16) Now Ahab the son of Omri did evil in the sight of the LORD, more than all who were before him.
33 … Ahab did more to provoke the LORD God of Israel to anger than all the kings of Israel who were before him.
My current reading has me in the Old Testament book of 1 Kings. This book starts out with “Gods man” – David, coming to the end of his life and giving the throne to Solomon. Solomon had an encounter with God and received his wish for wisdom and much more. There is a second encounter later also, and yet with all this, Solomon pretty well screws it all up with foreign wives that lead him astray to worship other gods.
The kingdom splits when Solomon dies and the spiral is pretty much downward from there. The two passages noted above stuck out to me this morning. This is not the first time that the phrase “did evil in the sight of the LORD, more than all who were before him” has been written of a king of Israel. However, Ahab is the worst according to verse 33.
I see these scriptures as warnings of just how easy it is to fall away from God. For all he amazing actions of God that these people have seen – they still run willy-nilly after some phony chunk of wood or stone and want to call it their god!
We can say that, “that will never happen to me” or perhaps “If I had been there I would have never strayed like that!” But we do! Now I have no stone idols in my house, but are there other idols? If I’m honest I would have to say yes. I don’t necessarily “worship” money, but an idol might be the security that I have in my retirement years. If I trust that more than I trust God for my sustenance – is it an idol?
I love new cars. I have been blessed with sufficient income to be able to have nice vehicles for many years. Not super expensive vehicles, but always nice. The little picture on the left is the one I currently am “coveting”. Now my great transportation might be a blessing. I like to think it is – but I could turn this passion into an idol very easily. What determines the difference between blessing and Idol?
One simple answer might be – who (or what) is on the throne in my heart. Do I spend more time dreaming about my dream car or pondering the greatness of my God? Taking good care of my “stuff” is probably OK until it becomes an obsession.
It’s a narrow path we walk and can be challenging. Beware of how the things you own or desire influence your thinking!
I’m claiming that Jesus is still the one on the throne of my heart!
Where’s He in your life?