June 25, 2016
1 Kings 12
So the king paid no attention to the people. 1 Kings 12:15a NLT
LET IT GLOW
Decisions, decisions. We make hundreds of them in a day's time-foolish and wise. Do we seek counsel for the important, tough ones? Do we sometimes have a hard time taking wise counsel, when it goes against the way we want to do things, against our will? Do we heed wise advise? When an event is God's doing, and not what we prefer, how do we react? King Rehoboam had a decision to make and he made it foolishly, denying the request of his people.
And so the saga begins-the split, the division of the mighty kingdom of David and Solomon, of Israel into two kingdoms.
- King Solomon's son, and inherited the throne, David's dynasty;
- summoned by the leaders of Israel, along with Jeroboam (who fled to Egypt so Solomon would not kill him), and the whole assembly of Israel;
- asked by the people of Israel to lighten their harsh labor load and heavy taxes imposed by Solomon, and then they would be loyal subjects of Rehoboam;
- wise to seek advise from his father's counselors;
- unwise to reject their counsel of giving the people for what they asked;
- sought counsel from his younger advisors, with whom he had grown up-no lightened burdens of the complainers;
- taking too long to make this important decision-3 days;
- unwise in his decision-heavier burdens;
- unwise to pay no attention to the people-rejected their request.
Rehoboam did not want to be a servant. He did not do as the wise elders recommended, but what young, inexperienced and unwise men suggested. He had no idea as to how close he came to loosing it all. But for God's grace and the David Covenant, he would have. Yep, he made a foolish decision.
LET IT GROW
After the three days, Rehoboam revealed his decision to the people's pleas and complaints. Their king had paid no attention to his people, which was a foolish decision. This turn of events as actually the will of the LORD, thus fulfilling His message through Prophet Ahijah from Shiloh back in 11:29-33. (verse 15) As punishment for Solomon's sins of idolatry and disobedience, God was going to divide Solomon's kingdom, the beloved Israel.
Later, in verses 21-24, we read of Rehoboam's effort to form an 18,000 men of Judah and Benjamin tribes army, with the purpose of fighting against Jeroboam, to restore all of Israel to his reign, to fight those rebels.
But God spoke to Shemaiah, a man of God, who relayed His message to Rehoboam and to all the Israelites in Judah and Benjamin:
- Do not fight against your relatives, the Israelites.
- Go back home.
- What is happening is God's doing!
Rehoboam reigned as king over Judah and little Benjamin tribes, who formed the Southern kingdom. Remember this so you can keep straight the two kingdoms.
First Kings covers 125 years of history. Looking beyond this time, Judah (southern kingdom) went on to have 5 kings and Israel (northern kingdom) went on to have 8 kings rule them before Assyria conquered the northern and Babylon conquered the southern kingdoms.
Beware, lest we fall, since the wisest man (Solomon) and his son (Rehoboam), could fall into temptations way of sin, so can we.
Do we ask if advise we get is realistic, workable, and consistent with biblical principles?
LET IT GO
Seek godly counsel and God's counsel in His Word when making a decision.
discern the wisest way to go.
If my prayer, request, is denied by God, accept it as the best way for me.