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CHAPTER 11 (ESV)
1 Now King Solomon loved many foreign women, along with the daughter of Pharaoh: Moabite, Ammonite, Edomite, Sidonian, and Hittite women, 2 from the nations concerning which the Lord had said to the people of Israel, “You shall not enter into marriage with them, neither shall they with you, for surely they will turn away your heart after their gods.” Solomon clung to these in love. 3 He had 700 wives, who were princesses, and 300 concubines. And his wives turned away his heart. 4 For when Solomon was old his wives turned away his heart after other gods, and his heart was not wholly true to the Lord his God, as was the heart of David his father. 5 For Solomon went after Ashtoreth the goddess of the Sidonians, and after Milcom the abomination of the Ammonites. 6 So Solomon did what was evil in the sight of the Lord and did not wholly follow the Lord, as David his father had done. 7 Then Solomon built a high place for Chemosh the abomination of Moab, and for Molech the abomination of the Ammonites, on the mountain east of Jerusalem. 8 And so he did for all his foreign wives, who made offerings and sacrificed to their gods.
- As mentioned in the last chapter, Old Testament law forbade marriage to foreign women, and specifically prohibited accumulating large amounts of gold and silver as well as multiple marriages for kings (Deut 17:14-20). Solomon not only married many women, but he built temples and permitted his wives to worship their old gods and goddesses, AND he began to worship with them.
- Solomon’s disobedience resulted in God’s decision to take most of the kingdom away from Solomon’s offspring, but for David’s sake reserved the tribe of Judah and Jerusalem for Solomon’s descendants.
- Ironically, the wisest man in the world became the most foolish. Solomon’s obsession with God gave way to an obsession with women. That obsession gave way to seduction, seduction to spiritual infidelity, infidelity to idolatry. And idolatry to open defiance.
- Wisdom doesn’t safeguard us from waywardness, for we, like Solomon, can be mentally brilliant but morally bankrupt. In the end, it’s a choice between obsession and obedience –obsession with our lusts or obedience to our Lord. How do I choose?
“The heart is rich when it is content, and it is always content when its desires are fixed on God. Nothing can bring greater happiness than doing God’s will for the love of God.”- Miguel Febres Cordero-Munoz
May God’s love propel me to love Him more and more and to fix my desires on God and be content always.