Study Guide

1 Kings Chapter 9

Chapter 9

God Accepts Solomon's Temple (With One Or Two Conditions)

  • Some time after the temple dedication, the Lord appears to Solomon again, like he had before at Gibeon.
  • He says, "I have heard your prayer [… and] I have consecrated this house that you have built, and put my name there fore ever" (9:3).
  • He tells Solomon that if he'll be as faithful as David was, God will make sure that Solomon's descendants keep the throne. But if he—or his children—step out of line, Israel and the temple will both fall.
  • It will be so bad, he says, that people passing by the ruined temple will be like, "Holy cow. Why would the Lord let this happen to his temple and his chosen people? Oh, probably because Israel didn't worship him" (9:8-9).
  • And that was that.
  • When things finally settle down after the festival, Solomon gives King Hiram of Tyre twenty cities in Galilee as payment for supplying all the gold and cedar and cypress.
  • But Hiram wasn't crazy about the cities, and he's like, "Whoa, my brother. What's with these cities? Can't you do any better than that?"
  • But then he lets it go, apparently, and actually gives Solomon a bunch more gold.
  • While Solomon has all of these conscripted laborers, he also builds other stuff, like the wall of Jerusalem, and fortifies lots of other cities, like Gezer, which Pharaoh had captured and given to his daughter, Solomon's wife, as a present. Thanks, Daddy.
  • This is a pretty rough time to be a Canaanite in Israel. Whereas the Israelites get to be soldiers, government officials, etc., the Canaanites get to be slaves. Bummer.
  • Solomon, meanwhile, just keeps doing his righteous king thing. He offers burnt sacrifices and burns incense at the temple, builds up a navy with some help from Hiram's experienced sailors, and keeps raking in boatloads of gold from tributaries.

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