Being Sure in the Lord
Jeroboam was promised ten tribes of the kingdom of Israel. In 1 Kings 11:26-40, we read about how those ten tribes would be given to him after the sin of Solomon.
As we continue reading in 1 Kings 12, we see that he did indeed become king over those 10 tribes. Rehoboam foolishly listened to bad advice, which led the 10 kingdoms to follow Jeroboam. Sadly, we also read about Jeroboam’s own foolishness.
A Fearful Heart
Jeroboam started to listen to his own heart. He became fearful that he would lose the ten tribes. He had a fearful thought of a possible future scenario, namely that the ten tribes would return to Israel. Then he built on this thought by imagining how this would happen. He decided that it was likely to occur when they went to Jerusalem to worship. Then he adds more catastrophe to his imaginations by convincing himself that as the ten tribes return to Rehoboam, they would kill him.
Jeroboam did not stop here, he took action on these thoughts and disastrously made two calves of gold and changed worship in Israel. He tried to prevent people going to Jerusalem to worship by changing the place where they worshipped. In this way, he believed that he could hold onto the ten tribes.
A Sure Promise
There is much that can be said about this sad time in the history of Israel, but I will only focus on one word. That word is “sure.” In 1 Kings 11:38, the Lord says to him through Ahijah “And if you will listen to all that I command you, and will walk in my ways, and do what is right in my eyes by keeping my statutes and my commandments, as David my servant did, I will be with you and will build you a sure house, as I built for David, and I will give Israel to you….”
When Jeroboam started thinking that the kingdom of Israel would return to Rehoboam, he should have remembered that the Lord had promised him a sure house. If he had, he would not have started imagining situations when they would return, and would not have taken action to prevent it. Instead, he would have trusted the Lord and focused on what the Lord asked of him.
The condition for a sure house was that he was obedient to the Lord. Rather than trying to control future scenarios, he should have focused on obeying the Lord and trusting that he would protect the kingdom.
Trusting the Sure Lord
Our hearts are like Jeroboam’s. How often do we start to imagine possible future events and then take action based on these speculations? How do we prevent this? We can prevent this by remembering what the Lord had promised, trusting him, and focusing on obeying and worshipping the Lord in our daily lives.