The Father gives wisdom
Give your servant a discerning heart. – 1 Kings 3:9
1 Kings 3:28 When all Israel heard the king’s decision, the people were in awe of the king, for they saw the wisdom God had given him for rendering justice.
Two different people claimed ownership of the same dog, a man and woman. They both presented convincing arguments when they went to court. The woman had filed a lawsuit claiming ownership of the dog. The man told the judge a very convincing story about his claim to ownership. He explained that he had purchased the dog. He gave details about where he purchased it.
The judge was somewhat puzzled. But he came up with a very wise and discerning solution. The dog was in the courtroom on a leash. When the dog was released, he ran immediately to the woman, tongue hanging out, and his tail wagging excitedly. The judge had stern words for the man. And the woman left the courtroom happily united with her best friend.
Solomon had a reputation for being the wisest man who ever lived. He demonstrated his wisdom in many specific historical recollections recorded in the book of 1 Kings. And of course the biblical books the books Song of Solomon, Proverbs and Ecclesiastes which he wrote.
In 1 Kings 3:16-26, two women claimed to be the mother of the same baby. Each woman presented her case. Of course, he listened intently considering the arguments of both women.
Here is the dialogue.
1 Kings 3:17-22
17 “Please, my lord,” one of them began, “this woman and I live in the same house. I gave birth to a baby while she was with me in the house.
18 Three days later this woman also had a baby. We were alone; there were only two of us in the house.
19 “But her baby died during the night when she rolled over on it.
20 Then she got up in the night and took my son from beside me while I was asleep. She laid her dead child in my arms and took mine to sleep beside her.
21 And in the morning when I tried to nurse my son, he was dead! But when I looked more closely in the morning light, I saw that it wasn’t my son at all.”
22 Then the other woman interrupted, “It certainly was your son, and the living child is mine.” “No,” the first woman said, “the living child is mine, and the dead one is yours.” And so they argued back and forth before the king.
Based upon the evidence, there was no way to make an accurate judgment. But Solomon came up with a brilliant strategy.
1 Kings 3:23-27
23 Then the king said, “Let’s get the facts straight. Both of you claim the living child is yours, and each says that the dead one belongs to the other.
24 All right, bring me a sword.” So a sword was brought to the king.
25 Then he said, “Cut the living child in two, and give half to one woman and half to the other!”
26 Then the woman who was the real mother of the living child, and who loved him very much, cried out, “Oh no, my lord! Give her the child– please do not kill him!” But the other woman said, “All right, he will be neither yours nor mine; divide him between us!”
27 Then the king said, “Do not kill the child, but give him to the woman who wants him to live, for she is his mother!”
Wisdom and discernment are absolutely necessary to decide what is right and wrong, moral and immoral, fair and unfair.
REFLECT & PRAY
The Father gives wisdom to those who ask.
Father thank you that you have made wisdom and discernment available to each of your children. Please let us to cultivate a “hearing heart.”
What is a discerning heart?
1 Kings 3:9 Give your servant a discerning heart.
The phrase “a discerning heart” is literally “a hearing heart.” The Hebrew word which is translated understanding or discerning is shama. Shama literally comes from the Hebrew verb shamah, which is regularly rendered “to hear.” It may also mean “to understand.” The Hebrew phrase could also be translated as, “an attentive heart” or “an intelligent heart” (UBS).
The Father answered Solomon’s prayer and blessed him with godly wisdom which only comes from above. To this very day when Solomon’s history and writings are studied, we are awed by his wisdom. The Father delights in giving wisdom to anyone who asks.
James 1:5 If you need wisdom, ask our generous God, and he will give it to you. He will not rebuke you for asking.