In the book of Kings we read about the life and rule of King Solomon, David’s successor. In the beginning he wholeheartedly followed God and obeyed all of His commandments. We read that under his kingship, the people of Israel lived in peace on all sides, ate, drank and were happy. The nations around Israel brought tribute to King Solomon, while each of his own people, the Israelites, lived in safety under his own vine and fig tree (1 Kings 4:25). It was a glorious time for Israel. They weren’t bothered by their enemies. The Temple was constructed and dedicated, and prosperity abounded. Solomon was the wisest and most discerning king that ever reigned at the time, and the nations came to listen to him speak (1 Kings 4:34).
In addition to this, Solomon understood the character of God, and we can see this in his prayer of dedication for the Temple in Chapter 8. He knew that God was a ‘promise keeper’; too awesome to be contained in the confines of the Temple he’d just completed, and that God had the nations on His heart. Solomon asked God to not only hear the prayers of the foreigners, but also answer them, so that His glory would be known amongst the nations (1 Kings 8:43). He also knew that God was merciful, forgiving and restorative, and proclaimed this in the hearing of all those present (1 Kings 8:46). Perhaps Solomon learned this from his father David, who sinned greatly, but was also forgiven and restored by his God.
Unfortunately, even though Solomon started his reign in wholehearted devotion to God, the latter part of his life was marked by compromise and disobedience (1 Kings 11:6-11). We read that he allowed himself to be lead astray by his foreign wives, who turned his heart after their gods and away from the Living God (1 Kings 11:4)! The Lord had already warned him what would happen if he did this, but, despite all his wisdom, he failed to heed. King Solomon started well, but ended badly. How that must have broken the heart of God, who wanted His people to continue living in a place of safety, security and abundance.
There is so much we can learn from studying King Solomon’s life (2 Timothy 3:16). I wonder what God is speaking to you right now. May King Solomon’s life be an example to you of how to, and how not to, live your life.
Prayer: Father God, help me to obey You wholeheartedly every day for the rest of my life. Thank You that I don’t have to do it in my own strength, for You’re with me and will empower me to do so. I ask You to lead me onwards and upwards. I want to finish well, and not defame the name of my God, as King Solomon did. Amen.
Please feel free to use this devotional to send on to your friends or share with your church fellowship. Provided full acknowledgement is made to Seeds of the Kingdom as the source, you are also welcome to use it in a non-commercial way and reproduce it in magazines or other Christian websites. The copyright for any commercial use of the material remains with Ellel Ministries International.