Wisdom and knowledge is granted to you; and I will give you riches, and wealth, and honor, such as none of the kings have had that have been before you, neither shall there any after you have the like.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)Wisdom and knowledge.—The wisdom and the knowledge, viz., which thou hast asked for.
And I will give thee.—Kings, “I have given.” The perfect tense (I will certainly give) is more idiomatic than the chronicler’s simple imperfect.
Such as none of the kings have had that have been before thee . . . the like.—Rather, Such as hath not been to the kings before thee, and after thee shall not be. (Comp. 1Chronicles 29:25 and Note.) The Assyrian kings were fond of similar comparisons between themselves and their predecessors. Kings: “That there hath not been (i.e., shall not be) a man like thee among the kings, all thy days,” a different promise. The conditional promise, “And if thou wilt walk in my ways . . . I will lengthen thy days” (1Kings 3:14), is hero omitted, although 2Chronicles 1:11 has mentioned long life; perhaps because Solomon fell short of it. But comp. 2Chronicles 7:17 seq. Of course the omission may be a mere abridgment.2 Chronicles 1:12. And I will give thee riches and wealth, &c. — Those that make this world their end, come short of the other, and frequently of this too. But those who make the other world their end shall not only obtain that, but shall have as much as is convenient of this world in their way.2 Chronicles 1:11 among the blessings which he might have been expected to ask. The reason for the omission would seem to lie in the writer's desire to record only what is good of this great king. Long life was included in the promises made to him; but it was granted conditionally; and Solomon not fulfilling the conditions, it did not take effect (1 Kings 3:14 note).
7. In that night did God appear unto Solomon—(See on 1Ki 3:5).2 Chronicles 1:12 it is the same with 1 Kings 3:5. See Gill on 1 Kings 3:5, 1 Kings 3:6, 1 Kings 3:7, 1 Kings 3:8, 1 Kings 3:9, 1 Kings 3:10, 1 Kings 3:11, 1 Kings 3:12, 1 Kings 3:13, 1 Kings 3:14, 1 Kings 3:15 Wisdom and knowledge is granted unto thee; and I will give thee riches, and wealth, and honor, such as none of the kings have had that have been before thee, neither shall there any after thee have the like.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)12. wisdom and knowledge is granted unto thee] The incident illustrates the principle, To him that hath shall be given; Solomon had wisdom enough to offer a wise prayer; increase of wisdom followed as the answer to the prayer.Verse 12. - Such as none of the kings... before thee, neither... after thee. These words were sadly ominous of the short-lived glory of the kingdom Only two kings had reigned before Solomon in Israel, and the glory of the kingdom too surely culminated in his reign, and even before the end of it (2 Chronicles 9:22, 23; 1 Chronicles 29:25; Ecclesiastes 2:9). On the other hand, the gratuitous and spontaneous fulness of promise in the Divine reply to a human prayer that "pleased" the Being invoked is most noticeable, and preached beforehand indeed, the lesson of the life of Jesus, "Seek ye first the kingdom... and all these things shall be added unto you" (Matthew 6:33). The contents of this verse are followed in the parallel by the words," And Solomon awoke; and behold it was a dream." There can be no doubt that what is here rehearsed did not lose any force or anything of reality from its transpiring in a dream, of which the abundantly open statement of the method of it, as in "sleep," and in "a dream," may be accepted as the first cogent evidence. But beside this, the frequent recital in the Old Testament of occasions when significant and weighty matters of business import were so conducted by the Divine will forms ample ground and defence for the other class of occasions, of which more spiritual matter was the subject (Genesis 28:12; Genesis 41:7; Genesis 20:3; Genesis 31:10, 24; Genesis 37:5; Genesis 40:5; Genesis 41:32; Judges . 7:15; Job 33:15; Daniel 2:3; Daniel 7:1; Matthew 1:20; Matthew 2:13, 22; Matthew 27:19). On the other hand, side by side with such passages are those that refer to dreams for their emptiness and transiency of impression, when similes of this kind of thing are required (Job 20:8; Psalm 73:20; Psalm 126:1). This is not the place to enter into any argument of a metaphysical or physiological character respecting dreams, and what they may or may not avail. But as some persons know even too well how dreams have brought them most vivid, most torturing, and most exquisite experiences in turn, there will seem, to them at least, the less difficulty in admitting utterly their availableness for communications of highest import, not only from God to man, but under certain conditions from man to God. Without doubt, certain disabilities (and those, perhaps, more especially of the moral kind) attach to our mind in dreams. But do not dreams also find the scene of the keener activities of mind pure? Granted that the mind is then under ordinary circumstances without a certain control and self-commanding power, yet is it also in some large respects much more at liberty from that besetting tyranny of sense with which waking hours are so familiar! Hence its consummate daring and swiftness and versatility in dream beyond all that it knows in the body's waking state. 2 Chronicles 1:1-6. When Solomon had established himself upon his throne, he went with the princes and representatives of the congregation of Israel to Gibeon, to seek for the divine blessing upon his reign by a solemn sacrifice to be offered there before the tabernacle. 2 Chronicles 1:1 forms, as it were, the superscription of the account of Solomon's reign which follows. In וגו ויּתחזּק equals Solomon established himself in his kingdom, i.e., he became strong and mighty in his kingdom, the older commentators saw a reference to the defeat of Adonijah, the pretender to the crown, and his followers (1 Kings 2). But this view of the words is too narrow; we find the same remark made of other kings whose succession to the throne had not been questioned (cf. 2 Chronicles 12:13; 2 Chronicles 13:21; 2 Chronicles 17:1, and 2 Chronicles 21:4), and the remark refers to the whole reign-to all that Solomon undertook in order to establish a firm dominion, not merely to his entry upon it. With this view of the words, the second clause, "his God was with him, and made him very great," coincides. God gave His blessing to all that Solomon did for this end. With the last words cf. 1 Chronicles 29:25.
We have an account of the sacrifice at Gibeon (2 Chronicles 1:7-13) in 1 Kings 3:4-15 also. The two narratives agree in all the main points, but, in so far as their form is concerned, it is at once discernible that they are two independent descriptions of the same thing, but derived from the same sources. In 1 Kings 3 the theophany-in our text, on the contrary, that aspect of the sacrifice which connected it with the public worship-is more circumstantially narrated. While in 1 Kings 3:4 it is briefly said the king went to Gibeon to sacrifice there, our historian records that Solomon summoned the princes and representatives of the people to this solemn act, and accompanied by them went to Gibeon. This sacrifice was no mere private sacrifice-it was the religious consecration of the opening of his reign, at which the estates of the kingdom were present as a matter of course. "All Israel" is defined by "the princes over the thousands ..., the judges, and all the honourable;" then לכל־שׂראל is again taken up and explained by the apposition האבות ראשׁי: to all Israel, viz., the heads of the fathers'-houses. ל is to be repeated before ראשׁי. What Solomon said to all Israel through its representatives, is not communicated; but it may be gathered from what succeeds, that he summoned them to accompany him to Gibeon to offer the sacrifice. The reason why he offered his sacrifice at the בּמה, i.e., place of sacrifice, is given in 2 Chronicles 1:3. There the Mosaic tabernacle stood, yet without the ark, which David had caused to be brought up from Kirjath-jearim to Jerusalem (1 Chronicles 13:1-14 and 15). In לו בּהכין the article in ba represents the relative אשׁר equals בּאשׁר or לו הכין אשׁר בּמקום; cf. Judges 5:27; Ruth 1:16; 1 Kings 21:19; see on 1 Chronicles 26:28. Although the ark was separated from the tabernacle, yet by the latter at Gibeon was the Mosaic altar of burnt-offering, and on that account the sanctuary at Gibeon was Jahve's dwelling, and the legal place of worship for burnt-offerings of national-theocratic import. "As our historian here brings forward emphatically the fact that Solomon offered his burnt-offering at the legal place of worship, so he points out in 1 Chronicles 21:28-30 :1, how David was only brought by extraordinary events, and special signs from God, to sacrifice on the altar of burnt-offering erected by him on the threshing-floor of Ornan, and also states how he was prevented from offering his burnt-offering in Gibeon" (Berth.). As to Bezaleel, the maker of the brazen altar, cf. Exodus 31:2 and Exodus 37:1. Instead of שׂם, which most manuscripts and many editions have before לפני, and which the Targ. and Syr. also express, there is found in most editions of the 16th century, and also in manuscripts, שׁם, which the lxx and Vulgate also read. The reading שׁם is unquestionably better and more correct, and the Masoretic pointing שׂם, posuit, has arisen by an undue assimilation of it to Exodus 40:29. The suffix in ידרשׁהוּ does not refer to the altar, but to the preceding word יהוה; cf. אלהים דּרשׁ, 1 Chronicles 21:30; 1 Chronicles 15:13, etc.
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