April 27, 2006
Read 1 Kings 14
In Today's Reading:
Ahijah's prophecy; reign and death of Rehoboam; Abijam's wicked reign and Asa's good reign in Judah
Jeroboam set up worship centers at Bethel in the south and at Dan in the north for his kingdom. The southern kingdom of Judah was greatly influenced to worship the Lord because the Levites (in the northern kingdom) left . . . their possession, and came to Judah and Jerusalem. . . . So they strengthened the kingdom of Judah. . . . for three years they walked in the way of David (II Chronicles 11:14,17).
In the fifth year of Rehoboam's reign in Jerusalem, Rehoboam . . . forsook the Law of the LORD (12:1-2). Rehoboam followed the policy of his father Solomon in being "broad-minded" and "tolerant" of other religions. This could be expected of Rehoboam since his mother was . . . an Ammonitess (I Kings 14:21).
Although the kingdom of Judah did not forsake the prescribed order of the Temple services, Judah did evil in the sight of the LORD, and they provoked Him to jealousy. . . . And there were also sodomites (male cult prostitutes) in the land: and they did according to all the abominations (detestable practices) of the nations which the LORD cast out before the children of Israel (14:22-24). When Israel first entered the land, God declared: There shall be no whore of the daughters of Israel, nor a sodomite of the sons of Israel (Deuteronomy 23:17).
Because of their sin, God withdrew His blessings and protection from Judah. And it came to pass in the fifth year of king Rehoboam, that Shishak king of Egypt came up against Jerusalem: And he took away the treasures of the House of the LORD, and the treasures of the king's house; he even took away all (I Kings 14:25-26). The kingdom was not only emptied of all its wealth but now it was under the control of Egypt.
In his later years, Solomon encouraged the worship of false gods and that sin continued to gain popularity during the reign of his son Rehoboam. Biblical history confirms that once cults and false worship become acceptable in a nation, they are followed by the acceptance of homosexuality and lesbianism.
For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold (suppress) the truth in unrighteousness (Romans 1:18).
14:3 cracknels = cakes or fig bars; 14:5 feign herself = pretend; 14:6 heavy tidings = bitter news; 14:15 groves = pagan shrines; 15:12 took away = banished; 15:17 suffer = allow or permit.
By Asa's ridding the land of idols and sodomites (I Kings 15:11-14). Christ cleansed the Temple (Matthew 21:12-13; John 2:13-16). As Christians, we are the temples of God, bought with His own blood (I Corinthians 6:19-20; II Corinthians 6:16-17, and are cleansed of all unrighteousness when we confess our sins (I John 1:9).
Pray for Staff: Ilene Wallace · Government Official: Rep. G.K. Butterfield (NC) · Country: Slovenia (2 million) in southeastern Europe · Major languages: Slovenian and Serbo-Croatian · Freedom of religion · 81% Roman Catholic; 1% Muslim · Prayer Suggestion: Pray with great faith and the Lord will answer (Matthew 21:22).
Optional Reading: Acts 28
Memory Verse for the Week: I Kings 2:3