Sunday, April 21, 2024

April 21, 2024

The kingdom of Israel became divided when Solomon's son, Rehoboam, consulted the old men who counseled David after some people came to him to get him to reduce the taxes. The old men told him that if he treated them kindly, the people would serve him forever. However, Rehoboam decided to consult his friends closer to his age; he was 40 years old then. His friends told him to give the people a heavier burden than they had been under during Solomon's reign. So when he told them his answer, they got angry and left to their tents. Then Rehoboam sent Adoram, who was over the taxes, to the people, and they stoned him to death, and Rehoboam hurried back to Jerusalem, where he reigned over Judah. When he returned, he gathered an army to fight against the people, but God sent him a message through Shemaiah telling him not to fight against your brothers, the children of Israel. They listened.

Jeroboam, who became king over the other ten tribes, Israel, was concerned about the people worshipping God and wanting to go to Jerusalem to make their sacrifices, where Rehoboam reigned as king. He devised a plan to change the direction of the people, made two golden calves for them to worship and make sacrifices to, and placed them in the cities of Bethel and Dan. Then, he held festivals during the same times as Judah. This caused the people to sin. 

What were these people thinking? How were they so easily swayed to turn away from God? It certainly couldn't have been all the people. Much like today, we live in a country considered a Christian nation and full of the spirit of God, yet a great number of people have rejected Jesus to go their own way. Now, many have turned away from God, yet there are those of us who still follow Jesus and are not worshiping the "Golden Calf." Hold on to Jesus with every ounce of your being! The ride will only get harder as more and more people fall under the enemy's spell. Keep your eyes on Jesus, and never turn to the right or the left!

And Jeroboam said in his heart, Now shall the kingdom return to the house of David: If this people go up to do sacrifice in the house of the LORD at Jerusalem, then shall the heart of this people turn again unto their lord, even unto Rehoboam king of Judah, and they shall kill me, and go again to Rehoboam king of Judah. 1 Kings 12:26-27

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