To those to whom much is given, much is required. Jeroboam did not follow the covenant that he was commissioned into. Because it was politically expedient, he chose to make a new idol and new cultus for the divided northern nation, for he feared that those who loved the LORD more than the king would vote with their feet.
The consequences were ugly. His son, Abijah, was to die, and that was an act of mercy for no other member of the family or the household would die in his bed. The family would be destroyed, root and branch
Some may question why Jeroboam was raised into this position. I’d argue that, like Pharaoh or Solomon, his life is a warning. The greatest temptations happen when you are trying to preserve possessions, a kingdom… and in this fallen time, the ability to use Facebook or Twitter.
14 At that time Abijah the son of Jeroboam fell sick. 2 And Jeroboam said to his wife, “Arise, and disguise yourself, that it not be known that you are the wife of Jeroboam, and go to Shiloh. Behold, Ahijah the prophet is there, who said of me that I should be king over this people. 3 Take with you ten loaves, some cakes, and a jar of honey, and go to him. He will tell you what shall happen to the child.”
4 Jeroboam’s wife did so. She arose and went to Shiloh and came to the house of Ahijah. Now Ahijah could not see, for his eyes were dim because of his age. 5 And the Lord said to Ahijah, “Behold, the wife of Jeroboam is coming to enquire of you concerning her son, for he is sick. Thus and thus shall you say to her.”
When she came, she pretended to be another woman. 6 But when Ahijah heard the sound of her feet, as she came in at the door, he said, “Come in, wife of Jeroboam. Why do you pretend to be another? For I am charged with unbearable news for you. 7 Go, tell Jeroboam, ‘Thus says the Lord, the God of Israel: “Because I exalted you from among the people and made you leader over my people Israel 8 and tore the kingdom away from the house of David and gave it to you, and yet you have not been like my servant David, who kept my commandments and followed me with all his heart, doing only that which was right in my eyes, 9 but you have done evil above all who were before you and have gone and made for yourself other gods and metal images, provoking me to anger, and have cast me behind your back, 10 therefore behold, I will bring harm upon the house of Jeroboam and will cut off from Jeroboam every male, both bond and free in Israel, and will burn up the house of Jeroboam, as a man burns up dung until it is all gone. 11 Anyone belonging to Jeroboam who dies in the city the dogs shall eat, and anyone who dies in the open country the birds of the heavens shall eat, for the Lord has spoken it.”’ 12 Arise therefore, go to your house. When your feet enter the city, the child shall die. 13 And all Israel shall mourn for him and bury him, for he only of Jeroboam shall come to the grave, because in him there is found something pleasing to the Lord, the God of Israel, in the house of Jeroboam. 14 Moreover, the Lord will raise up for himself a king over Israel who shall cut off the house of Jeroboam today. And henceforth, 15 the Lord will strike Israel as a reed is shaken in the water, and root up Israel out of this good land that he gave to their fathers and scatter them beyond the Euphrates, because they have made their Asherim, provoking the Lord to anger. 16 And he will give Israel up because of the sins of Jeroboam, which he sinned and made Israel to sin.”
17 Then Jeroboam’s wife arose and departed and came to Tirzah. And as she came to the threshold of the house, the child died. 18 And all Israel buried him and mourned for him, according to the word of the Lord, which he spoke by his servant Ahijah the prophet.
12 I thank him who has given me strength, Christ Jesus our Lord, because he judged me faithful, appointing me to his service, 13 though formerly I was a blasphemer, persecutor, and insolent opponent. But I received mercy because I had acted ignorantly in unbelief, 14 and the grace of our Lord overflowed for me with the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus. 15 The saying is trustworthy and deserving of full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am the foremost. 16 But I received mercy for this reason, that in me, as the foremost, Jesus Christ might display his perfect patience as an example to those who were to believe in him for eternal life. 17 To the King of ages, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honour and glory for ever and ever. Amen.
18 This charge I entrust to you, Timothy, my child, in accordance with the prophecies previously made about you, that by them you may wage the good warfare, 19 holding faith and a good conscience. By rejecting this, some have made shipwreck of their faith, 20 among whom are Hymenaeus and Alexander, whom I have handed over to Satan that they may learn not to blaspheme.
Christ is not that interested in the number of toys we have. He’s not that interested in prosperity of the nation, or peace. Our time of prosperity and peace is starting to go. Kea is seeing the stress among the people in the streets and the number of houses that cannot sell now because the prices of last month are deemed too high.
I am seeing an increase in mandatory blasphemy, a revulsion of discussing the ugly parts of scripture, and a false engineering of peace by censorship. This will not last.
All scripture is for our benefit. It is given for the same reason Christ came: so we would no longer live in bondage to sin, but, by faith in Christ, attain the status of being sons of God. God does not want us to be like him, or converged into union : he wants us to be ourselves fully and then worship in unity.
And if he saved a man who persecuted and executed Christians, he can indeed save you.
The elite of this time will be recorded as one with the Jacohins and the Red Guard. Leaders in a time of madness. And a warning for those who follow.
For those to whom much is given, much is required, or very little. The fear of God will draw them to repentance, and to then use what power they have for others. But if one dores not choose to give God the glory and others justice, then those very positions, powers, and privileges will damn you.
This, in a fallen time, is why we cannot be like them.