5.75” x 7.5”
This St. Nicholas (1851-1932) was affectionately known as Papa Nicholas Planas. He was born on the Island of Naxos in Greece, and as a young boy would secretly go the the local church and chant as much as he knew. At 14, Papa Nicholas’ father died, and his mother moved the family to Athens. Forced by his mother to marry when he was of age, he only lived with his wife until they had a child, then devoted his whole life to serving God.
Papa Nicholas was ordained a priest in 1884, even though he was quite simple and unlettered. He always performed the church services daily, and did this for anyone out of love for God. Living often in hardship, persecution (especially after the change from the Traditional Julian Church Calendar in Greece in 1923 to the Gregorian Calendar), and tribulation, he endured this peacefully and was always kind and thoughtful to all. He became a great visionary and saint, and knew how to guide others to God, seeing through outward circumstances to the actual inner workings of men and God, and His Providence. May we, too, learn to love God above all, be simple in faith and heart, and face trials peacefully.
The Prophet Solomon was the son of King David, and was anointed by the priest Zadok, the Prophet Nathan, and Benaiah, the son of Jehoiada. He inherited the throne of Israel from his father. Great wisdom came to Solomon from God, so much so that his renown went out far and wide and many people came to see him and hear his words and judgments. King Solomon began his rule with a humble prayer to God, “Give therefore Thy servant an understanding heart to judge Thy People, that I may discern between good and bad, for who is able to judge this Thy so great a people” (I Kings 3:9)? Humility is therefore the greatest wisdom.
Israel under King Solomon flourished more than at any time in its history, and became very rich. He built the first Temple in Jerusalem and it was magnificent, had the Ark of the Covenant brought and placed in the Holy of Holies, and reigned in a time of great peace for forty years. Although he fell to idolatry because of trying to please his foreign wives, he repented and is celebrated as a prophet of God. We see in Solomon an echo of the meekness of his father King David before the Lord. Let us learn this ourselves.
This icon is a protected print mounted on wood. Sizes are approximate.
8.5” x 10.5”
King Solomon was the son of King David who had reunited the kingdoms of Israel and Judah under his rule (1040-970 b.c.). King Solomon was the son of Bathsheba, who had been the wife of Uriah the Hittite. King David had committed adultery with her, and conceived a son by this union, but that son later died. Solomon was the second son of King David and Bathsheba born to them after David had married her, for he had sent Uriah to be killed in battle. With God even human sin and tragedy can be later turned to good.
King Solomon ruled for forty peaceful years and because he had prayed to God to rule Israel wisely, God gave him great wisdom which had not been seen on earth so prominently before him. Even Queen Sheba of Ethiopia came to hear King Solomon’s wise words. King Solomon desired to build a permanent house for the Lord, Whose worship had been held in tents, or tabernacles, since the time of Moses. God allowed him to build the First Temple in Jerusalem, and King Solomon greatly adorned it. Because of the influence of his pagan wives, King Solomon allowed idol worship in Israel for a time, but later he repented.