I have been on a very long journey to read the Old Testament in chronological order, which (once passed the first few books) is much more difficult than I would have guessed. Once I got passed the divided kingdom and it was going to take a few different books at once to move forward, I made a decision to go back and read more of the end of the united kingdom before it got too far away. So I read some Psalms, Ecclesiastes, and Song of Solomon.
Now, I am heading back to the narrative; but as a refresher, I am going to read through some I Kings and II Chronicles that I've already reviewed.
Solomon is using his life mixed with God's wisdom as an experiment in search of some meaning he has lost since he has walked away from worshipping God alone. He'll contemplate some portion of life left hollow in his earth pursuits and then briefly come back to the understanding that life lived with God does have meaning and purpose. We just completed the famous chapter three in which he contemplates the events in life under heaven.
I admit...I stole this title from Wiersbe's commentary on these chapters> I'll have to see if I change it once I read the content; but I'm guessing it's perfect because I think we're about to hit a string of kings and many of them will fly by as they did not glorify God.
So, apparently, the Bible is commonly divided in eras known as epochs. Oddly enough, we're at the end of one of these epochs right in the middle of our books, I Kings and II. We're leaving the united monarchies of David and Solomon and moving to the divided nations of Judah and Israel.
But before we go...I'm going stop and spend some time with the remaining books of David and Solomon, while I still have their lives fresh in my mind. I don't know how it will look exactly, but I will be working on some more Psalms, Proverbs, and Ecclesiastes. And probably Song of Solomon.
Then I will return to life after these monarchy falls to division.
The Temple has been built and the Lord was faithful to fill it with His presence. Now Solomon dedicates and prays over this House of God. What a seismic moment in their history and ours. To speak into such a profound moment had to come from the Lord. No human, even the wisest one can do that without God's guidance.
Solomon worked with Hiram for the final preparations for building the Temple. He also conscripted workers and levied taxes to pay for all of his building projects, creating the first cracks of resentment that will, ultimately, divide the nation.
So, verse 1 doesn't get us off to a good start. Solomon goes and gets a wife in Egypt and forms an alliance with them. Then he brought her back to Jerusalem. Meanwhile he was working on his own house and the Temple.