The first scriptural example of children building upon the foundation laid by their parents is David and Solomon. We can clearly see three areas in which Solomon built upon the foundation his father David laid:


1)      The Wisdom to Rule over a Domain

2)      The Stability and Greatness of the Domain

3)      The Presence of God in the Domain


The Wisdom to Rule

David ruled over Israel with unnatural wisdom. In Psalm 119:98-100 (usually attributed to David) he wrote:


“Your commandments make me wiser than my enemies, for they are ever mine. I have more insight than all my teachers, for Your testimonies are my meditation. I understand more than the aged, because I have observed Your precepts.”


Many of David’s insights into God’s ways are recorded in one of the most beautiful and profound documents ever written – the Psalms. David’s wisdom confounded those around him. He went into battle against Goliath, a man that terrified every other soldier because he understood God’s anointing upon him made Goliath’s size and strength a nonfactor. Also, he repeatedly spared Saul’s life and continued in submission to him rather than taking ahold of the throne God promised to give him. This is because he understood God’s principles for authority, submission, and waiting for His timing.


Nevertheless, David’s wisdom merely laid the foundation for Solomon’s wisdom. Solomon became the wisest man who ever lived besides Jesus. He authored the “Wisdom Books” of scripture – Proverbs and Ecclesiastes – and 1 Kings 4:29 says his wisdom and discernment was like the sand of the seashore. He said in Ecclesiastes 1:16, “I have magnified and increased wisdom more than all who were over Jerusalem before me.”


All the kings of the earth sought him to hear the wisdom God put in his heart. When a foreign queen traveled from the ends of the known earth to hear his wisdom, she was skeptical about whether it could live up to the hype. However, when she questioned him at length about all that was in her heart, nothing was hidden from Solomon that he did not explain to her. When she further saw the way he ordered his kingdom, even to the details of the food, attire, and architecture, she was breathless. She finally declared that, despite all the wild claims she had heard, they did not adequately capture even half of Solomon’s wisdom. (2 Chronicles 9)


The Stability and Greatness of the Realm He Ruled Over

David built up Jerusalem and the surrounding area into a great stronghold. Under his authority, Israel became greater and greater. His army was led by renowned, mighty warriors. He defeated a series of enemy kingdoms, expanded his rule, and greatly increased in wealth (1 Chronicles 11, 18-20).


However, his rule was also checkered with failure and calamity. Israel was at war during David’s entire reign. The sword never departed from his household (2 Samuel 12:10). Israel experienced three years of famine (2 Samuel 21), two rebellions (2 Samuel 15, 20), and severe pestilence (2 Samuel 24). Many of these things were even the direct consequence of David’s sins.


By contrast, there may never have been a more peaceful, prosperous, and glorious season for any nation in world history than there was for Israel in the early years of Solomon’s rule.

God gave him peace on all sides. Every man lived in safety and prosperity. There was such an abundance of gold and other forms of wealth that silver was not even considered valuable. The fame of the Lord was exalted through Solomon and Israel throughout the known earth. (1 Kings 4, 2 Chronicles 9) It was the closest thing the world has yet seen to the Millennial Kingdom.


The Presence of God in the Realm He Ruled Over

The presence of God during the rule of David was remarkable. David brought the ark of God’s presence into Jerusalem and assigned ministers to worship and offer sacrifices before Him continually, day and night. He also had it in his heart to build a magnificent temple as a permanent dwelling place for God’s presence. Therefore, God put His hand upon David so that he could understand and write in exhaustive detail everything such a temple would require. He accumulated great wealth and materials for the temple construction and established patterns for ministry and worship with various divisions of priests, musicians, gatekeepers, treasure keepers, and other servants. (1 Chronicles 23-28)


However, because he had shed so much blood on the earth, God did not allow David to build the temple (1 Chronicles 22:8). David passed on all his plans and preparations to Solomon, which Solomon executed faithfully. When construction was complete, the glory of God filled the temple in the form of a cloud. His glory was so overwhelming that the priests could not enter the temple or even remain standing. Then fire came down from heaven and the entire nation fell to the ground face-first and worshipped God, saying, “Truly He is good, truly His lovingkindness is everlasting.” (2 Chronicles 5, 7) 



Just like David and Solomon, modern believers are also called to rule over a domain, in a sense. For example, a believer’s domain could be his home, church, or workplace. This calling may include seeking God for wisdom in how to rule over it, expanding it through faithful stewardship, and acting as a carrier of God’s presence into it.


Unfortunately, Solomon’s life reminds us that the negative side of a spiritual inheritance can also be built upon and can ultimately destroy us. In disobedience to the Lord’s specific command for kings in Deuteronomy 17:17, David multiplied wives and personal wealth throughout his reign. Then Solomon took each of these failures to the next level and tragically fell away from the Lord. He did not refuse anything his eyes desired (Ecclesiastes 2:10). He took hundreds of wives and concubines and eventually began worshipping their demon gods. Also, he accumulated so much wealth that the repeated use of the number “666” (1 Kings 10:14, 2 Chronicles 9:13) in connection to it suggests he began to worship money more than in the Lord, just as this number represents allegiance to a satanic economic system in Revelation 13:18.



The second example of children building upon the foundation laid by their parents is Elizabeth and Mary. These two women faced circumstances very few of us can even imagine, but they overcame them together.