1 Kings 3:8-13

8 1And your servant is in the midst of your people whom you have chosen, a great people, 2too many to be numbered or counted for multitude.
9 3Give your servant therefore an understanding mind 4to govern your people, that I may 5discern between good and evil, for who is able to govern this your great people?"
10 It pleased the Lord that Solomon had asked this.
11 And God said to him, "Because you have asked this, and have not asked for yourself long life or riches or the life of your enemies, but have asked for yourself understanding to discern what is right,
12 behold, 6I now do according to your word. Behold, 7I give you a wise and discerning mind, so that none like you has been before you and none like you shall arise after you.
13 8I give you also what you have not asked, 9both riches and honor, so that no other king shall compare with you, all your days.

1 Kings 3:8-13 Meaning and Commentary

INTRODUCTION TO FIRST KINGS 3

This chapter relates the marriage of Solomon with Pharaoh's daughter, 1Ki 3:1; his piety and devotion, 1Ki 3:2-4; his prayer for wisdom and understanding, which was acceptable to God, who promised to grant his request, with an addition to it, 1Ki 3:5-15; an instance and proof of the wisdom given him in determining a case between two harlots brought before him, which greatly raised his reputation, and gave him reverence among his people, 1Ki 3:16-28.

1 Kings 3:8-13 In-Context

6 And Solomon said, "You have shown great and steadfast love to your servant David my father, because he walked before you in faithfulness, in righteousness, and in uprightness of heart toward you. And you have kept for him this great and steadfast love and have given him a son to sit on his throne this day.
7 And now, O LORD my God, you have made your servant king in place of David my father, although I am but a little child. I do not know how to go out or come in.
8 And your servant is in the midst of your people whom you have chosen, a great people, too many to be numbered or counted for multitude.
9 Give your servant therefore an understanding mind to govern your people, that I may discern between good and evil, for who is able to govern this your great people?"
10 It pleased the Lord that Solomon had asked this.
11 And God said to him, "Because you have asked this, and have not asked for yourself long life or riches or the life of your enemies, but have asked for yourself understanding to discern what is right,
12 behold, I now do according to your word. Behold, I give you a wise and discerning mind, so that none like you has been before you and none like you shall arise after you.
13 I give you also what you have not asked, both riches and honor, so that no other king shall compare with you, all your days.
14 And if you will walk in my ways, keeping my statutes and my commandments, as your father David walked, then I will lengthen your days."
15 And Solomon awoke, and behold, it was a dream. Then he came to Jerusalem and stood before the ark of the covenant of the Lord, and offered up burnt offerings and peace offerings, and made a feast for all his servants.

Cross References 9

  • 1. Deuteronomy 7:6
  • 2. Genesis 13:16; Genesis 15:5
  • 3. [Proverbs 2:6, 9; James 1:5]
  • 4. Psalms 72:1, 2
  • 5. [2 Samuel 14:17; Isaiah 7:15; Hebrews 5:14]
  • 6. [1 John 5:14, 15]
  • 7. 1 Kings 4:29-31; 1 Kings 5:12; 1 Kings 10:23, 24; Ecclesiastes 1:16
  • 8. [Matthew 6:33]
  • 9. 1 Kings 4:21-24; 1 Kings 10:23, 27; [Proverbs 3:16]