1 Kings 11:1-8 — Solomon Turns from the Lord
1 Kings 11:9-43 — The Lord Raises Adversaries
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One Reply to “Apr 24 — 1 Kings 11”
It’s interesting to have read Ecclesiastes between 1 Kings 10 and 11. The great and wise Solomon appears noble through chapter 8 and in chapter 9 the Lord appears to Solomon and affirms His promise and His warning, “But if you or your descendants turn away from me…to serve other gods and worship them, then I will cut off Israel from the land…” (1 Kings 9:6-7). From this point, about half-way through Solomon’s reign, we see him slipping, making mistakes and setting him up for disaster, worse yet, setting up God’s people for troubled times…the prelude to the divided kingdom.
So Solomon takes on hundreds of wives and concubines (11:3), some ancient method of establishing international relationships with various kings. Makes me wonder if Solomon was off writing Ecclesiastes while his attorneys were annexing neighboring kingdoms through some legal mechanism of making wives from their royal families. That’s a bit presumptuous on my part, just trying to rationalize how he could process the paperwork to acquire 1,000 wives/concubines over some 20 years (one per week on average). Perhaps he got to the point where everything just seemed meaningless (his words not mine), some point where he just loses his ability to see God’s plan before him.
It appears Solomon’s focus on maintaining diplomatic relations with all of these pagan countries turns his heart away from God, and he “was not fully devoted to the Lord his God” (11:4). “So the Lord said to Solomon” (11:11), nothing good can follow a verse that starts this way…”Since this is your attitude and you have not kept my covenant…I will most certainly tear the kingdom away from you…”
Lord, may I be able to keep focused on that which you have called me to do. May I work on whatever task you have placed before me with excellence and diligence. Help me to remain resolute, free from distraction by those who would work to draw my attention from you. Keep me humble. Surround me with true friends who will help me stay on track with you Lord. Amen!