This chapter records Solomon’s downfall and death. It’s interesting that the chapter doesn’t tell us about any more accomplishments. It simply records the fact that his heart turned away from God and to the women in his harem who led him to worship other gods.  That’s the last we learn about Solomon. He was such a great man, but what a lousy epitaph.

Another thing to notice in this chapter is that it’s really not about Solomon but about his enemies. They are mentioned by name: Hadad, Rezon, and Jeroboam.  I like what Dilday says, “As long as he walked with God, he was important to the inspired historians, but as soon as he forsook Yahweh, he became insignificant, an empty vessel discarded by the wayside. The spotlight of God’s plan now shifts from the noble life of Solomon to shine on other summits. And it is a sad eclipse.”

But to be fair in our assessment of HIs life, we must say with Dilday, “He was a man of peace, not warlike as David was. He sought wisdom—not the world’s variety, but wisdom from God. It was his desire to administer his government according to the law and will of Yahweh. His enormous talents included knowledge of the world as a naturalist, knowledge of humans as an expert in their behavior, knowledge of literature as a poet and writer. He had splendid tastes, which he bestowed upon his kingdom in vast building projects and cultural enhancements. He not only made Israel a majestic kingdom of this world, but he erected the temple to the glory of the spiritual world, lavishing upon it countless treasures. At its dedication, Solomon stood as one of the most imposing figures in human history.”

But his glory rapidly faded away. Too much luxury, pleasure, power, etc, lead to disobedience to God’s will. You can almost feel his pain in the words he wrote in Ecclesiastes when in defeat his says, “It’s all worth nothing. The best thing for man is to enjoy his work and obey God.” He had learned this from experience.

Maybe we can learn it from His experience and not have to suffer the same consequences.

“Don’t lie to each other, for you have stripped off your old sinful nature and all its wicked deeds. Put on your new nature, and be renewed as you learn to know your Creator and become like him.” Colossians 3:9-10