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Whence* Comes Your Wisdom?

However, as for you, I will take you, and you will rule over all that your heart desires; you will be king over Israel. If you do whatever I command you and walk in obedience to me and do what is right in my eyes by obeying my decrees and commands, as David my servant did, I will be with you. I will build you a dynasty as enduring as the one I built for David and will give Israel to you. (1 Kings 11:37-38 (NIV)


These are the words of the Lord through the prophet Ahijah to Jeroboam, a “man of standing” or “strong and honorable” (verse 28 in NIV and CEB, respectively). Solomon had fallen away from God by the end of his life, so God anointed Jeroboam to be a new king, to take ten out of twelve tribes away from David’s line and become the new kingdom of Israel (leaving David’s descendants ruling over Judah).


I didn’t notice this on my own, but I remember hearing or reading that Jeroboam received the same promise as David: “Your house and your kingdom will endure forever before me; your throne will be established forever” (2 Samuel 7:16 NIV). That’s astonishing! What an incredible opportunity!


Unfortunately, Jeroboam didn’t live up to David in the end. He was too afraid of losing his political power to let his people travel to Jerusalem to worship God, so he set up altars in his own country, twisting the word of God (1 Kings 12:26-33).


The Bible is full of both good and bad examples. It’s full of people, and sometimes they mess up (because all of us mess up sometimes!). David is a good example. Far from sinless, he was still a man after God’s own heart (Acts 13:22) because he truly loved and worshiped God—and, importantly, confessed his sin and trusted God to forgive them.


Jeroboam started out an honorable man, but he was tempted into sin by the very power that was a gift from God in the first place. Instead of trusting the One who had made him incredible promises and fulfilled them, he tried to secure his future on his own. Today, few people even know his name.


Notice that in 1 Kings 12:28, Jeroboam “seeks advice.” Apparently he wasn’t asking the right Person. While we seek God in community and can confirm His Word together, let us not fall into the trap of trusting our own human strength, but instead remember what David taught us: that all wisdom comes from God.


*“Whence” means “from where” or “from what source”. - Abigail

Abigail is our beloved former blog editor who now resides in Florida and shares occasional meditations with us. - ed.

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