1 Kings 4:22–23 (ESV)

22 Solomon’s provision for one day was thirty cors of fine flour and sixty cors of meal,

These verses give us the requirements for provisions for Solomon’s table for one day. The amounts given would probably have been those required at the height of his reign. Verse 22 deals with the amount of finely ground flour and the amount of more coarsely ground flour.

At this point we need some help because the amounts are given in a unit of measure that is no longer in use. Different authorities give different equivalencies in modern units, but the differences are relatively slight.

The ancient Hebrew unit mentioned is the kor. This was a unit of volume, not weight. 30 kors of fine flour was approximately 222 litres, and, of course, 60 kors of meal would be double that number.

The oxen, of two kinds, and the sheep are simply counted. Other animals, mostly what we would call game animals, are simply listed. Fattened geese, however, are listed after the game animals, and there is no reason given that a specific number of them was not required.

One reason for these verses being given to us is that we might have an idea of the greatness of the task laid upon the regional officials that are mentioned in previous verses. Nevertheless, there is at least another reason for mentioning this. We may characterize that reason as providing another piece of information to exhibit the greatness of Solomon’s reign. In the ancient Near East, one of the measures of a monarch's greatness was shown by the size of his courts, and this size was partially shown in the number of people who sat at his table.

Yet, the writer of 1 Kings would be misunderstood if we left these verses with that comment. The greatness of Solomon’s reign was a gift that the Lord God bestowed upon Solomon as a consequence of Solomon’s request for wisdom and also as result of the humility with which Solomon clothed his request.

These observations stand in sharp contrast to the attitude of King Nebuchadnezzar. That king of Babylon ascribed the greatness of Babylon and the empire that was subject to him as the result of his own doing. He said, Is not this great Babylon, which I have built by my mighty power as a royal residence and for the glory of my majesty? (Daniel 4:30).

Nebuchadnezzar’s arrogant pride brought God’s severe chastisement upon him. Conversely, Solomon’s humility brought God’s blessing as long as that humility lasted. God looks with favour upon those who are lowly of heart. Scripture says that God is opposed to the proud but gives grace to the humble (James 4:6).