BSF Study Questions People of the Promised Land 1: Lesson 28, Day 5: 1 Kings 10:14-29; Psalm 72

Summary of 1 Kings 10:14-29:

Solomon accumulated gold and shields. He made a huge throne of ivory and gold. Everything was made of gold. He engaged in foreign trade with gold, silver, ivory, apes, and baboons. Solomon was greater in riches and wisdom than any other earthly king. Everyone sought his advice and gave him gifts in return. Solomon accumulated chariots and horses, and silver was common in Jerusalem.

Summary of Psalm 72:

David prays for Solomon. He asks God to endow him with justice. The people will prosper. He will defend the afflicted and help the children of the poor. Solomon will endure and be prosperous. All kings will bow to him. May he live long and his name endure forever. Let all nations be blessed by him. Praise to God.

BSF Study Questions People of the Promised Land 1: Lesson 28, Day 5: 1 Kings 10:14-29; Psalm 72:

12) Part personal Question. My answer. Solomon was just to the people. He judged in righteousness. He defended the afflicted and saved the children of the needy. He lived a long life. He ruled a vast area. The desert tribes bowed before him. He was brought tribute by distant kings. The kings of Sheba and Seba presented him with gifts. All kings will bow down to Solomon and serve him. He rescued the needy. People prayed for him and blessed him. The land was plentiful. His name endures forever. All nations were blessed by him, and they called Solomon blessed. It doesn’t really encourage me to pray. We should be praying for all those lost anyways and for all we know to prosper, for those who are suffering, and for God to show up in lives and bless people.

13) Part personal Question. My answer: When you have great wealth, you have great responsibility.  People want to learn from you, and you are obligated to help them be better people. You also have an obligation to take care of those less fortunate than you — both financially and with your time. My lesson is when you’re successful, you need to help others who are struggling. Share your wealth. Bless others.

Conclusions BSF Study Questions People of the Promised Land 1 Lesson 28 Day 5: 1 Kings 10:14-29; Psalm 72:

This shows the power of prayer of parents for their children. King David prayed powerfully for Solomon, and God granted all of David’s requests. Solomon was indeed blessed by God, in part because of David’s faithfulness to God. It also shows the power of God’s blessings when you walk in His ways.

End Notes BSF Study Questions People of the Promised Land 1 Lesson 28, Day 5: 1 Kings 10:14-29; Psalm 72:

Commentary 1 Kings 10:14-29:

This was a vast amount of gold, which came to Solomon yearly. One commentator estimated the value of the 666 talents of gold at $281,318,400. According to the value of gold in 2015, it would be just under $1 billion dollars. This speaks not only to the great wealth of Solomon, but it also makes him the only other person in the Bible associated with the number 666.

The other Biblical connection to 666 is the end-times world dictator and opponent of God and His people often known as the Antichrist (Revelation 13:18). In fact, the Revelation passage specifically says that the number 666 is the number of a man, and the man may be Solomon. This isn’t to say that Solomon was the Antichrist or that the coming Antichrist will be some strange reincarnation of Solomon.

1 Kings assumes that we know of the instructions for future kings of Israel in Deuteronomy 17:14-20. God blessed Solomon with great riches, but Solomon allowed that blessing to turn into a danger because he disobediently multiplied silver and gold for himself.

According to Dilday, each large shield was worth about $120,000 ($250,000 at 2015 values). The smaller shields were worth $30,000 ($57,000 at 2015 values). $33 million was invested in gold ceremonial shields.

Image result for 1 kings 10

King Solomon surpassed all the kings of the earth in riches and wisdom

The promises of Deuteronomy 28:1-14 were fulfilled in his reign: The LORD will open to you His good treasure, the heavens, to give the rain to your land in its season, and to bless all the work of your hand. You shall lend to many nations, but you shall not borrow(Deuteronomy 28:12).

There were few military conflicts during the reign of Solomon, yet he still saw the importance of a strong defense. Perhaps there were few military conflicts because Solomon had a strong defense.

Remains of Solomon’s fortress and stables at Megiddo can be seen today.

When we think of Solomon’s great wealth, we also consider that he originally did not set his heart upon riches. He deliberately asked for wisdom to lead the people of God instead of riches or fame. God promised to also give Solomon riches and fame, and God fulfilled His promise.

Solomon gave an eloquent testimony to the vanity of riches as the preacher in the Book of Ecclesiastes. He powerfully showed that there was no ultimate satisfaction through materialism. We don’t have to be as rich as Solomon to learn the same lesson.

Image result for psalm 72Multiplying horses was in direct disobedience to Deuteronomy 17:16, which said to the Kings of Israel: But he shall not multiply horses for himself, nor cause the people to return to Egypt to multiply horses, for the LORD has said to you, “You shall not return that way again.”

Solomon traded in horses with the kings of the Hittites and Syria. Solomon could have used this as an excuse, saying he was not using the horses for himself. Many examples of gross disobedience begin as clever rationalizations.

Commentary Psalm 72:

The title of this Psalm is, A Psalm of Solomon. It is possible to translate the Hebrew here (and in almost all the Psalms which reference an author) as “A Psalm to Solomon,” and some have regarded it as David’s Psalm to and about his son Solomon and his Greater Son the Messiah. Yet, the most natural way to take the title is as it is given, A Psalm of Solomon and that the line about David in 72:20 refers to the collection of Book Two of the Psalms, which is heavy with David’s Psalms, separating it from Book Three, which begins with 11 Psalms authored by Asaph.

It is possible that Solomon complied this second book of the Psalms (Psalms 42-72) and composed this Psalm as a fitting conclusion for the collection of mostly David’s Psalms. It is a fitting conclusion, because it unexpectedly does not focus upon David himself, but on the Messiah – the King of Kings and the Son of David.

“The New Testament nowhere quotes it as Messianic, but this picture of the king and his realm is so close to the prophecies of Isaiah 11:1-5 and Isaiah 60-62 that if those passages are Messianic, so is this.” (Derek Kidner)

Righteousness dominates this opening, since in Scripture it is the first virtue of government, even before compassion (which is the theme of verses 12-14).” (Kidner)

Sometimes mountains represent human governments in the Bible, and David may have intended this allusion. He had in mind a national government (mountains) that blessed the people and local government (the little hills) that ruled with righteousness. This godly government would accomplish at least three things:

  1. The king and his government will make sure that justice is administered fairly.
  2. The king and his government will rescue those most vulnerable in society.
  3. The king and his government will protect Israel, keeping them free from external domination and from internal corruption.

However, the mountains could stand for something else:

  • Geddes wrote they spoke of messengers placed on a series of mountains or hilltops distributed news through a land.
  • Mollerus wrote that it spoke of the fertility of soil on the mountains.
  • Caryl wrote that it speaks of the safety from robbers who often infested mountain passes.
  • Alexander Maclaren wrote of another sense: “The mountains come into view here simply as being the most prominent features of the land.”

Image result for psalm 72Psalm 72:5-7

  • The answer to the prayer would mean that the people of Israel – the king, his government, and the people – would fear the Lord forever, throughout all generations.
  • The Scriptures often connect the ideas of righteous, just government, and blessing upon the ecology and produce of the land.
  • As God sends such a rich blessing His people would flourish and there would be an abundance of peace (shalom) that will last beyond comprehension (until the moon is no more).
  • In a greater sense, it points to Jesus alone. The connection between the righteous and peace reminds us of Melchizedek, the One who was and is both the King of Righteousness and the King of Peace (Hebrews 7:1-3).
  • To oppose the King with such a great dominion meant certain defeat. His enemies would be brought low in a way associated with the curse upon The Enemy in Genesis 3:14-15.

“Bear in mind that it was a custom with many nations that, when individuals approached their kings, they kissed the earth, and prostrated their whole body before them. This was the custom especially throughout Asia.” (LeBlanc, cited in Spurgeon)

All kings shall fall down was prophesied in a beautiful word from the prophet Nathan in 2 Samuel 7, which had in mind both David’s immediate son and successor (Solomon) and David’s ultimate Son and Successor (Jesus the Messiah). Both were in view in 2 Samuel 7:11-16, and both are in view in Psalm 72. The fulfillment in Solomon’s day is described in 1 Kings 10:23-25

“The distant nations are the kings of the ‘distant shores’ (72:10): Tarshish (cf. Psalm 48:7), Sheba (modern Yemen), and Seba (an African nation: cf. Genesis 10:7Isaiah 43:345:14

Tarshish may have been Tartessus in Spain; it was in any case a name associated with long voyages; likewise the isles or ‘coastlands’ were synonymous with the ends of the earth: see, e.g. Isaiah 42:10.” (Kidner)

Psalm 72:12-14

  • The justice and righteousness David prayed for and aspired to regarding Solomon’s reign (Psalm 72:1-4) will be perfectly fulfilled in the Greater King.
  • “The king is represented in Psalms 72:14 as taking on himself the office of Goel, or Kinsman-Redeemer, and ransoming his subjects’ lives from ‘deceit and violence.’” (Maclaren)

Blessed as it was, Solomon’s own reign did not live up to this fully. After his death they complained of his oppression (1 Kings 12:4). “Solomon continues to speak more wisely than he was ever to act.” (Kidner)

The lives of the poor and needy are often considered to be of little value. The Messiah, the Greater King, will regard their life as precious. This is especially meaningful when we consider the cheap regard for life outside and before the world influenced by Christianity.

Image result for animals of the biblePsalm 72:15-17

Commentators debate verses 15-17 if the He spoken of here refers to the ransomed man of the previous lines or of the King who ransomed him. Since the previous lines speak of a multitude redeemed and this He speaks of One, and because the following lines fit much better with the King, we regard He shall live as both a wish and a declaration for the King.

“How little this might mean is obvious from the address, ‘O king, live forever’, in the book of Daniel; yet also how much, can be seen from the Messianic prophecies and from the way these were understood in New Testament times.” (Kidner)

The Greater King would receive gifts and honor and praise. He would bestow great blessing on the earth (an abundance of grain in the earth) and upon His people (those of the city shall flourish).

“Gold, grain, and fruit were ancient measures of prosperity. So this is a way of saying that under the reign of Jesus there will be prosperity of every conceivable kind.” (Boice)

David recognized that this King of Kings was not only the fulfillment of the promise made to him in 2 Samuel 7:11-16. It was also the fulfillment of the great promise made to Abraham in Genesis 12:1-3In you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.

Themes of Psalm 72

Psalm 72 speaks powerfully of the kingdom of the King of Kings and speaks of it in terms of His personal rule, not ruling through an institution such as the Church. “In this Psalm, at least, we see a personal monarch, and he is the central figure, the focus of all the glory; not his servant, but himself do we see possessing the dominion and dispensing the government. Personal pronouns referring to our great King are constantly occurring in this Psalm; he has dominion, kings fall down before him,: and serve him; for he delivers; he spares, he saves, he lives, and daily is he praised.” (Spurgeon)

There is also a tragedy in this Psalm. As high as it soars with the concept of the king and his reign, we remember the sad disappointment of how quickly the monarchy in Israel declined after Solomon. There were certainly some good kings after Solomon, but the glory of the kingdom went from Solomon’s gold (1 Kings 10:16-17) to Rehoboam’s bronze (1 Kings 14:25-28) in only about five years.

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BSF Study Questions Romans Lesson 28, Day 5: Romans 15:30-33 with Acts 20:22-23

Summary of passages:  Romans 15:30-33:  Paul urges the Romans to pray for him, for his safety in Judea and for his service/offering to be accepted by the Jews in Jerusalem.

Acts 20:22-23:  On Paul’s journey to Jerusalem Paul knows hardships and prison await as the Holy Spirit as given him this premonition.

Questions

13)  Hardships, prison, unbelievers in Judea

14)  Prayer.  He believes in its power.

15)  He prayed to be rescued from the unbelievers in Judea and that his service in Jerusalem may be acceptable to the saints there so that he can come to the Roman church with joy and refreshment.

16)  Part personal Question.  My answer:  First century AD was a period of constant upheaval and wars in this region–both spiritual wars and physical wars.  God grants peace in all of this.  It’s hard to convert people to Christ when their lives are in upheavals and survival is the primary goal in mind.  When our worlds are peaceful, so are our minds and therefore our minds are more open to conversion.  Financial and peace with finding His will in my life.

Conclusions:  We all face dangers in our lives (just not so extreme as Paul’s).  What does he do?  He prays and asks others for prayer while walking through the danger, which is God’s calling for Him.  So must we.  We must pray and ask others to pray for us in all areas in our lives, especially the upheavals.  Only God can grant us peace as Paul says.

End Notes:  Sensing that danger awaited him in Jerusalem (having been warned several times as recorded in Acts 20:22-23 and Acts 21:10-14), Paul knew he needed the prayers of God’s people to see him through the difficulty promised him.

BSF Study Questions Romans Lesson 28, Day 4: Romans 15:22-29

Summary of passage:  Paul tells the Romans he plans to visit them on his way to Spain.  However, now he’s headed to Jerusalem to deliver funds he has raised from Macedonia and Achaia.  The Gentiles owe the Jews for sharing in the spiritual blessings.  After this trip, he is headed to them.

Questions:

10)  He longed to visit the Roman church but he needed first to go to Jerusalem to deliver funds he has raised from his travels to Macedonia and Achaia.

11)  Duties come first.  Paul wants to go to Rome but first has to deliver the funds he has raised.  Priorities are important.

12)  Part personal Question.  My answer:  Macedonia and Achaia 1) were pleased to donate 2) had a duty to donate to the Jews since they now share in the spiritual blessing.  Giving is a blessing and should be grateful to do so and we should give to those who have helped us along the way.

Conclusions:  Put God’s will for your life first.  You will be blessed for doing so.  God’s will leads to unexpected plans for your life!

End Notes:  Paul wrote Romans while traveling to raise funds for famine relief.  In another letter (2 Corinthians 8) he gives more details on this mercy mission on behalf of the Jews in Jerusalem.  Paul’s actions set an example of unity for a church composed of both Jews and Gentiles–unity sorely needed by groups wracked by the divisions described in Chapter 14.

Paul’s pioneer work came first.  Paul probably wanted Rome to be his base of operations for the western part of the empire, even as Antioch was his base for the eastern part.

Paul had these plans; yet things did not work out according to his plans. He did go to Rome, yet not as a missionary on his way to Spain. He went to Rome as a prisoner awaiting trial before Caesar, where he would preach the gospel on a different kind of frontier.

God had other plans for Paul, which led to unexpected opportunities.  As a prisoner, Paul was able to preach to the Roman emperor!

After his release from the Roman imprisonment at the end of the Book of Acts, Paul did in fact make it to Spain and preached the gospel there.

Paul thought he would stop in Corinth on his way to Jerusalem to deliver a collection from Christians in Macedonia and Achaia (Acts 20:1-3).

Paul sets the example:  We should help those who have helped us.  The Gentile Christians of the broader Roman empire had received so much spiritually from the community of Jewish Christians in Jerusalem, it was only right that they help the Jerusalem Christians in their need.  Paul wanted to present this gift personally to convey the lvoe and concern of the Gentile churches for their Jewish brothers and sisters in Christ.

BSF Study Questions Romans Lesson 28, Day 3: Romans 15:17-21

Summary of passage:  Paul once again explains his delay in coming to the Roman church:  he has been busy fulfilling his calling of missionary to the Gentiles and taking the gospel of Christ to places it has not been heard so that “those who have not heard will understand.”  He only speaks through the power of the Holy Spirit and what the Holy Spirit lays on his heart to speak.

Questions:

6)  Paul glories in serving God through spreading the Good News of Jesus Christ.  Our culture glories on self-satisfaction and laziness.

7)  Part personal Question.  My answer:  Christ.  Most of the time I don’t.  I’m very aware that I am powerless in this world and all is through Him so I try to give Him all the credit, even in my thoughts and mind.

8 )  Personal Question.  My answer:  Paul’s calling was to proclaim Jesus to the Gentiles.  We all have different callings.  I’m trying to spread the word of God through the way I live my life, those I touch, the words you are reading right now, my books and novels, my conversations with friends and family and strangers, etc.  In your little world, in your job, in your family is where the difference is made.

9)  Personal Question.  My answer:  Similar to number 8.  This blog, my other blogs, my work, my kids, friends, family, strangers, words, actions, deeds, volunteer opportunities, etc.  Little things and places in this world that mean a lot.

Conclusions:  Paul reiterates his calling here so BSF is asking us ours as well.  Don’t get caught up in trying to make such a difference in this world.  Most of us lead lives of ordinariness.  But in that ordinariness extraordinary things happen.  We just don’t perceive it because we are bombarded with stories of extraordinary people.  You are extraordinary as well.  Believe it.  Receive it.  Act on it.

End Notes:  Bible Scholar Morris explains Paul’s words here: “Paul will glory only in what Christ has done through him. He is sure that Christ has done great things through him, and he is glad that he can draw attention to those things. But he is not trying to attract adulation. It is what Christ has done that is his theme.”

Paul makes sure to point out it is the Holy Spirit who guides him and his ministry to others everywhere.

Notice how Paul mentions the Triune God in this passage:  God, Christ and the Holy Spirit.

Paul wanted to preach to new places.  He’s not saying to NOT preach to where the Gospel has been taken.  He is merely speaking of his particular calling, which he backs up with the Old Testament passage.  Again, this is his calling.  What is yours?