1 Kings 11:1-13
Memorise 1 Kings 11:4
"but he kept not that which the LORD commanded"
Solomon is said to be the wisest man that ever lived. He was blessed by God with a “wise and an understanding heart; so that there was none like thee before thee, neither after thee shall any arise like unto thee” (1 Kings 3:12). His reign over Israel was a golden era of peace and prosperity, when all the surrounding nations journeyed to his courts just to pay tribute to him and to witness his legendary wisdom. He started his reign very well, humbly acknowledging his inadequacies and asking the LORD for discernment and understanding. The early parts of his reign were spent in service to the Lord, in building the temple and establishing the kingdom. In 1 Kings 8 we read his excellent prayer at the dedication of the temple, showing his love and devotion for the Lord, and sincere desire to do His will.
However, upon closer look, we see that cracks in his relationship with God had already begun to show much earlier on. Solomon made mistakes that would be fully manifested in 1 Kings 11, where he completely fell away from the Lord by seeking other gods. In 1 Kings 3:1, he “made affinity with Pharaoh king of Egypt” and married Pharaoh’s daughter. In so doing, he compromised with the idolatrous Egyptians, who would later lead him to seek after their gods. This was only the first of many such sinful alliances that he made that led to his downfall (1 Kings 11:3-4). He completely ignored God’s command for kings not to multiply wives to themselves (Deuteronomy 17:17), and married 700 wives and had 300 concubines! In addition, we also read in 1 Kings 3:3, that although he loved the Lord, yet his worship was sinful for he sacrificed and burnt incense in high places, and not at the Tabernacle where he was suppsoed to. (Deuternomy 12:2, 11-14)
From these incidences we see that Solomon’s disobedience began as small seeds that blossomed into full-blown sin and rebellion in his later years. He did evil in the sight of the Lord in seeking after other gods, practising all manner of abominable worship. We thank God that he did repent and return to the Lord in his later days and wrote the book of Ecclesiastes, lamenting the vanity of seeking after the carnal things in life. May we all learn from Solomon’s example, to never allow sin and temptation to draw us away from our Lord.
Thought: We must nip sin at the bud, and never allow it to blossom!
Prayer: Lord, may You keep my heart always fixed upon Thee.