Read: 2 Chronicles 8-9
Today we quickly wrap up Solomon’s story in Chronicles 8 & 9; a mere 30 verses are used to cover his legacy.
Chapter 8 summarizes “Solomon’s Other Activities,” NIV, or as the New Life Version puts it: “Some of the Things Solomon Has Done.” We’re not going to gain a lot of insight into Solomon in this brief account, that alone is interesting. In fact, the tone of the writing in chapter 8 reminds us that Solomon did what David planned. If we only read this account of Solomon’s activities, we might walk away with the notion that David was the architect and Solomon the general contractor.
- “My wife must not live in the palace of David king of Israel…” (2 Chronicles 8:11)
- “…according to the daily requirement for offerings commanded by Moses…” (2 Chronicles 8:13)
- In keeping with the ordinance of his father David…” (2 Chronicles 8:14a)
- “…because this was what David the man of God had ordered.” (2 Chronicles 8:14b)
I find it interesting that Solomon’s activities point to his ancestors in this narrative. This seems to emphasize and honor his time as king.
But Solomon did not make slaves of the Israelites for his work; they were his fighting men, commanders of his captains, and commanders of his chariots and charioteers. 2 Chronicles 8:9
The Israelites were not used as slaves to implement the many building projects Solomon achieved during his time; however, many were conscripted to serve the king’s desires to build and rebuild. I suppose this wasn’t unusual for this point in history, it just seems like a fertile ground for dissent to grow among the people. It wouldn’t take much to get a sense of superiority based on ethnicity.
Chapter 9 invites us to remember the Queen of Sheba and the incredible wealth Solomon achieved during his reign.
Solomon answered all her questions; nothing was too hard for him to explain to her. 2 Chronicles 9:2
Even the Queen of Egypt is impressed with Solomon. In essence, the outside world sees the work and dedication to God and knows this is remarkable, something they want to understand.
King Solomon was greater in riches and wisdom than all the other kings of the earth. 2 Chronicles 9:22
Not just in gold, though there were literally tons of that, Solomon was wise and the people were focused on serving the One true God. People notice this, outsiders pay attention here.
Wouldn’t it be wonderful if Christians had this kind of respect from those outside the faith? This is still possible. Lord I pray that we, as your people, your church, would continue to move toward a focus on you above impressing others and let this light shine. I pray that people would see us as loving people that care about each other and those who are not “inside” the church. Give us the heart of Jesus for all people.