1When the queen of Sheba heard of the fame of Solomon concerning Yahweh’s name, she came to test him with hard questions. 2She 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. 3Solomon answered all her questions. There was not anything hidden from the king which he didn’t tell her. 4When the queen of Sheba had seen all the wisdom of Solomon, the house that he had built, 5the 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. 6She said to the king, “It was a true report that I heard in my own land of your acts, and of your wisdom. 7However 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. 8Happy are your men, happy are these your servants, who stand continually before you, who hear your wisdom. 9Blessed is Yahweh your God, who delighted in you, to set you on the throne of Israel. Because Yahweh loved Israel forever, therefore he made you king, to do justice and righteousness.” 10She gave the king one hundred twenty talents of gold, and a very great quantity of spices, and precious stones. Never again was there such an abundance of spices as these which the queen of Sheba gave to king Solomon.
11The fleet of Hiram that brought gold from Ophir, also brought in from Ophir great quantities of almug trees#possibly an Indian sandalwood, with nice grain and a pleasant scent, and good for woodworking and precious stones. 12The king made of the almug trees pillars for Yahweh’s house, and for the king’s house, harps also and stringed instruments for the singers; no such almug trees came or were seen, to this day. 13King Solomon gave to the queen of Sheba all her desire, whatever she asked, besides that which Solomon gave her of his royal bounty. So she turned and went to her own land, she and her servants. 14Now the weight of gold that came to Solomon in one year was six hundred sixty-six talents#A talent is about 30 kilograms or 66 pounds or 965 Troy ounces, so 666 talents is about 20 metric tons of gold, 15besides that which the traders brought, and the traffic of the merchants, and of all the kings of the mixed people, and of the governors of the country. 16King Solomon made two hundred bucklers of beaten gold; six hundred shekels#A shekel is about 10 grams or about 0.32 Troy ounces, so 600 shekels is about 6 kilograms or 13.2 pounds or 192 Troy ounces. of gold went to one buckler. 17he made three hundred shields of beaten gold; three minas#A mina is about 600 grams or 1.3 U. S. pounds. of gold went to one shield; and the king put them in the House of the Forest of Lebanon. 18Moreover the king made a great throne of ivory, and overlaid it with the finest gold. 19There were six steps to the throne, and the top of the throne was round behind; and there were armrests on either side by the place of the seat, and two lions standing beside the armrests. 20Twelve lions stood there on the one side and on the other on the six steps. Nothing like it was made in any kingdom. 21All king Solomon’s drinking vessels were of gold, and all the vessels of the House of the Forest of Lebanon were of pure gold. None were of silver, because it was considered of little value in the days of Solomon. 22For the king had a fleet of Tarshish at sea with Hiram’s fleet. Once every three years the fleet of Tarshish came, bringing gold, silver, ivory, apes, and peacocks. 23So king Solomon exceeded all the kings of the earth in riches and in wisdom. 24All the earth sought the presence of Solomon, to hear his wisdom, which God had put in his heart. 25Year after year, every man brought his tribute, vessels of silver, vessels of gold, clothing, armor, spices, horses, and mules. 26Solomon gathered together chariots and horsemen. He had one thousand four hundred chariots, and twelve thousand horsemen, that he kept in the chariot cities and with the king at Jerusalem. 27The king made silver as common as stones in Jerusalem, and cedars as common as the sycamore trees that are in the lowland. 28The horses which Solomon had were brought out of Egypt. The king’s merchants received them in droves, each drove at a price. 29A chariot came up and went out of Egypt for six hundred shekels#A shekel is about 10 grams or about 0.35 ounces. of silver, and a horse for one hundred fifty shekels; and so they exported them to all the kings of the Hittites, and to the kings of Syria.
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