1 Kings 10

1 And when the queen of Sheba heard of the fame of Solomon concerning the name of the LORD, she came to prove him with enigmas.
2 And she came to Jerusalem with a very great train, with camels that bore spices and very much gold and precious stones; and when she was come to Solomon, she communed with him of all that was in her heart.
3 And Solomon told her all her questions; there was not any thing hid from the king, which he did not tell her.
4 And when the queen of Sheba had seen all Solomon’s wisdom and the house that he had built,
5 likewise the food of his table and the sitting of his slaves and the attendance of his ministers and their apparel, and his butlers and his burnt offering which he sacrificed in the house of the LORD, there was no more spirit in her.
6 And she said to the king, It was a true report that I heard in my own land of thy words and of thy wisdom.
7 But I did not believe it until I came, and my eyes have seen that not even the half was told me. Thy wisdom and good exceeds the fame which I heard.
8 Blessed are thy men, blessed are these thy slaves, who stand continually before thee and that hear thy wisdom.
9 Blessed be the LORD thy God, who delighted in thee, to set thee on the throne of Israel; because the LORD has always loved Israel, therefore he made thee king, to do justice and righteousness.
10 And she gave the king one hundred and twenty talents of gold and a very great store of spices and precious stones; never again did there come such abundance of spices as these which the queen of Sheba gave to King Solomon.
11 And the navy of Hiram, that had brought the gold from Ophir, also brought in from Ophir a great plenty of brazil wood and precious stones.
12 And the king made of the brazil wood banisters for the house of the LORD and for the king’s houses, harps also and psalteries for the singers; there never had been such brazil wood, nor was it seen again unto this day.
13 And King Solomon gave unto the queen of Sheba all her desire, whatever she asked, beside that which Solomon gave her of his royal bounty. So she turned and went to her own country, she and her slaves.
14 Now the weight of gold that came to Solomon in one year was six hundred and sixty-six talents of gold,
15 besides what he had from the merchantmen and from the trade of the spice merchants and from all the kings of Arabia and from the princes of the land.
16 And King Solomon made two hundred shields of beaten gold; six hundred shekels of gold went into each shield.
17 Likewise he made three hundred shields of beaten gold; three pounds of gold went into each shield; and the king put them in the house of the forest of Lebanon.
18 The king also made a great throne of ivory and overlaid it with the purest gold.
19 The throne had six steps, and the top of the throne was round behind, and there were stays on either side on the place of the seat, and two lions stood beside the stays.
20 And twelve lions stood there on the one side and on the other upon the six steps; there was not the like made in any other kingdom.
21 And all King Solomon’s drinking vessels were of gold, and likewise all the vessels of the house of the forest of Lebanon were of pure gold; there was no silver, for in the days of Solomon it was not esteemed.
22 For the king had at sea a navy of Tarshish with the navy of Hiram; once every three years the navy of Tarshish came, bringing gold, silver, ivory, and apes, and peacocks.
23 So King Solomon exceeded all the kings of the earth for riches and for wisdom.
24 And all the earth sought to see the face of Solomon, to hear his wisdom, which God had put in his heart.
25 And they each one brought his presents each year, vessels of gold and vessels of silver and garments and arms and spices, horses, and mules.
26 And Solomon gathered together chariots and horsemen, and he had a thousand four hundred chariots and twelve thousand horsemen, whom he put in the cities of the chariots and with the king at Jerusalem.
27 And the king made silver to be in Jerusalem as stones, and he made cedars to be as the sycamore trees that are in the vale, for abundance.
28 And Solomon had horses brought out of Egypt and linen yarn, for the king’s merchants bought the horses and yarn.
29 And a chariot came up and went out of Egypt for six hundred shekels of silver, and a horse for one hundred and fifty, and so by their hand they supplied all the kings of the Hittites and the kings of Syria.

1 Kings 10 Commentary

Chapter 10

The queen of Sheba's visit to Solomon. (1-13) Solomon's wealth. (14-29)

Verses 1-13 The queen of Sheba came to Solomon to hear his wisdom, thereby to improve her own. Our Saviour mentions her inquiries after God, by Solomon, as showing the stupidity of those who inquire not after God, by our Lord Jesus Christ. By waiting and prayer, by diligently searching the Scriptures, by consulting wise and experienced Christians, and by practising what we have learned, we shall be delivered from difficulties. Solomon's wisdom made more impression upon the queen of Sheba than all his prosperity and grandeur. There is a spiritual excellence in heavenly things, and in consistent Christians, to which no reports can do justice. Here the truth exceeded; and all who, through grace, are brought to commune with God, will say the one half was not told them of the pleasures and the advantages of wisdom's ways. Glorified saints, much more, will say of heaven, ( 1 Corinthians. 2:9 ) pronounced them happy that constantly attended Solomon. With much more reason may we say of Christ's servants, Blessed are they that dwell in his house; they will be still praising him. She made a noble present to Solomon. What we present to Christ, he needs not, but will have us do so to express our gratitude. The believer who has been with Jesus, will return to his station, discharge his duties with readiness, and from better motives; looking forward to the day when, being absent from the body, he shall be present with the Lord.

Verses 14-29 Solomon increased his wealth. Silver was nothing accounted of. Such is the nature of worldly wealth, plenty of it makes it the less valuable; much more should the enjoyment of spiritual riches lessen our esteem of all earthly possessions. If gold in abundance makes silver to be despised, shall not wisdom, and grace, and the foretastes of heaven, which are far better than gold, make gold to be lightly esteemed? See in Solomon's greatness the performance of God's promise, and let it encourage us to seek first the righteousness of God's kingdom. This was he, who, having tasted all earthly enjoyments, wrote a book, to show the vanity of all worldly things, the vexation of spirit that attends them, and the folly of setting our hearts upon them: and to recommend serious godliness, as that which will do unspeakably more to make us happy, that all the wealth and power he was master of; and, through the grace of God, it is within our reach.

Chapter Summary

INTRODUCTION TO 1 KINGS 10

This chapter contains an account of the queen of Sheba's visit to King Solomon to her great satisfaction, 1Ki 10:1-13, of Solomon's merchandise and riches, and the magnificence of his court, 1Ki 10:14-23, of the rich presents sent to him, and of the purchase of chariots and horses, and other things, he made, 1Ki 10:24-29.

1 Kings 10 Commentaries

The Jubilee Bible

(from the Scriptures of the Reformation)

edited by Russell M. Stendal

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