The reign of Solomon 1 Kings 1-11*

Note: several proposals for Solomon’s reign have been made. Below the main pattern is from J T Walsh, Style and Structure in Biblical Hebrew Narrative, The liturgical Press, Minnesota, 2001, pp92-93. I have also inserted  (slightly modified to specify verse more accurately) the proposal of  D A Dorsey, The Literary Structure of the Old Testament, Baker Academic, Grand Rapids, p 138.  Both centre on the dedication of the temple. A combination of the two may be even more helpful. 

A. 1:1-2:12a A prophet intervenes in the royal succession.

B. 2:12b-46 Solomon eliminates threats to his security.

C. 3:1-15 The early promise of Solomon’s reign.

A. 3:1-3 Solomon’s marriage to Egyptian princess.

B. 3:4-15 Solomon’s request for wisdom.

D. 3:16-4:34 Solomon uses his gifts for the people.

C. 3:16-28 two women come to Solomon.

D. 4:1-34 overview of government.

E. 5:1-18 Preparations for building the temple.

E. 5:1-18 Hiram of Tyre provides supplies.

F. 6:1-7:51 Solomon builds the temple.

F. 6:1-7:51 Solomon builds the temple.

F’. 8:1-9:10 Solomon dedicated the temple.

G. 8:1-66 Temple dedication.

F’. 9:1-9 YHWH’s approval of temple.

E’. 9:11-25 After building the temple.

E’. 9:10-14 Hiram of Tyre is paid for supplies.

D’. 9:15-28 overview of government.

D’. 9:26-10:29 Solomon uses his gifts for himself.

C’. 10:1-13 Queen of Sheba comes to Solomon.

B’. 10:14-29 Solomon’s great wisdom and wealth

C’. 11:1-13 The tragic failure of Solomon’s reign.

A’. 11:1-3 Solomon marries foreign women.

B’. 11:14-25 YHWH raises up threats to Solomon’s security.

A’. 11:26-43 A prophet determines the royal succession.

One thought on “The reign of Solomon 1 Kings 1-11*”

  1. The glaring omission to this otherwise helpful chiasm is that right in the middle- between ‘building the temple’ and ‘dedicating the temple’, we read of Solomon’s other building projects – his home (13 yrs instead of the 7 for the temple), 7:1-12, as well as the palace of the forest of lebanon, etc. It’s as if the author of Kings is showing us that Solomon’s heart isn’t in the right place all along.

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