June 30, 2016
1 Kings 14
LET IT GLOW
The way the author wrote this book is different. He jumps back and forth between events of Israel, the 10 northern tribes, (ruled by Jeroboam) and Judah, the southern tribe (ruled by Rehoboam). So it will take some effort to keep them straight as we read through.
Jeroboam had a chance to be as great a king as David and as wealthy as Solomon, but he turned from God and led Israel into idolatry by making two golden calves to worship, in spite of being promised a lasting dynasty if he remained faithful to God. His dynasty became a disastrous dynasty. This man-made religion was designed for convenience of the people, so they wouldn't have to travel to Jerusalem to offer their sacrifices and participate in Jewish festivals.
Let's take a look at this family now. We see Abijah, who is Jeroboam's son, become fatally ill. I found this interesting.
Abijah means my father is the Lord, in Hebrew. His name indicates that Jeroboam desired to be regarded as a worshiper of the Lord at the time of Abijah's birth. (MacArthur)
His father was concerned that he would have no successor to his throne if his son died. Do you reckon that the king knew his false gods did not have the power to make his son get well, nor could they predict his future, so the king turned to Prophet Ahijah. (He had earlier given the prediction to Jeroboam that he would become king over Israel, and was an old man with poor eyesight by this time, since Jeroboam had reigned 22 years.)
So Jeroboam devised a scheme:
- He sent his wife to Prophet Ahijah, disguised as a poor woman bearing meager gifts for the prophet. The purpose for this was so the mother could ask the prophet what would happen to the king's son.
- The mother obeyed.
- However, before the mother arrived, the Lord had revealed the king's scheme and His answer.
- Ahijah asked the mother why she was pretending to be someone else. Then he told her the bad news, a message from God, to give her husband, King Jeroboam.
- God had promoted Jeroboam from the ranks of the common people to rule over His people Israel.
- Jeroboam had not been faithful like His servant David.
- Jeroboam did not obey God's commands, follow God with all his heart, doing whatever He wanted.
- Jeroboam's wickedness surpassed that of Saul and Solomon.
- He made other gods for himself and provoked God to anger with the golden calves.
LET IT GROW
What was the verdict that the prophet delivered from God to Jeroboam?
- Since Jeroboam turned his back on God, He would bring disaster on his dynasty and destroy his male descendants, both slave and free, and burn up his royal dynasty as one burns up trash until it is gone.
- The members of Jeroboam's family who die in the city will be eaten by dogs, and those who die in the fields will be eaten by vultures.
It happened as the prophet had told the mother.
LET IT GO
Beware of my sins affecting my family.
Keep the Lord as the God of my heart.