1Kings Chapter 14 (Bible Marathon Day 152)

1Kings Chapter 14 (Bible Marathon Day 152)

Ahijah Announces Jeroboam’s Downfall.*
At that time Abijah, son of Jeroboam, took sick.
a So Jeroboam said to his wife, “Go and disguise yourself so that no one will recognize you as Jeroboam’s
wife. Then go to Shiloh, where you will find Ahijah the prophet. It was he who spoke the word that made me
king over this people.
Take along ten loaves, some cakes, and a jar of honey, and go to him. He will tell you what will happen to
the child.”
The wife of Jeroboam did so. She left and went to Shiloh and came to the house of Ahijah.

Now Ahijah could not see because age had dimmed his sight.
But the LORD said to Ahijah: Jeroboam’s wife is coming to consult you about her son, for he is sick. Thus
and so you must tell her. When she comes, she will be in disguise.
So Ahijah, hearing the sound of her footsteps as she entered the door, said, “Come in, wife of Jeroboam.
Why are you in disguise? For my part, I have been commissioned to give you bitter news.
Go, tell Jeroboam, ‘Thus says the LORD, the God of Israel: I exalted you from among the people and made
you ruler of my people Israel.
I tore the kingdom away from the house of David and gave it to you. Yet you have not been like my servant
David, who kept my commandments and followed me with his whole heart, doing only what is right in my
You have done more evil than all who were before you: you have gone and made for yourself other gods
and molten images to provoke me; but me you have cast behind your back.
b Therefore, I am bringing evil upon the house of Jeroboam:
I will cut off from Jeroboam’s line every male
—bond or free—in Israel;
I will burn up what is left of the house of Jeroboam
as dung is burned, completely.
c Anyone of Jeroboam’s line who dies in the city,
dogs will devour;
anyone who dies in the field,
the birds of the sky will devour.
For the LORD has spoken!’
As for you, leave, and go home! As you step inside the city, the child will die,
and all Israel will mourn him and bury him, for he alone of Jeroboam’s line will be laid in the grave, since in
him alone of Jeroboam’s house has something pleasing to the LORD, the God of Israel, been found.
The LORD will raise up for himself a king over Israel who will cut off the house of Jeroboam—today, at this
very moment!
The LORD will strike Israel like a reed tossed about in the water and will pluck out Israel from this good land
which he gave their ancestors, and will scatter them beyond the River,* because they made asherahs for
themselves, provoking the LORD.
He will give up Israel because of the sins Jeroboam has committed and caused Israel to commit.”
So Jeroboam’s wife left and went back; when she came to Tirzah and crossed the threshold of her house,
the child died.
He was buried and all Israel mourned him, according to the word of the LORD spoken through his servant
Ahijah the prophet.
The rest of the acts of Jeroboam, how he fought and how he reigned, these are recorded in the book of the
chronicles of the kings of Israel.
The length of Jeroboam’s reign was twenty-two years. He rested with his ancestors, and Nadab his son
succeeded him as king.

Reign of Rehoboam.
* Rehoboam, son of Solomon, became king in Judah. Rehoboam was forty-one years old when he became
king, and he reigned seventeen years in Jerusalem, the city in which, out of all the tribes of Israel, the LORD
chose to set his name. His mother’s name was Naamah the Ammonite.
Judah did evil in the LORD’s sight and they angered him even more than their ancestors had done.
They, too, built for themselves high places, sacred pillars, and asherahs,* upon every high hill and under
every green tree.
There were also pagan priests in the land. Judah imitated all the abominable practices of the nations whom
the LORD had driven out of the Israelites’ way.
* In the fifth year of King Rehoboam, Shishak, king of Egypt, attacked Jerusalem.
d He took everything, including the treasures of the house of the LORD and the treasures of the house of the
king, even the gold shields Solomon had made.
To replace them, King Rehoboam made bronze shields, which he entrusted to the officers of the guard on
duty at the entrance of the royal house.
Whenever the king visited the house of the LORD, those on duty would carry the shields, and then return
them to the guardroom.
The rest of the acts of Rehoboam, with all that he did, are recorded in the book of the chronicles of the kings
of Judah.
There was war between Rehoboam and Jeroboam all their days.
Rehoboam rested with his ancestors; he was buried with his ancestors in the City of David. His mother’s
name was Naamah the Ammonite. His son Abijam succeeded him as king.

* [14:1–20] The last major unit of the Jeroboam story recounts the story of Ahijah of Shiloh’s oracle
condemning the entire house of Jeroboam; this is followed by a formulaic notice of Jeroboam’s death and
the succession of his son. Compare the first unit of the Jeroboam story, 11:26–43, which recounted Ahijah’s
oracle proclaiming Jeroboam’s kingship, followed by the formulaic notice of the death of Solomon.

* [14:15] The River: the Euphrates; see note on 5:1.

* [14:21–16:34] The treatment of the events of Jeroboam’s reign shows that the author believes that the
political division of the kingdoms embodies the Lord’s will, but that their religious separation is undesirable.
The Israelites are, in effect, one people of God under two royal administrations. This complex arrangement is
reflected in the way 1–2 Kings organizes the history of the divided kingdoms. Each reign is treated as a unity:
the kings, whether of Israel or Judah, are legitimate rulers. But the accounts of northern and southern kings
are interwoven in the order in which each came to the throne, without regard to which kingdom they ruled:
the people of God is one.

* [14:21] The account of each king’s reign follows the same basic pattern: a formulaic introduction, a
theological evaluation based on religious fidelity, a brief account of an event from the king’s reign, and a
formulaic conclusion.

* [14:23] Asherahs: see note on Ex 34:13.

* [14:25–28, 30] The narrator recounts Shishak’s campaign here to imply that it was punishment for Judah’s
evil, and perhaps to cast him as supporting Jeroboam in his constant warfare with Rehoboam. (Shishak was
named as Jeroboam’s protector and patron in 11:40.) Egyptian records of the campaign list one hundred
fifty cities conquered in Israel as well as Judah, but Jerusalem is not one of them. Chronicles has a parallel
version of this account in 2 Chr 12:9–11.

a. [14:2] 1 Kgs 11:29–39.

b. [14:10] 1 Kgs 15:29–30.

c. [14:11] 1 Kgs 16:4; 21:22.

d. [14:26] 1 Kgs 10:16–17.


1Kings Chapter 13 (Bible Marathon Day 152)

1Kings Chapter 13 (Bible Marathon Day 152)

A man of God came from Judah to Bethel by the word of the LORD, while Jeroboam was standing at the
altar to burn incense.
a He cried out against the altar by the word of the LORD: “Altar, altar, thus says the LORD: A child shall be
born to the house of David, Josiah by name, who shall slaughter upon you the priests of the high places
who burn incense upon you, and they shall burn human bones upon you.”
b He also gave a sign that same day and said: “This is the sign that the LORD has spoken: The altar shall
be torn apart and the ashes on it shall be scattered.”
When the king heard the word of the man of God which he was crying out against the altar in Bethel,
Jeroboam stretched forth his hand from the altar and said, “Seize him!” But the hand he stretched forth
against him withered, so that he could not draw it back.
(The altar was torn apart and the ashes from the altar were scattered, in accordance with the sign the man of
God gave by the word of the LORD.)
Then the king said to the man of God, “Entreat the LORD, your God, and intercede for me that my hand may
be restored.” So the man of God entreated the LORD, and the king’s hand was restored as it was before.
The king told the man of God, “Come with me to the house for some refreshment so that I may give you a
The man of God said to the king, “If you gave me half your palace, I would not go with you, nor eat bread or
drink water in this place.
For I was instructed by the word of the LORD: Do not eat bread or drink water, and do not return by the way
you came.”
So he departed by another road and did not go back the way he had come to Bethel.
Prophetic Disunity.*
There was an old prophet living in Bethel, whose son came and told him all that the man of God had done
that day in Bethel. When his sons repeated to their father the words the man of God had spoken to the king,
the father asked them, “Which way did he go?” So his sons pointed out to him the road taken by the man of
God who had come from Judah.
Then he said to his sons, “Saddle the donkey for me.” When they had saddled it, he mounted
and followed the man of God, whom he found seated under a terebinth. When he asked him, “Are you the
man of God who came from Judah?” he answered, “Yes.”
Then he said, “Come home with me and have some bread.”
“I cannot return with you or go with you, and I cannot eat bread or drink water with you in this place,” he
“for I was told by the word of the LORD: You shall not eat bread or drink water there, and do not go back the
way you came.”
But he said to him, “I, too, am a prophet like you, and an angel told me by the word of the LORD: Bring him
back with you to your house to eat bread and drink water.” But he was lying to him.
So he went back with him, and ate bread and drank water in his house.
But while they were sitting at table, the word of the LORD came to the prophet who had brought him back,
and he cried out to the man of God who had come from Judah: “Thus says the LORD: Because you
rebelled against the charge of the LORD and did not keep the command which the LORD, your God, gave
but returned and ate bread and drank water in the place where he told you, Do not eat bread or drink water,
your corpse shall not be brought to the grave of your ancestors.”
After he had eaten bread and drunk, they saddled for him the donkey that belonged to the prophet who had
brought him back,
and he set out. But a lion met him on the road, and killed him. His body lay sprawled on the road, and the
donkey remained standing by it, and so did the lion.
Some passersby saw the body lying in the road, with the lion standing beside it, and carried the news to the
city where the old prophet lived.
On hearing it, the prophet who had brought him back from his journey said: “It is the man of God who
rebelled against the charge of the LORD. The LORD has delivered him to a lion, which mangled and killed
him, according to the word which the LORD had spoken to him.”
Then he said to his sons, “Saddle the donkey for me,” and they saddled it.
He went off and found the body sprawled on the road with the donkey and the lion standing beside it. The
lion had not eaten the body nor had it harmed the donkey.
The prophet lifted up the body of the man of God and put it on the donkey, and brought him back to the city to
mourn and to bury him.
He laid the man’s body in his own grave, and they mourned over it: “Alas, my brother!”
c After he had buried him, he said to his sons, “When I die, bury me in the grave where the man of God is
buried. Lay my bones beside his.
d For the word which he proclaimed by the word of the LORD against the altar in Bethel and against all the
temples on the high places in the cities of Samaria shall certainly come to pass.”
Even after this, Jeroboam did not turn from his evil way, but again made priests for the high places from
among the common people. Whoever desired it was installed as a priest of the high places.
This is the account of the sin of the house of Jeroboam for which it was to be cut off and destroyed from the
face of the earth.

* [13:11–34] The next major unit illustrates how Jeroboam’s cultic innovations begin to alienate prophetic
figures of the two kingdoms. Nevertheless, the Lord’s word is stronger than any human attempt to thwart it.
The two prophets also foreshadow the destinies of their respective kingdoms. Israel’s experiment with
idolatry can tempt Judah to abandon its faithfulness to the Lord. If Judah succumbs, and no longer speaks
the word that can call Israel back to the true God, then the only hope for reuniting the two kingdoms will be
when they have both died the death of exile.

a. [13:2] 2 Kgs 23:16.

b. [13:3] 2 Kgs 23:15.

c. [13:31] 2 Kgs 23:17–18.

d. [13:32] 2 Kgs 23:19–20.

Kings of Israel

Kings of Israel.
Ist King: Saul
2nd King: David (most beloved King)
3rd: Solomon (Wisdoms.. author of Ecclesiastes and Song of Solomon)

After King Solomon, the Kingdom was Divided between Israel and Judah

>the kingdom of Judah resulted from the break-up of the United kingdom of Israel (1020 to about 930 BCE) after the northern tribes refused to accept Rehoboam, the son of Solomon, as their king. At first, only the tribe of Judah remained loyal to the house of David, but soon after the tribe of Benjamin joined Judah.

>next Kings in the photos

1Kings Chapter 12 (Bible Marathon Day 151)

1Kings Chapter 12 (Bible Marathon Day 151)

Political Disunity.*
Rehoboam went to Shechem,* where all Israel had come to make him king.
When Jeroboam, son of Nebat, heard about it, he was still in Egypt. He had fled from King Solomon and
remained in Egypt,
and they sent for him. Then Jeroboam and the whole assembly of Israel came and they said to Rehoboam,

“Your father put a heavy yoke on us. If you now lighten the harsh servitude and the heavy yoke your father
imposed on us, we will be your servants.”
He answered them, “Come back to me in three days,” and the people went away.
King Rehoboam asked advice of the elders who had been in his father Solomon’s service while he was
alive, and asked, “How do you advise me to answer this people?”
They replied, “If today you become the servant of this people and serve them, and give them a favorable
answer, they will be your servants forever.”
But he ignored the advice the elders had given him, and asked advice of the young men who had grown up
with him and were in his service.
He said to them, “What answer do you advise that we should give this people, who have told me, ‘Lighten
the yoke your father imposed on us’?”
The young men who had grown up with him replied, “This is what you must say to this people who have told
you, ‘Your father made our yoke heavy; you lighten it for us.’ You must say, ‘My little finger is thicker than my
father’s loins.
My father put a heavy yoke on you, but I will make it heavier. My father beat you with whips, but I will beat you
with scorpions.’”
Jeroboam and the whole people came back to King Rehoboam on the third day, as the king had instructed
them: “Come back to me in three days.”
Ignoring the advice the elders had given him, the king gave the people a harsh answer.
He spoke to them as the young men had advised: “My father made your yoke heavy, but I will make it
heavier. My father beat you with whips, but I will beat you with scorpions.”
a The king did not listen to the people, for this turn of events was from the LORD: he fulfilled the word the
LORD had spoken through Ahijah the Shilonite to Jeroboam, son of Nebat.
b When all Israel saw that the king did not listen to them, the people answered the king:
“What share have we in David?*
We have no heritage in the son of Jesse.
To your tents, Israel!
Now look to your own house, David.”
So Israel went off to their tents.
But Rehoboam continued to reign over the Israelites who lived in the cities of Judah.
King Rehoboam then sent out Adoram,* who was in charge of the forced labor, but all Israel stoned him to
death. King Rehoboam then managed to mount his chariot and flee to Jerusalem.
And so Israel has been in rebellion against the house of David to this day.
When all Israel heard that Jeroboam had returned, they summoned him to an assembly and made him king
over all Israel. None remained loyal to the house of David except the tribe of Judah alone.
Divine Approval.*
On his arrival in Jerusalem, Rehoboam assembled all the house of Judah and the tribe of Benjamin—one
hundred and eighty thousand elite warriors—to wage war against the house of Israel, to restore the kingdom
to Rehoboam, son of Solomon.
However, the word of God came to Shemaiah, a man of God:
Say to Rehoboam, son of Solomon, king of Judah, and to all the house of Judah and to Benjamin, and to
the rest of the people:
Thus says the LORD: You must not go out to war against your fellow Israelites. Return home, each of you, for
it is I who have brought this about. They obeyed the word of the LORD and turned back, according to the
word of the LORD.
Jeroboam built up Shechem in the hill country of Ephraim and lived there. Then he left it and built up Penuel.
Jeroboam’s Cultic Innovations.*
Jeroboam thought to himself: “Now the kingdom will return to the house of David.
If this people go up to offer sacrifices in the house of the LORD in Jerusalem, the hearts of this people will
return to their master, Rehoboam, king of Judah, and they will kill me and return to Rehoboam, king of
c The king took counsel, made two calves of gold, and said to the people: “You have been going up to
Jerusalem long enough. Here are your gods, O Israel, who brought you up from the land of Egypt.”
d And he put one in Bethel, the other in Dan.*
This led to sin, because the people frequented these calves in Bethel and in Dan.
He also built temples on the high places and made priests from among the common people who were not
Divine Disapproval.*
Jeroboam established a feast in the eighth month on the fifteenth day of the month like the pilgrimage feast in
Judah, and he went up to the altar. He did this in Bethel, sacrificing to the calves he had made. He stationed
in Bethel the priests of the high places he had built.
Jeroboam went up to the altar he built in Bethel on the fifteenth day of the eighth month, the month he
arbitrarily chose. He established a feast for the Israelites, and he went up to the altar to burn incense.
* [12:1–14:20] Like the story of the reign of Solomon, the story of the reign of Jeroboam is concentrically
organized. Ahijah’s oracle of promise to Jeroboam (11:26–43) belongs to both stories, ending that of
Solomon (see note on 1:1–11:43) and beginning that of Jeroboam; it corresponds to Ahijah’s oracle of
condemnation in 14:1–20. Within those literary boundaries are accounts of political (12:1–20) and religious
(13:11–34) disunity between Israel and Judah. The center of the story is the account of Jeroboam’s
heterodox cultic innovations (12:26–31).

* [12:1–20] The first major unit of the Jeroboam story was Ahijah’s oracle (11:26–40), followed by the notice
of Solomon’s death (11:41–43). This is the second major unit. It tells how Jeroboam came to the throne of
Israel after the intransigence of Solomon’s son Rehoboam provoked the northern tribes to secede from
Jerusalem. The political disunity of the two kingdoms fulfills the word spoken by Ahijah. Compare 13:11–32,
where Jeroboam’s improper cultic innovations produce religious disunity as well. The scene is concentrically
arranged: narrative introduction, first interview, first consultation, second consultation, second interview,
narrative conclusion. Chronicles has a parallel version of this story in 2 Chr 10:1–19.

* [12:1] Shechem: chief city of the northern tribes, where a covenant had previously been made between the
Lord and his people and a stone of witness had been erected in memory of the event (Jos 24:25–27). All
Israel: see note on 4:7–19.

* [12:16] What share have we in David?: even in David’s time the northern tribes seemed ready to withdraw
from the union with Judah (2 Sm 20:1). The unreasonable attitude of Rehoboam toward them intensified the
discontent caused by the oppression of Solomon (v. 4) and thus precipitated the political separation of the
two kingdoms. In the view of the Deuteronomistic historian (1 Kgs 11:35–36; 12:24), this was by the Lord’s

* [12:18] Adoram: the name is a shortened form of “Adoniram” (see 4:6; 5:28). If this is the same Adoram
who held the position in David’s day (2 Sm 20:24), he would have been a very old man.

* [12:21–25] The center of this unit is a divine oracle delivered by a man of God of the Southern Kingdom in
which the Lord affirms his approval of the secession of the northern tribes. Compare 13:1–10, where
another man of God from Judah proclaims the Lord’s condemnation of Jeroboam’s religious separatism.
Chronicles has a very similar version of Shemaiah’s oracle in 2 Chr 11:1–4.

* [12:26–31] At the center of the story of Jeroboam the narrator describes how the king went beyond the
political separation of Israel from Judah to create a separatist religious system as well. Jeroboam feared that
continued worship in the single Temple in Jerusalem would threaten the political independence of his
kingdom. To prevent this he established sanctuaries with non-levitical clergy in his own territory. At two of the
sanctuaries he set up golden calves, which the narrator depicts as idols. Thus begins what will later be
called “the sin of Jeroboam” (13:34), a theme that will be echoed throughout 1–2 Kings in the
condemnations of almost every king of the Northern Kingdom. Historically, Jeroboam’s innovations were not
as heterodox as our narrative portrays them. Bethel was an ancient and traditional site for worship of the
Lord; and the calves were probably intended to be a dais for the deity invisibly enthroned upon them, rather
like the cherubim atop the ark of the covenant.

* [12:29] Bethel…Dan: at the southern and northern boundaries of the separate kingdom of Israel, where
sanctuaries had existed in the past (Gn 12:8; 13:3–4; 28:10–22; 35:1–15; Jgs 18:1–31).

* [12:32–13:10] This unit of the Jeroboam story corresponds to 12:21–25. Before Jeroboam’s cultic
innovations, a man of God from Judah proclaimed the Lord’s approval of the political separation of the
kingdoms. After Jeroboam’s cultic innovations, a man of God from Judah proclaims the Lord’s disapproval of
Israel’s religious separatism. The unit begins with a long, detailed introduction about the dedication festival
Jeroboam holds at Bethel (12:32–33); then follows the scene of the ceremony disrupted by the oracle of the
man of God (13:1–10).

a. [12:15] 1 Kgs 11:26–39.

b. [12:16] 2 Sm 20:1.

c. [12:28] Ex 32:1–10.

d. [12:29] Tb 1:5.

1Kings Chapter 11 (Bible Marathon Day 151)

1Kings Chapter 11 (Bible Marathon Day 151)

The End of Solomon’s Reign.*
a King Solomon loved many foreign women besides the daughter of Pharaoh—Moabites, Ammonites,
Edomites, Sidonians, Hittites—
b from nations of which the LORD had said to the Israelites: You shall not join with them and they shall not
join with you, lest they turn your hearts to their gods. But Solomon held them* close in love.
He had as wives seven hundred princesses and three hundred concubines, and they turned his heart.
When Solomon was old his wives had turned his heart to follow other gods, and his heart was not entirely
with the LORD, his God, as the heart of David his father had been.
Solomon followed Astarte, the goddess of the Sidonians, and Milcom, the abomination of the Ammonites.
Solomon did what was evil in the sight of the LORD, and he did not follow the LORD unreservedly as David
his father had done.
Solomon then built a high place to Chemosh, the abomination of Moab, and to Molech, the abomination of
the Ammonites, on the mountain opposite Jerusalem.
He did the same for all his foreign wives who burned incense and sacrificed to their gods.
c The LORD became angry with Solomon, because his heart turned away from the LORD, the God of Israel,
who had appeared to him twice
and commanded him not to do this very thing, not to follow other gods. But he did not observe what the
LORD commanded.
So the LORD said to Solomon: Since this is what you want, and you have not kept my covenant and the
statutes which I enjoined on you, I will surely tear the kingdom away from you and give it to your servant.
d But I will not do this during your lifetime, for the sake of David your father; I will tear it away from your son’s
Nor will I tear away the whole kingdom. I will give your son one tribe for the sake of David my servant and for
the sake of Jerusalem, which I have chosen.
Threats to Solomon’s Kingdom.*
The LORD then raised up an adversary* against Solomon: Hadad the Edomite, who was of the royal line in
e Earlier, when David had conquered Edom, Joab, the commander of the army, while going to bury the
slain, killed every male in Edom.
Joab and all Israel remained there six months until they had killed off every male in Edom.
But Hadad, with some Edomite servants of his father, fled toward Egypt. Hadad was then a young boy.
They left Midian and came to Paran; they gathered men from Paran and came to Egypt, to Pharaoh, king of
Egypt; he gave Hadad a house, appointed him rations, and assigned him land.
Hadad won great favor with Pharaoh, so that he gave him in marriage his sister-in-law, the sister of Queen
Tahpenes, his own wife.
Tahpenes’ sister bore Hadad a son, Genubath. Tahpenes weaned him in Pharaoh’s palace. And
Genubath lived in Pharaoh’s house, with Pharaoh’s own sons.
When Hadad in Egypt heard that David rested with his ancestors and that Joab, the commander of the army,
was dead, he said to Pharaoh, “Give me leave to return to my own land.”
Pharaoh said to him, “What do you lack with me, that you are seeking to return to your own land?” He
answered, “Nothing, but please let me go!”
God raised up against Solomon another adversary, Rezon, the son of Eliada, who had fled from his lord,
Hadadezer, king of Zobah,
f when David was slaughtering them. Rezon gathered men about him and became leader of a marauding
band. They went to Damascus, settled there, and made him king in Damascus.
Rezon was an adversary of Israel as long as Solomon lived, in addition to the harm done by Hadad, and he
felt contempt for Israel. He became king over Aram.
Ahijah Announces Jeroboam’s Kingship.*
Solomon had a servant, Jeroboam, son of Nebat, an Ephraimite from Zeredah with a widowed mother
named Zeruah. He rebelled against the king.
This is how he came to rebel. King Solomon was building Millo, closing up the breach of the City of David,
his father.
Jeroboam was a very able man, and when Solomon saw that the young man was also a good worker, he
put him in charge of all the carriers conscripted from the house of Joseph.
At that time Jeroboam left Jerusalem, and the prophet Ahijah the Shilonite met him on the road. The prophet
was wearing a new cloak,* and when the two were alone in the open country,
g Ahijah took off his new cloak, tore it into twelve pieces,
h and said to Jeroboam: “Take ten pieces for yourself. Thus says the LORD, the God of Israel: I am about to
tear the kingdom out of Solomon’s hand and will give you ten of the tribes.
He shall have one tribe for the sake of my servant David, and for the sake of Jerusalem, the city I have
chosen out of all the tribes of Israel.
For they have forsaken me and have bowed down to Astarte, goddess of the Sidonians, Chemosh, god of
Moab, and Milcom, god of the Ammonites. They have not walked in my ways or done what is right in my
eyes, according to my statutes and my ordinances, as David his father did.
Yet I will not take any of the kingdom from Solomon himself, but will keep him a prince as long as he lives, for
the sake of David my servant, whom I have chosen, who kept my commandments and statutes.
But I will take the kingdom from his son’s hand and give it to you—that is, the ten tribes.
I will give his son one tribe, that David my servant may always have a holding before me in Jerusalem, the
city I have chosen, to set my name there.
You I will take and you shall reign over all that you desire and shall become king of Israel.
If, then, you heed all that I command you, walking in my ways, and do what is right in my eyes by keeping my
statutes and my commandments like David my servant, I will be with you. I will build a lasting house for you,
just as I did for David; I will give Israel to you.
I will humble David’s line for this, but not forever.”
When Solomon tried to have Jeroboam killed, Jeroboam fled to Shishak, king of Egypt. He remained in
Egypt until Solomon’s death.
The rest of the acts of Solomon, with all that he did and his wisdom, are recorded in the book of the acts of
Solomon was king in Jerusalem over all Israel for forty years.
Solomon rested with his ancestors and was buried in the City of David, his father, and Rehoboam his son
succeeded him as king.
* [11:1–13] The next major unit of the Solomon story corresponds to 3:1–15. Like the earlier passage it
includes the narrator’s remarks about Solomon’s foreign wives and his building projects, and a divine word
commenting on Solomon’s conduct. However, where 3:1–15 is generally positive toward Solomon, the
present passage is unrelievedly negative. Chronicles has no parallel to this material.

* [11:2] Them: both the nations and their gods.

* [11:14–25] This unit of the Solomon story corresponds to 2:12b–46, where Solomon secured his kingdom
by eliminating three men he perceived as threats. In this passage, we learn of two foreigners the Lord raised
up as “adversaries” to Solomon as early as the beginning of his reign (despite Solomon’s complacent claim
to Hiram in 5:18 that he had no adversary). In the next section we will learn of a third opponent, Israelite
rather than foreign, who turns out to be the “servant of Solomon” announced by the Lord in 11:11. Chronicles
has no parallel to this material.

* [11:14] Adversary: Hebrew śatan, one who stands in opposition; in this context a political opponent.

* [11:26–43] The last major unit of the Solomon story tells how the prophet Ahijah announces the divine
intention to take the larger part of Solomon’s kingdom from his control and give it to Jeroboam, Solomon’s
servant. This counterbalances the first unit of the story, 1:1–2:12a, where another prophet, Nathan,
managed to influence the royal succession and obtain the throne for Solomon. The unit is also the first part of
the story of Jeroboam (11:26–14:20). It thus acts as a literary hinge connecting the two stories. Chronicles
contains a death notice for Solomon in 2 Chr 9:29–31.

* [11:29] The narrator uses a powerful wordplay here. In the Hebrew consonantal text, Ahijah’s cloak (slmh)
is indistinguishable from Solomon’s name (slmh). Since a prophetic gesture such as Ahijah’s was
understood as effecting the event it announced, Ahijah’s tearing of his cloak embodies the divine action that
will tear Solomon’s kingdom apart (cf. vv. 11–13).

a. [11:1–3] Dt 17:17; Sir 47:19–20.

b. [11:2] Ex 34:16.

c. [11:9] 1 Kgs 3:4–15; 6:11–13; 9:2–9.

d. [11:12–13] 1 Kgs 11:34–36.

e. [11:15] 2 Sm 8:13–14.

f. [11:24] 2 Sm 8:3–6.

g. [11:30] 1 Sm 15:27–28.

h. [11:31–32] 1 Kgs 12:20.

1Kings Chapter 10 (Bible Marathon Day 150)

1Kings Chapter 10 (Bible Marathon Day 150)

Solomon’s Listening Heart: the Queen of Sheba.*
a The queen of Sheba,* having heard a report of Solomon’s fame, came to test him with subtle questions.
She arrived in Jerusalem with a very numerous retinue, and with camels bearing spices, a large amount of
gold, and precious stones. She came to Solomon and spoke to him about everything that she had on her
King Solomon explained everything she asked about, and there was nothing so obscure that the king could
not explain it to her.
When the queen of Sheba witnessed Solomon’s great wisdom, the house he had built,
the food at his table, the seating of his ministers, the attendance and dress of his waiters, his servers, and the
burnt offerings he offered in the house of the LORD, it took her breath away.
“The report I heard in my country about your deeds and your wisdom is true,” she told the king.
“I did not believe the report until I came and saw with my own eyes that not even the half had been told me.
Your wisdom and prosperity surpass the report I heard.
Happy are your servants, happy these ministers of yours, who stand before you always and listen to your
Blessed be the LORD, your God, who has been pleased to place you on the throne of Israel. In his enduring
love for Israel, the LORD has made you king to carry out judgment and justice.”
Then she gave the king one hundred and twenty gold talents, a very large quantity of spices, and precious
stones. Never again did anyone bring such an abundance of spices as the queen of Sheba gave to King
Hiram’s fleet, which used to bring gold from Ophir, also brought from there a very large quantity of almug*
wood and precious stones.
With this wood the king made supports for the house of the LORD and for the house of the king, and harps
and lyres for the singers. Never again was any such almug wood brought or seen to the present day.
King Solomon gave the queen of Sheba everything she desired and asked for, besides what King Solomon
gave her from Solomon’s royal bounty. Then she returned with her servants to her own country.

Solomon’s Riches: Domestic Affairs.*
b The gold that came to Solomon in one year weighed six hundred and sixty-six gold talents,
in addition to what came from the tolls on travelers, from the traffic of merchants, and from all the kings of
Arabia and the governors of the country.
c King Solomon made two hundred shields of beaten gold (six hundred shekels of gold went into each
and three hundred bucklers of beaten gold (three minas of gold went into each buckler); and the king put
them in the house of the Forest of Lebanon.
The king made a large ivory throne, and overlaid it with refined gold.
The throne had six steps, a back with a round top, and an arm on each side of the seat, with two lions
standing next to the arms,
and twelve other lions standing there on the steps, two to a step, one on either side of each step. Nothing like
this was made in any other kingdom.
All King Solomon’s drinking vessels were gold, and all the utensils in the house of the Forest of Lebanon
were pure gold. There was no silver, for in Solomon’s time silver was reckoned as nothing.
For the king had a fleet of Tarshish ships* at sea with Hiram’s fleet. Once every three years the fleet of
Tarshish ships would come with a cargo of gold, silver, ivory, apes, and peacocks.

Solomon’s Renown.
Thus King Solomon surpassed all the kings of the earth in riches and wisdom.
And the whole world sought audience with Solomon, to hear the wisdom God had put into his heart.
They all brought their yearly tribute: vessels of silver and gold, garments, weapons, spices, horses and
mules—what was due each year.

Solomon’s Riches: Chariots and Horses.
d Solomon amassed chariots and horses; he had one thousand four hundred chariots and twelve thousand
horses; these he allocated among the chariot cities and to the king’s service in Jerusalem.
e The king made silver as common in Jerusalem as stones, and cedars as numerous as the sycamores of
the Shephelah.
Solomon’s horses were imported from Egypt and from Cilicia, where the king’s merchants purchased them.
A chariot imported from Egypt cost six hundred shekels of silver, a horse one hundred and fifty shekels; they
were exported at these rates to all the Hittite and Aramean kings.
* [10:1–13] The sub-unit on Solomon’s wisdom contrasts with 3:16–28. There Solomon’s gifts led him to
listen to the humblest of his subjects; he accomplished justice and was revered by all his people. Here the
emphasis is on his clever speech to a foreign monarch. She is duly impressed by the glory of his court, but it
is she, not Solomon, who recalls the monarch’s duty of establishing justice (v. 9). The unit is interrupted
briefly by a remark about Solomon’s maritime commerce (10:11–12).

* [10:1] Queen of Sheba: women rulers among the Arabs are recorded in eighth-century B.C. Assyrian
inscriptions. Sheba was for centuries the leading principality in what is now Yemen.

* [10:11–12] Almug: the identification of this wood is unknown.

* [10:14–29] The material on Solomon’s riches, like that in 4:1–5:8, is organized around domestic affairs,
international affairs, and chariots and horses (see note on 4:1–5:8), but contrasts with that earlier passage.
There, Solomon’s domestic administration produced prosperity for all Judah and Israel (4:20); here the
focus is on the wealth and luxury of Solomon’s own palace (10:14–21). There his international hegemony
assured peace for all Judah and Israel (5:5); here his maritime ventures simply bring him more and more
wealth (9:26–28; 10:11–12, 22). There even his livestock benefited from his prudent administration; here
chariotry and horses are just another commodity to be traded (10:26–29).

* [10:22] Tarshish ships: large, strong vessels for long voyages. Tarshish was probably the ancient
Tartessus, a Phoenician colony in southern Spain. Ivory, apes, and peacocks: the Hebrew words are
obscure and the translations conjectural; however, the reference is certainly to exotic luxury items.

a. [10:1] Mt 12:42; Lk 11:31.

b. [10:14] Dt 17:17; Sir 47:18.

c. [10:16] 1 Kgs 14:26–28; 2 Sm 8:7.

d. [10:26] 1 Kgs 5:6; Dt 17:16; 2 Chr 1:14; 9:25.

e. [10:27] Dt 17:17; Sir 47:18.

1Kings Chapter 9 (Bible Marathon Day 150)

1Kings Chapter 9 (Bible Marathon Day 150)

Promise and Warning to Solomon.
After Solomon finished building the house of the LORD, the house of the king, and everything else that he
wanted to do,
a the LORD appeared to Solomon a second time, as he had appeared to him in Gibeon.
The LORD said to him: I have heard the prayer of petition which you offered in my presence. I have
consecrated this house which you have built and I set my name there forever; my eyes and my heart shall
be there always.
As for you, if you walk before me as David your father did, wholeheartedly and uprightly, doing all that I have
commanded you, keeping my statutes and ordinances,
b I will establish your royal throne over Israel forever, as I promised David your father: There shall never be
wanting someone from your line on the throne of Israel.
But if ever you and your descendants turn from following me, fail to keep my commandments and statutes
which I set before you, and proceed to serve other gods and bow down to them,
I will cut off Israel from the land I gave them and repudiate the house I have consecrated for my name. Israel
shall become a proverb and a byword among all nations,
c and this house shall become a heap of ruins. Every passerby shall gasp in horror and ask, “Why has the
LORD done such things to this land and to this house?”
And the answer will come: “Because they abandoned the LORD, their God, who brought their ancestors out
of the land of Egypt, and they embraced other gods, bowing down to them and serving them. That is why the
LORD has brought upon them all this evil.”

After Building the Temple.*
d After the twenty years during which Solomon built the two houses, the house of the LORD and the house of
the king—
Hiram, king of Tyre, supplying Solomon with all the cedar wood, fir wood, and gold he wished, and King
Solomon giving Hiram in return twenty cities in the land of Galilee—
Hiram left Tyre to see the cities Solomon had given him, but he was not satisfied with them.
So he said, “What are these cities you have given me, my brother?”* And he called them the land of Cabul,
as they are called to this day.
Hiram, however, had sent King Solomon one hundred and twenty talents of gold.*
This is an account of the conscript labor force King Solomon raised in order to build the house of the LORD,
his own house, Millo,* the wall of Jerusalem, Hazor, Megiddo, Gezer
(Pharaoh, king of Egypt, had come up and taken Gezer and, after destroying it by fire and slaying all the
Canaanites living in the city, had given it as a farewell gift to his daughter, Solomon’s wife;
Solomon then rebuilt Gezer), Lower Beth-horon,
Baalath, Tamar in the desert of Judah,
all his cities for supplies, cities for chariots and cities for cavalry, and whatever Solomon desired to build in
Jerusalem, in Lebanon, and in the entire land under his dominion.
All the people who were left of the Amorites, Hittites, Perizzites, Hivites, and Jebusites, who were not
those of their descendants who were left in the land and whom the Israelites had not been able to destroy
under the ban—these Solomon conscripted as forced laborers, as they are to this day.
But Solomon made none of the Israelites forced laborers, for they were his fighting force, his ministers,
commanders, adjutants, chariot officers, and cavalry.
There were five hundred fifty overseers answerable to Solomon’s governors for the work, directing the
people engaged in the work.
e As soon as Pharaoh’s daughter went up from the City of David to her house, which he had built for her,
Solomon built Millo.
Three times a year Solomon used to offer burnt offerings and communion offerings on the altar which he had
built to the LORD, and to burn incense before the LORD.
Thus he completed the temple.*

Solomon’s Gifts.*
King Solomon also built a fleet at Ezion-geber, which is near Elath on the shore of the Red Sea in the land of
To this fleet Hiram sent his own servants, expert sailors, with the servants of Solomon.
They went to Ophir, and obtained four hundred and twenty talents of gold and brought it to King Solomon.

* [9:10–25] This unit of the Solomon story corresponds to 5:15–32. It comprises the same two themes,
negotiations with Hiram of Tyre (vv. 10–14) and use of conscripted labor (vv. 15–23); the last two verses
mark the end of the account of Solomon’s building projects (vv. 24–25). Chronicles has an incomplete
parallel in 2 Chr 8:1–13.

* [9:13] Brother: a term for a treaty partner; cf. 20:32–33. Cabul: the meaning is uncertain; perhaps “of no

* [9:14] The talent was a measure of weight that varied in the course of ancient Israel’s history from forty-five
to one hundred thirty pounds. This would mean that, at the least, Hiram sent five thousand pounds of gold to
Solomon, and the figure may be as much as three times that amount.

* [9:15] Millo: probably means ground fill, and may refer to an artificial earthwork or platform of stamped
ground south of the Temple area. It was begun by David (2 Sm 5:9); cf. 1 Kgs 9:24; 11:27.

* [9:25] With these words the account of the construction and dedication of the Temple, which began in 6:1,
comes to a close. The verb “complete” (shillem) is a play on Solomon’s name (shelomo); see also the note
on 7:51.

* [9:26–10:29] The next major unit of the Solomon story returns to the theme of the three gifts the Lord gave
Solomon in 3:12–13: a listening heart (10:1–13), riches (9:26–27; 10:14–22, 26–29), universal renown
(10:23–25). In 3:16–5:14, where the same three themes structure the passage, the emphasis was on the
benefits these gifts brought to the whole nation; here it is on the luxury they afford to Solomon’s own court.
The material in 9:26–28; 10:11–12, 22 dealing with Solomon’s commercial fleet corresponds to the material
on Solomon’s international affairs in 5:1–5. Chronicles has a partial parallel to this material in 2 Chr 9:17–28;
see also 2 Chr 1:14–17.

* [9:26] Ezion-geber…Edom: the first mention of maritime commerce in the Israelite kingdom; Edom was
subject after David conquered it; cf. 2 Sm 8:13–14.

a. [9:2] 1 Kgs 3:4–15; 6:11–13; 11:9–13.

b. [9:5] 2 Sm 7:16.

c. [9:8] Dt 29:23; Jer 22:8.

d. [9:10] 1 Kgs 6:38–7:1.

e. [9:24] 1 Kgs 3:1; 7:8.

1Kings Chapter 8 (Bible Marathon Day 149)

1Kings Chapter 8 (Bible Marathon Day 149)

Dedication of the Temple.*
Then Solomon assembled the elders of Israel and all the heads of the tribes, the princes in the ancestral
houses of the Israelites. They came to King Solomon in Jerusalem, to bring up the ark of the LORD’s
covenant from the city of David (which is Zion).
All the people of Israel assembled before King Solomon during the festival in the month of Ethanim (the
seventh month).*
When all the elders of Israel had arrived, the priests took up the ark;
and they brought up the ark of the LORD and the tent of meeting with all the sacred vessels that were in the
tent. The priests and Levites brought them up.
King Solomon and the entire community of Israel, gathered for the occasion before the ark, sacrificed sheep
and oxen too many to number or count.
* The priests brought the ark of the covenant of the LORD to its place, the inner sanctuary of the house, the
holy of holies, beneath the wings of the cherubim.
The cherubim had their wings spread out over the place of the ark, sheltering the ark and its poles from
a The poles were so long that their ends could be seen from the holy place in front of the inner sanctuary.
They cannot be seen from outside, but they remain there to this day.
b There was nothing in the ark but the two stone tablets which Moses had put there at Horeb, when the
LORD made a covenant with the Israelites after they went forth from the land of Egypt.
c When the priests left the holy place, the cloud filled the house of the LORD
so that the priests could no longer minister because of the cloud, since the glory of the LORD had filled the
house of the LORD.
* d Then Solomon said,
“The LORD intends to dwell in the dark cloud;
I have indeed built you a princely house,
the base for your enthronement forever.”
The king turned and blessed the whole assembly of Israel, while the whole assembly of Israel stood.
He said: “Blessed be the LORD, the God of Israel, who with his own mouth spoke a promise to David my
father and by his hand fulfilled it, saying:
e Since the day I brought my people Israel out of Egypt, I have not chosen a city out of any tribe of Israel for
the building of a house, that my name might be there; but I have chosen David to rule my people Israel.
When David my father wished to build a house for the name of the LORD, the God of Israel,
the LORD said to him: In wishing to build a house for my name, you did well.
But it is not you who will build the house, but your son, who comes from your loins; he shall build the house
for my name.
Now the LORD has fulfilled the word he spoke: I have succeeded David my father, and I sit on the throne of
Israel, as the LORD has spoken, and I have built this house for the name of the LORD, the God of Israel.
I have provided there a place for the ark in which is the covenant of the LORD that he made with our
ancestors when he brought them out of the land of Egypt.”

Solomon’s Prayer.
Solomon stood before the altar of the LORD in the presence of the whole assembly of Israel, and stretching
forth his hands toward heaven,
he said, “LORD, God of Israel, there is no God like you in heaven above or on earth below; you keep
covenant and love toward your servants who walk before you with their whole heart,
the covenant that you kept toward your servant, David my father, what you promised him; your mouth has
spoken and your hand has fulfilled this very day.
f And now, LORD, God of Israel, keep toward your servant, David my father, what you promised: There shall
never be wanting someone from your line to sit before me on the throne of Israel, provided that your
descendants keep to their way, walking before me as you have.
Now, God of Israel, may the words you spoke to your servant, David my father, be confirmed.
“Is God indeed to dwell on earth? If the heavens and the highest heavens cannot contain you, how much
less this house which I have built!
Regard kindly the prayer and petition of your servant, LORD, my God, and listen to the cry of supplication
which I, your servant, utter before you this day.
May your eyes be open night and day toward this house, the place of which you said, My name shall be
there; listen to the prayer your servant makes toward this place.
Listen to the petition of your servant and of your people Israel which they offer toward this place. Listen, from
the place of your enthronement, heaven, listen and forgive.
g “If someone sins in some way against a neighbor and is required to take an oath sanctioned by a curse,
and comes and takes the oath before your altar in this house,
listen in heaven; act and judge your servants. Condemn the wicked, requiting their ways; acquit the just,
rewarding their justice.
“When your people Israel are defeated by an enemy because they sinned against you, and then they return
to you, praise your name, pray to you, and entreat you in this house,
listen in heaven and forgive the sin of your people Israel, and bring them back to the land you gave their
“When the heavens are closed, so that there is no rain, because they have sinned against you, but they pray
toward this place and praise your name, and turn from their sin because you have afflicted them,
listen in heaven and forgive the sin of your servants, your people Israel (for you teach them the good way in
which they should walk). Give rain to this land of yours which you have given to your people as their heritage.
“If there is famine in the land or pestilence; or if blight comes, or mildew, or locusts, or caterpillars; if an enemy
of your people presses upon them in the land and at their gates; whatever plague or sickness there may be;
whatever prayer or petition any may make, any of your people Israel, who know heartfelt remorse and stretch
out their hands toward this house,
listen in heaven, the place of your enthronement; forgive and take action. Render to each and all according
to their ways, you who know every heart; for it is you alone who know the heart of every human being.
So may they revere you as long as they live on the land you gave our ancestors.
“To the foreigners, likewise, who are not of your people Israel, but who come from a distant land for the sake
of your name
(since people will hear of your great name and your mighty hand and your outstretched arm), when they
come and pray toward this house,
listen in heaven, the place of your enthronement. Do all that the foreigner asks of you, that all the peoples of
the earth may know your name, may revere you as do your people Israel, and may know that your name
has been invoked upon this house that I have built.
“When your people go out to war against their enemies, by whatever way you send them, and they pray to
the LORD toward the city you have chosen and the house I have built for your name,
listen in heaven to their prayer and petition, and uphold their cause.
h “When they sin against you (for there is no one who does not sin), and in your anger against them you
deliver them to an enemy, so that their captors carry them off to the land of the enemy, far or near,
and they have a change of heart in the land of their captivity and they turn and entreat you in the land of their
captors and say, ‘We have sinned and done wrong; we have been wicked’;
if with their whole heart and soul they turn back to you in the land of their enemies who took them captive,
and pray to you toward the land you gave their ancestors, the city you have chosen, and the house I have
built for your name,
listen in heaven, your dwelling place, to their prayer and petition, and uphold their cause.
Forgive your people who have sinned against you and all the offenses they have committed against you,
and grant them mercy in the sight of their captors, so that these will be merciful to them.
For they are your people and your heritage, whom you brought out of Egypt, from the midst of the iron
“Thus may your eyes be open to the petition of your servant and to the petition of your people Israel; thus may
you listen to them whenever they call upon you.
For you have set them apart from all the peoples of the earth to be your heritage, as you declared through
Moses your servant when you brought our ancestors out of Egypt, Lord my GOD.”
After Solomon finished offering this entire prayer and petition to the LORD, he rose from before the altar of the
LORD, where he had been kneeling, hands outstretched toward heaven.
He stood and blessed the whole assembly of Israel, saying in a loud voice:
“Blessed be the LORD who has given rest to his people Israel, just as he promised. Not a single word has
gone unfulfilled of the entire gracious promise he made through Moses his servant.
May the LORD, our God, be with us as he was with our ancestors and may he not forsake us nor cast us off.
May he draw our hearts to himself, that we may walk in his ways and keep the commands, statutes, and
ordinances that he enjoined on our ancestors.
May these words of mine, the petition I have offered before the LORD, our God, be present to the LORD our
God day and night, that he may uphold the cause of his servant and the cause of his people Israel as each
day requires,
so that all the peoples of the earth may know that the LORD is God and there is no other.
* Your heart must be wholly devoted to the LORD, our God, observing his statutes and keeping his
commandments, as on this day.”
The king and all Israel with him offered sacrifices before the LORD.
* Solomon offered as communion offerings to the LORD twenty-two thousand oxen and one hundred twenty
thousand sheep. Thus the king and all the Israelites dedicated the house of the LORD.
On that day the king consecrated the middle of the court facing the house of the LORD; he offered there the
burnt offerings, the grain offerings, and the fat of the communion offerings, because the bronze altar before
the LORD was too small to hold the burnt offering, the grain offering, and the fat of the communion offering.
On this occasion Solomon and all Israel with him, a great assembly from Lebo-hamath to the Wadi of Egypt,
celebrated the festival before the LORD, our God, for seven days.
On the eighth day he dismissed the people, who blessed the king and went to their tents, rejoicing and glad
of heart because of all the blessings the LORD had given to David his servant and to his people Israel.

* [8:1–66] The account of the Temple’s dedication ceremony is organized concentrically: Solomon gathers
the assembly (vv. 1–13), blesses it (vv. 14–21), utters a long dedicatory prayer (vv. 22–53), blesses the
assembly again (vv. 54–61), and dismisses it (vv. 62–66). To this account is appended an appearance of
the Lord to Solomon (9:2–9) that balances the divine word to Solomon in the account of the Temple’s
construction (6:11–13).

* [8:2] “The seventh month” (“Ethanim” in the Canaanite calendar) corresponded to late September/early
October. The great festival at that time of year is the feast of Booths, or Succoth/Sukkoth (see Lv 23:33–43; Dt
16:13–15). The feast was important enough to warrant holding the dedication ceremony either a month
before or eleven months after the Temple was completed in the eighth month (6:38).

* [8:6–9] The transfer of the ark of the covenant into the newly constructed Temple building, God’s act of
possession (8:10–13), and Solomon’s dedicatory prayer and sacrifices constituted the Temple’s solemn
dedication and made of it the place of God’s presence in the midst of Israel for which David had hoped (2
Sm 6:12–15; 7:1–3). Later God expresses approval of the Temple with an oracle (1 Kgs 9:3–9).

* [8:12–13] This brief poem is rich in layered meanings. The “dark cloud” in which the Lord intends to dwell
refers not only to the cloud that filled the Temple (v. 10) but to the darkness of the windowless holy of holies
and to the mystery of the God enthroned invisibly upon the cherubim as well. Solomon calls the Temple he
offers God a firm base, using terminology similar to that used for God’s firm establishment of Solomon’s own
kingdom (2:12, 46). Finally, Solomon intends this as a place for God to yashab, but the Hebrew word
yashab can mean “to dwell” or “to sit.” In other words, the Temple can be understood both as a place where
God resides and as the earthly foundation of God’s heavenly throne. The double meaning allows an
understanding of the divine presence as both transcendent and graciously immanent. See Solomon’s
sentiments in 8:27, and the frequent reference in 8:30–52 to God’s hearing in heaven prayers that were
offered in or toward the Temple.

* [8:61] In urging the people to be “wholly devoted” (shalem), Solomon plays on his own name (shelomo), as
if to imply that he himself exemplifies perfect fidelity to God.

* [8:63] “Communion offerings” (shelamim) is another wordplay on the name of Solomon.

a. [8:8] Ex 25:13–15.

b. [8:9] Ex 25:16; 34:27–28; Dt 10:5; Heb 9:4.

c. [8:10] Ex 13:21; 40:34–38.

d. [8:12] Ex 20:21; Dt 4:11; 5:22; Ps 97:2.

e. [8:16–19] 2 Sm 7:5–8, 12–13.

f. [8:25] 1 Kgs 2:4; 9:5; 2 Sm 7:14–16; Jer 33:17.

g. [8:31] Ex 22:6–10.

h. [8:46] Eccl 7:20; 1 Jn 1:8.

1Kings Chapter 7 (Bible Marathon Day 149)

1Kings Chapter 7 (Bible Marathon Day 149)

* a To finish the building of his own house Solomon took thirteen years.
He built the House of the Forest of Lebanon one hundred cubits long, fifty wide, and thirty high; it was
supported by four rows of cedar columns, with cedar beams upon the columns.
Moreover, it had a ceiling of cedar above the rafters resting on the columns; these rafters numbered forty-
five, fifteen to a row.
There were lattices in three rows, each row facing the next,
and all the openings and doorposts were squared with lintels, each facing across from the next.
He also made the Porch of Columns, fifty cubits long and thirty wide. The porch extended across the front,
and there were columns with a canopy in front of them.
He also made the Porch of the Throne where he gave judgment—that is, the Porch of Judgment; it was
paneled with cedar from floor to ceiling beams.
b The house in which he lived was in another court, set in deeper than the Porch and of the same
construction. (Solomon made a house like this Porch for Pharaoh’s daughter, whom he had married.)*
All these buildings were of fine stones, hewn to size and trimmed front and back with a saw, from the
foundation to the bonding course and outside as far as the great court.
The foundation was made of fine, large blocks, some ten cubits and some eight cubits.
Above were fine stones hewn to size, and cedar wood.
The great court had three courses of hewn stones all around and a course of cedar beams. So also were
the inner court of the house of the LORD and its porch.
King Solomon brought Hiram* from Tyre.
He was a bronze worker, the son of a widow from the tribe of Naphtali; his father had been from Tyre. He
was endowed with wisdom, understanding, and knowledge for doing any work in bronze. He came to King
Solomon and did all his metal work.
* c He fashioned two bronze columns, each eighteen cubits high and twelve cubits in circumference.
He also made two capitals cast in bronze, to be placed on top of the columns, each of them five cubits high.
There were meshes made like netting and braid made like chains for the capitals on top of the columns,
seven for each capital.
* He also cast pomegranates, two rows around each netting to cover the capital on top of the columns.
The capitals on top of the columns (in the porch) were made like lilies, four cubits high.
And the capitals on the two columns, both above and adjoining the bulge where it crossed out of the netting,
had two hundred pomegranates in rows around each capital.
He set up the columns at the temple porch; one he set up to the south, and called it Jachin, and the other to
the north, and called it Boaz.*
The top of the columns was made like a lily. Thus the work on the columns was completed.
Then he made the molten sea;* it was made with a circular rim, and measured ten cubits across, five in
height, and thirty in circumference.
Under the brim, gourds encircled it for ten cubits around the compass of the sea; the gourds were in two
rows and were cast in one mold with the sea.
This rested on twelve oxen, three facing north, three facing west, three facing south, and three facing east,
with their haunches all toward the center; upon them was set the sea.
It was a handbreadth thick, and its brim resembled that of a cup, being lily-shaped. Its capacity was two
thousand baths.*
He also made ten stands of bronze, each four cubits long, four wide, and three high.
When these stands were constructed, panels were set within the framework.
On the panels within the frames there were lions, oxen, and cherubim; and on the frames likewise, above
and below the lions and oxen, there were wreaths in hammered relief.
Each stand had four bronze wheels and bronze axles. The four legs of each stand had cast braces, which
were under the basin; they had wreaths on each side.
The mouth of the basin was inside, and a cubit above, the crown, whose opening was round, made like a
receptacle, a cubit and a half in depth. There was carved work at the opening, on panels that were square,
not circular.
The four wheels were below the paneling, and the axletrees of the wheels and the stand were of one piece.
Each wheel was a cubit and a half high.
The wheels were constructed like chariot wheels; their axletrees, rims, spokes, and hubs were all cast.
The four braces reached the four corners of each stand, and formed part of the stand.
At the top of the stand there was a raised collar half a cubit high, and the handles and panels on top of the
stand formed part of it.
On the flat ends of the handles and on the panels, wherever there was a bare space, cherubim, lions, and
palm trees were carved, as well as wreaths all around.
This was how he made the ten stands, all of the same casting, the same size, the same shape.
He made ten bronze basins, each four cubits in diameter with a capacity of forty baths, one basin atop each
of the ten stands.
He placed the stands, five on the south side of the house and five on the north. The sea he placed off to the
southeast from the south side of the house.
When Hiram had made the pots, shovels, and bowls, he finished all his work for King Solomon in the house
of the LORD:
two columns; two nodes for the capitals on top of the columns; two pieces of netting covering the two nodes
for the capitals on top of the columns;
four hundred pomegranates in double rows on both pieces of netting that covered the two nodes of the
capitals on top of the columns;
ten stands; ten basins on the stands;
one sea; twelve oxen supporting the sea;
pots, shovels, and bowls. All these articles which Hiram made for King Solomon in the house of the LORD
were of burnished bronze.
The king had them cast in the neighborhood of the Jordan, between Succoth and Zarethan, in thick clay
Solomon did not weigh all the articles because they were so numerous; the weight of the bronze, therefore,
was not determined.
Solomon made all the articles that were for the house of the LORD: the golden altar; the table on which the
showbread lay;
the lampstands of pure gold, five to the right and five to the left before the inner sanctuary; their flowers,
lamps, and tongs of gold;
basins, snuffers, bowls, cups, and firepans of pure gold; hinges of gold for the doors of the innermost part of
the house, or holy of holies, and for the doors of the outer room, the nave.
d When all the work undertaken by King Solomon in the house of the LORD was completed,* he brought in
the votive offerings of his father David, and put the silver, gold, and other articles in the treasuries of the
house of the LORD.

* [7:1–12] The account of Solomon’s building of the Temple (the Lord’s “house”) is interrupted by an account
of his building of the palace (Solomon’s “house”), which contained also the main buildings of public
administration. The passage is anachronistic, since 6:38–7:1 and 9:10 imply that the palace was not begun
until the Temple was completed. By placing the account here, the narrator highlights the fact that Solomon
spent almost twice as long on his own “house” as on the Lord’s.

* [7:8] Solomon did not build the house for Pharaoh’s daughter until Temple and palace were finished (3:1).
By mentioning this marriage, the narrator keeps before the reader a developing theme in the Solomon story:
the king’s building activities for his foreign wives, which eventually implicate him in idolatry (3:1; 7:8; 9:24;

* [7:13] Hiram: a craftsman, not the king of Tyre (5:15–26).

* [7:15] The two bronze columns were called Jachin and Boaz (v. 21; also 2 Chr 3:17); the significance of
the names is unclear. The columns stood to the right and left of the Temple porch, and may have been
intended to mark the entrance to the building as the entrance to God’s private dwelling. Their extraordinary
size and elaborate decoration would have made them the most impressive parts of the Temple visible to the
ordinary viewer, who was not permitted into the nave, let alone into the innermost sanctuary. According to Jer
52:21, the columns were hollow, the bronze exterior being “four fingers thick.”

* [7:18–20] The Hebrew text is corrupt in many places here, and alternative readings attested in the ancient
versions are secondary attempts to make sense of the text. A clearer description of the columns and their
decoration is found in vv. 41–42.

* [7:21] Jachin…Boaz: see note on 7:15.

* [7:23–26] The molten sea: this was a large circular tank containing about twelve thousand gallons of water.

* [7:26] Baths: see note on Is 5:10.

* [7:51] The account of the Temple’s construction has been punctuated by references to “building” (banah)
or “finishing” (killah) it (6:1b, 9a, 14, 38; 7:40). Here, at the end of the account, the narrator uses a different
verb for its “completion,” shillem, which allows him to play on the name of Solomon (shelomo).

a. [7:1] 1 Kgs 9:10.

b. [7:8] 1 Kgs 3:1; 9:24.

c. [7:15–18] Jer 52:21–23.

d. [7:51] 2 Sm 8:9–12.
f. [5:19] 2 Sm 7:12–13.

1Kings Chapter 6 (Bible Marathon Day 148)

1Kings Chapter 6 (Bible Marathon Day 148)

Building of the Temple.*
In the four hundred and eightieth year after the Israelites went forth from the land of Egypt, in the fourth year of
Solomon’s reign over Israel, in the month of Ziv (the second month), he began to build the house of the
The house which King Solomon built for the LORD was sixty cubits long, twenty wide, and thirty high.
The porch in front of the nave of the house was twenty cubits from side to side along the width of the house,
and ten cubits deep in front of the house.
Windows with closed lattices were made for the house,
and adjoining the wall of the house he built a substructure around its walls that enclosed the nave and the
inner sanctuary, and he made side chambers all around.
The lowest story was five cubits wide, the middle one six cubits wide, the third seven cubits wide, because
he put recesses along the outside of the house to avoid fastening anything into the walls of the house.
The house was built of stone dressed at the quarry, so that no hammer or ax, no iron tool, was to be heard
in the house during its construction.
The entrance to the middle story was on the south side of the house; stairs led up to the middle story and
from the middle story to the third.
When he had finished building the house, it was roofed in with rafters and boards of cedar.
He built the substructure five cubits high all along the outside of the house, to which it was joined by cedar
The word of the LORD came to Solomon:
a As to this house you are building—if you walk in my statutes, carry out my ordinances, and observe all my
commands, walking in them, I will fulfill toward you my word which I spoke to David your father.
I will dwell in the midst of the Israelites and will not forsake my people Israel.
When Solomon finished building the house,
its inside walls were lined with cedar paneling: he covered the interior with wood from floor to ceiling, and he
covered its floor with fir planking.
At the rear of the house a space of twenty cubits was set off by cedar panels from the floor to the ceiling,
enclosing the inner sanctuary, the holy of holies.
The house was forty cubits long, that is, the nave, the part in front.
The cedar in the interior of the house was carved in the form of gourds and open flowers; all was of cedar,
and no stone was to be seen.
In the innermost part of the house* he set up the inner sanctuary to house the ark of the LORD’s covenant.
In front of the inner sanctuary (it was twenty cubits long, twenty wide, and twenty high, and he covered it with
pure gold), he made an altar of cedar.
Solomon covered the interior of the house with pure gold, and he drew golden chains across in front of the
inner sanctuary, and covered it with gold.
He covered the whole house with gold, until the whole house was done, and the whole altar that belonged to
the inner sanctuary he covered with gold.
In the inner sanctuary he made two cherubim, each ten cubits high, made of pine.
Each wing of a cherub was five cubits so that the span from wing tip to wing tip was ten cubits.
The second cherub was also ten cubits: the two cherubim were identical in size and shape;
the first cherub was ten cubits high, and so was the second.
He placed the cherubim in the inmost part of the house; the wings of the cherubim were spread wide, so that
one wing of the first touched the side wall and the wing of the second touched the other wall; the wings
pointing to the middle of the room touched each other.
He overlaid the cherubim with gold.
The walls of the house on all sides of both the inner and the outer rooms had carved figures of cherubim,
palm trees, and open flowers.
The floor of the house of both the inner and the outer rooms was overlaid with gold.
At the entrance of the inner sanctuary, doors of pine were made; the doorframes had five-sided posts.
The two doors were of pine, with carved figures of cherubim, palm trees, and open flowers. The doors were
overlaid with gold, and the cherubim and the palm trees were also covered with beaten gold.
He did the same at the entrance to the nave, where the doorposts were of pine and were four-sided.
The two doors were of fir wood, each door consisting of two panels hinged together;
and he carved cherubim, palm trees, and open flowers, and plated them with gold.
He walled off the inner court with three courses of hewn stones and one course of cedar beams.
The foundations of the LORD’s house were laid in the month of Ziv in the fourth year,
and it was finished, in all particulars, exactly according to plan, in the month of Bul, the eighth month, in the
eleventh year. Thus Solomon built it in seven years.

[6:1–7:51] The central units of the Solomon story describe the building of the Temple (6:1–7:51) and its
dedication ceremony (8:1–9:10). The account of the construction of the Temple (“the house”) is organized to
give the reader a guided tour. Approaching from a distance, we see ground plans (6:2–3) and structural
work in stone (6:4–8) and wood (6:9–10). After a brief interruption that recounts a divine word to Solomon
(6:11–13), we enter the Temple to view the paneling and ornamentation of the nave (6:14–18), the gilded
walls and golden entrance of the inner sanctuary or holy of holies (6:19–22), with its priceless interior
decoration and furnishings (6:23–28). As we leave, we admire the interior carvings and gilded floor of the
inner sanctuary (6:29–30), return to the nave through carved and gilded doors (6:31–32), and exit from the
nave through another set of carved and gilded doors (6:33–35) to the courtyard (6:36). Our guide briefly
points out the nearby palace complex (7:1–12); then we walk around the courtyard to marvel at Hiram’s
heroic works in bronze: the two columns (7:15–22), the “sea” (7:23–26), and the ten stands and basins set
along either side of the Temple buildings (7:27–39). The account ends with the smaller bronze vessels
Hiram made for the Temple services (7:40–47) and the gold vessels that Solomon made (7:48–50).
Unfortunately, several factors make it impossible to use the account to produce a satisfactory model of
Solomon’s Temple. Throughout the account there are numerous technical architectural terms whose
meaning is lost to us; and it is moreover likely that the author is describing the Temple as it stood in his own
time, centuries after Solomon’s day. The Chronicler also describes the construction of the Temple in 2 Chr
3:1–4:22 and its dedication in 2 Chr 5:1–7:22.

* [6:1] Construction of the Temple is here dated in relation to the traditional date of the exodus from Egypt,
rounded off to a conventional twelve generations of forty years each. This chronology means that the Temple
was built approximately midway between Israel’s two foundational deliverances, the exodus and the return
from the Babylonian exile. The schematization of history implied in these figures recommends caution in
using them for historical reconstruction.

* [6:19] The innermost part of the house: the inner sanctuary or holy of holies reserved exclusively for the
Lord, enthroned upon the cherubim over the ark of the covenant (2 Chr 3:10–13). See note on Ex 25:18–

a. [6:12] 2 Sm 7:13–16.