QUEEN OF SHEBA
1 The queen of Sheba heard of Solomon's fame. She traveled to Jerusalem to test him with difficult questions.
2 So she came to Jerusalem with a very large caravan. The camels carried spices and very much gold and precious stones. When she approached Solomon, she talked about everything she had on her mind heart.
3 Solomon answered all her questions. Nothing was hidden from the king that he did not explain to her.
4 When the queen of Sheba perceived all the Wisdom of Solomon, the house that he had built,
5 the food of his table, the seating of his servants, the attendance of his waiters and their attire, his cupbearers, and his stairway by which he went up to the house of Jehovah, she was overwhelmed.
6 She said to the king: »The report I heard in my country about your acts and your wisdom was true.
7 »But I had no faith in what was said about you, till I came and saw for myself. Now I see that what I was told was not the half of it! Your wisdom and your wealth are much greater than they said.
8 »Happy are your wives, happy are your servants whose place is ever before you, hearing your words of wisdom.
9 »Praise Jehovah your God! He delighted in you and made you king of Israel. Jehovahs love for Israel is long lasting, he has made you king, to be their judge in righteousness.«
10 She gave the king a hundred and twenty talents of gold, and a great store of spices and jewels. Never again was such a wealth of spices seen as that which the queen of Sheba gave King Solomon.
11 Hiram's fleet that brought gold from Ophir also brought a large quantity of sandalwood and precious stones from Ophir.
12 With the sandalwood possibly the algum tree the king made supports for Jehovahs Temple and the royal palace, and lyres and harps for the singers. Never again was sandalwood like this imported into Israel, nor has any been seen there to this day.
13 King Solomon gave the queen of Sheba all her desire. Whatever she requested in addition to what he gave her freely from the impulse of his heart. She and her servants went back to her country.
14 Each year King Solomon received about twenty-five tons of gold.
15 This was in addition to what came to him from the business of the traders, and from all the kings of the Arabians, and from the rulers of the country.
16 Solomon made two hundred large shields of hammered gold. About fifteen pounds of gold went into each shield.
17 He made three hundred smaller body-covers of hammered gold. Three pounds of gold was in every cover. The king put them in the house of the Woods of Lebanon.
18 The king made a great ivory throne plated with the best gold.
19 There were six steps going up to it. The top of it was round at the back. There were arms on the two sides of the throne and two lions by the side of the arms.
20 Twelve lions were placed on one side and on the other side on the six steps: there was nothing like it in any kingdom.
21 All King Solomon's drinking vessels were of gold. All the vessels of the house of the Woods of Lebanon were of the best gold. Not one was of silver, for no one gave a thought to silver in the days of King Solomon.
22 For the king had Tarshish-ships at sea with the ships of Hiram. Once every three years the Tarshish-ships came with gold and silver and ivory and apes monkeys and peacocks.
23 King Solomon was greater than all the kings of the earth in wealth and in wisdom.
24 They came from all over the earth to see Solomon and to listen to his wisdom, which God had put in his heart.
25 Everyone took presents such as vessels of silver and vessels of gold, and robes, and coats of metal, and spices, and horses, and beasts of transport, regularly year by year.
26 Solomon gathered war-carriages and horsemen. He had one thousand, four hundred carriages and twelve thousand horsemen, whom he kept, some in the carriage-towns and some with the king at Jerusalem.
27 The king made silver as common as stones in Jerusalem and cedars like the sycamore-trees of the lowlands in number.
28 Solomon's string of horses came from Egypt and from Kue. The king's traders got them at a price from Kue.
29 A war-carriage might be obtained from Egypt for six hundred shekels of silver, and a horse for a hundred and fifty. They got them at the same rate for all the kings of the Hittites and the kings of Aram.