Tuesday, 14th September 2021
Rev Daniel Xi An Poon
God gave Jeroboam promises and blessings, but because Jeroboam was afraid of people and did not stand firm in the Word of God, at the end his house was destroyed. It was supposed to be a blessed family, but when Jeroboam chose to walk his own way, the blessings of God left him and his family.
Section One V1-10 God still Reigns
Jeroboam was doing rebellious things, and God sent a godly man to talk to him. The Temple of God was in Judah, therefore the man of God was from there. His name was not mentioned in the Bible, he came during the time when Jeroboam was about to sin against God by offering to the idols. V2 “O altar, altar! Thus says the Lord: ‘Behold, a child, Josiah by name, shall be born to the house of David; and on you he shall sacrifice the priests of the high places who burn incense on you, and men’s bones shall be burned on you.’” The man of God didn’t use any action to stop Jeroboam, he only used the Word of God and we know his prophecy was fulfilled in the future.
V3 “And he gave a sign the same day, saying, ‘This is the sign which the Lord has spoken: Surely the altar shall split apart, and the ashes on it shall be poured out.’” When Jeroboam saw what God did, by fear, he asked the prophet to stay with him, instead of turning to God. His eyes were closed and his heart was hardened. When we are afraid of the things of the world, our health, our finance, our relationship with others… we will fail to see God as our God.
Jeroboam couldn’t admit God was his God because he didn’t want to repent. We need to learn to pray for ourselves and repent on our own behalf. Because if Jeroboam admitted his mistakes of building the alters and raising false prophets, God will give him a chance. Jeroboam did not see that everything he had was from God, and it was God behind all this, but he only saw the man of God and asked him to pray for him. Jeroboam tried to bribe the man of God and tried to please him instead of pleasing God.
Jeroboam had been making alters for idols and build golden calves. He would feel tired because he was not walking in godly ways. We would feel tired when we are trying to do everything with our own hands and we didn’t experience God’s doing. Let us see God’s Work in our lives, to see His miracles and the new things, and praise Him for everything He is doing in our lives. May God help us, to take away all the lies from the devil, and see God’s blessings for us to come out of darkness and confusion.
The lesson of humility is to follow God’s Way, not our own ways. The man of God followed the Way of God that led him to leave Bethel.
Section Two V11-19 Man’s Weakness
There was an old prophet in Bethel. The man of God was not recorded as a prophet, but this old prophet in Bethel was specifically mentioned in the Bible as a prophet. He had the experiences and gifts as a prophet, but why did God not use him to talk to Jeroboam? Instead of a young man of God from Judah?
It’s true that God will talk to everyone of us, but why a lot of times, God talks to others more than to us? This old prophet in Bethel had the reputations, experiences, status and gifts, but why did God not use him? When Jeroboam did so many ungodly things, where was this old prophet? As a prophet, he would know what’s right and what’s wrong, and he would know how much wrongdoings Jeroboam had already done.
This man of God already told Jeroboam that he would not stay in Bethel. The old prophet would also know what God told the man of God. But he still insisted for the man of God to stay and eat with him. He tempted the young man, even when the king could not keep him. The young man continued to proclaim that God told him not to stay. Then the old prophet said in V18 “I too am a prophet as you are, and an angel spoke to me by the word of the Lord, saying, ‘Bring him back with you to your house, that he may eat bread and drink water.’ ” He was lying to him.
A prophet should be hearing directly from God, not from the angel. If this young man was a true prophet, he would also know the old prophet was lying. Instead, he followed the old prophet. When people praise us for our anointing and gifts, what is our attitude? We like people to praise us, we like to be recognised and we lift our own status up. But God is with us not because of the gifts we have or what we have done. We can do all things because of God not ourselves. We must be careful not to chase our own achievements but to pursuit God only.
This young man of God was pleased to hear from the old prophet, and he forsook the Word of God. He treated his earthly honour more important than God’s Word, he had insecurity in his heart. Did he really know God was with him? The recognition from others was a louder voice in him than God’s Word for him, and at the end it costed his life. The old prophet had the status as a prophet but God was not with him.
When we are unwilling to face the problems in our lives, to repent and see our lives sinning against God, then our sins will separate us from God. God has mercy on us, He uses our authority to talk to us. When the Word of God finally came to the old prophet. This time it was really from God, not from an angel. What the old prophet said contradicted himself, but this time the young man of God didn’t listen. He stayed and ate, he also took the donkey of the old prophet. He didn’t follow the way God showed him and he was lost in his own wilfulness.
Section Three V20-34 God’s Word never Fails
The old prophet lost his relationship and confidence in hearing from God. When he really heard from God it was about the destructions of Israel. The lion didn’t eat the man of God, it was not the lion’s normal behaviour because God wanted the old prophet to see that His Word never fails. The old prophet knew he sinned against God and his wilfulness costed the life of the man of God. But he still didn’t show repentance. We must continue to come before God and repent, we sin everyday against God and against people, don’t think we are ok.
Jeroboam also didn’t repent after he heard from the man of God and God’s favours left him and his household. We must come to God everyday, admit our sins and ask Him for His forgiveness.
Worship: My Love My Cross十字架的傳達者 https://youtu.be/mpugTxcAXn0
Prayer & Pursuit
Through the lives of Jeroboam, of the man of God and of the old prophet, God is talking to us. Do we have reverence in God? Is our heart blocked us from following God? There are so many reasons for us not to follow God, God is talking to us right now, let us humble ourselves, repent our sins and ask for forgiveness.
Lord, forgive us, that we want to hear people’s praises more than hear from You. Lord, only You can forgive our sins, You have already given us Jesus Christ, so we can come before You. Lord let us experience Your love and blessings. Amen.
从耶罗波安的一生经历我们可以看到神的祝福和人的愚昧 – 耶罗波安因为惧怕，没有相信神曾给他的应许，选择走人的道路，最后“这事叫耶罗波安的家陷在罪里，甚至他的家从地上除灭了”（V34）。
V4-6 耶罗波安因为想要抓住神人，结果手枯干，收不回来，并且“坛也破裂了，坛上的灰倾撒了”。这些事情都没有让耶罗波安都看到神对他的拣选，他仍然对神人说“求耶和华你神”，想让神人为他祷告。耶罗波安自己曾经经历神将他从埃及救出来，又有立国的应许和成就，但他里面有很多对人的惧怕。他不愿意承认神是他的神，不愿意承认自己的罪 – 因为他怕他若承认他在以色列北国立国后所做的那些事都是错的，他会失去一切。耶罗波安被蒙蔽了，没有看到他所有的一切都是从神而来。
神今天借着神人、老先知、耶罗波安对我们说话。我们的生命是否敬畏神，我们里面是否有很多蒙蔽？我们有很多理由不去跟从神，有很多理由支持我们不听神的话。求神帮助我们，圣灵就在这里，神在跟我们说话。我们要谦卑，将我们生命中一切的蒙蔽 – 包括对神的怀疑、不谦卑-都交给神，求神帮助我们悔改、得神的饶恕。