1The queen of Sheba heard how famous Solomon was, so she came to Jerusalem to test him with tough questions. She brought with her a very large entourage, with camels loaded with spices, large amounts of gold, and precious gemstones. She came to Solomon and asked him about everything she had on her mind.
2Solomon answered all her questions. There was nothing he couldn't explain to her.
3When the queen of Sheba saw Solomon's wisdom, and the palace he had built,
4the food on the table, how his officials lived, how his servants operated and how they were dressed, the clothes of the waiters, and the burnt offerings he presented at the Lord's Temple, she was so astonished she could hardly breathe.
5She told the king, “It's true what I heard in my own country about your proverbs and your wisdom!
6But I didn't believe what they told me until I came and saw with my own eyes. In fact, I wasn't told the half of it—the extent of your wisdom far exceeds what I heard!
7How happy your people must be! How happy those who work for you, who stand here every day listening to your wisdom!
8Praise the Lord your God who is so pleased with you, who placed you on his throne as king to rule on his behalf. Because of the love of your God for Israel he has made them secure forever, and he has made you king over them to do what is fair and right.”
9She presented the king with one hundred and twenty talents of gold, huge amounts of spices and precious stones. Never before had there been spices like those the queen of Sheba gave to King Solomon.
10(Hiram and of Solomon's men, who brought gold from Ophir, also brought algum wood and precious stones.
11The king used the algum wood to make steps for the Temple and for the royal palace, and into lyres and harps for the musicians. Nothing like them had ever been seen before in the land of Judah.)
12King Solomon gave the queen of Sheba all wanted, whatever she asked for. This was far more than she had brought the king. Then she and her attendants returned home to her own country.
13The weight of gold that Solomon received each year was 666 talents,
14not including that received from traders and merchants. All the kings of Arabia and governors of the land also brought gold and silver to Solomon.
15King Solomon made two hundred shields of hammered gold. Each shield required six hundred shekels of hammered gold.
16He also made three hundred small shields of hammered gold. Each of these shields required three hundred gold coins. The king placed them in the Palace of the Forest of Lebanon.
17The king also made a great throne of ivory, and covered it with pure gold.
18The throne had six steps, with a golden footstool attached. There were armrests on both sides of the seat, with lions standing beside the armrests.
19Twelve lions stood on the six steps, one on opposite ends of each step. Nothing like this had ever been made for any kingdom.
20All of King Solomon's drinking cups were gold, and all the utensils of the Palace of the Forest of Lebanon were pure gold. No silver was used, because it was not valued in the days of Solomon.
21The king had a fleet of ships from Tarshish crewed by Hiram's sailors. Once every three years the ships of Tarshish would arrive with a cargo of gold, silver, ivory, apes, and peacocks.
22King Solomon was greater than any other king on earth in wealth and wisdom.
23All the kings of the earth wanted to meet Solomon to hear the wisdom that God had placed in his mind.
24Year after year, every visitor would bring gifts—articles of silver and gold, clothes, weapons, spices, horses, and mules.
25Solomon had four thousand stalls for horses and chariots, and twelve thousand horsemen. He kept them in the chariot towns, and also with him in Jerusalem.
26He ruled over all the kings from the Euphrates River to the land of the Philistines, and to the border with Egypt.
27The king made silver as plentiful in Jerusalem as stones, and cedar wood as plentiful as sycamore-figs in the foothills.
28Solomon's horses were imported from Egypt and from many other lands.
29The rest of the acts of Solomon, from start to finish, are written in the Records of Nathan the Prophet, in the Prophecy of Ahijah the Shilonite, and in the Visions of Iddo the Seer about Jeroboam, son of Nebat.
30Solomon ruled in Jerusalem over all of Israel for forty years.
31Then Solomon died and was buried in the city of his father David. His son Rehoboam took over as king.