Bible Pathway - May 21, 2011

Highlights:

Solomon begins his reign with a humble attitude — he offers a thousand Burnt Offerings on the Altar to the Lord (II Chr. 1:6). But one of his first recorded acts is to make affinity with Pharaoah by marrying his daughter (I Kin. 3:1). He then gathered . . . chariots, and. . . . made silver and gold (II Chr. 1:14-15; see Deut. 17:16-17).

Solomon's kingdom was unequaled in wealth and splendor: Solomon the son of David was strengthened in his kingdom, and the Lord his God was with him, and magnified him exceedingly (II Chr. 1:1). It may appear strange for someone to possess such wealth and wisdom and still not desire to please the Lord as David did. But possessions can give a false sense of security and self-sufficiency which often robs many — even those who otherwise have spiritual insight — of the true values of life. The Scriptures teach that the Word of God is the Source of true wisdom for daily direction. As we read the Bible with a desire to do His will, the Spirit of Christ — the Living Word — guides our thoughts and actions. Of Him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption: That, according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord. . . . For the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God (I Cor. 1:30-31; 3:19).

Eventually Solomon — the wisest and most wealthy man on earth — did evil in the sight of the Lord . . . and turned from the Lord God of Israel (I Kin. 11:6-11). Jesus told of a successful farmer who said: I will say to my soul . . . take thine ease, eat, drink, and be merry. But God said unto him, Thou fool, this night thy soul shall be required of thee: then whose shall those things be, which thou hast provided? (Luke 12:19-20). This man was no fool as a farmer, but he gave himself the wrong advice when he congratulated himself on his worldly attainments.

The Lord urges us through Paul's words to Timothy: Having food and raiment let us be therewith content (I Tim. 6:8). We have a far more important purpose in life to occupy our time than with gaining material possessions.

We are living in days of excessive evil to which one is continually exposed; our guiding principle must be: The time is short . . . they that buy, (be) as though they possessed not; and they that use the world, as not abusing it; for the fashion (form) of this world passeth away (I Cor. 7:29-31).

Thought for Today:

And they remembered that God was their Rock, and the high God their Redeemer (Ps. 78:35).

Christ Revealed:

By the thousand burnt offerings of Solomon (II Chr. 1:6). We can be thankful that the one perfect offering of Christ on the cross did away with the need for many and continual individual offerings. He died unto sin once (for all) (Rom. 6:10; Heb. 10:10-12,14).

Word Studies:

2:2 told out, assigned; 2:7 cunning, skilled; can skill to grave, has skill to engrave; 2:14 find out every device, execute any design; 2:16 floats, rafts; 3:1 affinity, alliance by marriage to Pharaoh's daughter; 3:5 cieled, paneled; 3:10 of image work, fashioned by carving; 3:16 oracle, Holy of Holies.

Prayer Needs:

Pray for Assistant to the Executive Director of the IBRA in our Washington DC Branch: Terry Hall • Government Official: Sen. Al Franken (MN) • Country: Guinea-Bissau (1 million) on the western coast of Africa • Major languages: Portuguese and Criolo • Religious freedom • 51% animist; 42% Muslim; 6% Roman Catholic; .7% Protestant • Prayer Suggestion: Humble yourself before the Lord (I Pet. 5:5-6).

Optional Reading: 1 Corinthians 8

Memory Verse for the Week: John 15:7

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