My small group is doing a study by Charles Swindoll on Forgotten People of the Bible. Last night was Rehoboam. Did you know that Rehoboam became the first ruler of the Southern Kingdom of Judah? He became king after his father Solomon died. The people of the northerm kingdom came to Rehoboam and asked that he relieve them from some of the burden that Solomon had placed on them. Rehoboam asked for 3 days to think about it. He went to the wise, older counselors and they told him to ease up on the people and they will serve you. He didn’t like that answer. He then went to his “buddies”, peers his own age that grew up with him, and they said “show them who is who. Show them you can make it even harder on them. Show them who is Boss”. That is what he did. The end result was the split of the 12 tribes to 10 in the northern kingdom and 2 in the southerm kingdom. God sent the prophet Shemaiah to tell Rehoboam that he needed to stop the war before it started. He was told that the 12 tribes would be divided if he didn’t listen and that things would be okay if he obeyed God. He didn’t listen. Rehoboam built up 15 cities as fortresses, sent his 28 sons out to man the regions. Rehoboam abandoned God. The Northern Kingdom and the Southern Kingdom began years of fighting, proving that God is true to his word. The tribes were split and Jeroboam ruled the North and Rehoboam the South.
Isn’t that a lot like us? Don’t we all tend to go to the person who tells us what we want to hear, rather than to someone a little older, a little wiser? We want to hear what we want to hear and the majority of the time our closest friends are the ones we rely on to give us the answer we want to hear. And how many times do we give something to God only to take it back again and let ourselves and our friends handle the problem?
Like the women’s conference a couple of years ago, ladies, we need to be Dangerous Women. We need to counsel those around us to the truths of the Bible, not just the stuff people want to hear. Help ME to be real, Lord. Help me to listen to your words and not abandon your ways just because it is easy at that time.
The story of Rehoboam can be found in 1 Kings and 2 Chronicles.