Items posted on 19 February 2011
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1 Kings 14.1-12 – Sin & its consequences.
Posted: 19 February 2011 in 1 Kings

At that time Abijah the son of Jeroboam fell sick. And Jeroboam said to his wife, Arise, I pray thee, and disguise thyself, that thou be not known to be the wife of Jeroboam; and get thee to Shiloh: behold, there is Ahijah the prophet, which told me that I should be king over this people…. he shall tell thee what shall become of the child…. And the LORD said unto Ahijah, Behold, the wife of Jeroboam cometh to ask a thing of thee for her son; for he is sick: thus and thus shalt thou say unto her: for it shall be, when she cometh in, that she shall feign herself to be another woman. And it was so, when Ahijah heard the sound of her feet, as she came in at the door, that he said, Come in, thou wife of Jeroboam; why feignest thou thyself to be another? for I am sent to thee with heavy tidings. Go, tell Jeroboam, Thus saith the LORD God of Israel, Forasmuch as I exalted thee from among the people, and made thee prince over my people Israel, And rent the kingdom away from the house of David, and gave it thee: and yet thou hast not been as my servant David, who kept my commandments…. But hast done evil above all that were before thee: for thou hast gone and made thee other gods, and molten images, to provoke me to anger, and hast cast me behind thy back: Therefore, behold, I will bring evil upon the house of Jeroboam, and will cut off from Jeroboam him that pisseth against the wall, and him that is shut up and left in Israel, and will take away the remnant of the house of Jeroboam…. Him that dieth of Jeroboam in the city shall the dogs eat; and him that dieth in the field shall the fowls of the air eat: for the LORD hath spoken it. Arise thou therefore, get thee to thine own house: and when thy feet enter into the city, the child shall die.

For Christians salvation is through grace, and it is not something which can be earned by leading a sinless life (which is impossible). Nevertheless, the above passage makes it clear that sin has its consequences. God will not give his glory to another, and he will not permit idolatry to go unchallenged. It must be remembered that the God of the Old Testament, who made his displeasure known to Jeroboam, is not a different God to the one who became incarnate in Jesus of Nazareth. Christians, who belong to a religion where the emphasis is rightly upon God’s grace, can sometimes, for that very reason, find themselves talking as though the God of the New Testament, and the God of the Old Testament, were two different Gods.

Salvation is by grace through faith, but as Paul made clear to his readers, that does not give us a licence to sin. God is unchanging, and he views sin or idolatry with the same disfavour today, as he did when he removed Jeroboam and his family from the throne of Israel.

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