TODAYíS READING: I KINGS 9-11
God speaks to Solomon; the Queen of Sheba comes to Solomon; Solomonís kingdom increases in wealth; Solomonís heart is turned away; Godís judgment upon Solomon.
HIGHLIGHTS & INSIGHTS:
Chapter 9 begins with God speaking to Solomon a second time. It has now been 20 years since God first spoke to Solomon, and God reestablishes the path of blessing and the path of defeat. God emphasizes in verse 4 walking in integrity of heart and uprightness, and keeping His statutes and judgments. God does not expect perfection (David certainly wasnít), but He is always seeking a true heart. As a believer, we all have the same choice as Solomon. Galatians 5 describes it as either walking in the Spirit or walking in the flesh. The Spirit produces true spiritual fruit, while the flesh produces vanity. If it wasnít so difficult, it would seem like an easy choice.
Chapter 10 begins with the Queen of Sheba coming to prove Solomon with hard questions. She has heard of his fame, but canít believe it can be true. She quizzes him on the things most important to her heart, and she is blown away by his wisdom and his kingdom. Doctrinally, this pictures the Lord Jesus Christ reigning in Jerusalem as the people of the earth come unto Him. Devotionally, isnít it good to know that God is not afraid of hard questions? Also, in 10:4-5 she is amazed at his wisdom, the house of the Lord, and everything about his kingdom. We, too, can have the wisdom of God (the Bible) put on display in our life, and as it changes us, it should have an impact on those around us. Once again, though in the midst of greatness, another crack is shown. Chapter 10 and verse 14 states the weight of gold to come to Solomon in one year is six hundred threescore and six talents (666)! Remember Deut. 17:17 Ė the kings of Israel are not to greatly multiply gold unto the!
mselves. Deut. 17:16 commands them not to multiply horses or go to Egypt to get horses. Chapter 10, verses 26 and 28 show the slippery slope Solomon was on.
We have seen the flaws in Solomon and now they will come full bore. The three things God specifically mentions in Deut. 17:16-17 are the very things to which Solomon yields. In the midst of the most blessed time in Israelís history and with their most glorious king on the throne, Solomon allows his heart to be turned away. Remember when it was just horses and gold? No big deal, right? Now itís a thousand women and building altars to false gods. Proverbs 4:23 says we must guard our heart, but not just from the ďbigĒ stuff, but the little things as well. This also should remind us that we cannot sit back and rest on our past victories, but everyday engage in the spiritual battle by dying to ourselves. Sadly, there doesnít seem to be a Nathan that was willing to confront Solomon. Do you have a Nathan in your life? Someone that is a friend, but will also challenge your life. Are YOU that kind of friend?
Because of Solomonís disobedience, God raises up men to be his adversaries. One of these men will eventually lead ten of the tribes in rebellion against Solomonís son.
CHRIST IS REVEALED:
Through SOLOMON ruling in Jerusalem as the leaders of the world seek Him and His wisdom. Ė I Kings 10:1-6 (Phil. 2:9:11).