received the linen yarn at a price.
(k) Read ( 1 Kings 20:28 ).