Friday, February 01, 2008

Solomon 1 Kings 8

22 Then Solomon stood before the altar of the LORD in front of the whole assembly of Israel, spread out his hands toward heaven 23 and said:

    "LORD, the God of Israel, there is no God like you in heaven above or on earth below—you who keep your covenant of love with your servants who continue wholeheartedly in your way.
    27 "But will God really dwell on earth? The heavens, even the highest heaven, cannot contain you. How much less this temple I have built! 28 Yet give attention to your servant's prayer and his plea for mercy, LORD my God. Hear the cry and the prayer that your servant is praying in your presence this day. 29 May your eyes be open toward this temple night and day, this place of which you said, 'My Name shall be there,' so that you will hear the prayer your servant prays toward this place. 30 Hear the supplication of your servant and of your people Israel when they pray toward this place. Hear from heaven, your dwelling place, and when you hear, forgive.

Solomon's prayer was one of the best prayers in the Bible and indeed was very perceptive.

Before Solomon was corrupted- he was a man after God's heart. In many ways he was very fortunate.

His birth lineage was suspect - as his mother was Bathsheba whose husband David had murdered.

Yet, Solomon inherited the throne over the rest of his other brothers - and whats more he got God's blessing. God was pleased with him and blessed his humility with wisdom and wealth beyond measure.

Whilst his father, David, had to war, fight and struggle, the throne was handed to Solomon on a golden platter.

In many ways, many Christians today are like Solomon - many of us didn't have to fight for our faith - everything was given to us. You can even get Bibles for free today, a luxury not afforded to the ancient Christians and many Christians in 3rd world countries or Communist lands.

But yet Solomon fell from grace. He indulged in his wealth by a huge margin, took advantage of God's grace and turned his heart away from God. He died early, probably from the high living. Contrast the Song of Songs with the bitter and world weary Ecclesiastes, which Solomon wrote, the first when he was young, the last when he was at the end of his days, and you can see that at the end, he had lost his way.

His tragic failure truly serves as a warning to us.

God gives great gifts to all of us, some more than others. And when we sin against him and rebel, He still loves us- but He cannot forever protect us from the consequences of our folly. And in the end, He will not struggle with our stubborn spirits any more.


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