Read I Kings 9 -- 11
In Today's Reading:
Warning to Solomon; alliance with King Hiram of Tyre; Solomon's riches and wisdom
The Lord gave Solomon special privileges far exceeding those of other kings. But the Lord's continued blessings are conditional, as He said to Solomon: If you walk before Me as your father David walked, with integrity of heart and in uprightness, to do . . . what I have commanded you . . . then I will establish your royal throne over Israel forever (I Kings 9:4-7).
Did Solomon assume that building the most sacred temple in history, praying the longest prayer, and offering the most sacrifices meant that God would overlook his sins? In disregard for the word of God, Solomon amassed thousands of horses and chariots, and lived in an atmosphere of unparalleled luxury. He also violated the command of God by accumulating 700 wives and 300 concubines (Deuteronomy 17:16-17). Did Solomon deceive himself into thinking that, as king, he could ignore the word of God in his personal life?
Solomon not only chose daughters of foreign kings for his wives, but he encouraged them to worship their idols. This had been expressly forbidden in the law (18:9-12). There is no indication that Solomon made an effort to encourage any of his wives to worship the one true God.To do this would have interfered with his political agenda, since his foreign wives were daughters of kings who would insure peace with their countries. His power, prestige, and wealth eventually became his undoing. We are shocked to read that eventually Solomon went after Ashtoreth, the goddess of the Sidonians, and after Milcom, the abominable idol of the Ammonites. . . . So the LORD was angry with Solomon because his heart had turned from the LORD God of Israel, who had appeared to him twice (I Kings 11:5,9).
What happened to Solomon can happen to all who allow an abundance of "things" to crowd out one's loyalty to the Lord.
How solemn is the warning: The love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, and by craving it, some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many pains (I Timothy 6:10).
By David who walked before the Lord with integrity of heart (I Kings 9:4).Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and with people (Luke 2:52).
Government Official: Sen. Jon Kyl (AZ) · Country: Armenia (3 million) southwest Transcaucasia between Europe and Asia · Major languages: Armenian and Russian · Religious freedom · 79% Armenian/Russian Orthodox; 3% Muslim · Prayer Suggestion: Seek the Lord in prayer, turn from your sinful ways, and God will have mercy and pardon for you (Isaiah 55:6-7).
Optional Reading: Acts 26
Memory Verse for the Week: Psalms 119:165