I’ve been reading in 1 Kings and looking at Solomon. We’ve all heard how God told him to ask whatever he wanted as king, and that Solomon chose wisdom. Because of that choice and his desire to rule God’s people well and honorably, God gave him not only incredible wisdom, but also “riches and wealth and honor, such as none of the kings who were before (him) has possessed nor those who will come after (him).”
We know that most of the Proverbs, Song of Solomon and probably Ecclesiastes were written by him. We know that he built a magnificent temple for the Lord that became one of the 7 wonders of the ancient world. We know of his wisdom with the 2 mothers claiming the same baby, and of the Queen of Sheba coming to see all his glory.
What we tend to forget is how at the end of his life, he blew it spiritually! What caused Solomon to turn his heart away from God?
Now King Solomon loved many foreign women along with the daughter of Pharaoh: Moabite, Ammonite, Edomite, Sidonian, and Hittite women,
from the nations concerning which the LORD had said to the sons of Israel, “You shall not associate with them, nor shall they associate with you, for they will surely turn your heart away after their gods.” Solomon held fast to these in love.
He had seven hundred wives, princesses, and three hundred concubines, and his wives turned his heart away.
For when Solomon was old, his wives turned his heart away after other gods; and his heart was not wholly devoted to the LORD his God, as the heart of David his father had been.
For Solomon went after Ashtoreth the goddess of the Sidonians and after Milcom the detestable idol of the Ammonites.
Solomon did what was evil in the sight of the LORD, and did not follow the LORD fully, as David his father had done. 1 Kings 11:1-6
This got me thinking about all the things we seek in our lives. This passage about Solomon has been a reminder to me of the choices we make and the toll they take on our lives.
I don’t think that Solomon, when he decided to make an alliance with Egypt by marrying Pharaoh’s daughter, was thinking in his head, “How can I disobey the Lord? How far can I walk the line of just barely obeying and still stay in His favor?” He was even in the midst of his great CONSTRUCTION of the house of the Lord and his own house. He was, seemingly, focused on God’s glory in building His house. Yet still, there was compromise! Instead of seeking protection from God alone, he sought help and protection from the Pharaoh.
For us, this is where it always starts. Little compromises. Little doors we open in our hearts. We erase the clear and distinct lines we vowed NEVER to cross and draw them a little further out, a little closer to sin.
Solomon had many kings and queens come to hear his great wisdom. In the course of those visits he met many women from these foreign countries. He never guarded his heart (or his loins, it seems) and we see that he loved many foreign women. And these wives turned his heart away.
I was meditating on this today and wondering what compromises I might have made in my life. Little ones that maybe others wouldn’t notice. Deep in my heart that affect my relationship with God. I’ve been spending time this morning asking the Holy Spirit to examine my heart and to reveal areas of compromise and purge that sin from me, to cleanse and purify my heart. It is always humbling when we go before the Great I AM and see how much we are lacking. But there is also so much HOPE to know that He IS working in our lives, and if we seek and desire to live the surrendered life, how DEEPLY He will work in our lives to sanctify (purify) and transform our lives so that we will more purely reflect the image of Jesus. That when people look at us, they see Jesus!
I challenge you today to ask His Spirit to examine YOUR life. Are there unholy things that YOU have given your love to? Have you sought comfort or fulfillment in things that reject or deny or neglect God? Have you allowed compromise in your walk with God?