Thursday, March 8, 2012

2 Chronicles 11 - Judah's King Rehoboam Listens

LINK: 2 Chronicles 11
Parallel Passage: 1 Kings 12:21-24

Remember that anytime we are in 2 Chronicles, we are always talking about Kings of Judah because the purpose of chronicles is to highlight the importance of the temple and the religious revivals in Judah. The Kingdom of Judah is in focus from 10:1-36:23. 


BACKGROUND 

Judah's King Rehoboam 
Reigned: 931 - 913 B.C. for 17 years
Character: Bad Mostly
Overlap with Israel's King: Jeroboam I (931-910 B.C.)
Manner of Death: Natural 

The 1 Kings account of Rehoboam recounts the event, but 2 Chronicles 11 centers around the divine purpose behind those events that we read in 2 Chronicles 10:15: "So the king did not listen to the people, for it was a turn of events from God that the LORD might establish His word . . ."  The question was: Would Rehoboam listen?

In this chapter, Rehoboam did. He heard and obeyed God's message through Shemaiah. As a result, God blessed his building projects (11:5-12), his people (11:13-17),  and his family (11:18-23).

The King of Israel, Jeroboam I, had put his own priests in place and led the ten northern tribes into worship of goat and calf idols; but for three years, King Rehoboam led the people of Judah into the worship ordained in the Law of Moses. This resulted in the migration of many priests and Levites in Israel to true worship in Judah. 

Even though Rehoboam was blessed with many children and acted wisely in the distribution of his sons through all the territories of Judah (11:23), he did disobey God by taking eighteen wives and fifteen concubines (Deuteronomy 17:17). We know that was the downfall of his father Solomon!

REFLECTION

Rehoboam had three glorious years. Let us bask in that for a while because I hate to say it, it will not last!

So, what is going to keep us walking with God for the long haul? Do we want to finish well?  YES!!!!!!!

So, why did Rehoboam succeed for those three years?


They listened to the words of the LORD. (11:4)


He acted wisely.
(11:23)

There is a simple pattern here: Listen and act upon what God tells you!

APPLICATION

This is the key to a day to day, 24/7/365 life of walking with the Lord: Listen and obey. I know it sounds simple, but that is it.

I have recommended this book before, and I will do it again until you order it: God Guides. I have yet to meet anyone who has not loved this simple book. Most people order more to give away. It is that good. Remember to have a daily "listening time" and write down what God tells you. Then do what He tells you to do. 

In addition, I am reading a sweet book with the elders and wives of our church called More Than Ordinary: Enjoying Life with God by Doug Sherman (turns out I know the man that discipled him and wrote the foreword to the book!). It is a very simple concept, but it is about walking with Him 24/7/365.  

 
More Than Ordinary: Enjoying Life with God
The principles in this book are super simple. If every believer followed them, their lives would be transformed!  Sadly, we can sometimes be like Rehoboam.

PRAYER

Lord, empower us to listen and obey for the long haul! We want to live extraordinary lives for You. Amen.
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