Thursday, March 6, 2014

Are you putting God first?

If you could ask him for anything, what would you ask of God? Solomon was given this chance, and he asked for wisdom to rule God’s people. God commended him and gave him not only that but honor (fame) and riches as well. But Solomon disappointed God.
In Deuteronomy 17:14-17 God gave the kings of Israel some rules. They were not to collect horses or to return to Egypt for horses. They were not to collect wives.  And they were not to collect riches. But Solomon had thousands of horses, and he imported them from Egypt. He had 700 wives and 300 concubines. And he definitely had riches. It was the wives, especially, that were Solomon’s undoing. They led him into idol worship. But without the riches and honor he could never have gotten all the wives. In the end, God said he would tear the kingdom from Solomon because of Solomon’s unfaithfulness. Yet because of God’s promise to David, he would not do it in Solomon’s lifetime, but his son’s. Solomon’s response? He tried to kill the one to whom God said he would give the kingdom. Wow, Solomon! What happened to the humility shown in 1 King 3?

David, in contrast to Solomon, asked one thing of God - to dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of his life, to gaze upon his beauty and seek him in his temple. Solomon asked a noble thing. He was concerned about God’s people and he wanted to be a good ruler, to fulfill his duty in the best way possible. But his focus was on earthly things. David had his eyes on the eternal. He had his priorities right and he was commended as a man after God’s own heart. And his faithfulness affected his descendants as well as himself. The greatest command is to love God. The second is to love people. Our love for and service to people flows out of our love for God. Without the first, the second will inevitably go astray. Solomon’s concern for God’s people is commendable, but he forgot to put God first.

So my question for you is, Are you putting God first? Do you make time for Him? Or do you let the things of the world pull your attention away? If you are not putting God first, all your works are meaningless, a chasing after the wind.

If you’d like to check this with the Bible, here are some references:
1 Kings 3 (Solomon’s petition)
Deut 17:14-17 (God’s command to kings)
1 Kings 4:21-28, 2 Chronicles 9:13-28, 1 Kings 11 (Solomon’s riches and God’s anger)
Psalm 27:4 (David’s prayer)
Matt 22:36-40 (Greatest & second command)
Acts 13:22 (David is a man after God’s heart)
Ecclesiastes (Everything under the sun is meaningless)