Hidden Nuggets Series #7: “Ask! What shall I give you?” – God speaking to Solomon in II Chronicles 1:7
“Oh, no…not me. My values are nobler than that. Money doesn’t hold that kind of power in my life that it would be the first thing I would wish for.”
A respected gentleman in my life circle likes to say, “It’s not the money, it’s the money” in reference to decisions that have a financial related angle. Another way to say that is “money answers everything.” Know where that last phrase is found? If you said in the Bible, you would be right. Look it up, it’s there in Ecclesiastes 10:19.
I’d love to ask Solomon, the writer of Ecclesiastes, what he meant by that. I know money can’t buy our way into heaven and I’m pretty confident he knew that also. It can buy pleasure and perhaps bring a sense of happiness but cannot produce joy. It can construct a multi-million dollar church facility to initially get people in the door but it’s not what keeps them coming back.
His statement in Ecclesiastes becomes a bit more confusing when we realize that Solomon didn’t always think that money was the answer for everything.
One night, years earlier, God approached Solomon as the young, new king of Israel. During that pivotal encounter, God told him “Ask! What shall I give you?” (II Chronicles 1:7). How much more of a genie-in-the-bottle scenario can you get than that?
In the quietness of that night, Solomon didn’t ask for riches, although I’m sure the thought swirled through his head. Instead he petitioned God for something he thought far more valuable – wisdom and knowledge. His role as king would position him as judge over the entire nation and he felt inadequately prepared for that role. God was so pleased with this humble request that He made him the wisest man to ever live, and also granted him honor, peace from his enemies, AND incredible wealth.
Solomon got it all.
Would the strength of my morals and my spiritual maturity have produced a similar response? Frankly, I’m not sure. There are several things high on my list to wish for but the lure of money would be real strong because it does solve a lot of problems. I know this much, how we answer this question speaks volumes about what we value.
So what’s your answer?
Do you think Solomon had a change of heart later in life? Or is there a hidden meaning to the “money answers everything” phrase?
An Update and Thank You
This post has taken on new meaning for me since the tragic events that occurred at my school a few weeks ago. Everyone familiar with that event knows what we would use our one wish for. I want to thank everyone who shared the post at the link above through Twitter and Facebook. I’m amazed to report in the last five days that post has been viewed 1,300 times, shared over 950 times on Facebook and emailed 22 times. These statistics overwhelm me and provide me with hope the post is being shared with people who have been touched by that issue and perhaps need encouragement and support. I have to believe that God is using our painful story for good in some person’s life somewhere.
Again, thank you for your prayers and willingness to share through your social media outlets.
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