The Testament of Solomon — What is it?

The Testament of Solomon is a book that was written sometime between the third and fifth centuries, hundreds of years after the life of Christ and approximately 1,500 years after the life of Solomon. It has deep ties to astrology and was never believed to be truthful or scriptural by either Jews or the early church.

King Solomon was the son of King David and was known for his wisdom. The Testament of Solomon purports to share a record of his supernatural encounters. It's written to sound like a confessional or letter one would pen from their deathbed.

A good portion of the Testament of Solomon tells tales of Solomon enslaving demons and using a powerful magic ring to get the temple built. In the book, there is a young boy helping to build the temple who is being tormented by a demon who is sucking his vitality out of his right thumb. When Solomon prays for wisdom about the situation, the angel Michael appears to give him a magical ring, sometimes called the Seal of Solomon, which was supposedly in the shape of a pentagram or a hexagram (like the Star of David). Using the ring's power, Solomon forces the demons into slavery and makes them work on the temple construction. He also questions each of the demons to learn about what issues they cause and how to win against them.

The Testament of Solomon is a fictional work that combines Christian, Egyptian, and Greek spirituality. There are strong links to astrology such as by associating the demons with different constellations, and the book also contains medical alchemy. The demons Solomon interrogates take responsibility for some specific ailments and provide spells that will break off their power. Some demon names such as Asmodeus and Abyzou show up in much other ancient literature and mythology. Solomon was a popular historical figure at the time the Testament of Solomon was written, so the work does provide an interesting glance into some of the popular cultural mythology about Solomon from that time. But it is nothing more than that.

Related Truth:

The Wisdom of Solomon — What is it?

The Wisdom of Sirach / Book of Ecclesiasticus — What is it?

The Gnostic gospels — What are they?

The apocryphal gospels — What are they?

What determines canonicity or that a particular book is considered scriptural? How do we decide which books belong in the Bible since the Bible doesn't tell us?

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