I've been reading through the Kings and Chronicles, and personally, I'm fascinated. It's sort of like an Old Testament Jerry Springer or something. Siblings killing siblings. Sons plotting against fathers. Solomon had 1,000 wives and concubines. Imagine the tabloid fodder that would provide? Yikes! Of course, he learned it from the best - dear old dad, David, had quite a few wives himself.
I found it really interesting to note that if you looked at the lives of father and son, Solomon would seem to come out ahead of David. While he did have an uncommonly large number of wives, you don't find any reference to any huge sins that Solomon committed. And hey, he asked God for wisdom instead of wealth or power; had peace during his reign; amassed a huge fortune and wealth and power; authored several books of the Bible; and built the temple in all its splendor.
In contrast, David had that whole issue with Bathsheba - committed adultery and then tried to cover it up with murder. David was incited by Satan to do a census which caused punishment to come down on the entire nation of Israel. David was a warrior and spent his entire life fighting and had a lot of blood on his hands - so much so, that God told David NOT to build the temple but to allow Solomon to build it. His family was a real mess too - Absalom and Amnon were not sons of which you'd be very proud.
BUT, David is called a man after God's heart. David is commended for his wholehearted devotion despite his many major and public sins. Solomon on the other hand was NOT called a man after God's own heart. Despite his rather tame life compared to David's, Solomon had an achille's heel - beautiful women. He collected them like a beanie baby junkie. And he didn't just collect women - they were exotic, foreign women. He was guilty of allowing something or someone else to have place of honor in his heart and mind.
Take a look at I Kings 11: 1-6, "Now King Solomon loved many foreign women along with the daughter of Pharoah: Moabite, Ammonite, Edomite,Sidonian, and Hittite women, from the nations concerning which the Lord had said to the sons of Israel, 'You shall not associate with them, nor shall they associate with you, for they will surely turn your heart away after their gods.' Solomon held fast to thes in love. He had seven hundred wives, princesses and three hundred concubines, and his wives turned his heart away. For when Solomon was old, hsi wives turned his heart away after other gods; and his heart was not wholly devoted to the Lord his God,as the heart of David his father had been. For Solomon went after Ashtoreth the goddess of the Sidonians and after Milcom the detestable idol of the Ammonites. Solomon did what was evil in teh sight of the Lord, and did not follow the Lord fully, as David his father had done."
So, Solomon was a fool for love, just not the right kind of love. David was a fool for love too(remember his dear wife Michel who despised him for dancing before his God?). But the object of his love was an Almighty, holy God that delighted in David's "foolishness."
I guess if I'm going to be a fool, I want to be the kind David was - a fool for Jesus!
~ Blessings, Bronte