October 9, 2017 by Kgalalelo
On this day, the day after my birthday, I would like us to look at the life of Solomon in the Bible whom we meet in the book of 1Kings. There are lessons to learn from his life that will save a lot of us self-inflicted heartaches. His father, David, gave him instructions before he died as he was an old man. He said to him: “I go the way of all the earth; be strong, therefore, and prove yourself a man. And keep the charge of the Lord your God: to walk in His ways, to keep His statutes, His commandments, His judgments, and His testimonies, as it is written in the Law of Moses, that you may prosper in all that you do and wherever you turn; that the Lord may fulfill His word which He spoke concerning me, saying, ‘If your sons take heed to their way, to walk before Me in truth with all their heart and with all their soul,’ He said, ‘you shall not lack a man on the throne of Israel” (1 Kings 2:3-4).
Solomon became King after his father, David and one night the Lord appeared to Solomon in a dream and He said he should ask for whatever he wanted God to give him and this is what Solomon said to the Lord and the Lord’s response: “You have shown great mercy to Your servant David my father, because he walked before You in truth, in righteousness, and in uprightness of heart with You; You have continued this great kindness for him, and You have given him a son to sit on his throne, as it is this day. Now, O Lord my God, You have made Your servant king instead of my father David, but I am a little child; I do not know how to go out or come in. And Your servant is in the midst of Your people whom You have chosen, a great people, too numerous to be numbered or counted. Therefore give to Your servant an understanding heart to judge Your people, that I may discern between good and evil. For who is able to judge this great people of Yours?”
The speech pleased the Lord, that Solomon had asked this thing. Then God said to him: “Because you have asked this thing, and have not asked long life for yourself, nor have asked riches for yourself, nor have asked the life of your enemies, but have asked for yourself understanding to discern justice, behold, I have done according to your words; see, I have given you a wise and understanding heart, so that there has not been anyone like you before you, nor shall any like you arise after you. And I have also given you what you have not asked: both riches and honour, so that there shall not be anyone like you among the kings all your days. So if you walk in My ways, to keep My statutes and My commandments, as your father David walked, then I will lengthen your days” (1Kings 3:6-14).
God bestowed wisdom unto Solomon. Solomon asked and God gave. God is in the business of giving, in John 3:16 He gave His only begotten Son that whoever believes in Him might live and not perish and receive eternal life. He therefore, gave Solomon what he asked for, to judge people with all wisdom and his gift of wisdom was confirmed a number of times. The bible says that as he judged wisely, the nation “saw the wisdom of God” in him to administer justice. People recognised that the wisdom he used, came from the Lord, it was God’s wisdom and not necessarily his own making.
Solomon appointed for himself governors to help him rule in all of Israel. God ensured that he ruled in peace, he was rich in livestock, I can imagine that he had great farms and property and all the material things you could think of. He was definitely not filthy rich as his riches were given him by the Lord. The Bible further says: “And God gave Solomon wisdom and exceedingly great understanding, and largeness of heart like the sand on the seashore. Thus Solomon’s wisdom excelled the wisdom of all the men of the East and all the wisdom of Egypt. For he was wiser than all men…” (1Kings 4:29-31).
Since God had given Solomon peace at every side and no one desired to wage war against him he proposed to build a temple for the Lord and he began to put resources in place to accomplish this massive task. As a reminder, the Word of the Lord came to Solomon once again during this task saying: “Concerning this temple which you are building, if you walk in My statutes, execute My judgments, keep all My commandments, and walk in them, then I will perform My word with you, which I spoke to your father David. And I will dwell among the children of Israel, and will not forsake My people Israel” (1Kings 6:12-13).
When the assignment of building the temple was complete, the priests brought in the ark of the covenant of the Lord and placed it in its place in the temple. Solomon then dedicated the temple to the Lord in prayer.
In 1Kings 9:1-9 we read: “and it came to pass, when Solomon had finished building the house of the Lord and the king’s house, and all Solomon’s desire which he wanted to do, that the Lord appeared to Solomon the second time, as He had appeared to him at Gibeon. And the Lord said to him: “I have heard your prayer and your supplication that you have made before Me; I have consecrated this house which you have built to put My name there forever, and My eyes and My heart will be there perpetually”.
“Now if you walk before Me as your father David walked, in integrity of heart and in uprightness, to do according to all that I have commanded you, and if you keep My statutes and My judgments, then I will establish the throne of your kingdom over Israel forever, as I promised David your father, saying, ‘You shall not fail to have a man on the throne of Israel.’ But if you or your sons at all turn from following Me, and do not keep My commandments and My statutes which I have set before you, but go and serve other gods and worship them, then I will cut off Israel from the land which I have given them; and this house which I have consecrated for My name I will cast out of My sight. Israel will be a proverb and a byword among all peoples. And as for this house, which is exalted, everyone who passes by it will be astonished and will hiss, and say, ‘Why has the Lord done thus to this land and to this house?’ Then they will answer, ‘Because they forsook the Lord their God, who brought their fathers out of the land of Egypt, and have embraced other gods, and worshiped them and served them; therefore the Lord has brought all this calamity on them”.
Solomon’s wealth became even greater, God prospered him immensely as he was walking in the ways of God. He didn’t look to the left nor to the right but looked forward in alignment with God and in God’s perfect will for his life. In Joshua 1: 8 God commanded the Israelites saying “This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success”.
Brethren, the secret is to walk in the ways of God. You need to attune your consciousness with the consciousness of God that well-being may flow freely in your life and spread in everything that you do and touch. When God gave these instructions, despite the fact that He gave man free will, it was for the sake of man, that we should not perish. Life outside of God is dark, you walk in a maze and you will not know where you are going. When I am in the space of giving gratitude to God, things flows to me and everything I lay my hands on turns to gold because in that moment, I am connected to Him, the source of well-being. When I do not feel the connection, that’s when negative emotions surfaces and derails me. In that instant, I know that I am not connected to the Source of well-being.
Solomon enjoyed well-being for as long as he walked in the ways of God. His mind was one with the Mind of God and in 1 Kings 11, he lost his way. He turned his heart away from God. He married many women all over the place and they turned his heart after foreign gods. The Lord was angry with Solomon as he failed to keep the Lord’s statutes and commandments and he tore the kingdom away from him and worse, he raised up an adversary against Solomon. He had enjoyed peace on all sides all the years that He was looking to God but as soon as he turned away from God, he was attacked. He was not resting in the Lord nor keeping His eyes on Him. His focus had completely changed.
Our spiritual walk is a lifetime journey, when you lose sight of the Lord, even if you have been attuned all these years, as soon as you look elsewhere, you become derailed. The train which is you, gets out of the railway track and it crashes. When you lose sight of God, who is your light, you get lost in the labyrinth of life. You invite to yourself, sickness, heartache, negativity and attack from all angles. Never walk too far from the Lord that you lose sight of home. God in His mercy will save you but at what cost? God said that He would not take the whole kingdom out of Solomon’s hand as he had made him ruler all the days of his life for the sake of his father David. God could have decided otherwise, but because He is faithful and the God of His Word, He left something for Solomon until he died.
In Luke 15:3-4 Jesus said to the Pharisees and scribes who were complaining that Jesus was receiving sinners and eating with them he said “What man of you, having a hundred sheep, if he loses one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the wilderness, and go after the one which is lost until he finds it?” Jesus taught that He would find the lost sheep, the sheep could be lost as a result of rebellion and not sticking with the rest of the flock. In the wilderness, it could be threatened by lions and all wild animals but had it stuck with the flock, there wouldn’t be any threat. Is it worthy to sacrifice the comfort of God for evil and wrong doing, well, it is you who will suffer until you turn again towards God. Life in God is wonderful and stress free. Align yourself with God and the rewards are great.
Footnote: Scriptures taken from the The Holy Bible, New King James Version, 1982: Nashville, TN, Thomas Nelson, Inc. &
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Kgalalelo Saane Mphephuka
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