1 Kings 3:3-4:34 ~ Acts 6:1-15 ~ Psalm 126:1-6 ~ Proverbs 16:26-27
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Old Testament - Today in 1 Kings chapter 3 we read about King Solomon asking for wisdom from God! It is of note that Solomon is estimated to be about 20 years old in this chapter - he was born about half way through David's 40 year reign. So, he is a very young king. In verse 5 we read these words from God to Solomon – “Ask for whatever you want me to give you." In verses 7 through 9 we will read this amazing response from Solomon to God – “O LORD my God, you have made your servant king in place of my father David. But I am only a little child and do not know how to carry out my duties. Your servant is here among the people you have chosen, a great people, too numerous to count or number. So give your servant a discerning heart to govern your people and to distinguish between right and wrong. For who is able to govern this great people of yours?" Solomon could have asked God for anything – more wealth, more power, more strength, more whatever, but he simply asked for wisdom. Why? Because he wanted to govern God’s people well and distinguish between right and wrong. Amazing. How would you or I answer this question today? What if God came to you today and said the same thing to you from verse 5 - “Ask for whatever you want me to give you." What would you ask for? Would you ask for Wisdom? If so, God offers this to you and me now. Where? I believe wisdom is offered to us through study of the Bible and by living in a loving and right relationship with God. We can receive the gift of God’s wisdom today! If we would answer this question from God differently – maybe wanting more money, or power, or whatever – do you think we might forfeit gaining wisdom? So, again, what if God were to say to you right now this same statement he said to Solomon? “Ask for whatever you want me to give you." What do you ask for? Below is a wonderful portrait by artist Guy Rowe of the young King Solomon praying for wisdom:
We then read about Solomon's wise judgment related to the two women and a baby. This is certainly verification that God fulfilled what he promised in verse 12 - "I will give you what you asked for! I will give you a wise and understanding mind such as no one else has ever had or ever will have!" Below is "The Judgment of Solomon" by Flemish painter Antoon Claeissens, circa 1600:
As we read 1 Kings 4 verses 29, 32 & 33 I am reminded that some say Solomon was the last person on earth (well besides Jesus of course) who knew everything there was to know about any and all subject's of the day - "God gave Solomon great wisdom and understanding, and knowledge too vast to be measured. He composed some 3,000 proverbs and wrote 1,005 songs. He could speak with authority about all kinds of plants, from the great cedar of Lebanon to the tiny hyssop that grows from cracks in a wall. He could also speak about animals, birds, reptiles, and fish." Solomon was obviously one wise person. What do you think the wisest thing about Solomon was? I think it was this - he was in relationship with God. That was the #1 wisest decision Solomon ever made. And it's the #1 wisest decision you or I could ever make - to be in relationship with God through his son Jesus. From this wise decision flows all other wisdom in our lives. But this decision is of primary importance... Are you as wise as Solomon in this regard? Does your heart belong to God?
New Testament - Acts 6 verse 2 is of interest to me today - ""We apostles should spend our time preaching and teaching the word of God, not administering a food program." When I first read this, I thought, "Wait a second! What's wrong with administering a food program??" Then, upon further reflection I realized the apostles were not saying anything was wrong with administering a food program - just that they were not called to it. They were called to spend their time preaching and teaching the Word of God. Which of course is true Food in the spiritual sense. So - I think this is important for us to realize today as well. I think sometimes we might get a bit grouchy if we don't see our pastors or ministers at every single church function or event - but we have to realize they are not called to do every single thing that we, the body of the church, are called to. One of their primary roles is to preach and teach the word of God. So, they may need us to volunteer at or administer a food program while they are doing what they are called to. Each of us are important parts of the body of Christ. And each part of the body has different functions. We shouldn't get upset if one part of the body is not doing exactly what we are doing. And yes, there are times when community & fellowship will bring us all together - which typically is worship on Sundays. Let us come together as many members but one body without complaint toward others who are called to other holy tasks!
Bible.org's commentary on today's Acts readings titled "Waiting on the Widows" is at this link.
Psalms - Psalm 126 has a great verse today. I always love the verses in Psalms that speak about water! I don't know what it is about these verses, but here's verse 4: "Restore our fortunes, LORD, as streams renew the desert." Do you believe that God can restore your life like water restores the desert? Will you allow God's water into all the nooks & crannies in your life that are in need of renewal?
Do you believe that God is living water? Are you thirsty for that living water in your life? Will you drink the Water?
Proverbs - I like Proverbs 16 verse 26 today! "It is good for workers to have an appetite; an empty stomach drives them on." This wisdom reminds me of the old adage - "Lord, don't make me too rich that I forget you or too poor that I curse you." It's better to be a bit "hungry" I think... What are you hungry for? I do pray that we are hungry each and every day for God's Word, the Bible!
(On another note of food related hunger - in years past, June was National Hunger Awareness Day in the U.S. Learn more about the 38 million people living in the U.S. who do not know where their next meal will come from and how you can make a different volunteering or giving food to your local food bank at this link: www.hungerday.org)
Worship God: Today's readings reminded me of JJ Weeks Band's song "Let Them See You:"
Do they see Him in you? Click here for Him to be seen!
Please join us in memorizing and meditating on a verse of Scripture today: "At Gibeon the LORD appeared to Solomon during the night in a dream, and God said, "Ask for whatever you want me to give you." 1 Kings 3:5 (NIV)
Prayer Point: Pray that you show wisdom like Solomon did in 1 Kings 3, and ask God for wisdom. Don't ask God for riches or power, but pray for discernment in your life.
Comments from You & Questions of the Day: What are you hungry or thirsty for in your life right now? Are you hungry for wisdom like young Solomon was hungry for wisdom? Are you thirsty to know God more? Are you hungry to love Jesus more? Are you thirsty to read the Bible every day? Are there people around you in your life who may also be hungry? What are they hungry for? Will you help feed them? Spiritually, mentally, physically? Like the food program we read about in Acts today, when was the last time you volunteered at your local food bank or soup kitchen or homeless shelter? If you are called to it, will you sign up to volunteer out there again in this next month? Will you get in the monthly habit of volunteering to feed someone in some way? Also, what verses or insights stand out to you in today's readings? Please post up by clicking on the "Comments" link below!
p.s. Download our monthly Small Group study notes for our One Year Bible readings at this link.
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