Day 174 – 1 Kings 12-14

Day 174
1 Kings 12-14

Following the death of Solomon, the story of Israel was never the same. Overall, a united Israel existed for less than three administrations, before it became irreparably broken. From this point onward, it is a narrative of national disunity, spiritual idolatry, and finally, severe judgment. As it


Day 173 – Proverbs 30-31

Day 173
Proverbs 30-31

The final two chapters of Proverbs present the sayings of Agur (30) and King Lemuel (31), two Gentile names who appear nowhere else in the Bible. Both chapters are presented as an oracle (30:1; 31:1). Verse 1 of Chapter 30 is intriguing. The textual note in the ESV indicates that “oracle”


Day 172 – 1 Kings 10-11, 2 Chronicles 9

Day 172
1 Kings 10-11; 2 Chronicles 9

It remains one of the most famous encounters between two heads of state in history. The Queen of Sheba, whose kingdom was most likely ancient Saba in what is modern-day Yemen, traveled to Jerusalem from southern Arabia to visit King Solomon and to see for herself what she had


Day 171 – Ecclesiastes 7-12

Day 171
Ecclesiastes 7-12

The book of Ecclesiastes is a cynical but candid evaluation of life by someone who has done and tasted everything that is offered under the sun. This self-designated Professor dares to ask the question most people are afraid to ask, “Is this all there is?” The Teacher referred to himself as a collector and arranger of Proverbs. As it happened, Chapter 7


Day 170 – Ecclesiastes 1-6

Day 170
Ecclesiastes 1-6

It is a puzzling shift to move from Proverbs to Ecclesiastes. The move can be very disorienting. The buoyant optimism of Proverbs stands in sharp contrast to the restless pessimism of Ecclesiastes. Ecclesiastes is Greek for “Preacher,” rendering the Hebrew word that can also be translated, “Teacher” or “Professor.” Ecclesiastes is


Day 169 – Proverbs 27-29

Day 169
Proverbs 27-29

As it happened, these proverbs of Solomon preserved by the men of Hezekiah, generally explore the themes of friendship and trust (27); rule and government (28); righteousness and justice (29). Chapter 27 opens with a pair of proverbs that urge us to spurn boastfulness in favor of the commendation by others. Any assertion about what we


Day 168 – Proverbs 25-26

Day 168
Proverbs 25-26

As it happened, some of the men who served within King Hezekiah’s administration preserved and arranged additional proverbs of Solomon. As a result, these proverbs are organized into groups that are more evident than some of the earlier proverbs. In Chapter 25 kings (1-7; 11-15) and neighbors (8-10; 16-20) are prominently featured,


Day 167 – 1 Kings 9, 2 Chronicles 8

Day 167
1 Kings 9, 2 Chronicles 8

As it happened, after the Temple was dedicated and everyone had returned home, the Lord appeared to Solomon “a second time, as he had appeared to him at Gibeon” (9:2). The Lord’s appearance to Solomon was both affirming and solemn. First of all, God answered Solomon’s


Day 166 – Psalm 134, 146-150

Day 166
Psalm 134, 146-150

Psalm 134 is the last psalm in a series of palms known as the songs of Ascent. Though brief, it consists of both a call to worship (1-2) and a benediction (3). Imagine a host of Hebrew pilgrims singing this song upon their arrival into Jerusalem for a festival. Perhaps they have entered the


Day 165 – 2 Chronicles 6-7, Psalm 136

Day 165
2 Chronicles 6-7, Psalm 136

There are a few minor differences in Solomon’s blessing and prayer of dedication as recorded in 1 Kings and 2 Chronicles, but overall the two accounts are quite complementary as we would expect. First of all, the Chronicler described the large and impressive bronze platform (90’ x 90’ x 54’)