Sharon Wilharm Bible Storyteller

Two Harlot Mothers

In 1 Kings chapter 3 God appeared to King Solomon and asked him what he wanted from God. Solomon asked for wisdom. Immediately following his conversation with God, we’re given an example of his wisdom.

Two harlot women came to him with a problem. They’d each had sons within a few days of each other. One of them smothered to death her baby when she rolled over on him. When she realized what had happened, she went into the other woman’s room and swapped babies. The other woman woke up to find a dead baby. Only it wasn’t her baby. Unfortunately, she couldn’t prove it.

The innocent mother hoped King Solomon could get the other woman to return her baby. She pleaded her case, then the other woman denied her claims. 

The king responded by asking a servant to bring him a sword. They brought in his sword and the king ordered the baby to be cut in two with each of the women given half. 

The real mother was horrified. She asked Solomon not to kill him, but to give him to the other mother.

The other woman, though, agreed that his way made the most sense. 

That was all Solomon needed to hear. He knew who the real mother was. 

The chapter closes with, “And all Israel heard of the judgment that the king had rendered, and they stood in awe of the king, because they perceived that the wisdom of God was in him to do justice.” (1 Kings 3:28 ESV)

Being a mother is never easy. Fortunately for us, whenever we’re facing a difficult situation, we can take it to our King who is always there for us.

I’m Sharon Wilharm, host of All God’s Women and I’d like to invite you to join the free Women of Prayer simulstudy coming January 9. Learn more at

Read about two harlot mothers in Scripture: 1 Kings 3

two harlot mothers Bible stories

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