READ: 1 Kings 2-3
THINK: Think about it, if God said to you, "Ask for whatever you want me to give you" (3:5), what would you request? Be honest. Would your first thought be something that would bring security, success or status? Perhaps in this information age, in which knowledge is power, you might be inclined to ask for greater intelligence or insight. But even that doesn't equate with wisdom. When applied correctly, wisdom is worth more than anything the world can offer (cf. Proverbs 3:14-15), and it provides security and influence beyond anything you can imagine (Proverbs 2 & 3).
RESPOND: What did Solomon need to do in order to prosper as king (2:1-4)? How does this advice relate to anyone who desires to successfully serve God? Why was David concerned about how Solomon's descendants lived? (See 2:4 note.) What would happen if Solomon turned from God? In what way were some of David's final instructions to Solomon questionable by God's standards? (See 2:9 note.) In what way did Abiathar's removal from the priesthood fulfill the word of the Lord? (See 2:27 note.) What does this tell us about the reliability of God's Word? Though the initial consequences of defying God's Word-or breaking your own word-are not as severe as we often see in the Old Testament (cf. 2:31-32, 44-46), what do these tragic instances reveal about God's Word and standards? What was wrong with offering sacrifices "at the high places"? (See 3:2 note.) What opportunity did God give Solomon in 3:5, and how did Solomon respond? What did Solomon realize about his own ability to lead (3:7-8)? What was significant about Solomon's request for "a discerning heart"? (See 3:9 note.) How did God respond to this request? (See 3:10 note.) Did God's gift of wisdom guarantee that Solomon would be faithful to God? Why or why not? (See 3:9 note.) What must we do in order for godly wisdom to have its intended affect in our lives?
PRAY: Ask God to help you develop a heart that is completely devoted to serving Him and obeying His Word. Give God thanks for His mercy, forgiveness and continued faithfulness toward those who humbly submit to Him. Ask God to give you wisdom to carry out His plans for you and to help you put that wisdom into action.
ACT: Think of any aspects of life in which you're not behaving wisely or you need added wisdom. Perhaps you're not putting into practice the wisdom God has already given you. Ask the Lord to help you make a definite change, then immediately start applying His wisdom in every aspects of life. Throughout the day, continually ask yourself, "Am I making wise decisions by God's standard?". Always measure your actions by the standard of God's Word.
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