1 Kings 3–5

1 Solomon made a treaty with Pharaoh king of Egypt. He married Pharaoh’s daughter and brought her to the City of David until he finished building his palace, the house of the Lord, and the wall around Jerusalem. 2 The people were sacrificing at the high places, because no house had yet been built for the name of the Lord. 3 Solomon loved the Lord, walking in the statutes of his father David, though he sacrificed and burned incense at the high places.

4 The king went to Gibeon to sacrifice there, for that was the great high place, and he offered a thousand burnt offerings on that altar. 5 While he was in Gibeon, the Lord appeared to Solomon in a dream at night, and He said, “Ask what you want from Me.”

6 Solomon answered, “You have shown great mercy to Your servant David my father, because he walked before You in faithfulness, righteousness, and uprightness of heart toward You. And You have shown him great kindness in giving him a son to sit on his throne this day.

7 “Now, O Lord, my God, You have made Your servant king in place of my father David, and I am still a little child and do not know how to go out or come in. 8 And Your servant is in the midst of Your people whom You have chosen, a great people, so numerous that they cannot be numbered or counted. 9 Give Your servant therefore an understanding heart to judge Your people, that I may discern between good and bad, for who is able to judge among so great a people?”

10 It pleased the Lord that Solomon had asked this. 11 God said to him, “Because you have asked this and have not asked for yourself long life or riches or the lives of your enemies, but have asked for yourself wisdom so that you may have discernment in judging, 12 I now do according to your words. I have given you a wise and an understanding heart, so that there has never been anyone like you in the past, and there shall never arise another like you. 13 I have also given you what you have not asked, both riches and honor, so that no kings will compare to you all of your days. 14 If you will walk in My ways, keeping My statutes and My commandments as your father David did, then I will lengthen your days.” 15 Solomon awoke and found it was a dream.

Then he came to Jerusalem and stood before the ark of the covenant of the Lord and offered up burnt offerings and peace offerings and made a feast for all of his servants.

16 At that time, two women who were prostitutes came and stood before the king. 17 The first woman said, “O my lord, this woman and I live in the same house, and I bore a child with her in the house. 18 Three days after I gave birth, she also had a child, and we were together. There was no one else with us in the house, only the two of us were in the house.

19 “Then this woman’s child died during the night because she rolled over on it. 20 She got up at midnight and took my son from beside me while your servant slept and laid him at her bosom and laid her dead child at my bosom. 21 When I rose in the morning to feed my child, it was dead. But when I looked closely in the morning light, I recognized that it was not my son whom I bore.”

22 The other woman said, “No, the living is my son, and the dead is your son.”

And she said, “No, the dead is your son, and the living is my son.” Thus they spoke before the king.

23 Then the king said, “One says, ‘This is my son who lives, and your son is the dead,’ and the other says, ‘No, but your son is dead, and my son is the living.’”

24 So the king said, “Bring me a sword.” And they brought a sword before the king. 25 The king said, “Divide the living child in two, and give half to the one and half to the other.”

26 Then the woman whose child was the living one spoke to the king, for she yearned with compassion for her son, and she said, “O my lord, give her the living child, and do not kill it.”

But the other said, “Let it be neither mine nor yours and divide it.”

27 Then the king answered and said, “Give her the living child, and do not slay it. She is its mother.”

28 All Israel heard of the king’s judgment, and they feared the king, for they saw that the wisdom of God was in him, to execute sound judgment.

Chapter 4

1 So King Solomon was king over all Israel. 2 These were the officials in his court:

Azariah the son of Zadok was the priest.

3 Elihoreph and Ahijah, the sons of Shisha, were secretaries.

Jehoshaphat the son of Ahilud was the recorder;

4 Benaiah the son of Jehoiada was over the army.

Zadok and Abiathar were priests.

5 Azariah the son of Nathan was over the officers,

and Zabud the son of Nathan was principal officer and the king’s friend.

6 Ahishar was over the household,

and Adoniram the son of Abda was over the forced labor.

7 Solomon had twelve officers over all Israel who made provision for the king and his household. Each man was assigned a month to make provision. 8 These are their names:

the son of Hur in Mount Ephraim;

9 the son of Deker in Makaz and in Shaalbim and Beth Shemesh and Elon Bethhanan;

10 the son of Hesed in Arubboth (to him belonged Sokoh and all the land of Hepher);

11 the son of Abinadab in all the region of Dor (he had Taphath the daughter of Solomon as his wife);

12 Baana the son of Ahilud in Taanach, Megiddo, and all Beth Shan that is by Zarethan beneath Jezreel, and from Beth Shan to Abel Meholah as far as the other side of Jokmeam;

13 the son of Geber in Ramoth Gilead (to him pertained the towns of Jair the son of Manasseh which are in Gilead, and also the region of Argob which is in Bashan, sixty great cities with walls and iron bars);

14 Ahinadab the son of Iddo in Mahanaim;

15 Ahimaaz in Naphtali (he had taken Basemath the daughter of Solomon as his wife);

16 Baana the son of Hushai in Asher and in Aloth;

17 Jehoshaphat the son of Paruah in Issachar;

18 Shimei the son of Ela in Benjamin;

19 Geber the son of Uri in the country of Gilead, the country of Sihon king of the Amorites and of Og king of Bashan. He was the only officer who was in that region.

20 Judah and Israel had a large populace, as numerous as the sand by the sea. They ate and drank and were happy. 21 Solomon reigned over all kingdoms from the River to the land of the Philistines and to the border of Egypt. The people brought presents and served Solomon all the days of his life.

22 Solomon’s provision for one day was thirty kors of fine flour and sixty kors of meal, 23 ten fat oxen and twenty pasture-fed cattle, a hundred sheep in addition to deer, roebucks, gazelle, and fatted poultry. 24 For he had dominion over all the region on this side of the River from Tiphsah to Gaza, over all the kings on this side of the River, and he had peace on all borders of his land. 25 Judah and Israel lived safely, every man under his vine and under his fig tree, from Dan to Beersheba all the days of Solomon.

26 Solomon had forty thousand stalls of horses for his chariots and twelve thousand horsemen.

27 Those officers made provision for King Solomon and for all who came to King Solomon’s table, every man in his month, and they lacked nothing. 28 Barley also and straw for the horses and dromedaries were brought to the place where the officers were, every man according to his charge.

29 God gave Solomon wisdom and great depth of understanding as well as compassion, as vast as the sand on the seashore. 30 Solomon’s wisdom excelled the wisdom of all the people of the East country and all the wisdom of Egypt. 31 For he was wiser than all other men, wiser than Ethan the Ezrahite, Heman, Kalkol, and Darda, the sons of Mahol; his fame spread throughout all the surrounding nations. 32 He spoke three thousand proverbs, and his songs numbered a thousand and five. 33 He spoke of trees, from the cedar tree that is in Lebanon to the hyssop that springs out of the wall. He also spoke of beasts and of fowl and of insects and fish. 34 People from all over came to hear the wisdom of Solomon, from all kings of the earth, who had heard of his wisdom.

Chapter 5

1 Now Hiram king of Tyre sent his servants to Solomon, for he had heard that they had anointed him king in place of his father, and Hiram had always loved David. 2 And Solomon sent word to Hiram, saying,

3 “You know how David my father was unable to build a house for the name of the Lord his God because of the wars all around him, until the Lord put his enemies under his feet. 4 But now the Lord my God has given me peace on every side, so that there is neither adversary nor misfortune. 5 So know that I plan to build a house to honor the name of the Lord my God, just as the Lord spoke to my father David, saying, ‘Your son, whom I will set on your throne after you, shall build a house to honor My name.’

6 “Now therefore command that cedar trees from Lebanon be cut down for me, and my servants shall be with your servants, and I will pay your servants whatever you command, for you know that there are none among my people who can cut timber like the Sidonians.”

7 When Hiram heard the words of Solomon, he rejoiced greatly and said, “Blessed be the Lord this day, who has given David a wise son over this great people.

8 Hiram sent to Solomon, saying,

“I have considered the things which you contacted me about, and I will do all you asked concerning timber of cedar and fir. 9 My servants shall bring them down from Lebanon to the sea, and I will send them by sea in floats to the place that you shall name and will cause them to be discharged into your care there, and in return you will meet my wishes by giving food for my household.”

10 So Hiram gave Solomon cedar trees and fir trees as he desired. 11 Solomon gave Hiram twenty thousand kors of wheat for his household and twenty baths of pure oil. This is what Solomon gave to Hiram each year. 12 The Lord gave Solomon wisdom, as He promised, and there was peace between Hiram and Solomon as they made a treaty together.

13 King Solomon drafted men from all Israel, totaling thirty thousand men. 14 He sent them to Lebanon in turns, ten thousand a month, with each spending a month in Lebanon and two months at home. Adoniram administered the labor force. 15 Solomon had seventy thousand porters and eighty thousand stonecutters in the mountains, 16 not counting the chief of Solomon’s officers who were over the work, three thousand three hundred, who ruled over the people who did the work. 17 At the king’s command, they quarried out great, costly stones in order to lay the foundation of the house with dressed stones. 18 Solomon’s builders and Hiram’s builders, along with the stonemasons, cut them and prepared timber and stones to build the house.

Luke 20:1–26

1 One day, as He taught the people in the temple and preached the gospel, the chief priests and the scribes with the elders came up to Him, 2 and said to Him, “Tell us, by what authority are You doing these things? Who is he who gave You this authority?”

3 He answered them, “I will also ask you one thing. Answer Me: 4 Was the baptism of John from heaven or from men?”

5 They debated with themselves, saying, “If we say, ‘From heaven,’ He will say, ‘Why then did you not believe him?’ 6 But if we say, ‘From men,’ all the people will stone us, for they are persuaded that John was a prophet.”

7 So they answered that they did not know where it was from.

8 Jesus said to them, “Neither will I tell you by what authority I do these things.”

9 He began to tell the people this parable: “A man planted a vineyard, and leased it to vinedressers, and went to a distant country for a long time. 10 At harvest time he sent a servant to the vinedressers so they might give him some fruit of the vineyard. But the vinedressers beat him and sent him away empty-handed. 11 Again, he sent another servant. But they beat him also, and treated him shamefully, and sent him away empty-handed. 12 Once again, he sent a third. And they wounded him also and drove him out.

13 “Then the owner of the vineyard said, ‘What shall I do? I will send my beloved son. Perhaps they will respect him when they see him.’

14 “But when the vinedressers saw him, they debated among themselves, saying, ‘This is the heir. Come, let us kill him, that the inheritance may be ours.’ 15 So they drove him out of the vineyard and killed him.

“What then will the owner of the vineyard do to them? 16 He will come and kill these vinedressers and will give the vineyard to others.”

When they heard this, they said, “May it not be so!”

17 He looked at them and said, “What then is this that is written:

‘The stone which the builders rejected

has become the cornerstone’?

18 Whoever falls on that stone will be broken. But he on whom it falls will be crushed to powder.”

19 The chief priests and the scribes tried to lay their hands on Him that same hour, but they feared the people. For they perceived that He had told this parable against them.

20 They watched Him and sent out spies who pretended to be righteous men, that they might seize Him in His words to hand Him over to the power and authority of the governor. 21 So they asked Him, “Teacher, we know that You speak and teach rightly. And You do not show partiality, but You truly teach the way of God. 22 Is it lawful for us to pay taxes to Caesar, or not?”

23 He perceived their craftiness and said to them, “Why do you test Me? 24 Show Me a denarius. Whose image and inscription does it have?”

They said, “Caesar’s.”

25 He said to them, “Then render to Caesar what is Caesar’s, and to God what is God’s.”

26 They could not catch Him in His words before the people. And they marveled at His answer and were silent.