An Ancestral Advent Day 15: The Son of Solomon.

Matthew 1:6-7. 6 and Jesse the father of David the king. And David was the father of Solomon by the wife of Uriah, 7 and Solomon the father of Rehoboam

If you wanted to convince your Jewish audience that Jesus of Nazareth has a right to be called the king of Israel what would you do? Well, you’d do exactly what Matthew does in his gospel. You’d record the genealogy of Jesus making sure to include all the great kings of the united kingdom of Israel. Matthew is showing us that Jesus has a legal right to the throne of Israel’s most magnificent king, King Solomon.

You remember King Solomon don’t you? His wisdom is legendary. His collection of proverbs canonized in scripture. His courtroom decisions still pondered to this day. Visitors from around the world would come to consult him. And, his wealth was unprecedented. “The richest man who ever lived” some have called him. Gold reserves worth into the billions today. Thousands of horses and chariots. Palaces, princes, and peacocks.

And yet when Jesus walks the earth and people cry out to him in their despair, no one ever calls him Son of Solomon. No, it’s always Son of David. The blind beggars on the side of the road ask the Son of David for mercy, not the Son of Solomon. As his countrymen look to enthrone a king who can overthrow Roman oppression, they don’t seek a Solomonic king but rather a Davidic king.

Why is this? Because, even in Jesus’ day, everyone knew that the glory of Solomon was born on the backs of the people. David was a servant-king, but Solomon turned his people into servants, slaves actually. Forced labor. High taxes. Unfair treatment. Like Babel and Egypt before him, Solomon’s desire to reach to the heavens left his people crying out from the dirt.

Solomon’s reign was not only one of oppression, it was one of excess. Women. Treasure. Women. Houses. Women. Wine. Women. Knowledge. Women. Pleasures. Women. Solomon withheld nothing from himself. Anything he wanted he allowed himself to have.

You see Solomon wasn’t waiting for the greatest king to come, preparing his heart and his people’s hearts for the Messiah. He wanted to be the greatest king himself. He wasn’t waiting for God’s hero who would crush evil and establish a world of good. He was his own determiner of good and evil. King David, though a sinner, was a man after God’s own heart. Solomon, was a man chasing after his own heart. His own desires. His own control. His own meaning.

But he was only chasing the wind.

Ecclesiastes 1:14. I have seen everything that is done under the sun, and behold, all is vanity and a striving after wind.

May this Christmas season be a reminder to stop chasing something to fill our hearts, and instead let our hearts be captured by the Christ child who gave up everything for us.

Questions.

What have you chased after to try and fill the hole in your heart? As you wait for Christ’s return are you a person after God’s heart (like David), or a person after your own heart (like Solomon)? Are you using this Christmas season to be a servant-king/queen or are you making everyone else your servants? 

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