Solution to man’s perplexing problems – Part 1
As we enter the New Year, the temptation is to continue life as before. We may even have many questions, fears or doubts about the future. But God wants us to come to Him for answers, when things happen contrary to our interest or welfare. Rehoboam did not understand why Israel, which had been united since the time of Moses, broke apart in his time. Therefore, he sought to unify the nation again by engaging Jeroboam and the ten tribes in battle.
Some Christians do not hear from the Lord before they embark on plans and projects, which they have in mind to do for themselves, family, church or workplace. Thus, they run ahead and complicate issues. Before the fight to recover the lost ten tribes, the word of the Lord came to Rehoboam through Shemaiah, the man of God: “Thus saith the LORD, Ye shall not go up, nor fight against your brethren: return every man to his house: for this thing is done of me. And they obeyed the words of the LORD, and returned from going against Jeroboam.” Without this revelation, thousands of people on both sides of the divide could have perished and gone to lost eternity. Hearing from God every time gives us clear direction to follow.
The division of the kingdom was occasioned by Solomon’s sin and Rehoboam’s folly. It was punishment for Solomon and a fulfilment of prophecy for Jeroboam. To resist a decree by God would be futile. When we accept the Lord’s position on everything we intend to do, it brings, one, peace of mind; two, freedom from worry; three, prevention of loss of life and property; four, harmonious relationship; five, preservation of true worship; six, mutual understanding; and seven, practical, profitable wisdom to learn from past mistakes. Among brethren, the knowledge of what God wants cancels fighting, strife, jealousy, envy, malice, confusion, commotion and contention.
God expects His children to bow to His sovereignty and overruling purpose. “Who will say unto him, What doest thou?” The promotion of anyone who ascends the throne of any nation is not from anywhere else but God. “He putteth down one (like Rehoboam), and setteth up another (like Jeroboam)”. The people who fight against God’s will do not understand the place of His sovereign, overruling plan. Concerning Balak’s invitation to curse Israel, God clearly told Balaam: “Thou shalt not go with them; thou shalt not curse the people: for they are blessed”. But his greed for the reward made him to seek a permissive will for which “God’s anger was kindled because he went”.
It does not pay to fight against the sovereign will of God. “Woe unto him that striveth with his Maker!” It took time for Nebuchadnezzar to understand that it is pointless to strive against God’s overruling purpose. He eventually realised that God “doeth according to his will in the army of heaven, and among the inhabitants of the earth: and none can stay his hand, or say unto him, What doest thou?” Many, like him, could have avoided a lot of problems, if they had submitted to the Lord earlier.
We may not understand why God permits certain circumstances. Therefore, couples should not always rush to the court for divorce; business partners should not take or seek legal action against each other at the slightest provocation and believers should not join the community to riot or the labour unions to carry out industrial action. When we recognise the sovereignty of God in the events of our lives, we will not fight, murmur, complain, envy others, strive or separate the family.
Further Reading (King James Version): 1 Kings 12:21-24; 2 Chronicles 11:4. 1 Kings 12:24; Job 9:4,12,13; 40:2,6-9; Psalm 75:6,7; Numbers 22:12,15-22; Deuteronomy 23:5; Numbers 31:16,8; Isaiah 10:15; 45:9; Jeremiah 50:24; Daniel 4:35-37; Acts 5:33-35,39. 1 Kings 12:24; 2 Chronicles 11:4; 13:12-16,18,20; 35:20-24; Psalm 33:9; Proverbs 19:21; 21:30; Isaiah 14:27; 46:9,10; Lamentations 3:37-41. 1 Kings 12:24; Genesis 18:23-26; Exodus 32:7,9,10; Psalm 125:3; 2 Kings 20:1-6; Jeremiah 18:1-10; 31:20; Ezekiel 18:30-32; Jonah 3:4-10; 2 Peter 3:9.
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