2

I read in Chapter 3, verses 11-12 of the Book of Kings (which I think is in the Nevi'im) the following:

And God said to him, "Because you have asked this thing, and have not asked for yourself long life; neither have you asked riches for yourself, nor have you asked the life of your enemies; but have asked for yourself understanding to discern judgment. Behold, I have done according to your word; behold, I have given you a wise and understanding heart; so that there was none like you before you, nor after you shall any arise like you.

(Source here, emphasis added)

Does this mean that there will never be someone as wise and understanding as Solomon, including Moshiach?

  • 1
    Why not? Where does it say that the Messiah must be the wisest man? – Bach Aug 2 '17 at 14:21
  • ונחה עליו רוח ה׳ רוח חכמה - just says wise, not wisest. – DonielF Aug 3 '17 at 18:41
7

The Rambam in hilchos teshuva chapter 9 halacha 2 actually writes that Moshiach will be smarter than Solomon and also on a level of prophecy close to Moshe.

מפני שאותו המלך שיעמוד מזרע דוד בעל חכמה יהיה יתר משלמה. ונביא גדול הוא קרוב למשה רבינו. ולפיכך ילמד כל העם ויורה אותם דרך ה'.

As for the passage you quoted, Rambam himself in his Guide for the Perplexed quoted the opinion of the rabbis saying that only applied to Solomon's own generation.

When Scripture says of Solomon, "And he was wiser than all men" (1 Kings 5:11), our Sages add, "but not greater than Moses"; and the phrase, "than all men," is explained to mean, "than all men of his generation"

Although Rambam used this to exclude Moses, it is used as a source to explain his words in Hilchos Teshuva, as found in the mekoros of the Shabsi Frenkel edition.

  • 2
    While this is an excellent source, it's a pretty counterintuitive read of the OP's verse ואחריך לא יקום כמוך. Btw do you know where the sages say that about Moses? – Double AA Aug 2 '17 at 16:15
  • I'm quite certain I've seen it inside a medrash. Iirc it was a machlokes there. Now that you are jogging my memory it might lead to a more complete answer. But that will have to wait a bit. – user6591 Aug 2 '17 at 17:54
  • Looking forward! :) – Double AA Aug 3 '17 at 3:10

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