Therefore give to Your servant an understanding heart to judge Your people, that I may discern between good and evil. For who is able to judge this great people of Yours?
1 Kings 3:9
Let’s take a look at the life of Solomon. When Solomon became king, he was only a young man of about 18 years old and had big shoes to fill as David’s successor to the throne. Solomon was not filled with wisdom when he first ascended the throne, but he was clearly very earnest. He went to Mount Gibeon, where the tabernacle of Moses was, to offer a thousand burnt offerings to the Lord. At Mount Gibeon, the Lord appeared to Solomon in a dream and said, “Ask! What shall I give you?” (2 Chronicles 1:7).
Now, think about this for a moment. What would you have asked for if you were in Solomon’s position? Solomon did not ask for riches. Neither did he ask to be honored by all men. Instead, he told the Lord, “…give me wisdom and knowledge, that I may go out and come in before this people; for who can judge this great people of Yours?” (2 Chronicles 1:10).
Another account in the Book of 1 Kings tells us that Solomon told the Lord, “Therefore give to Your servant an understanding heart to judge Your people, that I may discern between good and evil. For who is able to judge this great people of Yours?” So when Solomon asked for wisdom and knowledge, he was asking for an understanding heart.
Let’s go deeper. The word “understanding” here is the Hebrew word shama, which means “to hear intelligently.” In other words, Solomon had asked for a hearing heart—one that hears from and flows with the leading of the Spirit of God, who leads us into all truth (John 16:13). You need a hearing heart for God’s wisdom to flow through you in every aspect of your life!
The Bible records that Solomon’s request pleased the Lord (1 Kings 3:10). I believe that the same request that pleased the Lord then still pleases Him today. When we ask Jesus for wisdom, we put ourselves in a posture of trusting and depending on His unmerited favor.
Although Solomon only asked for wisdom, the Lord added “riches and wealth and honor” to him. Too many people are chasing riches, wealth, and honor, not realizing that they come through the wisdom of Jesus. Even if someone were to come into sudden wealth, without the wisdom of Jesus to manage it, the money would be squandered away. But with the wisdom of Jesus, you won’t only be blessed, you will also be able to hold on to the blessings in your life. Jesus makes you safe for good success that produces lasting and abiding fruit from generation to generation!