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1 Kings 9:21--10:4

Context
9:21 Their descendants remained in the land (the Israelites were unable to wipe them out completely). Solomon conscripted them for his work crews, and they continue in that role to this very day. 1  9:22 Solomon did not assign Israelites to these work crews; 2  the Israelites served as his soldiers, attendants, officers, charioteers, and commanders of his chariot forces. 3  9:23 These men were also in charge of Solomon’s work projects; there were a total of 550 men who supervised the workers. 4  9:24 Solomon built the terrace as soon as Pharaoh’s daughter moved up from the city of David 5  to the palace Solomon built for her. 6 

9:25 Three times a year Solomon offered burnt offerings and peace offerings 7  on the altar he had built for the Lord, burning incense along with them before the Lord. He made the temple his official worship place. 8 

9:26 King Solomon also built ships 9  in Ezion Geber, which is located near Elat in the land of Edom, on the shore of the Red Sea. 9:27 Hiram sent his fleet and some of his sailors, who were well acquainted with the sea, to serve with Solomon’s men. 10  9:28 They sailed 11  to Ophir, took from there four hundred twenty talents 12  of gold, and then brought them to King Solomon.

Solomon Entertains a Queen

10:1 When the queen of Sheba heard about Solomon, 13  she came to challenge 14  him with difficult questions. 15  10:2 She arrived in Jerusalem 16  with a great display of pomp, 17  bringing with her camels carrying spices, 18  a very large quantity of gold, and precious gems. She visited Solomon and discussed with him everything that was on her mind. 10:3 Solomon answered all her questions; there was no question too complex for the king. 19  10:4 When the queen of Sheba saw for herself Solomon’s extensive wisdom, 20  the palace 21  he had built,

1 tn Heb “their sons who were left after them in the land, whom the sons of Israel were unable to wipe out, and Solomon raised them up for a crew of labor to this day.”

2 sn These work crews. The work crews referred to here must be different than the temporary crews described in 5:13-16.

3 tn Heb “officers of his chariots and his horses.”

4 tn Heb “these [were] the officials of the governors who were over the work belonging to Solomon, five hundred fifty, the ones ruling over the people, the ones doing the work.”

5 sn The phrase city of David refers here to the fortress of Zion in Jerusalem, not to Bethlehem. See 2 Sam 5:7.

6 tn Heb “As soon as Pharaoh’s daughter went up from the city of David to her house which he built for her, then he built the terrace.”

7 tn Or “tokens of peace”; NIV, TEV “fellowship offerings.”

8 tn Heb “and he made complete the house.”

9 tn Or “a fleet” (in which case “ships” would be implied).

10 tn Heb “and Hiram sent with the fleet his servants, men of ships, [who] know the sea, [to be] with the servants of Solomon.”

11 tn Heb “went.”

12 tn The Hebrew term כִּכָּר (kikkar, “circle”) refers generally to something that is round. When used of metals it can refer to a disk-shaped weight made of the metal or to a standard unit of weight, generally regarded as a talent. Since the accepted weight for a talent of metal is about 75 pounds, this would have amounted to about 31,500 pounds of gold (cf. NCV); CEV, NLT “sixteen tons”; TEV “more than 14,000 kilogrammes.”

13 tn Heb “the report about Solomon.” The Hebrew text also has, “to the name of the Lord,” which fits very awkwardly in the sentence. If retained, perhaps it should be translated, “because of the reputation of the Lord.” The phrase, which is omitted in the parallel passage in 2 Chr 9:1, may be an addition based on the queen’s declaration of praise to the Lord in v. 9.

14 tn Or “test.”

15 tn Or “riddles.”

16 map For location see Map5 B1; Map6 F3; Map7 E2; Map8 F2; Map10 B3; JP1 F4; JP2 F4; JP3 F4; JP4 F4.

17 tn Heb “with very great strength.” The Hebrew term חַיִל (khayil, “strength”) may refer here to the size of her retinue (cf. NAB, NASB, NIV, NRSV) or to the great wealth she brought with her.

18 tn Or “balsam oil.”

19 tn Heb “Solomon declared to her all her words; there was not a word hidden from the king which he did not declare to her.” If riddles are specifically in view (see v. 1), then one might translate, “Solomon explained to her all her riddles; there was no riddle too complex for the king.”

20 tn Heb “all the wisdom of Solomon.”

21 tn Heb “house.”



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