1 Kings 3:5
In Gibeon the LORD appeared to Solomon in a dream by night: and God said, Ask what I shall give thee.
1 Kings 3:6
And Solomon said, Thou hast shewed unto thy servant David my father great mercy, according as he walked before thee in truth, and in righteousness, and in uprightness of heart with thee; and thou hast kept for him this great kindness, that thou hast given him a son to sit on his throne, as it is this day.
1 Kings 3:7
And now, O LORD my God, thou hast made thy servant king instead of David my father: and I am but a little child: I know not how to go out or come in.
1 Kings 3:8
And thy servant is in the midst of thy people which thou hast chosen, a great people, that cannot be numbered nor counted for multitude.
1 Kings 3:9
Give therefore thy servant an understanding heart to judge thy people, that I may discern between good and bad: for who is able to judge this thy so great a people?
If God Almighty should say to the carnal man, “Ask what I should give thee,” his finite mind could not possibly fathom what is being offered. The carnal man is consumed by his own lust, so his wicked thoughts and desires would turn to things temporal and fleeting. Only a regenerated man would first consider the great mercies of his Almighty God.
Solomon had by grace seen his father David walk in the truth of Christ. He walked in Christ’s righteousness and in the uprightness of a new heart. He realized that merciful Providence had placed him in the position as king, but the responsibility of having been given authority over God’s chosen people was grave and weighed heavily on his renewed mind.
The man of God’s choosing, that one which is to oversee the Almighty heritage of Gospel Truth, will perceive himself to be totally insufficient for these things.
Solomon confessed that he could think or reason only as a child. Asking for an understanding heart of wisdom to know that which would be preeminent to the praise and glory of God in the person of the Lord Jesus Christ and for the good of Christ’s precious bride, takes the all-conquering grace of Him who is worthy of all adoration and commitment of my life.
By Marvin Stalnaker