Although the main point of this passage is Solomon’s request for wisdom, we also see some early warning signs of the trouble to come. Verse 1 notes that Solomon made an alliance with Egypt. Egypt! The site of four hundred years of bondage for God’s people. God, speaking through the prophet Isaiah, described Egypt as “that broken reed of a staff, which will pierce the hand of any man who leans on it” (Isa. 36:6).
Verse 1 goes on to say that Solomon sealed the alliance by marrying Pharaoh’s daughter. While forming alliances through marriage has long been a common practice among world powers, God explicitly forbade His people from marrying foreigners because of the danger of apostasy (Deut. 7:3-4). It wasn’t about mixing races but mixing faiths. This was the first of many foreign wives who would ultimately lead Solomon into idolatry (1 Kings 11:1-4). How sad that Solomon didn’t ask for wisdom before he made these two mistakes, although, as we will see, even God’s gift of wisdom was not enough to overcome Solomon’s sin.
When do you typically seek God’s wisdom: before or after you’ve already made up your mind? Why?