“Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not clothed like one of these.” (Matt.6:28-29; Luke 12:27) The Gospels of Matthew and Luke include this reference to Solomon in Jesus’ teaching about worry and anxiety over food, drink and clothing. Solomon is known and revered for his great wisdom and his extravagant wealth–he lacked nothing. Yet, these verses give a slightly different picture, one in which Solomon’s glory, which he worked hard for, pales in comparison to the way that God has clothed the world–flowers which don’t do anything related to their own existence.
The story of Solomon is a story with many layers and complexities. For the most part, we have a single, glorified image of Solomon: he was wise, and because he asked for wisdom instead of riches or a long life, God honoured his request and also rewarded him with riches and power. And certainly, the first part of chapter 3 shows Solomon at his best. In a dream, God appears to him and asks him what he would like. God says, “Ask what I should give you.” Essentially, God will give Solomon anything he wants, he just has to ask!
- 1 Kings 3:3 - 28