Now the king went to Gibeon to sacrifice there, for that was the great high place: Solomon offered a thousand burnt offerings on that altar. At Gibeon the Lord appeared to Solomon in a dream by night; and God said, “Ask! What shall I give you?”
– 1 Kings 3:4-5
We are still meditating on Solomon’s principles to acquiring such wisdom and wealth, which are famed to be unmatched by anyone else before or after him. The passage above acquaints us with another step Solomon took to attract the attention of God – he made a phenomenal sacrifice to God; he offered a thousand burnt offerings in a single day!
Note that he was not told by anyone what to give; neither was he compelled by a prophet to make the offering. He did it of his own free will, no counseling, no preaching, and no altar call to make a pledge. He made up his mind himself and set out to the high place to offer such massive sacrifice to God. It is also noteworthy that he did not set out to give so that God could give him more; he had no such intention. He did not give as a form of bargain with God. He gave out of his volition and without an ulterior motive.
It seems most of the giving we do these days are laden with personal agenda. We give in order to arm-twist God to give us more in return, and the situation where some clergies harangue the congregation into making specific financial pledges don’t seem to help matters. Giving becomes compromised when it is done as a transaction, and not as a gesture of love or appreciation. The Bible is clear on how it should be done, “You must each decide in your heart how much to give. And don’t give reluctantly or in response to pressure. “For God loves a person who gives cheerfully.”” (2 Corinthians 9:7, NLT). Another translation says, “God loves a man who gives because he wants to give” (NLV).
Solomon was in the category of people who give because they want to give. No wonder God appeared to Him and presented him with a blank cheque to ask whatever he wanted and he would have it. Perhaps, we can learn from his example.
You will succeed in Jesus Name!