No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon. Matthew 6:24.
So gradual was Solomon’s apostasy that before he was aware of it, he had wandered far from God. Almost imperceptibly he began to trust less and less in divine guidance and blessing, and to put confidence in his own strength….
Engrossed in an overmastering desire to surpass other nations in outward display, the king overlooked the need of acquiring beauty and perfection of character. In seeking to glorify himself before the world, he sold his honor and integrity….
The conscientious, considerate spirit that had marked his dealings with the people during the early part of his reign, was now changed. From the wisest and most merciful of rulers, he degenerated into a tyrant. Once the compassionate, God-fearing guardian of the people, he became oppressive and despotic.
Men who have the use of money are to learn a lesson from the history of Solomon. Those who have a competence are in continual danger of thinking that money and position will ensure them respect, and they need not be so particular. But self-exaltation is but a bubble. By misusing the talents given him, Solomon apostatized from God. When God gives men prosperity, they are to beware of following the imaginations of their own hearts, lest they endanger the simplicity of their faith and deteriorate in religious experience.
The lesson for us to learn from the history of this perverted life is the necessity of continual dependence upon the counsels of God; to carefully watch the tendency of our course, and to reform every habit calculated to draw us from God. It teaches us that great caution, watchfulness, and prayer are needed to keep undefiled the simplicity and purity of our faith. If we would rise to the highest moral excellence, and attain to the perfection of religious character, what discrimination should be used in the formation of friendships, and the choice of a companion for life!
Conflict and Courage p. 193
—–Please pray for my friends who are filled with bitterness. L
—–I am desperate for a miracle in my family,my husband,and me!!!Please pray. Gracia
When Ronnie Jay was eight years old, I bought him his first gerbil. He was so happy! He took very good care of it and played with it daily. It became very tame and was a much loved pet. Gerbily-erbily knew who his family was. He never bit us, but anyone not a part of the family was “fair game.” That little rodent lived for nearly five years. We were all very sad when he died.
To soothe Ronnie Jay’s sadness at the death of his pet, we went that very day and bought another one, but it never was the same. Over the years it became a tradition, when one gerbil would die, we would go to the store and buy another baby gerbil until he developed other interests.
Each of these little rodents had some common traits. One of the funniest was the way they ate M&M’s. When given one of these coated chocolate candies, they carefully shelled it and ate the chocolate inside. Not one of the gerbils he had, would eat the outside of the candy.
They must have thought that the candy coating was the shell of a very sweet seed. They approached life in the way they had been taught, even though it did not always make sense.
How often it is the same way with us. Our thought patterns, our actions, our words are largely developed from the experiences we have gone through. They do not always make sense, but we stick to them because they are familiar. They are often full of selfishness, pride, and sin. They often separate us from the very help that we need. Deep within us, we long for something better. We try to find fulfillment for the void we feel by tasting the pleasures of this world, but those pleasures last but a moment. When they are over, we are dissatisfied and must look for something else to satisfy that want within us.
We have within our reach the answer to our longing. It is found in God’s Word. “Ho, every one that thirsteth, come ye to the waters, and he that hath no money, come ye, buy, and eat” Isa 55:1 How much we need that water of life! How much we need a way to receive it. Jesus assures us, “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” John 14:6 The way that He leads may open new avenues of thought, new ways of doing things, new ways of speaking. He will lead us in the way in which we should go, both here in this world and in the earth made new. “For the Lamb which is in the midst of the throne shall feed them, and shall lead them unto living fountains of waters: and God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes.” Rev 7:17 He is the fulfillment of all our desire for happiness and peace. He is the One we are searching for.
But it will cost us something. It will cost us our preconceived ideas, the fleeting pleasures of sin, sometimes it will even cause us to be hated by those we love. But it is worth giving up all things for the One Who loves us so. It is the least we can do for our Dear Saviour Who gave His life for us. Jesus told a parable to illustrate this. “the kingdom of heaven is like unto treasure hid in a field, the which when a man hath found, he hideth, and for joy thereof goeth and selleth all that he hath, and buyeth that field. Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a merchant man, seeking goodly pearls: Who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that he had, and bought it.” Matt 13:44-46 May we set aside our preconceived ideas, our old habits, our old desires and follow our Loving Saviour fully wherever He leads. May He control our thoughts, our words, our actions. May we find our happiness in the One Who left Heaven and died on the cross that we might spend eternity