Wisdom & Wealth as a Witness unto Worship

Aug 21, 2019 -- Posted by : RyanHaley

This blog post is a study of scripture from 1 Kings 10: 1-10, in which the Queen of Sheba came to visit Israel to see the wisdom and wealth of King Solomon.

v1: The Queen of Sheba comes from far away to see, hear, and taste for herself the seemingly too good to be true news (i.e., “Gospel”) of Solomon’s wealth and wisdom. She had “heard about the fame of Solomon and the name of the Lord”. Solomon’s wisdom led to wealth, which created a reputation far and wide. Relying on godly wisdom to excel (or in the Hebrew, “yatir”: to be conspicuously prominent/preeminent in one’s “metron”, or sphere of influence) in life, peace and prosperity was the bait on the hook for an unbeliever to make a great journey to inquire of these things to see if they were really true. “She came to test him with difficult questions”.

v2: She came bearing many precious gifts, ostensibly to give her access/proximity to a person of power and influence (“a man’s [woman’s] gift makes room for him [her] and brings him [her] before great men [women]”, Pr. 18:16). Andrew Wommack commentary: Here and in Proverbs 19:6 “gift” is talking about a monetary gift. Whatever you are giving to makes room for you. Giving with the right attitude directs the blessing toward you. The Queen of Sheba’s desire was to search out truth, despite what seemed impossible to her. Her gift made room for her in the greatest earthly kingdom that has or will ever exist.

v3: “Solomon answered all her questions; he didn’t hide or withhold anything from her.” We need to have spent time in advance meditating on the Word and asking for and receiving God’s wisdom so we always have a ready answer for those who may ask. “Show, and then tell” may be more effective to be a witness to people, because they’re initiating the question(s) and you’re simply responding to their initiation and curiosity. God’s wisdom and guidance will always come “full term” with practical manifestations/fruit: “All by itself the earth produces a crop—first the stalk, then the head, then grain that ripens within” (Mk. 4:28, Berean Study Bible). Our work is to believe (John 6:29), “the belief itself will help create the fact” (Dr. Vincent Norman Peale), and the facts speak for themselves, which we see here with the queen of Sheba.

vv4-5: “When the queen of Sheba perceived all the wisdom of Solomon:

  1. The house that he had built
  2. The food of his table
  3. The seating of his servants
  4. The attendance of his waiters and their attire
  5. His cupbearers
  6. His stairway by which he went up to the house of the Lord

There was no more spirit in her.” (enumeration and emphasis mine)

vv6-7 : “Then she said to the king, ‘It was a true report which I heard in my own land about your words and your wisdom. Nevertheless I did not believe the reports, until I came and my eyes had seen it. And behold, the half was not told me. You exceed in wisdom and prosperity the report which I heard.” (emphasis mine)

For unbelievers, seeing is believing; for believers it’s vice versa. We as Believers do well to testify of God’s reality, truth, and goodness by believing so that we can see, so that unbelievers can see and therefore believe. Unrighteous Mammon welcomes people into eternal dwelling places. God and Christians know that material things are not the most important and intrinsically have no eternal value, but when they can inspire belief and trust in Jesus to unbelievers because of the practical results they can see and perceive, we have used temporal things to transact something of eternal value.

vv8-9: “How blessed are your men, how blessed are these your servants who stand before you continually and hear your wisdom. Blessed be the Lord your God who delighted in you to set you on the throne of Israel; because the Lord loved Israel forever, therefore He made you king, to do justice and righteousness.” Bingo! This is the end state of a true witness through wisdom and wealth: worship and awe of unbelievers. I don’t know if she was already familiar with Psalm 89:14 (or numerous other proverbs and verses saying the same thing) but indeed, righteousness and justice are the foundation of God’s throne and He puts kings into place so that He can establish both.

v10: “She gave the king 120 talents of gold, and a very great amount of spices and precious stones. Never again did such abundance of spices come in as that which the queen of Sheba gave Solomon.” Wisdom led to wealth, which was a witness that led to worship, leading back into wealth. True worship always has a demonstrable outflow. God’s economy and Kingdom provide a naturally self-sustaining ecosystem that always leads to increase: “Of the increase of His government and peace there will be no end. He will reign on the throne of David and over his kingdom, to establish and sustain it with justice and righteousness from that time and forevermore. The zeal of the LORD of Hosts will accomplish this.” (Isaiah 9:7, Berean Study Bible).

I recently was asked “what’s my Why?”(deeply-held purpose, cause, or belief that drives my business’s Unique Value Proposition and connects me at a deep level to my customer segment, who are the people I’m serving). Wealth is not an end unto itself; it is always a means to an end. And in God’s Kingdom, the end never justifies the means if we’re building wealth in a way that does not provide a godly witness to people. For some, their Why may be to serve the orphan and the widow, to reach an underserved market, to redeem something the enemy meant for evil to be used by God for good. The list could go on.

I’ve realized that my Why for business is to be a testimony or witness of “where the supernatural meets the practical” and use the practical results and blessings of doing business God’s way to “bait the hook” and tell the story behind the success. It’s so important to know Why you’re doing business before you get into the What and the How. Many people spend a whole lifetime building a ladder of “success”, only to get to the top and find they leaned it against the wrong wall.

So ask yourself now: What’s your Why for building wealth? When you have allowed God to make that firmly established in your mind and heart, expectantly wait to see Him do “exceedingly, abundantly beyond all you could ever ask, dream, or imagine, according to the power that works within you.” (Ephesians 3:20)


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