Solomon’s Riches: Domestic Affairs.* 1Solomon was king over all Israel, 2and these were the officials he had in his service:
Azariah, son of Zadok, the priest;
3Elihoreph and Ahijah, sons of Shisha, scribes;
Jehoshaphat, son of Ahilud, the chancellor;
4Benaiah, son of Jehoiada, in charge of the army;
Zadok and Abiathar, priests;
5Azariah, son of Nathan, in charge of the governors;
Zabud, son of Nathan, priest and companion to the king;
6Ahishar, master of the palace; and
Adoniram, son of Abda, in charge of the forced labor.
7* Solomon had twelve governors over all Israel who supplied food for the king and his household, each having to provide for one month in the year. 8Their names were:*
the son of Hur in the hill country of Ephraim;
9the son of Deker in Makaz, Shaalbim, Beth-shemesh, and Elon Beth-hanan;
10the son of Hesed in Arubboth, as well as in Socoh and the whole region of Hepher;
11the son of Abinadab, in all Naphath-dor; he was married to Taphath, Solomon’s daughter;
12Baana, son of Ahilud, in Taanach and Megiddo and all Beth-shean near Zarethan below Jezreel, from Beth-shean to Abel-meholah to beyond Jokmeam;
13the son of Geber in Ramoth-gilead, having charge of the villages of Jair, son of Manasseh, in Gilead; and of the district of Argob in Bashan—sixty large walled cities with gates barred with bronze;
14Ahinadab, son of Iddo, in Mahanaim;
15Ahimaaz, in Naphtali; he was married to Basemath, another daughter of Solomon;
16Baana, son of Hushai, in Asher and Aloth;
17Jehoshaphat, son of Paruah, in Issachar;
18Shimei, son of Ela, in Benjamin;
19Geber, son of Uri, in the land of Gilead, the land of Sihon, king of the Amorites, and of Og, king of Bashan.
There was one governor besides, in the land of Judah.* 20a Judah and Israel were as numerous as the sands by the sea; they ate and drank and rejoiced.
* [4:1–5:8] The sub-unit on Solomon’s riches is organized around domestic affairs (4:1–20) and international affairs (5:1–5), with a short appendix on Solomon’s horses and chariots (5:6–8). Compare 9:26–10:29, where comparable elements reappear.
* [4:7–19] The administration of the kingdom thus initiated by Solomon continued in its main features for the duration of the monarchy in Israel and Judah. Note the use of “all Israel” to mean only the northern tribes (see also 5:27). Solomon’s exactions did not fall evenly on the whole people, but favored his own southern tribe of Judah. Eventually this inequity would lead to the dissolution of the union of Israel and Judah (12:1–19).
* [4:8–19] Several of the governors are identified only by their fathers’ names.
* [4:19] One governor...land of Judah: the royal territory of Judah had its own peculiar administration different from that of the twelve northern districts, each of which had to supply the king and his household with a month’s provisions of food each year (v. 7).