2 Kings 14-15 – The Future Impact of Current Choices

Global warming. It’s one of the hot topics today…if you’ll excuse the pun. Scientists tell us that past decisions to satisfy our growing hunger for more (more products, more comfort, more convenience, etc.) are now having destructive consequences on the current state and health of our environment.

Just as decisions in the past can affect current conditions environmentally, past decisions can affect current conditions spiritually.

That’s the message we hear over and over again in 2 Kings chapters 14 and 15. Time and time again, we hear phrases like, “He did evil in the sight of the Lord, just as his father did.” At times, the Scripture connects the behaviors of the current king of Israel all the way back to the idolatry of the first king of Israel…Jeroboam. And this pattern is repeated so often in chapters 14 and 15 that you get tired of reading it.

I believe the Scripture is trying to drill home the idea that the choices we make now have a lasting impact in the years to come. Our decisions now will reverberate down through the generations. (Ex. 20:5) Our current choices and actions are key to the spiritual climate of the future. My words and actions impact my children; which has an impact on their interactions with their friends, their spouses, and their children.

Whether or not you believe in the reality of global warming, you can believe that your current decisions and actions will impact your future spiritual climate. That is the clear message God gives us in 2 Kings chapters 14 and 15.

1 Kings 14 – What a Waste!

It happens. You open up your news feed or turn on the news, and you hear about someone with a lot of promise and with everything going for them who threw it all away on bad choices and wrong living. It’s not only sad, it’s mystifying. All you can do is shake your head and think, “What a waste!”

This is the feeling you get from 1 Kings chapter 14. Both Jeroboam and Rehoboam had been given great opportunities. God had given each of them a kingdom and a promise to meet their needs and desires if they would simply follow and obey Him. Yet, they took God’s goodness toward them as a sign they were invincible and they did whatever they wanted.

We can read 1 Kings chapter 14 and say, “What a waste,” but aren’t we prone to demonstrate the same type of behavior?

When things are going well, we tend to let down our guard and become less disciplined and vigilant. We do more of what we want to do and less of what we need to do, acting as if God’s blessings are going to just keep coming…even though our actions are less and less worthy of blessing.

We must remember that every blessing we experience is a gift from God. (James 1:17) We need to realize that we have been bought with the great price of Christ’s life. We should honor and obey God out of gratitude, rather than honor ourselves by doing whatever we want. (1 Cor. 6:20)

Don’t take for granted the blessings of God and your need to gratefully obey His directions. Don’t live your life in such a way that someone might someday look at your life and say, “What a waste!”

1 Kings 12 – Are You A Repeat Offender?

Have you ever watched someone do something foolish and said to yourself, “I’m never going to do anything like that,” and then wound up doing something very similar later on? If so, you have a picture of what’s going on in 1 Kings chapter 12.

There, Solomon’s son, Rehoboam, chooses to reject wise counsel and instead do what he wants to do. Because of this tragic and rebellious sin, Rehoboam loses over 90% of his kingdom to Jeroboam.

Now you would think that Jeroboam, having watched Rehoboam lose most of his kingdom through selfish rebellion, would have learned to do things differently. But after God gives most of the kingdom to him, and after God has told him that He will do for him what He did for David, Jeroboam turns away from the God who has given him the kingdom and sets up idols and false gods for worship. He’s a repeat offender.

It makes you want to say, “How can you be so foolish?”

But before we start pointing fingers, how many times have we watched someone suffer the consequences of willful disobedience only to turned around and ignored our own need to obey.

It’s part of our post-fall wiring (Romans 3:23) and none of us are exempt. This is why we need a Savior to pay for our sin and give us a new life that can combat the old life.

Rehoboam. Jeroboam. They all sound alike. They all act alike, and they are all prone to wander off the path of God…just as we are. The question is not, “Will you ever do something like that?” The question is, “When you do, will you turn back to the God of your blessings or continue toward your downfall.

Are you a repeat offender?