Moment of Transformation:
At Gibeon the Lord appeared to Solomon in a dream by night; and God said, “Ask! What shall I give you?” 1 Kings 3:5 NKJV
In his youth Solomon made David’s choice his own, and for many years he walked uprightly, his life marked with strict obedience to God’s commands. Early in his reign he went with his counselors of state to Gibeon, where the tabernacle that had been built in the wilderness still was, and there he united with his chosen advisers, “the captains of thousands and of hundreds,” “the judges,” and “every governor in all Israel, the chief of the fathers,” in offering sacrifices to God and in consecrating themselves fully to the Lord’s service. 2 Chronicles 1:2. Comprehending something of the magnitude of the duties connected with the kingly office, Solomon knew that those bearing heavy burdens must seek the Source of Wisdom for guidance, if they would fulfill their responsibilities acceptably. This led him to encourage his counselors to unite with him heartily in making sure of their acceptance with God.
Above every earthly good, the king desired wisdom and understanding for the accomplishment of the work God had given him to do. He longed for quickness of mind, for largeness of heart, for tenderness of spirit. That night the Lord appeared to Solomon in a dream and said, “Ask! What shall I give you?” In his answer the young and inexperienced ruler gave utterance to his feeling of helplessness and his desire for aid. “…’give to Your servant an understanding heart to judge Your people, that I may discern between good and evil. For who is able to judge this great people of Yours?’ The speech pleased the Lord, that Solomon had asked this thing. Then God said to him: ‘Because you have asked this thing, and have not asked long life for yourself, nor have asked riches for yourself, nor have asked the life of your enemies, but have asked for yourself understanding to discern justice, behold, I have done according to your words; see, I have given you a wise and understanding heart, so that there has not been anyone like you before you, nor shall any like you arise after you.’” 1 Kings 3:9-12
God promised that as He had been with David, so He would be with Solomon. If the king would walk before the Lord in uprightness, if he would do what God had commanded him, his throne would be established and his reign would be the means of exalting Israel as “a wise and understanding people,” the light of the surrounding nations. Deuteronomy 4:6
Ellen G. White, Prophets and Kings, pp. 27-29
Quote of the Day “God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference.” The Serenity Prayer – Reinhold Niebuhr
Did You Know?
At the beginning of his reign Solomon was about 20 years old. In a dream, which was a frequent channel of revelation in Old Testament days, God appeared with a forthright invitation, “Ask!” What shall I give you?” (1 Kings 3:5). Here the God of heaven bends down to grant the supplication of a man and graciously puts the key to all His treasures in the young king’s hand. Within the bounds of reason, Solomon could have obtained anything he wished.
How often in God’s Word are we reminded that every faithful believer has that same privilege? “And I say unto you, ask, and it will be given to you” (Luke 11:9). “If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you” (John 15:7). Even though we are not kings on royal thrones, every time we come before the gracious heavenly Father through Jesus Christ our Mediator, it is as though God were saying to us, “Ask! What shall I give you?” The doors to His unlimited blessings are opened to us. If young men and women at the beginning of their careers could see the possibilities of their futures and the issues that hang on early choices as clearly as they will see them someday, there would be fewer wasted mornings of life and fewer gloomy sunsets.
Of course God knew Solomon well enough to know he could be trusted with this wide open offer to grant anything he wished. No parent offers to give a child anything he wishes without knowing what the child is likely to ask. Similarly, God gives us a carte blanche choice only if our wills run parallel with His. The promise has a condition: “If you abide in Me …” David wrote, “He shall give you the desires of your heart,” but he preceded that promise with the condition: “Delight yourself also in the LORD” (Ps. 37:4).
Russell Dilday and Lloyd J. Ogilvie, 1, 2 Kings, vol. 9, The Preacher’s Commentary Series (Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Inc, 1987), 63.
What have you been asking God in prayer?
This Week’s Homework