(Rough Draft - Last Updated 9/24/09)
As the period of the judges has been called the "Dark Ages," so this period of the kingdom may be called the "Golden Age" of Israel's history.
(1) Literary Activity
Many books of Scripture were written during this period -- Judges, Ruth, 1 and 2 Samuel, Ecclesiastes, The Song of Solomon, and most of the Psalms and of the Proverbs.
(2) Religious Progress
This was a period of special religious development. The Temple was built and dedicated, and its worship was elaborately perfected; sacred music was introduced on a scale never known before, and a high degree of religious faith and fervor was developed.
(3) Conquest and Expansion
The Kingdom under David and Solomon comprised about six times as much territory as was originally occupied by the Twelve Tribes. The promise made hundreds of years before to Abraham was thus fulfilled.
(4) Wealth and Splendor
Silver was in Jerusalem as stones and cedar trees as sycamores, and the people became so many that they were as the sand which is by the sea for multitude.