Useful Bible Studies > 1 Kings Commentary > chapter 5

Hiram praises God for the wisdom of Solomon

1 Kings 5:7

When God’s people give honour to God, that often causes other people to give honour to God, too (Psalm 126:1-2). Solomon had given honour to God in his message to Hiram, the king of Tyre. Solomon told Hiram that he (Solomon) intended to carry out David’s plan to build the temple (great house of God) in Jerusalem. Solomon also declared that God had given peace to Israel. So Solomon was now ready to build this great temple, which would give honour to God among all the nations (1 Kings 8:41-43; Isaiah 56:6-7; Mark 11:17).

Many people in the region of Tyre and Sidon served false gods (11:5). It seems likely that Tyre’s royal family too had belonged to a wrong religion. However, on the day when he received Solomon’s message, Hiram began to praise the true God. Hiram was pleased that he would be able to join Solomon in this great task to give honour to God. Of course, Hiram would benefit from the trade, but that was not the main reason for his happiness. Rather, he was pleased to see what God had done in Israel. David had been loyal to God when he was Israel’s king. Now Hiram could see that God had given David a wise son, Solomon, to rule after him.

Hiram could recognise Solomon’s great wisdom in this message. The king who ruled Israel after David, might have been proud and selfish, or foolish - like Absalom or Adonijah (2 Samuel 15:1-14; 1 Kings 1:5-10). Such a king in Israel could have caused great trouble for Hiram. However, Hiram saw that Solomon was responsible and wise. Solomon was not trying to please himself; he was eager to carry out his father’s plans. In particular, Solomon’s first desire was to give honour to God - and that is a wise and excellent way to behave.

Next part: Hiram promises to help to build the temple (1 Kings 5:8-9)


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