The Queen of Sheba’s Praise of Solomon
1Now when the #2 Chr. 9:1; Matt. 12:42; Luke 11:31queen of Sheba heard of the fame of Solomon concerning the name of the Lord, she came #Judg. 14:12; Ps. 49:4; Prov. 1:6to test him with hard questions. 2She came to Jerusalem with a very great retinue, with camels that bore spices, very much gold, and precious stones; and when she came to Solomon, she spoke with him about all that was in her heart. 3So Solomon answered all her questions; there was nothing so difficult for the king that he could not explain it to her. 4And when the queen of Sheba had seen all the wisdom of Solomon, the house that he had built, 5the food on his table, the seating of his servants, the service of his waiters and their apparel, his cupbearers, #1 Chr. 26:16; 2 Chr. 9:4and his entryway by which he went up to the house of the Lord, there was no more spirit in her. 6Then she said to the king: “It was a true report which I heard in my own land about your words and your wisdom. 7However I did not believe the words until I came and saw with my own eyes; and indeed the half was not told me. Your wisdom and prosperity exceed the fame of which I heard. 8#Prov. 8:34Happy are your men and happy are these your servants, who stand continually before you and hear your wisdom! 9#1 Kin. 5:7Blessed be the Lord your God, who #2 Sam. 22:20delighted in you, setting you on the throne of Israel! Because the Lord has loved Israel forever, therefore He made you king, #2 Sam. 8:15; Ps. 72:2; (Prov. 8:15)to do justice and righteousness.”
10Then she #Ps. 72:10, 15gave the king one hundred and twenty talents of gold, spices in great quantity, and precious stones. There never again came such abundance of spices as the queen of Sheba gave to King Solomon. 11#1 Kin. 9:27, 28; Job 22:24Also, the ships of Hiram, which brought gold from Ophir, brought great quantities of almug wood and precious stones from Ophir. 12#2 Chr. 9:11And the king made steps of the almug wood for the house of the Lord and for the king’s house, also harps and stringed instruments for singers. There never again came such #2 Chr. 9:10almug wood, nor has the like been seen to this day.
13Now King Solomon gave the queen of Sheba all she desired, whatever she asked, besides what Solomon had given her according to the royal generosity. So she turned and went to her own country, she and her servants.
Solomon’s Great Wealth
14The weight of gold that came to Solomon yearly was six hundred and sixty-six talents of gold, 15besides that from the #2 Chr. 1:16traveling merchants, from the income of traders, #2 Chr. 9:24; Ps. 72:10from all the kings of Arabia, and from the governors of the country.
16And King Solomon made two hundred large shields of hammered gold; six hundred shekels of gold went into each shield. 17He also made #1 Kin. 14:26three hundred shields of hammered gold; three minas of gold went into each shield. The king put them in the #1 Kin. 7:2House of the Forest of Lebanon.
18#1 Kin. 10:22; 2 Chr. 9:17; Ps. 45:8Moreover the king made a great throne of ivory, and overlaid it with pure gold. 19The throne had six steps, and the top of the throne was round at the back; there were armrests on either side of the place of the seat, and two lions stood beside the armrests. 20Twelve lions stood there, one on each side of the six steps; nothing like this had been made for any other kingdom.
21#2 Chr. 9:20All King Solomon’s drinking vessels were gold, and all the vessels of the House of the Forest of Lebanon were pure gold. Not one was silver, for this was accounted as nothing in the days of Solomon. 22For the king had #Gen. 10:4; 2 Chr. 20:36merchant ships at sea with the fleet of Hiram. Once every three years the merchant #1 Kin. 9:26–28; 22:48; Ps. 72:10ships came bringing gold, silver, ivory, apes, and monkeys. 23So #1 Kin. 3:12, 13; 4:30; 2 Chr. 1:12King Solomon surpassed all the kings of the earth in riches and wisdom.
24Now all the earth sought the presence of Solomon to hear his wisdom, which God had put in his heart. 25Each man brought his present: articles of silver and gold, garments, armor, spices, horses, and mules, at a set rate year by year.
26#1 Kin. 4:26; 2 Chr. 1:14; 9:25And Solomon #(Deut. 17:16); 1 Kin. 9:19gathered chariots and horsemen; he had one thousand four hundred chariots and twelve thousand horsemen, whom he stationed in the chariot cities and with the king at Jerusalem. 27#(Deut. 17:17); 2 Chr. 1:15–17The king made silver as common in Jerusalem as stones, and he made cedar trees as abundant as the sycamores which are in the lowland.
28#(Deut. 17:16); 2 Chr. 1:16; 9:28Also Solomon had horses imported from Egypt and Keveh; the king’s merchants bought them in Keveh at the current price. 29Now a chariot that was imported from Egypt cost six hundred shekels of silver, and a horse one hundred and fifty; #Josh. 1:4; 2 Kin. 7:6, 7and thus, through their agents, they exported them to all the kings of the Hittites and the kings of Syria.