Reflection on 1 Kings 11:1-8

Additional 11639   f. 116   King Solomon

Additional 11639 f. 116 King Solomon

“And king Solomon loved many strange women besides the daughter of Pharao, and women of Moab, and of Ammon, and of Edom, and of Sidon, and of the Hethites:Of the nations concerning which the Lord said to the children of Israel: You shall not go in unto them, neither shall any of them come in to yours: for they will most certainly turn away your heart to follow their gods. And to these was Solomon joined with a most ardent love.And he had seven hundred wives as queens, and three hundred concubines: and the women turned away his heart.And when he was now old, his heart was turned away by women to follow strange gods: and his heart was not perfect with the Lord his God, as was the heart of David his father.But Solomon worshipped Astarthe the goddess of the Sidonians, and Moloch the idol of the ammonites.And Solomon did that which was net pleasing before the Lord, and did not fully follow the Lord, as David his father.Then Solomon built a temple for Chamos the idol of Moab, on the hill that is over against Jerusalem, and for Moloch the idol of the children of Ammon.And he did in this manner for all his wives that were strangers, who burnt incense, and offered sacrifice to their gods.” (1 Kings 11:1-8)

Literal Sense:  When the people of Israel left the land of Egypt and were yet to enter the promised land, God, through Moses, specified that when the people of Israel have a king, he shall not multiply horses and wives (Deuteronomy 17:16-17).  This Solomon did during his reign as King of Israel in direct defiance of what was commanded.  Solomon desired many horses, as a sign of power, as well as many wives in order to satisfy his lust for women.   His many wives led him to worship other gods and even to build a temple for one of the gods.  In fact, his wives led him to worship the demon god Moloch, a demon unto whom infants were sacrificed.

Allegorical Sense: Unlike Solomon, the King of Israel, the true King of Israel, Christ Jesus, did not concern Himself with accumulating power (Matthew 4:8-10) neither did He concern Himself with sexual pleasures, as his desire was to do the will of His Father in heaven (Psalm 40:8).  Unlike Solomon, Christ did not worship demons but told Satan “The Lord thy God shalt thou adore, and him only shalt thou serve” (Matthew 4:10).  Additionally, Christ did not seek after many wives as Solomon did, but was, and still is, faithful to only one wife, the Church. Not only is Christ the antithesis of Solomon in the matters of power, worship and women, but He is also the antithesis of the demon Moloch, since Christ gives life to infants in commanding for them to be baptized, whereas Moloch brings death to infants in commanding for them to be sacrificed.

Moral Sense: These things were written for our instruction to warn us against seeking worldly power and sensual pleasures as Solomon did.  They also warn us from establishing relationships with unbelievers (2 Corinthians 6:14), symbolized by the “strange women”, or women of other nations.  A person is often enticed and led astray by their relationships with the ungodly.  Such an example can be seen in the many Christians who, as a result of the influence of their relationships with the ungodly, believe it is morally acceptable to sacrifice infants to the demon Moloch in the act of abortion.

Anagogical Sense: Christians may look forward to the day when all disordered desire for power, sensual pleasure and idolatry will be eliminated and the worship of the one true God will extend to all parts of the earth: “[a]ll the ends of the earth shall remember, and shall be converted to the Lord” (Psalm 22:27).  In that day, there will no longer remain corrupt kings who seek after their own interests, but there will the one true King of Kings who rules in love and serves His subjects.

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