And Solomon the son of David was strengthened in his kingdom, and the LORD his God was with him, and magnified him exceedingly.2 Chronicles 1:1-2. Solomon was strengthened in his kingdom — Or, established, after his seditious brother Adonijah and his partisans were suppressed; and he was received with the universal consent and joy of his princes and people. Solomon spake unto all Israel — Namely, concerning his intention of going to Gibeon, and that they should attend him thither, as the next verse shows. Authority and interest are well bestowed on those that will thus use them for the glory of God, and the promotion of religion. But it is the duty of all men to engage all they have any influence upon in the solemnities of religion, and very desirable to have many to join with them therein: the more the better: it makes these solemnities the more like heaven.
Then Solomon spake unto all Israel, to the captains of thousands and of hundreds, and to the judges, and to every governor in all Israel, the chief of the fathers.
So Solomon, and all the congregation with him, went to the high place that was at Gibeon; for there was the tabernacle of the congregation of God, which Moses the servant of the LORD had made in the wilderness.2 Chronicles 1:3-4. Solomon, &c., went to the high place at Gibeon — Upon which the tabernacle was placed; whence it is called the great high place, 1 Kings 3:4. But the ark, &c. — David had separated the ark from the tabernacle, and brought it to Jerusalem, because there he intended to build a far more noble and lasting habitation for it.
But the ark of God had David brought up from Kirjathjearim to the place which David had prepared for it: for he had pitched a tent for it at Jerusalem.
Moreover the brasen altar, that Bezaleel the son of Uri, the son of Hur, had made, he put before the tabernacle of the LORD: and Solomon and the congregation sought unto it.2 Chronicles 1:5. The brazen altar he put before the tabernacle, &c. — He continued it there, and did not remove it, as he did the ark, from the tabernacle. Solomon and the congregation sought unto it — Sought the Lord and his favour by hearty prayers and sacrifices in the place which God had appointed for that work, Leviticus 17:3-4.
And Solomon went up thither to the brasen altar before the LORD, which was at the tabernacle of the congregation, and offered a thousand burnt offerings upon it.2 Chronicles 1:6. To the brazen altar before the Lord — It is said to be before the Lord, though the ark was not there, because God was pleased graciously to accept the sacrifices offered before the place, though wanting the token of his glorious presence. And offered a thousand burnt-offerings upon it — Namely, by the ministry of the priests, He probably offered as many peace- offerings, on which he and his company feasted before the Lord; unless, as Pellicanus thinks, burnt-offerings here signify peace-offerings, the general name being put for the special.
In that night did God appear unto Solomon, and said unto him, Ask what I shall give thee.2 Chronicles 1:7. In that night — After those sacrifices were offered; did God appear to Solomon in a dream — Of which see the notes on 1 Kings 3:5. And said, Ask what I shall give thee — God bid him ask what he would; not only that he might put him in the right way to obtain the favours which were intended him, Ask, and ye shall receive; but that he might try him how he stood affected, and give him an opportunity of knowing and manifesting what was in his heart. For men’s characters appear in their desires and choices. What wouldst thou have? tries a man as much as, What wouldst thou do?
And Solomon said unto God, Thou hast shewed great mercy unto David my father, and hast made me to reign in his stead.2 Chronicles 1:8. And hast made me to reign — Give me the spirit of my father David, that Israel may not suffer by the change. The eminence of those that went before us, and the obligation that lies upon us to keep and carry on the good work they were engaged in, should quicken our prayers for wisdom and grace, that we may do the work of God in our day as faithfully as they did in theirs.
Now, O LORD God, let thy promise unto David my father be established: for thou hast made me king over a people like the dust of the earth in multitude.
Give me now wisdom and knowledge, that I may go out and come in before this people: for who can judge this thy people, that is so great?2 Chronicles 1:10. Give me now wisdom and knowledge — Like a genuine son of David and Abraham, he chose spiritual blessings rather than temporal. That I may go out and come in before this people — This is a proverbial speech for governing the people both at home and abroad, in peace and war. See Numbers 27:17; Deuteronomy 31:2. For who can judge this thy people, that is so great? — Among such a numerous people he knew there would be so many, and so various, and, many times, difficult cases brought before him, that it would be impossible for him to hear them and judge aright, without wisdom more than human. See note on 1 Kings 3:9.
And God said to Solomon, Because this was in thine heart, and thou hast not asked riches, wealth, or honour, nor the life of thine enemies, neither yet hast asked long life; but hast asked wisdom and knowledge for thyself, that thou mayest judge my people, over whom I have made thee king:
Wisdom and knowledge is granted unto thee; and I will give thee riches, and wealth, and honour, such as none of the kings have had that have been before thee, neither shall there any after thee have the like.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.
Then Solomon came from his journey to the high place that was at Gibeon to Jerusalem, from before the tabernacle of the congregation, and reigned over Israel.
And Solomon gathered chariots and horsemen: and he had a thousand and four hundred chariots, and twelve thousand horsemen, which he placed in the chariot cities, and with the king at Jerusalem.2 Chronicles 1:14. And Solomon gathered chariots and horsemen, which he placed in the chariot-cities, and with the king at Jerusalem — Of this and the three following verses, see the notes on 1 Kings 10:26, &c.
And the king made silver and gold at Jerusalem as plenteous as stones, and cedar trees made he as the sycomore trees that are in the vale for abundance.
And Solomon had horses brought out of Egypt, and linen yarn: the king's merchants received the linen yarn at a price.
And they fetched up, and brought forth out of Egypt a chariot for six hundred shekels of silver, and an horse for an hundred and fifty: and so brought they out horses for all the kings of the Hittites, and for the kings of Syria, by their means.