In this part of 1 Kings, Solomon, who has been a quite successful King of Israel so far, following in the footsteps of his father David, now finds himself drifting away from God. He has married many different wives (700 wives in total, all with royal titles), as well as having 300 concubines; however, it’s not the number of wives, but the religions of the wives that makes the tragic difference in Solomon’s life. His wives follow many different gods, according to the beliefs of their homelands (Moab, Ammon, Edom, etc.), and Solomon begins to worship with them instead of continuing to worship God. This begins Solomon’s downhill slide–after this point, many enemies rise up against him, including one of his own officials.
Like Solomon, we too can turn away from God for various reasons. We may not have 700 significant others to lead us astray, but we can certainly end up copying our friends’ bad behavior, for instance. Sometimes, even being alone without friends or family can lead us into doing things we know shouldn’t be part of our lives, just to break up the boredom and loneliness. The more obvious bad choices, like drinking and partying, not showing up to work on time, etc., aren’t the only ways we can drift from God. Sometimes, our drifting is so gradual we don’t even see it–we start using the bad language we hear our family members using, or we start shirking responsibilities one at a time until we can’t be counted on for anything.
We Must Be Honest with Ourselves!
If we truly want to worship God and have a closer relationship with Him, we have to make sure all facets of our lives match up with that goal–living for God doesn’t just happen on Sunday morning and Wednesday night, but on Saturday night, Monday morning, and all the rest of the week. This is a very difficult process; certainly I’m still in the process of weeding out the things in my life that aren’t really in tune with God’s Word. But we must be willing to take a hard look at our lives and see the things that might be pulling us away from God rather than towards Him.