One of the greatest Kings of Israel was Solomon. God asked him in a dream recorded in 2 Chronicles 1:7b, “Ask me whatever you want me to give you.” Solomon answered and said, “Give me wisdom and knowledge, that I may lead this people.” He became famous for his wisdom and wealth so much so that the then known world had heard of him. But at the end of his life this was his statement…”Vanity of vanities, says the Preacher, vanity of vanities! All is vanity.” Ecclesiastes1:2.
What had happened to this man who at one time had walked in so much wisdom; a man who had become wealthy beyond measure; he made the mistake of compromise and fell into disobedience. He had married foreign women, something forbidden by God. This subject of compromise is heavy on my heart. I see so much compromise in the church, in the lives of people I love, maybe in my life too.
God had commanded Israel not to marry foreign women. Deuteronomy 7:1-4, “When the Lord your God brings you into the land you are entering to possess and drives out before you many nations—the Hittites, Girgashites, Amorites, Canaanites, Perizzites, Hivites and Jebusites, seven nations larger and stronger than you— 2 and when the Lord your God has delivered them over to you and you have defeated them, then you must destroy them totally. Make no treaty with them, and show them no mercy. 3 Do not intermarry with them. Do not give your daughters to their sons or take their daughters for your sons,4 for they will turn your children away from following me to serve other gods, and the Lord’s anger will burn against you and will quickly destroy you.
Song of Solomon 2:15 TPT says, “ You must catch the troubling foxes, those sly little foxes that hinder our relationship.” Other translations say, “It’s the little foxes that spoil the vine.” The compromise’s of our hearts are foxs, predators who’s goal is to destroy our fruit. Compromise hinders our relationship with the Lord. Solomon’s compromise cost him.
We can wonder why sometimes…why can’t I do that or say that or do what I want! God in all of his wisdom knows far better than we do that when we follow our own desires what consequences we will have to face and what heartache we will feel. There was a reason God forbid foreign marriage. He knew it would turn their hearts from following him. 1 Kings 11:4a states, “For it was so, when Solomon was old, that his wives turned his heart after other gods…”There is a reason for every one of Gods commandments.
Solomon had it all. He had women, riches, and looks and somewhere along the way he made a simple decision…a decision to do what he wanted, what he felt like instead of what God required. That simple choice cost him. No he didn’t lose his throne or his riches. But he lost his compass. That inner knowing that leading that kept him always going in the right direction, that kept his heart right and his eye single.
In the moment we don’t’ stop to think how that one decision could derail us and cause more pain than we want to suffer. Our feelings are a powerful force in our nature. A force we cannot allow to take control. We must guard our hearts above all else Proverbs tells us, for out of it flow our life. Solomon knew what God had said. But he chose to compromise.
Solomon wrote Ecclesiastes and to read it is in parts depressing!! He is negative and has lost hope in life and people. He goes on for several chapters bemoaning the futility of life. Why does he seem so negitive? Compromise is “a weakening or a reduction of ones principles or standards, to reduce the quality of something.”
Solomon had reduced his quality of life by compromise, and that compromise cost him his deep relationship with the Lord. It also cost his descendants the Kingdom. His foreign wives drew his heart away. Is getting our way, or a fleeting pleasure worth what it will cost? We are required every single day to make choices, decisions that are God’s will or our own. We have all made a wrong choice. We have all paid a price for those decisions. Lord don’t I know it. BUT since we can’t do anything about the past, we need to decide to look to the future. God is full of grace and mercy for our past.
Every day is a new day to make the right choice to say no to ourselves and yes to God. In the moment it can suck. Nothing worth the cost is ever easy…just think of the Cross. But we don’t live for the moment we live for all of the moments that make our whole life. Hebrews 12 says, “fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of our faith. For the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning it’s shame, and set down at the right hand of the throne of God.”
He knew his choice was going to be hard, so hard, but he looked FORWARD to what his choice would do…save us. Sometimes it’s hard to do the right thing…we must count the cost and know it is worth the price we will pay. Our choices are important.