READ: 1 Kings 10-11
THINK: Solomon had a reputation for being wise. But you can't rely on a reputation when it comes to wisdom. It's not just a matter of knowledge or intelligence. Some people with a high degree of intelligence lack any degree of wisdom and discretion. Wisdom must be applied to be authentic. Wisdom is knowledge in action- but not just any knowledge. True wisdom comes from the Source of all knowledge-that's God. His Word conveys His wisdom. Yet, knowing the Word does little good if you don't put it to practice. Solomon had incomparable wisdom, yet he still turned from God and following foolish practices that eventually tore the kingdom apart. If you want to keep your life together, stay true to God and always do the wise thing.
RESPOND: What did the queen of Sheba recognize as the source of Solomon's wisdom and wealth (10:9)? Why did people from all over the world come to see Solomon (10:20-24)? Why is wisdom greater than wealth? What were the reasons for Solomon's spiritual decline? (See 11:1 note.) In what ways did he disregard God's commands (11:10)? (See 11:1 note, subpoints 3 & 4, and 11:2 note.) Although David failed God at times, what wicked things did Solomon do that his father never did? (See 11:4 and 11:5-7 notes.) What were the consequence of Solomon's sin (11:11-12)? (See 11:11 note.) Why do you think God raised up adversaries against Solomon (11:14,23)? How and why might God use other people to challenge, discipline and keep us dependent on Him? What opportunity did God give Jeroboam, and why (11:29-37)? What would Jeroboam have to do to fulfill this opportunity as God intended (11:38)? How did Solomon abuse God's grace and take Him for granted, and how did this affect his life? (See 11:43 note.) How does Solomon serve as both an example and a warning to us? (See 11:5-7 note, subpoint 2.)
PRAY: Give thanks that regardless of whether you're wealthy or not, you can become rich in wisdom from God's Word. Ask God to place whatever or whomever needs to be in your life to keep you focused and dependent on Him.
ACT: Spend time today with someone who has proven to have wisdom and can share that with you. Take your Bible with you and spend more time in the Proverbs today. Also, consider if there is anyone or anything in your life that's causing you to compromise your relationship with God or to prioritize anything above His purposes. If so, rid your life of the distraction, even if it means getting out of a relationship or totally re-working your priorities.
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