I Kings 10:1-13
The Queen of Sheba’s Visit to Solomon
1. Camping trip to Yellowstone while I was in Middle school
a. Orientation by Ranger
i. Brown bear & grizzly bear
1. Brown bear is mean, but grizzly is really mean
2. Don’t want to startle
3. Wear bells, blow whistle
ii. Bring pepper spray
1. You can’t overpower or outrun a bear
2. If do startle, spray the pepper spray
iii. How to tell which bear in area – droppings
1. Brown bear droppings – nuts, berrys
2. Smells musty
3. Grizzly bear droppings – bells & whistles
4. smells like pepper spray
b. Rangers point – the consequences of running into bears, esp. grizzly, are horrendious.
2. Welcome to our Bible study tonight.
a. Tonight we are going to talk about something even more horrendous than bears – God’s judgement.
b. We are using the Straight Street reading program.
i. Developed so you guys could get into the habit of a systematic, daily Bible reading program.
ii. Look on board – 2nd rule to “getting strong” in the Lord is to read your Bible.
iii. Pick up a calendar on way out.
c. One of readings for today is 1st Kings, Chapter 10.
i. The books of 1st and 2nd Kings are the history of the nation Israel under their first monarchs.
1. Anyone know who was Israel’s 1st King? Saul
2. Who came after him? David
3. Then who? Solomon.
ii. Tonight, we are going to look at the first 13 verses of 1st Kings Chapter 10
1. These verses deal with the early part of Solomon’s reign.
2. Solomon lived about 1000 years before Jesus was born, or about 3000 years ago.
3. He was the son of King David
4. He became king when he was 18 or 19 years old, when his father died.
5. His father, David, had a close relationship with God, and when David died, God asked Solomon what he (Solomon) wanted
6. Solomon answered that he wanted wisdom to rule the people of God, the Israelites, wisely
7. This impressed God – He said Solomon could have asked for riches, victory in battles, a long and peaceful reign, etc.
8. So God gave Solomon wisdom in ruling His people, and all the other things he could have asked for as well
9. As a result, it is thought that in his day Solomon was the wisest and richest man alive. Perhaps for all time.
10. Our reading tonight is about another monarch, the Queen of Sheba, who came to see Solomon.
d. Read I Kings 10:1-13
The Queen of Sheba
1 Now when the queen of Sheba heard about the fame of Solomon concerning the name of the Lord, she came to test him with difficult questions.
2 So she came to Jerusalem with a very large retinue, with camels carrying spices and very much gold and precious stones. When she came to Solomon, she spoke with him about all that was in her heart.
3 Solomon answered all her questions; nothing was hidden from the king which he did not explain to her.
4 When the queen of Sheba perceived all the wisdom of Solomon, the house that he had built,
5 the food of his table, the seating of his servants, the attendance of his waiters and their attire, his cupbearers, and his stairway by which he went up to the house of the Lord, there was no more spirit in her.
6 Then she said to the king, “It was a true report which I heard in my own land about your words and your wisdom.
7 “Nevertheless I did not believe the reports, until I came and my eyes had seen it. And behold, the half was not told me. You exceed in wisdom and prosperity the report which I heard.
8 “How blessed are your men, how blessed are these your servants who stand before you continually and hear your wisdom.
9 “Blessed be the Lord your God who delighted in you to set you on the throne of Israel; because the Lord loved Israel forever, therefore He made you king, to do justice and righteousness.”
10 She gave the king a hundred and twenty talents of gold, and a very great amount of spices and precious stones. Never again did such abundance of spices come in as that which the queen of Sheba gave King Solomon.
11 Also the ships of Hiram, which brought gold from Ophir, brought in from Ophir a very great number of almug trees and precious stones.
12 The king made of the almug trees supports for the house of the Lord and for the king’s house, also lyres and harps for the singers; such almug trees have not come in again nor have they been seen to this day.
13 King Solomon gave to the queen of Sheba all her desire which she requested, besides what he gave her according to his royal bounty. Then she turned and went to her own land together with her servants.
3. Let’s look at this passage a little closer.
a. Sheba is modern Yemen, in Arabia, about 1,200 miles from Jerusalem.
b. The queen’s primary purpose in visiting Solomon was to see if he was really as wise and wealthy as she had heard (she came to test him).
c. The queen was quite wealthy herself. She gave Solomon 120 talents of gold (4 ½ tons), great quantities of spices, and precious stones.
d. She has many riddles, puzzles (for which Arabs of the time were known), and questions for Solomon who gives satisfactory replies in all instances.
e. His fame, faith, and wisdom are confirmed. His wealth, civic organization, and services overwhelm her.
f. She recognizes Solomon’s Lord, the blessings he provides, and the joy he gives Solomon.
i. Though she praised the Lord who had so richly blessed Solomon, it does not affect her own faith.
ii. She recognizes the Lord just as she would recognize her own god(s) – one among many from which to choose.
iii. She was astonished at the greatness and goodness of the God of Israel to Solomon, but she never worshipped Him.
4. Our God is a good God! His mercy endures forever. His love has no bounds. The queen saw all of this.
a. Every man who turns aside from a life of sin to examine God will see the same goodness in God that the Queen of Sheba saw.
b. The Queen of Sheba still rejected God after seeing his great goodness to Solomon and Israel.
c. Men still reject God even after seeing all of His blessings.
i. Why do I say men reject God? After all, something over 80% of Americans say they believe in God.
ii. I think they are saying that they know there is a God by the blessings He provides.
iii. It is not enough to know about God, we must know God – have a personal relationship with Him.
iv. After all, the Queen of Sheba learned about God from what she saw of His blessings to Solomon.
5. Now look at Matthew 12:38, 39, 42
38 Then some of the scribes and Pharisees said to Him, “Teacher, we want to see a sign from You.”
39 But He answered and said to them, “An evil and adulterous generation craves for a sign; …
42 “The Queen of the South will rise up with this generation at the judgment and will condemn it, because she came from the ends of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon; and behold, something greater than Solomon is here.”
a. These are the words of Jesus.
i. The Queen of the South is the Queen of Sheba.
ii. The judgment that He speaks of here is known as the Great White Throne Judgment.
iii. It is when those who rejected God will be judged, and thrown into Hell for all of eternity.
iv. Oh how terrible it will be when those who have seen the goodness of God but refused to come to Him will be condemned by an Arabian Queen who never accepted God either.
v. This is running headlong into a grizzly bear. Actually, much worse because it lasts forever.
6. Look into the goodness of God and you will see that He gives only good things and life everlasting.
a. James 1:17 says, " Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow.
b. God gives us His great wisdom in the Bible to live by. God’s word will never fail. It contains the right answer to all of life’s problems.
c. God takes care of this own. God has promised that His people would never be forsaken nor their children begging for bread.
d. Psalm 100:5 says, “For the Lord is good; His lovingkindness is everlasting, and His faithfulness is to all generations.
7. Don’t be like the rich man in Luke 16
a. He lived a good life, he ate well, he had all he could desire. He saw the goodness of God.
b. Yet he never developed a relationship with God.
c. In Luke 16:23 it says after he died he found himself in Hades in torment.
d. You, like the Queen of Sheba, have seen God’s goodness.
i. Don’t walk away from Him as she did.
ii. The choice is yours – heaven, or the grizzly bear.