Solomon was raised in David’s household. David was probably one of the most competitive men who ever lived. David was the macho man who slew the giant Goliath and beheaded him with his own sword. He did this when all the other men of Israel cowered in fear. David is the macho man who had his groupies singing, “Saul killed thousands, but David ten thousands.” David was the macho man who won the king’s daughter in marriage by killing 200 Philistines. The King had promised the hand of his daughter to whomever killed 100, but David is an extremely competitive man.

Virility was a measure of the ability to reign over a kingdom in those days. Thus David multiplied wives and concubines as did all the monarchs of the day. He was forced to choose a successor when he was unable to consummate his relationship with Abigail.
The competitive nature of David ran strong through Solomon. He multiplied wives more than any other ruler at any other time. The number of his wives (700) far surpasses the number of wives by any other ruler at any time. The number of his concubines (300) is also unsurpassed. He was extremely competitive.

David’s major failure was with Bathsheba. As the wife of another man, she was the forbidden fruit.  It’s interesting that Bathsheba was Solomon’s mother. Solomon’s major failure was with “many” foreign women. They too were the forbidden fruit.

Dilday observes, “It was bad enough that Solomon went along with customs of his day and practiced polygamy in defiance of the ideal God set forth in Genesis. It was bad enough that he took so many wives and concubines, straining the financial budget of his court. It was bad enough that they were foreigners, inciting great suspicion among the Israelites. But what made the situation intolerable was that he chose the women from among those nations God had specifically warned him to avoid. In several places in the Scriptures, which Solomon knew well, God had forbidden intermarriage with the Moabites, Ammonites, Edomites, Sidonians, and Hittites. In defiance of God’s clear command, Solomon chose his harem from these very nations.”

It’s always the forbidden fruit that gets us in trouble! It started in the garden!

“Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise.” Philippians 4:8