How Rich Was Solomon?

Each year Solomon received about 25 tons of gold. This did not include the additional revenue he received from merchants and traders, all the kings of Arabia, and the governors of the land.
King Solomon made 200 large shields of hammered gold, each weighing more than fifteen pounds. He also made 300 smaller shields of hammered gold, each weighing nearly four pounds. The king placed these shields in the Palace of the Forest of Lebanon.
Then the king made a huge throne, decorated with ivory and overlaid with fine gold.
. . . All of King Solomon's drinking cups were solid gold, as were all the utensils in the Palace of the Forest of Lebanon. They were not made of silver, for silver was considered worthless in Solomon's day!
The king had a fleet of trading ships . . . Once every three years the ships returned, loaded with gold, silver, ivory, apes, and peacocks.
So King Solomon became richer and wiser than any other king on earth. People from every nation came to consult him and to hear the wisdom God had given him. Year after year everyone who visited brought him gifts of silver and gold, clothing, weapons, spices, horses and mules.
. . . He had 1,400 chariots and 12,000 horses.   . . . The king made silver as plentiful in Jerusalem as stone. And valuable cedar timber was as common as the sycamore-fig trees that grow in the foothills of Judah.     I Kings 10:14-27 (NLT)

This is opulence at the highest level! Opulence that was not the result of human efforts but the product of a divine promise given by God to Solomon. The palace Solomon lived in took thirteen years to construct! Of course, it was built of the highest quality imported materials.
Solomon ate from golden plates, drank from cups made of gold and used golden knives and forks! Silver was considered of little value and they were as common as stones in Jerusalem.
Solomon lived in opulence because God richly blessed him.

So how rich was Solomon? Consider this: A ton of gold is worth over $64 million today. So Solomon received over $1.6 billion in yearly revenue from gold alone in today's money, outside of his many other sources of income. Solomon was a consultant with clients from all over the world who rewarded him handsomely with expensive gifts. He also had a shipping and trading enterprise that brought in lots of returns every three years in gold, ivory, and exotic animals. 

But all this can never compare with his greatest wealth and asset -- the God who was the source of his wealth. In the eyes of Solomon, his greatest wealth was his relationship with God. So, he wrote in Ecclesiastes: "I amassed silver and gold for myself . . . I became greater by far than anyone in Jerusalem before me . . . I denied myself nothing my eyes desired . . . Yet when I surveyed all that my hands had done and what I had toiled to achieve, everything was meaningless, a chasing after the wind . . . "
"Here is the conclusion of the matter: Fear God and keep His commandments . . . For God will bring every deed into judgment!" (Ecclesiastes 2:8-11 and 12:13)
So how wealthy was King Solomon? Very wealthy. But his greatest wealth was his relationship with God -- fearing God and keeping His commandments. That concluded it all for him!

The source of your wealth is more important than what you have in the bank because without the source, your wealth will dry up! God is your source of wealth because it is He who gives you the breath and ability to obtain wealth. Let your life be consciously and continually informed by this truth relayed by the wisest and wealthiest man who ever lived. Life without God is hopeless.

Prayer: Father, I thank you for all the blessings you have bestowed on me. Please help me to remember that you are my greatest blessing because without you, I will have absolutely nothing.