2 Chronicles 8: Foreshadowing

Solomon, the wisest king ever, was still a fool.

Solomon moved his wife, Pharaoh’s daughter, from the City of David to the new palace he had built for her. He said, “My wife must not live in King David’s palace, for the Ark of the LORD has been there, and it is holy ground.” v11

Solomon knew God’s prohibition against marrying foreign wives, yet he did it anyway. And not just once. Solomon had 700 wives of royal birth and 300 concubines (1 Kings 11:3).

Solomon’s downfall is chronicled in 1 Kings 11. In his old age, he worshiped Ashtoreth (goddess) and Molech (fond of child sacrifice). And, predictably, God became very angry with Solomon.

So now the LORD said to him, “Since you have not kept my covenant and have disobeyed my decrees, I will surely tear the kingdom away from you and give it to one of your servants. But for the sake of your father, David, I will not do this while you are still alive. I will take the kingdom away from your son. And even so, I will not take away the entire kingdom; I will let him be king of one tribe, for the sake of my servant David and for the sake of Jerusalem, my chosen city.” ~1 Kings 11:9-13

This is a powerful warning, is it not? Even the wisest of us can fall into sin. He tiptoed in with his first wife, then went all-in with 999 more. He built them places to worship their gods, before eventually worshipping them himself, just as God predicted would happen in Deuteronomy 7:3-4.

David wasn’t sinless. He was an adulterer and murderer. The difference between David and Solomon was their hearts. David was a “man after God’s own heart” (Acts 13:22) and he was quick to repent when he realized he was wrong. There is no indication that Solomon ever repented. Foolish king.

But we are all foolish. I wonder where I am tiptoeing into sin? Or whether I’m all-in somewhere and don’t realize it? My prayer is that the LORD show me these areas and help me repent. I don’t want to follow the path of Solomon. I want to be like David and have a heart for God.

Blessings on your day.

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2 Chronicles 7: Why is it so hard to obey?

So God answered Solomon’s prayer with conditions. Much like we do as parents, God gave Solomon (and the nation of Israel) two choices.

  1. Obey (or repent and obey) and things will be wonderful.
  2. Disobey and serve other Gods and things will be horrible.

Easy, right?

Wrong. This is the same choice God gave the Israelites over and over in the Old Testament. “Serve me only and obey my commands.” Yet over and over again, the Israelites chose to disobey.

Why is it that it is so hard for people to choose the better option? I don’t think it’s that we think option 2 is better, it’s just that we can’t clearly see the consequences of our actions. I don’t wake up in the morning and say to myself, “Time to sin!” I just get busy doing things and forget about God. Or I fool myself into thinking I’m doing what he wants me to do.

I think this is the appeal of Amish fiction. (Stay with me here). For those of us who live in an age of technology and hedonism, the Amish way of life seems simple. I think in the back of our minds, we think that if life were less complicated, choosing option 1 would be easier.

I’m pretty sure it didn’t get any easier than the Garden of Eden. Adam and Eve? They chose option 1. Which tells me we need to fight our human nature tooth and toenail, no matter what.

We still have two choices.

  1. A relationship with Christ Jesus.
  2. Burning in the pit of hell for eternity.

Always be joyful. Never stop praying. Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus. ~1 Thessalonians 5:16-18