OUR FATHER WHO GIVES WISDOM TO THOSE WHO ASK HIM FOR IT AND LONG LIFE TO THOSE WHO HONOR HIM
In the book of 1 Kings chapter 3 verse 14, we read the words that the Lord said to King Solomon, the son of David, in a dream;
And if you walk in obedience to me and keep my decrees and commands as David your father did, I will give you a long life.”
Leading up to this moment, Solomon had just taken up the throne of his father David over the kingdom of Israel. He went up to Gibeon to honor the Lord by carrying out sacrifices at the high places there.
While Solomon was at Gibeon, he had a dream in which the Lord invited him to ask for anything he wanted the Lord to give him.
Such an open-ended offer could potentially tempt a person to ask for riches or a long life but instead, Solomon asked for enough wisdom to enable him, as a youth, to carry out his duties as the new king of Israel.
Solomon's modest response pleased God and He granted him his request and because he did not ask for great riches and a long life, the Lord told Solomon that he would give him great wealth unequalled in his day.
The Lord also added to Solomon a long life but unlike the other two allotments of wisdom and riches, the gift of a long life was conditional.
If Solomon walked in obedience to the Lord and kept His decrees and commandments in the same way that his father David did, a long life would then be granted to him.
This conditional conferring of a long life mirrors the fifth commandment in the law of Moses in Exodus chapter 20 verse 5 which reads like this;
“Honor your father and your mother, so that you may live long in the land the Lord your God is giving you.
The fifth commandment adjures us to honor our father and mother because doing so would add to us a long life.
The condition on the offer given to Solomon appears to be based on the same principle found in the commandment.
If Solomon were to honor his father David by upholding the standards of uprightness that David lived by and if Solomon were to honor the Lord his father by obeying His decrees and commandments, a long life would be granted to him based on the principle set in the Law.