CHOOSE WISELY – CHOOSE WISDOM
What have you wanted to ask God for and thought perhaps was too big or too simple of a request? Ask him now.
Read 2 Chronicles 1:1–17
Solomon Asks for Wisdom
1 Solomon son of David established himself firmly over his kingdom, for the Lord his God was with him and made him exceedingly great.
2 Then Solomon spoke to all Israel—to the commanders of thousands and commanders of hundreds, to the judges and to all the leaders in Israel, the heads of families— 3 and Solomon and the whole assembly went to the high place at Gibeon, for God’s tent of meeting was there, which Moses the Lord’s servant had made in the wilderness. 4 Now David had brought up the ark of God from Kiriath Jearim to the place he had prepared for it, because he had pitched a tent for it in Jerusalem. 5 But the bronze altar that Bezalel son of Uri, the son of Hur, had made was in Gibeon in front of the tabernacle of the Lord; so Solomon and the assembly inquired of him there. 6 Solomon went up to the bronze altar before the Lord in the tent of meeting and offered a thousand burnt offerings on it.
7 That night God appeared to Solomon and said to him, “Ask for whatever you want me to give you.”
8 Solomon answered God, “You have shown great kindness to David my father and have made me king in his place. 9 Now, Lord God, let your promise to my father David be confirmed, for you have made me king over a people who are as numerous as the dust of the earth. 10 Give me wisdom and knowledge, that I may lead this people, for who is able to govern this great people of yours?”
11 God said to Solomon, “Since this is your heart’s desire and you have not asked for wealth, possessions or honor, nor for the death of your enemies, and since you have not asked for a long life but for wisdom and knowledge to govern my people over whom I have made you king, 12 therefore wisdom and knowledge will be given you. And I will also give you wealth, possessions and honor, such as no king who was before you ever had and none after you will have.”
13 Then Solomon went to Jerusalem from the high place at Gibeon, from before the tent of meeting. And he reigned over Israel.
14 Solomon accumulated chariots and horses; he had fourteen hundred chariots and twelve thousand horses,[a] which he kept in the chariot cities and also with him in Jerusalem. 15 The king made silver and gold as common in Jerusalem as stones, and cedar as plentiful as sycamore-fig trees in the foothills. 16 Solomon’s horses were imported from Egypt and from Kue[b]—the royal merchants purchased them from Kue at the current price. 17 They imported a chariot from Egypt for six hundred shekels[c] of silver, and a horse for a hundred and fifty.[d] They also exported them to all the kings of the Hittites and of the Arameans.
a 2 Chronicles 1:14 Or charioteers
b 2 Chronicles 1:16 Probably Cilicia
c 2 Chronicles 1:17 That is, about 15 pounds or about 6.9 kilograms
d 2 Chronicles 1:17 That is, about 3 3/4 pounds or about 1.7 kilograms
New International Version (NIV)
Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
ReflectIf there was one thing you could ask God for, what would it be? Why?
The books of Kings fill in extra background to this story. Solomon did establish himself as king (1) but it wasn’t without a struggle. What was the decisive factor (1)?
God is at the heart of the story. Solomon wants to ensure that worship is done properly, but despite his eagerness he doesn’t run ahead—he asks God for the best way. And then when God asks what he wants, the answer is wisdom to rule, to be a good king, to govern well. Solomon knows that he can’t do that on his own; he needs God to show the way.
We are not called to be kings of Israel, but we are called to live effectively for God, to show Jesus to others. And we can’t do that on our own. We need to know the right things to do, the sensitive things to say. And that is when, like Solomon, we ask God for wisdom. We don’t ask for our own sake, we ask so that others may benefit (10). Whatever roles God has called us to, we can be sure that if we ask he will give us what we need—and because he loves to give we might get more than we asked for (12).
James encourages us to ask God for wisdom (Jas. 1:5). Where do you need wisdom this week? Make a point of asking God for wisdom each morning this week as you wake up.
Jesus, I need Your wisdom. I can’t do life on my own—lead me.