the queen of Sheba had seen all the wisdom of Solomon, the house that he had built, the food of his table, the sitting of his servants, the attendance of his officials, their clothing, his cup bearers, and his ascent by which he went up to Yahweh’s house; there was no more spirit in her. She said to the king, “It was a true report that I heard in my own land of your acts, and of your wisdom. However I didn’t believe the words until I came and my eyes had seen it. Behold, not even half was told me! Your wisdom and prosperity exceed the fame which I heard.
1 Kings 10:4-7
1 Kings 10 [1.] When the queen of Sheba heard of the fame of Solomon concerning Yahweh’s name, she came to test him with hard questions. She came to Jerusalem with a very great caravan, with camels that bore spices, very much gold, and precious stones; and when she had come to Solomon, she talked with him about all that was in her heart. Solomon answered all her questions. There was not anything hidden from the king which he didn’t tell her. When the queen of Sheba had seen all the wisdom of Solomon, the house that he had built,
1 Kings 10 [5.] the food of his table, the sitting of his servants, the attendance of his officials, their clothing, his cup bearers, and his ascent by which he went up to Yahweh’s house; there was no more spirit in her. She said to the king, “It was a true report that I heard in my own land of your acts, and of your wisdom. However I didn’t believe the words until I came and my eyes had seen it. Behold, not even half was told me! Your wisdom and prosperity exceed the fame which I heard. Happy are your men, happy are these your servants, who stand continually before you, who hear your wisdom. Blessed is Yahweh your God, who delighted in you, to set you on the throne of Israel.
- Witnessing Solomon's Wisdom:
"When the queen of Sheba had seen all Solomon’s wisdom..."
The Queen of Sheba arrives to witness firsthand the wisdom that made Solomon renowned. This encompasses not only intellectual wisdom but also the practical application of it in various aspects of his kingdom.
- Marveling at Solomon's Kingdom:
"the house that he had built, the food of his table, the seating of his servants, the attendance of his ministers, their clothing, his cupbearers..."
The Queen observes the grandeur of Solomon's kingdom, from the magnificence of his palace to the order and prosperity evident in every detail, including the attire of his servants and the ceremonial aspects of his court.
- Overwhelmed by the House of Yahweh:
"his burnt offerings which he offered in the house of Yahweh..."
The mention of Solomon's offerings in the house of Yahweh highlights the spiritual aspect of his reign. The Queen is not only impressed by the material wealth but also by Solomon's devotion to God through the offerings made in the temple.
- Speechless in Awe:
"there was no more spirit in her."
The overwhelming experience leaves the Queen breathless, emphasizing the profound impact of what she witnesses. It transcends a mere intellectual acknowledgment; it stirs a deep spiritual and emotional response.
- Confirmation of Reports:
"The report that I heard in my own land of your acts and of your wisdom was true."
The Queen acknowledges the accuracy of the reports she had heard about Solomon's wisdom and achievements. Her firsthand experience validates the reputation that preceded him.
- Exceeding Expectations:
"Behold, the half was not told me! Your wisdom and prosperity exceed the fame which I heard."
The Queen expresses her astonishment, realizing that the reports she heard fell short of capturing the full extent of Solomon's wisdom and prosperity. The reality surpasses the already impressive reputation.
Wisdom and Prosperity: Solomon's wisdom goes beyond intellectual prowess; it permeates every aspect of his kingdom, contributing to its prosperity. This underlines the holistic nature of wisdom that combines insight with practical application.
Devotion to Yahweh: The mention of burnt offerings in the house of Yahweh emphasizes Solomon's commitment to God. His wisdom isn't divorced from his faith but is expressed in the worship and reverence for the divine.
Impact on Witnesses: The Queen's overwhelmed response underscores the transformative impact of witnessing wisdom and prosperity. It serves as a testament to the influence a kingdom guided by wisdom can have on those who encounter it.
Proverbs 3:13-18: “Happy is the man who finds wisdom, the man who gets understanding..." Solomon, the author of Proverbs, extols the value of wisdom. The Queen's experience aligns with the notion that encountering true wisdom brings happiness and fulfillment.
Matthew 12:42: “The queen of the south will rise up in the judgment with this generation and will condemn it, for she came from the ends of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon, and behold, someone greater than Solomon is here." Jesus refers to the Queen of Sheba as a symbol of seeking wisdom. He contrasts Solomon's wisdom with his own, emphasizing his divine authority.
In Our Daily Lives:
Holistic Wisdom: Solomon's example challenges us to seek wisdom that permeates every aspect of our lives. It's not just about knowledge but about its practical application in our relationships, responsibilities, and devotion to God.
Impact on Others: Like Solomon's kingdom, our lives can be a testimony that impacts others. Our wisdom, expressed through integrity, kindness, and devotion to God, can leave a lasting impression on those who encounter it.
Seeking Wisdom in Worship: Solomon's devotion in offering burnt offerings in the house of Yahweh inspires us to integrate our worship and spiritual practices into our pursuit of wisdom. Our relationship with God should be foundational to our pursuit of understanding.