Guarding and proclaiming the unchanging truth in a changing world

1 Kings 3: ‘Wise Words’

4th August 2021

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If you could ask God for one wish, what would that be?
Many might seek health, wealth, success, or happiness.

In 1 Kings 3, we read that King Solomon’s one wish was that he would be truly wise. It was a great moment in the early days of the rule of one of the Lord’s great kings. He saw what was truly valuable because he lived in the security of God’s love. 

He knew that the love of the Lord to his father David was full of grace and mercy, especially in the light of his sin of adultery and murder, verse 6a: “You showed great and faithful love to your servant my father, David, because he was honest and true and faithful to you.” (1 Kings 3:6a) 

Solomon wisely knew that his status before the Lord was secure because of the grace shown to his father, King David. 

Furthermore, he knew the awesome and overwhelming privilege of following in his father’s footsteps, verse 7b: "...I am like a little child who doesn’t know his way around. And here I am in the midst of your own chosen people, a nation so great and numerous they cannot be counted!” (1 Kings3:7b-8) 

Solomon wisely acknowledged that he was part of something much bigger, as he was blessed to lead the people who were already blessed by God, receiving promises made to the Patriarchs. 

Solomon recognised the grace of God and the blessings of the Lord, and this provided a solid framework for his special request of the Lord. 
As he engaged with God during a special dream, Solomon asked this of the Lord, verse 9: “Give me an understanding heart so that I can govern your people well and know the difference between right and wrong. For who by himself is able to govern this great people of yours?” (1 Kings 3:9) 

The wisdom of Solomon was shown in his wise request for wisdom: he longed to have an understanding heart that would lead God’s people well. 

In particular, he sought from God the knowledge of good and evil, unlike Adam and Eve who desired the same things, but sought them by grasping at the forbidden fruit of Eden. 

So as a ruler who knew the comfort of living in God’s secure covenant, Solomon could focus his attention to seeking wisdom. 

The Lord was pleased with Solomon’s request, granting him “a wise and understanding heart such as no one else has had or ever will have!” (1 Kings 3:12), which he then demonstrated through his famous decision about the surviving child of the two prostitutes (1 Kings 3:16-28). 

Yet, even in his great wisdom, Solomon would be surpassed by the ultimate king of God’s people, the Lord Jesus Christ. 
Through Jesus, God has chosen to display an even greater wisdom through Christ’s body, the church. 
For as we read in Ephesians chapter 3: 

“God’s purpose in all this was to use the church to display his wisdom in its rich variety to all the unseen rulers and authorities in the heavenly places. This was his eternal plan, which he carried out through Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Ephesians 3:10-11) 

Compared to the glory of Solomon, the church of Christ seems pale in comparison. 

Yet, it is in and through the body of Christ that a superior wisdom is displayed to all the powers and authorities of the universe. 

May we delight in knowing that we, the body of Christ, are blessed to be used by our Lord to demonstrate the greatest wisdom of all to the universe. 


Grant us, Lord, we pray, the spirit to think and do always such things as are right, that we who cannot do anything that is good without you, may in your strength be able to live according to your will; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. (BCP, Trinity 9).

Pray with us today's prayer request:

Continue to pray for the leadership of Gafcon Australia. They have announced plans to create a new structure for faithful Anglicans who cannot stay within their diocese if innovations about blessing same-sex marriage go ahead. Pray for their unity in the gospel and wisdom in their communications.

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