Solomon

When making requests to God, he had his priorities right.

(1 Ki 3:5-10 NIV) At Gibeon the LORD appeared to Solomon during the night in a dream, and God said, "Ask for whatever you want me to give you." ….. {9} So give your servant a discerning heart to govern your people and to distinguish between right and wrong. For who is able to govern this great people of yours?" {10} The Lord was pleased that Solomon had asked for this.

When we pray, do we have our priorities right? Do we ask for things of God's kingdom or do we ask for things for ourselves. There is nothing wrong with asking things for ourselves but the priority we attribute to them is important. When Jesus' disciples asked Him how they should pray, He taught them what now has been called "The Lord's Prayer". And in that prayer we can see that priority is placed on matters of God before attention is directed at self.

(Mat 6:9-13 NIV) "This, then, is how you should pray: "'Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, {10} your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven. {11} Give us today our daily bread. {12} Forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. {13} And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.'

Solomon had his priorities right when he talked with God. Because he asked for things of God and not things for himself, God chose to honor him even with personal wealth.

Examine your own prayer life today. Think of a typical day when you prayed. List down what you prayed for and in what order. Is there some change we can make to your priorities in prayer?

 

Recognized the need for wisdom to accomplish God's work.

(1 Ki 3:5-10 NIV) At Gibeon the LORD appeared to Solomon during the night in a dream, and God said, "Ask for whatever you want me to give you." ….. {9} So give your servant a discerning heart to govern your people and to distinguish between right and wrong. For who is able to govern this great people of yours?" {10} The Lord was pleased that Solomon had asked for this.

Sometimes we try to accomplish God's purpose through our own means and we do not ask God for the wisdom that is readily available to us as He promised.

(James 1:5 NIV) If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him.

What are you trying to do today that is too difficult for you. Maybe you are trying to share the gospel to that someone who has been asking difficult questions. Or you are thinking of how you can make your Bible Study more interesting to your group. Let's ask God to give us the wisdom that He has promised to.

 

Compromised by marrying foreign wives. Did not trust in God alone to provide his nation with peace.

1KI 11:3 He had seven hundred wives of royal birth and three hundred concubines, and his wives led him astray.

Solomon thought that he could secure peace with the surrounding nations by marrying the kings' daughters. By doing so he did not rely on God to help Israel secure peace. He also went against God's command to the Israelites not to marry foreign wives.

Are you trying to do the right things the wrong way? Solomon had a noble aim - to secure peace for Israel - and that is the king's rightful duty. Yet he went about doing so the wrong way.

We may want to do right things - get that account, keep our job, etc - but do we compromise our ethical standards to do so. Do we say an occasional lie thinking it is okay as long as the objectives are noble?

 

Allowed his loved ones to affect his loyalty towards God.

Solomon married many pagan wives and he allowed himself to be influenced by them to worship foreign gods. It is difficult to isolate ourselves from the influence of our loved ones. That is why the Bible reminds us to be careful of the people we mix with.

 1KI 11:3 He had seven hundred wives of royal birth and three hundred concubines, and his wives led him astray.

Especially in the area of marriage, the Bible tells us not to be unequally yoked.

2CO 6:14 Do not be yoked together with unbelievers. For what do righteousness and wickedness have in common? Or what fellowship can light have with darkness?

Too often we hear of cases whereby a Christian who marries a non-Christian falls out of faith because the spouse, who initially does not mind the Christian activities, start to mind after the marriage. Even if that does not happen, it takes tremendous discipline to be the only one going to church on Sunday, only one reading the Bible at night, etc, that many will just stop after some time. We have to be careful in our selection of close companions so that they do not influence us negatively.

We need not restrict the command not to be unequally yoked with just marriage. It should apply to all situations wherein it would have a significant impact on our lives. Like a business venture for example. If we enter into a business partnership with someone who does not have the right values, it is easy to compromise and try to do some things the wrong way.

 

Only learned the true meaning of life when he was old.

Ecclesiastes probably records Solomon's last reflections on life. In that book we find a man that has proved through bitter experience that finding meaning to life apart from God is a vain pursuit. He concludes in the Book of Ecclesiastes:

(Eccl 12:13 NIV) Now all has been heard; here is the conclusion of the matter: Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man.

We should not wait until we are at our dying bed before we contemplate on life. That would be too late. Today, let's ask ourselves what we are living for. Record down our daily activities. That would give us a clue. Are our activities mainly for the purpose of accumulating wealth? Is our life centered around our children? Or are living our life the way Solomon would have lived his life if he were given a second chance - to serve God and obey His commandments.

How can we change? What changes do we need to make to our lifestyle or daily schedule so that we can live our lives for God?