1 Kings 11:1-13

Solomon Turns from God

11 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 [a]associate with them, nor shall they [b]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 [c]wholly devoted to the Lord his God, as the heart of David his father had beenFor Solomon went after Ashtoreth the goddess of the Sidonians and after [d]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 doneThen Solomon built a high place for Chemosh the detestable idol of Moab, on the mountain which is [e]east of Jerusalem, and for Molech the detestable idol of the sons of Ammon. Thus also he did for all his foreign wives, who burned incense and sacrificed to their gods.

Now the Lord was angry with Solomon because his heart was turned away from the Lord, the God of Israel, who had appeared to him twice, 10 and had commanded him concerning this thing, that he should not go after other gods; but he did not observe what the Lord had commanded. 11 So the Lord said to Solomon, “Because [f]you have done this, and you have not kept My covenant and My statutes, which I have commanded you, I will surely tear the kingdom from you, and will give it to your servant. 12 Nevertheless I will not do it in your days for the sake of your father David, but I will tear it out of the hand of your son. 13 However, I will not tear away all the kingdom, but I will give one tribe to your son for the sake of My servant David and for the sake of Jerusalem which I have chosen.”

For all his wisdom, Solomon’s weak spot was his undoing. But this isn’t about how crazy it was to have 700 wives. No, Solomon’s failing was in doing exactly what he knew was unwise, which was marrying foreign women who served other gods. The trap that God had warned the Israelites of, which had snared many over the years, to the point of causing pestilence and oppression, was Solomon’s undoing.

Though we could focus on how foolish Solomon became, we ought to examine our own lives. Many times, we do the same, we allow ourselves to fall prey to the same vices, because we do not resist the trap that leads us there. Jesus said, “if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off…” The point being, that your hand doesn’t cause you to sin, but other things do, and you ought to “cut them off” to prevent returning to your sin like a dog to it’s vomit.

When you allow those traps to exist, do not be shocked when you fall into the sin you hate so much. Instead, root out the traps, and seek wholeheartedly after God. Only by focusing on our Savior and His love can we avoid the snares of darts of the enemy. Indeed, the “helmet of salvation” protects our mind by focusing on what is good, pure, of “good repute”. Think on these things, and do not allow the snares of the flesh to stay in your life.

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