Solomon Asks God for Wisdom to Lead Well and God Grants It
God appears to Solomon and offers to grant him a request. This isn’t a genie-in-a-bottle situation; it’s the all-powerful God showing his love and appreciation. Solomon makes a wise decision. He asks for wisdom and knowledge to lead the people well.
Solomon doesn’t ask for wealth or possessions. He could have, but he doesn’t. In our materialistic society today, money is the goal for many. They don’t see it as a means to an end—such as to be a blessing to others—but as the end goal itself. But we can never have enough money or enough things. Pursuing money will leave us empty
Other people pursue prestige. They seek acclaim from others. Solomon doesn’t ask for honor either. Though receiving respect may be gratifying and ego stroking, it accomplishes little else.
Along with money and honor, a third often-valued pursuit is power. An extreme display of power is overcoming our enemies by bringing about their death. Solomon doesn’t ask for this either.
Not a Long Life
Most people hope for a long life, one filled with worthwhile activities and pursuits. And the older we get, the more fragile life seems and the more important it becomes. Yet Solomon doesn’t ask to live long either.
What Solomon does ask for is wisdom and knowledge. And this isn’t for a selfish, intellectual pursuit, but so that he can govern the people with excellence.
God grants Solomon’s request for wisdom. Because Solomon chooses wisely, God also gives him the things he didn’t ask for: wealth, honor, power, and a long life.
God gives wisdom to Solomon because he asks for it. And he will give it to us when we ask for it too (James 1:5).
Whether we lead a country, a group, our family, or ourselves, may we lead well with wisdom and knowledge. And if we lack wisdom all we need to do is ask God for it.
Peter DeHaan writes about biblical Christianity to confront status quo religion and live a life that matters. He seeks a fresh approach to following Jesus through the lens of Scripture, without the baggage of made-up traditions and meaningless practices.