1 Kings 3; 1 Kings 4; 1 Kings 5; Luke 20:1-26

1 Solomon made an alliance with the king of Egypt by marrying his daughter. He brought her to live in David's City until he had finished building his palace, the Temple, and the wall around Jerusalem. 2 A temple had not yet been built for the Lord, and so the people were still offering sacrifices at many different altars. 3 Solomon loved the Lord and followed the instructions of his father David, but he also slaughtered animals and offered them as sacrifices on various altars. 4 On one occasion he went to Gibeon to offer sacrifices because that was where the most famous altar was. He had offered hundreds of burnt offerings there in the past. 5 That night the Lord appeared to him in a dream and asked him, "What would you like me to give you?" 6 Solomon answered, "You always showed great love for my father David, your servant, and he was good, loyal, and honest in his relation with you. And you have continued to show him your great and constant love by giving him a son who today rules in his place. 7 O Lord God, you have let me succeed my father as king, even though I am very young and don't know how to rule. 8 Here I am among the people you have chosen to be your own, a people who are so many that they cannot be counted. 9 So give me the wisdom I need to rule your people with justice and to know the difference between good and evil. Otherwise, how would I ever be able to rule this great people of yours?" 10 The Lord was pleased that Solomon had asked for this, 11 and so he said to him, "Because you have asked for the wisdom to rule justly, instead of long life for yourself or riches or the death of your enemies, 12 I will do what you have asked. I will give you more wisdom and understanding than anyone has ever had before or will ever have again. 13 I will also give you what you have not asked for: all your life you will have wealth and honor, more than that of any other king. 14 And if you obey me and keep my laws and commands, as your father David did, I will give you a long life." 15 Solomon woke up and realized that God had spoken to him in the dream. Then he went to Jerusalem and stood in front of the Lord's Covenant Box and offered burnt offerings and fellowship offerings to the Lord. After that he gave a feast for all his officials. 16 One day two prostitutes came and presented themselves before King Solomon. 17 One of them said, "Your Majesty, this woman and I live in the same house, and I gave birth to a baby boy at home while she was there. 18 Two days after my child was born, she also gave birth to a baby boy. Only the two of us were there in the house - no one else was present. 19 Then one night she accidentally rolled over on her baby and smothered it. 20 She got up during the night, took my son from my side while I was asleep, and carried him to her bed; then she put the dead child in my bed. 21 The next morning, when I woke up and was going to nurse my baby, I saw that it was dead. I looked at it more closely and saw that it was not my child." 22 But the other woman said, "No! The living child is mine, and the dead one is yours!" The first woman answered back, "No! The dead child is yours, and the living one is mine!" And so they argued before the king. 23 Then King Solomon said, "Each of you claims that the living child is hers and that the dead child belongs to the other one." 24 He sent for a sword, and when it was brought, 25 he said, "Cut the living child in two and give each woman half of it." 26 The real mother, her heart full of love for her son, said to the king, "Please, Your Majesty, don't kill the child! Give it to her!" But the other woman said, "Don't give it to either of us; go on and cut it in two." 27 Then Solomon said, "Don't kill the child! Give it to the first woman - she is its real mother." 28 When the people of Israel heard of Solomon's decision, they were all filled with deep respect for him, because they knew then that God had given him the wisdom to settle disputes fairly.
1 Solomon was king of all Israel, 2 and these were his high officials: The priest: Azariah son of Zadok 3 The court secretaries: Elihoreph and Ahijah, sons of Shisha In charge of the records: Jehoshaphat son of Ahilud 4 Commander of the army: Benaiah son of Jehoiada Priests: Zadok and Abiathar 5 Chief of the district governors: Azariah son of Nathan Royal Adviser: the priest Zabud son of Nathan 6 In charge of the palace servants: Ahishar In charge of the forced labor: Adoniram son of Abda 7 Solomon appointed twelve men as district governors in Israel. They were to provide food from their districts for the king and his household, each man being responsible for one month out of the year. 8 The following are the names of these twelve officers and the districts they were in charge of: Benhur: the hill country of Ephraim 9 Bendeker: the cities of Makaz, Shaalbim, Beth Shemesh, Elon, and Beth Hanan 10 Benhesed: the cities of Arubboth and Socoh and all the territory of Hepher 11 Benabinadab, who was married to Solomon's daughter Taphath: the whole region of Dor 12 Baana son of Ahilud: the cities of Taanach, Megiddo, and all the region near Beth Shan, near the town of Zarethan, south of the town of Jezreel, as far as the city of Abel Meholah and the city of Jokmeam 13 Bengeber: the city of Ramoth in Gilead, and the villages in Gilead belonging to the clan of Jair, a descendant of Manasseh, and the region of Argob in Bashan, sixty large towns in all, fortified with walls and with bronze bars on the gates 14 Ahinadab son of Iddo: the district of Mahanaim 15 Ahimaaz, who was married to Basemath, another of Solomon's daughters: the territory of Naphtali 16 Baana son of Hushai: the region of Asher and the town of Bealoth 17 Jehoshaphat son of Paruah: the territory of Issachar 18 Shimei son of Ela: the territory of Benjamin 19 Geber son of Uri: the region of Gilead, which had been ruled by King Sihon of the Amorites and King Og of Bashan Besides these twelve, there was one governor over the whole land. 20 The people of Judah and Israel were as numerous as the grains of sand on the seashore; they ate and drank, and were happy. 21 Solomon's kingdom included all the nations from the Euphrates River to Philistia and the Egyptian border. They paid him taxes and were subject to him all his life. 22 The supplies Solomon needed each day were 150 bushels of fine flour and 300 bushels of meal; 23 10 stall-fed cattle, 20 pasture-fed cattle, and 100 sheep, besides deer, gazelles, roebucks, and poultry. 24 Solomon ruled over all the land west of the Euphrates River, from Tiphsah on the Euphrates as far west as the city of Gaza. All the kings west of the Euphrates were subject to him, and he was at peace with all the neighboring countries. 25 As long as he lived, the people throughout Judah and Israel lived in safety, each family with its own grapevines and fig trees. 26 Solomon had forty thousand stalls for his chariot horses and twelve thousand cavalry horses. 27 His twelve governors, each one in the month assigned to him, supplied the food King Solomon needed for himself and for all who ate in the palace; they always supplied everything needed. 28 Each governor also supplied his share of barley and straw, where it was needed, for the chariot horses and the work animals. 29 God gave Solomon unusual wisdom and insight, and knowledge too great to be measured. 30 Solomon was wiser than the wise men of the East or the wise men of Egypt. 31 He was the wisest of all men: wiser than Ethan the Ezrahite, and Heman, Calcol, and Darda, the sons of Mahol, and his fame spread throughout all the neighboring countries. 32 He composed three thousand proverbs and more than a thousand songs. 33 He spoke of trees and plants, from the Lebanon cedars to the hyssop that grows on walls; he talked about animals, birds, reptiles, and fish. 34 Kings all over the world heard of his wisdom and sent people to listen to him.
1 King Hiram of Tyre had always been a friend of David's, and when he heard that Solomon had succeeded his father David as king, he sent ambassadors to him. 2 Solomon sent back this message to Hiram: 3 "You know that because of the constant wars my father David had to fight against the enemy countries all around him, he could not build a temple for the worship of the Lord his God until the Lord had given him victory over all his enemies. 4 But now the Lord my God has given me peace on all my borders. I have no enemies, and there is no danger of attack. 5 The Lord promised my father David, "Your son, whom I will make king after you, will build a temple for me.' And I have now decided to build that temple for the worship of the Lord my God. 6 So send your men to Lebanon to cut down cedars for me. My men will work with them, and I will pay your men whatever you decide. As you well know, my men don't know how to cut down trees as well as yours do." 7 Hiram was extremely pleased when he received Solomon's message, and he said, "Praise the Lord today for giving David such a wise son to succeed him as king of that great nation!" 8 Then Hiram sent Solomon the following message: "I have received your message, and I am ready to do what you ask. I will provide the cedars and the pine trees. 9 My men will bring the logs down from Lebanon to the sea and will tie them together in rafts to float them down the coast to the place you choose. There my men will untie them, and your men will take charge of them. On your part, I would like you to supply the food for my men." 10 So Hiram supplied Solomon with all the cedar and pine logs that he wanted, 11 and Solomon provided Hiram with 100,000 bushels of wheat and 110,000 gallons of pure olive oil every year to feed his men. 12 The Lord kept his promise and gave Solomon wisdom. There was peace between Hiram and Solomon, and they made a treaty with each other. 13 King Solomon drafted 30,000 men as forced labor from all over Israel, 14 and put Adoniram in charge of them. He divided them into three groups of 10,000 men, and each group spent one month in Lebanon and two months back home. 15 Solomon also had 80,000 stone cutters in the hill country, with 70,000 men to carry the stones, 16 and he placed 3,300 foremen in charge of them to supervise their work. 17 At King Solomon's command they cut fine large stones for the foundation of the Temple. 18 Solomon's and Hiram's workers and men from the city of Byblos prepared the stones and the timber to build the Temple.
1 One day when Jesus was in the Temple teaching the people and preaching the Good News, the chief priests and the teachers of the Law, together with the elders, came 2 and said to him, "Tell us, what right do you have to do these things? Who gave you such right?" 3 Jesus answered them, "Now let me ask you a question. Tell me, 4 did John's right to baptize come from God or from human beings?" 5 They started to argue among themselves, "What shall we say? If we say, "From God,' he will say, "Why, then, did you not believe John?' 6 But if we say, "From human beings,' this whole crowd here will stone us, because they are convinced that John was a prophet." 7 So they answered, "We don't know where it came from." 8 And Jesus said to them, "Neither will I tell you, then, by what right I do these things." 9 Then Jesus told the people this parable: "There was once a man who planted a vineyard, rented it out to tenants, and then left home for a long time. 10 When the time came to gather the grapes, he sent a slave to the tenants to receive from them his share of the harvest. But the tenants beat the slave and sent him back without a thing. 11 So he sent another slave; but the tenants beat him also, treated him shamefully, and sent him back without a thing. 12 Then he sent a third slave; the tenants wounded him, too, and threw him out. 13 Then the owner of the vineyard said, "What shall I do? I will send my own dear son; surely they will respect him!' 14 But when the tenants saw him, they said to one another, "This is the owner's son. Let's kill him, and his property will be ours!' 15 So they threw him out of the vineyard and killed him. "What, then, will the owner of the vineyard do to the tenants?" Jesus asked. 16 "He will come and kill those men, and turn the vineyard over to other tenants." When the people heard this, they said, "Surely not!" 17 Jesus looked at them and asked, "What, then, does this scripture mean? "The stone which the builders rejected as worthless turned out to be the most important of all.' 18 Everyone who falls on that stone will be cut to pieces; and if that stone falls on someone, that person will be crushed to dust." 19 The teachers of the Law and the chief priests tried to arrest Jesus on the spot, because they knew that he had told this parable against them; but they were afraid of the people. 20 So they looked for an opportunity. They bribed some men to pretend they were sincere, and they sent them to trap Jesus with questions, so that they could hand him over to the authority and power of the Roman Governor. 21 These spies said to Jesus, "Teacher, we know that what you say and teach is right. We know that you pay no attention to anyone's status, but teach the truth about God's will for people. 22 Tell us, is it against our Law for us to pay taxes to the Roman Emperor, or not?" 23 But Jesus saw through their trick and said to them, 24 "Show me a silver coin. Whose face and name are these on it?" "The Emperor's," they answered. 25 So Jesus said, "Well, then, pay to the Emperor what belongs to the Emperor, and pay to God what belongs to God." 26 There before the people they could not catch him in a thing, so they kept quiet, amazed at his answer.
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