When God showered Solomon with wisdom and understanding, he did not hold back but blessed him with extravagant abundance. He was considered wiser than the most notable wise men of the day, wiser than all the people of the East, wiser than the intellectual center of Egypt, in fact wiser than any on earth.
And his wisdom was not just myopic and narrow. He was wise and gifted in many areas. He wrote 3000 proverbs, hundreds of which we still have. He wrote 1005 songs. But even beyond that he was an extraordinary botanist, had great understanding of the animal world and taught on these matters, and so much more (1 Kings 4:32-35).
This verse below hadn’t even been written yet for but it remains true of God’s character:
If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you. (James 1:5)
We think of wisdom has some sage sitting on a chair, gray haired and old, giving calm instructions about difficult situations. But wisdom is much richer than that. Wisdom affects all areas of life.
Wisdom is working with people and discerning situations, but it is also about art, beauty and understanding the world we live in. It’s about interacting with all that God has made. It is rich and multi-faceted.
The beauty of wisdom is that it blesses those around the wise. The nations came to hear and be taught by Solomon and so his understanding spilled out to the many.
It wasn’t about pride as pride and wisdom are incompatible. Nor was it about the greatness of Solomon. Rather it was about the goodness of God and serving others–with song, with understanding, with discernment, with appreciation for the natural world, and so much more.