The queen of Sheba visited Solomon
1 The queen who ruled the Sheba area in Arabia heard that Solomon had become famous, so she traveled to Jerusalem to ask him questions that were difficult to answer. She came with a large group of servants, and she brought camels that were loaded with spices, and valuable gems, and a lot of gold. When she met Solomon, she asked him questions about all the things/topics in which she was interested. 2 Solomon answered all her questions. He explained everything that she asked about, even things that were very difficult.
3 The queen realized that Solomon was very wise. She saw his palace, 4 she saw the food that was served on his table every day; she saw how his officials were seated at the table, their uniforms, the servants who served the food and wine, and the sacrifices that he took to the temple to be completely burned on the altar. She was extremely amazed.
5 She said to the king, “Everything that I heard in my own country about you and about how wise you are is true! 6 But I did not believe it was true until I came here and saw it myself. You are extremely wise and rich, more than what people told me. 7 The men who work for you are very fortunate! Your officials who are constantly standing in front of you and listening to the wise things that you say are also fortunate! 8 Praise Yahweh your God, who has shown that he is pleased with you by appointing you to be the king of Israel for him. God has always loved the Israeli people, and desires to assist them forever, and therefore he has appointed you to be their king, in order that you will rule them fairly and righteously.”
9 Then the queen gave to Solomon about 4-1/2 tons of gold and a large amount of spices and gems. Never had King Solomon received more spices than the queen gave him at that time.
10-12 King Solomon gave to the queen of Sheba everything that she wanted. He gave her more than she had given to him. Then she and those who came with her returned to her own land.
In the ships that belonged to ing Hiram, Hiram’s workers and Solomon’s workers brought gold from Ophir. They also brought a large amount of juniper wood and gems. King Solomon told his workers to use that wood to make railings in the temple and in his palace and also to make harps and lyres for the musicians. That wood was the the finest wood that had ever been seen in Israel.
13 Each year there was brought to Solomon a total of 25 tons of gold. 14 That was in addition to the taxes paid to him by the merchants and traders. Also, the kings of Arabia and the governors of the districts in Israel brought gold and silver to Solomon.
15 King Solomon’s workers took this gold and hammered it into thin sheets and covered 200 large shields with those thin sheets of gold; they put almost 7-1/2 pounds of gold on each shield. 16 His workers made 300 smaller shields. They covered each of them with almost 4 pounds of gold. Then the king put those shields in the Hall of the Forest of Lebanon.
17 His workers also made for him a large throne. Part of it was covered with decorations made from ivory and part of it was covered with very fine gold. 18 There were six steps in front of the throne. There was a gold footstool that was attached to the throne. At each side of the throne there was an armrest, and alongside each armrest there was a small statue of a lion. 19 On the six steps there were twelve statues of lions, one on each side. No throne like that had ever existed in any other kingdom. 20 All of Solomon’s cups were made of gold, and all the various dishes in the Hall of the Forest of Lebanon were made of gold. They did not make things from silver, because during the years that Solomon ruled, silver was not considered to be valuable. 21 The king had a fleet of ships that sailed with the ships that King Hiram owned. Every three years the ships returned from the places to which they had sailed, bringing gold, silver, ivory, monkeys, and baboons (OR, peacocks).
22 King Solomon became richer and wiser than any other king on the earth. 23 Kings from all over the world wanted to come and listen to the wise things that Solomon said, things that God had enabled him to know. 24 All the people who came to him brought presents: They brought things made from silver or gold, or robes, or weapons, or spices, or horses, or mules. The people continued to do this every year.
25 Solomon had 4,000 stalls for his horses and chariots, and 12,000 horses. Solomon put some of them in Jerusalem and some of them in other cities where he kept his chariots. 26 Solomon ruled over all the kings in the area from the Euphrates River in the northeast to the Philistia area in the west to the border of Egypt in the south. 27 During the years that Solomon was king, he caused silver to become as common in Jerusalem as stones; and he caused cedar trees in the foothills of Judah to become as plentiful as fig trees. 28 Solomon’s agents brought horses from the Musri area and other places.
29 Lists of all the other things that Solomon did are recorded in the scrolls written by the prophet Nathan and by the prophet Ahijah from Shiloh city, and in the scroll in which were written the visions that the prophet Iddo saw concerning King Jeroboam. 30 Solomon ruled from Jerusalem all of Israel for 40 years. 31 Then Solomon died and was buried in the part of Jerusalem called ‘The City of David’. And his son Rehoboam became the king.