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Harsh Words of the King Harsh Words of the King

Harsh Words of the King

More than one parent has said to a child in an exasperated tone, “I can’t wait until you have children one day!” And more than one parent has thought, “Now I understand my own parents’ decisions better!” What felt unreasonable to a child actually provided a measure of safety. From the perspective of adulthood, we can better appreciate our parents’ intentions to bring us good and protect from harm.

Rather than enter his reign with the perspective of a mature adult, Solomon’s son Rehoboam chose to listen to the immature advice of his friends (vv. 10–11). King Rehoboam’s pronouncement of a rule that is harsher than his father’s led Israel to reject his kingship.

Jeroboam, the people of Israel, and Rehoboam’s childhood friends all seemed to want a new king to rule differently than King Solomon. Apparently, no one, not even Rehoboam, understood the blessing of the rule of Solomon, which had led to Israel’s prosperity. As a result, the kingdom divided into the ten tribes of Israel, that chose to follow Jeroboam, and the two tribes of Judah that followed the line of David.

Our Savior encountered His own people of Israel who misunderstood His Father’s rule—that His Father’s rule invites anyone to experience salvation in the Son of God by grace. Unlike those who want to bind people under a heavy weight they cannot bear, Jesus offers freedom from sin and the power to serve God (Matt. 11:30).

Though He is the eternal Son of God with all the power of the universe at His disposal, Jesus will never scourge us with scorpions but instead invites us to experience His love and forgiveness.

Pray with Us

Would you uphold in prayer Troy Fichter and Josie Scott who serve at the Solheim Center, Moody’s athletic facility? Praise the Lord for all they do in the management and administration of the Center to benefit the Moody community.

BY Dr. Eric C. Redmond

Dr. Eric C. Redmond serves as a professor of Bible at Moody Bible Institute in Chicago and as associate pastor of adult ministries at Calvary Memorial Church in Oak Park, Ill. He is married to Pam and they have five children. He is the author of Say It!  Celebrating Expository Preaching in the African American Tradition (Moody Publishers), Where Are All the Brothers? Straight Answers to Men's’ Questions about the Church (Crossway), a commentary on Jonah in the Christ-Centered Exposition Series (B&H Publishers), and a study guide on Ephesians in the Knowing the Bible series (Crossway).

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