666 And The Love Of Money Part 2

In Post 1 of this series, 666 and The Love of Money, we saw how Solomon, intoxicated by greed and grandeur broke the Mosaic Covenant. As the King he was supposed to learn and keep God’s commandments. But in spite of his great wisdom he did not keep them due to his divided loyalties. 

Solomon’s large court of his wives, concubines, children, courtiers, government officials, and his extravagant building projects, along with a large army cost a lot of money to maintain. 

He even delayed completing the building work of the temple so that he could build a magnificent palace for himself and his new Egyptian wife. That palace was grander and took twice as long as the temple to get built. In addition it was his palace that drew great attention from the Queen of Sheba, rather than the temple.

His own palace was larger and grander than the temple and took twice as long to build. So to help pay for it all he also placed heavy taxation on the people of Israel and created 12 tax districts ~ 1 Kings 4: 7-19

His many wives also led him astray and he built altars to Chemosh and Molech, abominations in the eyes of God. As a result of seeking ‘fools gold’ he became lawless and led Israel into idolatry.

He Amassed Riches For Personal Gain

Solomon didn’t look after the poor, the sick, widows or orphans very well while he amassed riches, assets, and wives for personal gain that he promised God he’d never do. The thirst for self indulgence through riches got the better of him and the writer of Chronicles details many of luxuries he indulged in…

The weight of the gold that Solomon received yearly was 666 talents, NOT including the revenues brought in by merchants and traders. Also all the kings of Arabia and the governors of the territories brought gold and silver to Solomon.

King Solomon made two hundred large shields of hammered gold; six hundred shekels of hammered gold went into each shield. He also made three hundred small shields of hammered gold, with three hundred shekels of gold in each shield. The king put them in the Palace of the Forest of Lebanon.

Then the king made a great throne covered with ivory and overlaid with pure gold. The throne had six steps, and a footstool of gold was attached to it. On both sides of the seat were armrests, with a lion standing beside each of them. Twelve lions stood on the six steps, one at either end of each step. Nothing like it had ever been made for any other kingdom. All King Solomon’s goblets were gold, and all the household articles in the Palace of the Forest of Lebanon were pure gold. Nothing was made of silver, because silver was considered of little value in Solomon’s day. The king had a fleet of trading ships manned by Hiram’s servants. Once every three years it returned, carrying gold, silver and ivory, and apes and baboons.

King Solomon was greater in riches and wisdom than all the other kings of the earth. All the kings of the earth sought audience with Solomon to hear the wisdom God had put in his heart. Year after year, everyone who came brought a gift—articles of silver and gold, and robes, weapons and spices, and horses and mules. Solomon had four thousand stalls for horses and chariots, and twelve thousand horses, which he kept in the chariot cities and also with him in Jerusalem. He ruled over all the kings from the Euphrates River to the land of the Philistines, as far as the border of Egypt. The king made silver as common in Jerusalem as stones, and cedar as plentiful as sycamore-fig trees in the foothills. Solomon’s horses were imported from Egypt and from all other countries. ~ 2 Chronicles 9:13-27

His Favouritism To The Tribe of Judah

When Solomon formed his 12 districts for the purposes of taxation to pay for all the lavish expenditure in his large court and palace, he did not include the tribe of Judah (1 Kings 4). The tribe of Judah had tax-free status and didn’t need to contribute any money towards all the food and provisions that Solomon’s court would need each day. Solomon’s building projects were concentrated in the land of Judah while most of the taxes to pay for his lifestyle and the forced labourers for those projects came from the 10 northern tribes. In addition the 12 district tax appointees were either from the tribe of Judah or pro- Judahites. As a result this caused a huge amount of discontentment among the 10 Northern tribes.

Divided Loyalties Resulted In A Divided Kingdom

Solomon thought he was above God’s laws and could do whatever he wanted.
However, his kingdom would eventually be split in two becoming Judah and Israel under the reign of his son.

And the Lord was angry with Solomon, because his heart had turned away from the Lord, the God of Israel, who had appeared to him twice and had commanded him concerning this thing, that he should not go after other gods. But he did not keep what the Lord commanded. Therefore the Lord said to Solomon, “Since this has been your practice and you have not kept my covenant and my statutes that I have commanded you, I will surely tear the kingdom from you and will give it to your servant. Yet for the sake of David your father I will not do it in your days, but I will tear it out of the hand of your son. However, I will not tear away all the kingdom, but I will give one tribe to your son, for the sake of David my servant and for the sake of Jerusalem that I have chosen.” ~ 1 Kings 11: 9-13


Then he said to Jeroboam, “Take for yourself ten pieces, for thus says Yahweh, the God of Israel: ‘Behold, I am about to tear the kingdom from the hand of Solomon, and I will give to you ten tribes, but one tribe shall be for him, for the sake of my servant David and for the sake of Jerusalem, the city which I have chosen from all the tribes of Israel; because he has forsaken me, and they bowed down to Ashtoreth, the god of the Sidonians, to Chemosh, the god of Moab, and to Milcom, the god of the Ammonites. They did not walk in my ways to do right in my eyes, my ordinances, or my judgments, as did David his father. ~ 1 King 11:31-33

But Solomon was unrepentant and he tried to kill the person God was going to use to divide his kingdom. As a result, Jeroboam fled to Egypt until Solomon died.

Solomon sought therefore to kill Jeroboam. But Jeroboam arose and fled into Egypt, to Shishak king of Egypt, and was in Egypt until the death of Solomon.  ~ 1 Kings 11:40

Money Is The Root of All Evil For Solomon


In the end, Solomon became a wicked lawless king of Israel due to his love of money and chasing after his own personal desires. 

Solomon became just like the third seed in the parable of the soils, just like so many did during New Testament times.

And as for what fell among the thorns, they are those who hear, but as they go on their way they are choked by the cares and riches and pleasures of life, and their fruit does not mature. Luke 8:14

He became a fool.

Solomon Disciplined His People With Whips, But His Son Would Discipline Them With Scorpions


Once King Solomon died his son became king and instead of lifting the burden of the harsh taxation from the people, he made it even worse. No doubt he was a spoilt kid who ‘hung out with the rich kids in town’ and he valued his mates opinions more than the elders of Judah.

 Then Rehoboam went to Shechem, because all Israel had come to Shechem to make him king. Now when Jeroboam the son of Nebat heard about this, he was living in Egypt (for he was still in Egypt, where he had fled from the presence of King Solomon). Then they sent word and summoned him, and Jeroboam and all the assembly of Israel came and spoke to Rehoboam, saying, Your father made our yoke hard; but now, lighten the hard labor imposed by your father and his heavy yoke which he put on us, and we will serve you.” Then he said to them, “Depart for three days, then return to me.” So the people departed.

And King Rehoboam consulted with the elders who had served his father Solomon while he was still alive, saying, “How do you advise me to answer this people?” Then they spoke to him, saying, “If you will be a servant to this people today, and will serve them and grant them their request, and speak pleasant words to them, then they will be your servants always.” 

But he ignored the advice of the elders which they had given him, and consulted with the young men who had grown up with him and served him. He said to them, “What advice do you give, so that we may answer this people who have spoken to me, saying, ‘Lighten the yoke which your father put on us’?” 10 And the young men who had grown up with him spoke to him, saying, “This is what you should say to this people who spoke to you, saying: ‘Your father made our yoke heavy, now you make it lighter for us!’ You should speak this way to them: ‘My little finger is thicker than my father’s waist! 11 Now then, my father loaded you with a heavy yoke; yet I will add to your yoke. My father disciplined you with whips, but I will discipline you with scorpions!’” ~ 1 Kings 12:1-11

666 Symbolizes The Corrupt Apostate Rulership in Judah


If Scripture truly interprets itself, we can see the number 666 is associated with the nature of Solomon’s kingdom, his apostasy, the political chaos in his kingdom, his accumulation of wealth, his abuse of power through oppressing the people, his breaking of the Mosaic covenant, and turning away from worshiping Yahweh, God Most High. 

In my next post we will look at the warnings the prophets gave the rulers of Israel about their corruption and the judgement that would come on them.


Further Reading: 

How Israel Became The 4th Kingdom of Daniel 2: When Rome congratulated Israel


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