Friday, June 19, 2009

A Newly Minted Multi Billionaire

We are fascinated by the lives of the rich and famous. Perhaps because in all of us there is this fantasy - "What would it be like?"

Let's go backwards in time to King Solomon. He was raised in wealth. Pampered as one of the children of the king.

So here he is - a very young king. He is held in high regard, becuase his father was venerated. All the countries around had been dominated, and were regularly bringing in huge taxes to the treasury. God had given him great wisdom to rule well. I think he also had high intelligence, with a restless, curious mind, and a bent toward the philosophical. He was incredibly handsome - his mother a beauty queen, his father "bright-eyed, good-looking." (1 Samuel 16:12)

Later he would write an entire book about his experience with life.

Ecclesiastes 2
4 -8 Oh, I did great things: built houses, planted vineyards, designed gardens and parks and planted a variety of fruit trees in them, made pools of water to irrigate the groves of trees. I bought slaves, male and female, who had children, giving me even more slaves; then I acquired large herds and flocks, larger than any before me in Jerusalem. I piled up silver and gold, loot from kings and kingdoms. I gathered a chorus of singers to entertain me with song, and—most exquisite of all pleasures— voluptuous maidens for my bed.
9 -10 Oh, how I prospered! I left all my predecessors in Jerusalem far behind, left them behind in the dust. What's more, I kept a clear head through it all. Everything I wanted I took—I never said no to myself. I gave in to every impulse, held back nothing. I sucked the marrow of pleasure out of every task—my reward to myself for a hard day's work!

Today we look at his activities...

He built himself the most magnificent castle to live in.

1 Kings 71 -5 It took Solomon another thirteen years to finish building his own palace complex. He built the Palace of the Forest of Lebanon a hundred and fifty feet long, seventy-five feet wide, and forty-five feet high. There were four rows of cedar columns supporting forty-five cedar beams, fifteen in each row, and then roofed with cedar. Windows in groupings of three were set high in the walls on either side. All the doors were rectangular and arranged symmetrically.
6 He built a colonnaded courtyard seventy-five feet long and forty-five wide. It had a roofed porch at the front with ample eaves.

In fact, there was an entire series of government buildings - all of them magnificent!

7 He built a court room, the Hall of Justice, where he would decide judicial matters, and paneled it with cedar.
8 He built his personal residence behind the Hall on a similar plan. Solomon also built another one just like it for Pharaoh's daughter, whom he had married.
9 -12 No expense was spared—everything here, inside and out, from foundation to roof was constructed using high-quality stone, accurately cut and shaped and polished. The foundation stones were huge, ranging in size from twelve to fifteen feet, and of the very best quality. The finest stone was used above the foundation, shaped to size and trimmed with cedar. The courtyard was enclosed with a wall made of three layers of stone and topped with cedar timbers, just like the one in the porch of The Temple of God.

A pretty dazzling array of wealth, success and power!

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