Scripture declares King Solomon “greater than all the kings of the earth in riches and wisdom.” From an ivory throne overlaid with pure gold, he ruled the prosperous kingdom of Israel. His majestic splendor and intellectual brilliance were known throughout the ancient Near East. Vast treasures, costly goods, and rare novelties like apes and peacocks enriched his noble court, yet in all this Solomon did not have happiness. Why not?


Somewhere along the line, Solomon forgot the divine source of his prosperity. A great emptiness came into his life as he turned away from the Lord, and he embarked on a pursuit of happiness to fill the spiritual void. Out of Solomon’s frantic and fruitless search comes a compelling message for us: the message of the “apes and peacocks.” The peacock with his strutting finery and the ape with his power represent every amusement, every diversion, every possible attempt to find happiness apart from the plan of God. As Solomon eventually discovered, only through fellowship with God and the pursuit of His Word can the believer attain stability, contentment of soul, and a true and enduring happiness.


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