1 Kings 3:1-28 Comments by Stephen Ricker
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Ask for a Wise and Discerning Heart
Comments for Study 3

1 Kings 3:1-28
Memory Verse: 12

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I. Solomon's Egyptian Wife (3:1)

>1. Why did Solomon marry an Egyptian? (1)

* 1 Kings 3:1 "Solomon made an alliance with Pharaoh king of Egypt and married his daughter. He brought her to the City of David until he finished building his palace and the temple of the LORD, and the wall around Jerusalem."

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>Considering Deuteronomy 7:3-4 was this wise?

* Deuteronomy 7:1-4 "When the LORD your God brings you into the land you are entering to possess and drives out before you many nations--the Hittites, Girgashites, Amorites, Canaanites, Perizzites, Hivites and Jebusites, seven nations larger and stronger than you-- and when the LORD your God has delivered them over to you and you have defeated them, then you must destroy them totally. Make no treaty with them, and show them no mercy. Do not intermarry with them. Do not give your daughters to their sons or take their daughters for your sons, for they will turn your sons away from following me to serve other gods, and the LORD's anger will burn against you and will quickly destroy you."

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II. Since You Have Asked For This? (3:2-15)

>2. Why were the "high places" used as sights of worship? (2; and 1 Sam. 3:3, 4:3,11, 6:21-7:1, 9:12-14; and 2 Sam. 6:2-4,17)

* 1 Kings 3:2 "The people, however, were still sacrificing at the high places, because a temple had not yet been built for the Name of the LORD."

* 1 Samuel 3:3 "The lamp of God had not yet gone out, and Samuel was lying down in the temple of the LORD, where the ark of God was."

* 1 Samuel 4:3 "When the soldiers returned to camp, the elders of Israel asked, "Why did the LORD bring defeat upon us today before the Philistines? Let us bring the ark of the LORD's covenant from Shiloh, so that it may go with us and save us from the hand of our enemies."

* 1 Samuel 4:11 "The ark of God was captured, and Eli's two sons, Hophni and Phinehas, died."

* 1 Samuel 6:21-7:1 "Then they sent messengers to the people of Kiriath Jearim, saying, "The Philistines have returned the ark of the LORD. Come down and take it up to your place. So the men of Kiriath Jearim came and took up the ark of the LORD. They took it to Abinadab's house on the hill and consecrated Eleazar his son to guard the ark of the LORD."

* 1 Samuel 9:12-13 "He is," they answered. "He's ahead of you. Hurry now; he has just come to our town today, for the people have a sacrifice at the high place. As soon as you enter the town, you will find him before he goes up to the high place to eat. The people will not begin eating until he comes, because he must bless the sacrifice; afterward, those who are invited will eat. Go up now; you should find him about this time. They went up to the town, and as they were entering it, there was Samuel, coming toward them on his way up to the high place."

* 2 Samuel 6:2-4 "He and all his men set out from Baalah of Judah to bring up from there the ark of God, which is called by the Name, the name of the LORD Almighty, who is enthroned between the cherubim that are on the ark. They set the ark of God on a new cart and brought it from the house of Abinadab, which was on the hill. Uzzah and Ahio, sons of Abinadab, were guiding the new cart with the ark of God on it, and Ahio was walking in front of it."

* 2 Samuel 6:17 "They brought the ark of the LORD and set it in its place inside the tent that David had pitched for it, and David sacrificed burnt offerings and fellowship offerings before the LORD."

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>Was this wrong? (3-4; Deut. 12:2-7)

* 1 Kings 3:3-4 "Solomon showed his love for the LORD by walking according to the statutes of his father David, except that he offered sacrifices and burned incense on the high places. The king went to Gibeon to offer sacrifices, for that was the most important high place, and Solomon offered a thousand burnt offerings on that altar. "

* Deuteronomy 12:2-7 "Destroy completely all the places on the high mountains and on the hills and under every spreading tree where the nations you are dispossessing worship their gods. Break down their altars, smash their sacred stones and burn their Asherah poles in the fire; cut down the idols of their gods and wipe out their names from those places. You must not worship the LORD your God in their way. But you are to seek the place the LORD your God will choose from among all your tribes to put his Name there for his dwelling. To that place you must go; there bring your burnt offerings and sacrifices, your tithes and special gifts, what you have vowed to give and your freewill offerings, and the firstborn of your herds and flocks. There, in the presence of the LORD your God, you and your families shall eat and shall rejoice in everything you have put your hand to, because the LORD your God has blessed you."

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>3. Why did God use a dream to communicate to Solomon? (5a; Gen. 20:3; Num. 12:6-8)

* 1 Kings 3:5a "At Gibeon the LORD appeared to Solomon during the night in a dream"

* Genesis 20:3 "But God came to Abimelech in a dream one night and said to him, "You are as good as dead because of the woman you have taken; she is a married woman."

* Numbers 12:6-8 "he said, "Listen to my words: "When a prophet of the LORD is among you, I reveal myself to him in visions, I speak to him in dreams. But this is not true of my servant Moses; he is faithful in all my house. With him I speak face to face, clearly and not in riddles; he sees the form of the LORD. Why then were you not afraid to speak against my servant Moses?"

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>What did the Lord say? (5b)

* 1 Kings 3:5b "and God said, 'Ask for whatever you want me to give you.'"

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>4. What was Solomon's statement as king? (6-9)

* 1 Kings 3:6-9 "Solomon answered, 'You have shown great kindness to your servant, my father David, because he was faithful to you and righteous and upright in heart. You have continued this great kindness to him and have given him a son to sit on his throne this very day. Now, O LORD my God, you have made your servant king in place of my father David. But I am only a little child and do not know how to carry out my duties. Your servant is here among the people you have chosen, a great people, too numerous to count or number. So give your servant a discerning heart to govern your people and to distinguish between right and wrong. For who is able to govern this great people of yours?"

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>Whose interests does he have at heart and why?

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>What can we learn from him? (Mark 10:42-45)

* Mark 10:42-45 "Jesus called them together and said, "You know that those who are regarded as rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them. Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all. For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many."

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>5. With what kind of prayers is God pleased with? (10-12)

* 1 Kings 3:10-12 "The Lord was pleased that Solomon had asked for this. So God said to him, "Since you have asked for this and not for long life or wealth for yourself, nor have asked for the death of your enemies but for discernment in administering justice, I will do what you have asked. I will give you a wise and discerning heart, so that there will never have been anyone like you, nor will there ever be."

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>6. What did God promise Solomon? (13-14)

* 1 Kings 3:13-14 "Moreover, I will give you what you have not asked for--both riches and honor--so that in your lifetime you will have no equal among kings. And if you walk in my ways and obey my statutes and commands as David your father did, I will give you a long life."

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>Why?

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>What teaching of Jesus repeats this? (Matt. 6:33)

* Matthew 6:33 "But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well."

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>7. Why did Solomon worship and throw a party? (15)

* 1 Kings 3:15 "Then Solomon awoke--and he realized it had been a dream. He returned to Jerusalem, stood before the ark of the Lord's covenant and sacrificed burnt offerings and fellowship offerings. Then he gave a feast for all his court."

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III. He Had Wisdom From God (3:16-28)

>8. What kind of court system did Israel have? (2 Sam. 15:2; 14:4)

* 2 Samuel 15:2 "He would get up early and stand by the side of the road leading to the city gate. Whenever anyone came with a complaint to be placed before the king for a decision, Absalom would call out to him, "What town are you from?" He would answer, "Your servant is from one of the tribes of Israel."

* 2 Samuel 14:4 "When the woman from Tekoa went to the king, she fell with her face to the ground to pay him honor, and she said, "Help me, O king!"

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>9. What case did two prostitutes bring before Solomon? (16-22)

* 1 Kings 3:16-22 "Now two prostitutes came to the king and stood before him. One of them said, "My lord, this woman and I live in the same house. I had a baby while she was there with me. The third day after my child was born, this woman also had a baby. We were alone; there was no one in the house but the two of us. During the night this woman's son died because she lay on him. So she got up in the middle of the night and took my son from my side while I your servant was asleep. She put him by her breast and put her dead son by my breast. The next morning, I got up to nurse my son--and he was dead! But when I looked at him closely in the morning light, I saw that it wasn't the son I had borne." The other woman said, "No! The living one is my son; the dead one is yours." But the first one insisted, "No! The dead one is yours; the living one is mine." And so they argued before the king."

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>Why should the new king worry about a dispute among prostitutes?

* 1 Kings 3:23-25 "The king said, "This one says, 'My son is alive and your son is dead,' while that one says, 'No! Your son is dead and mine is alive.'" Then the king said, "Bring me a sword." So they brought a sword for the king. He then gave an order: "Cut the living child in two and give half to one and half to the other."

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>10. For what quality is Solomon testing the women? (26-27)

* 1 Kings 3:26-27 "The woman whose son was alive was filled with compassion for her son and said to the king, "Please, my lord, give her the living baby! Don't kill him!" But the other said, "Neither I nor you shall have him. Cut him in two!" Then the king gave his ruling: "Give the living baby to the first woman. Do not kill him; she is his mother."

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>Why would this ruling impress Israel?

* 1 Kings 3:28 "When all Israel heard the verdict the king had given, they held the king in awe, because they saw that he had wisdom from God to administer justice."

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