June 27, 2017
1 Kings 12-Part 2
I will place you on the throne of Israel, and you will rule over all that your heart desires. If you listen to what I tell you and follow my ways and do whatever I consider right, and if you obey my decrees and commands, as my servant David did, then I will always be with you. I will establish an enduring dynasty for you as I did for David, and I will give Israel to you. 1 Kings 11:37-38 NLT
LET IT GLOW
King Rehoboam, son of Solomon, blew it. He had a chance to reign over all of Israel, but he chose to not give the people their requests of lessening their labor load and taxes. So as a result, this kingdom divided their allegiance. The southern nation of Judah (and part of the tribe of Benjamin) was ruled by Rehoboam. The 10 northern tribes turned to Jeroboam for their king. An opportunity came knocking on Rehoboam's door, but he did not take it nor make the right choice. Do we make the best of an opportunity when it comes our way? Do we Ask God if it is His will before we jump into it? I have learned that not all things are God sent. When opportunities come our way, what do we do?
Who was this Jeroboam?
- He had been a servant of Solomon, who was a type of special project foreman.
- He was from Ephraim.
- As a young man, Jeroboam had been appointed by Solomon as leader over the building works around Jerusalem, and he rose to public notice. (MacArthur)
- Jeroboam was told about God's plans, through Prophet Ahijah, of a future division of the kingdom of Israel and his reigning over a part. Solomon heard about this and tried to have Jeroboam killed, so he fled for his life to Egypt.
- He was summoned from Egypt by the 10 northern tribes to be their representative and spokesman in dealing with King Rehoboam.
- He returned from Egypt, willing to do whatever to secure his reign a king over the 10 tribes, leading a rebellion. This charismatic man became a leader with much support.
- However, he was warned that if he disobeyed God's Word, then his family would be wiped out and not remain upon the throne, which eventually happened. (1 Kings 13:33-34)
Are we faithful to seek God's will and His way in our life and in our church? We have the choice to obey or rebel.
LET IT GROW
Sadly, Jeroboam did not stay faithful to God:
- He led the ten tribes of Israel away from worshiping God and into worshiping idols.
- He erected idols in Israel in order to keep the people from going to Jerusalem to worship so they would not change their alliance.
- He appointed priests outside of the Levite tribe.
- Instead of depending upon God's promises, he relied upon his own cunning ways.
- He established the city of Shechem as his royal residence and capital.
- Jeroboam's mistake was similar to Aaron's-making 2 gold calves for idol worship.
- He even instituted a religious festival.
- He even offered sacrifices to his idols on the altar at Bethel.
We must be extremely careful to keep God at the center of our life, first place, the One we give our time and allegiance to. Ask Him for discernment when an opportunity comes knocking on our door.
The Life Application Study Bible gives us some life lessons from this chapter:
Great opportunities are often destroyed by small decisions. Careless efforts to correct another's errors often lead to the same errors. Mistakes always occur when we attempt to take over God's role in the situation.
LET IT GO
Seek discernment as to whether an opportunity is from God.
Be careful in aiding others in their errors.
Do not take over God's role in a situation.
Stay surrendered to God.