When God promises us something, it is very important that we BELIEVE Him. Why? Because to doubt or not believe God is to question His Character, His Faithfulness, His very nature. God’s Faithfulness is a critical part of His Character. Frankly, it’s one of my favorite things about God. Man can promise all sorts of good things…but we rarely deliver. It is sort of “hit or miss” with mankind. But God (FATHER/SON/HOLY SPIRIT) is always 100% faithful. Jesus is so faithful, that HIS NAME is FAITHFUL and TRUE.
Revelation 19:11 And I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse, and He who sat on it is called Faithful and True, and in righteousness He judges and wages war.
God says what He means and means what He says. What are the consequences of NOT believing God when He speaks? Well, Holy Spirit was showing me this very thing a couple of days ago. Unbelief leads to IDOLATRY.
Hebrews 3:12: Take care, brothers and sisters, that there will not be in any one of you an evil, unbelieving heart that falls away from the living God.
If you are familiar with the Bible, you have probably heard of Israel’s King Jeroboam. He became king over the northern 10 Tribes of Israel when Israel divided into two kingdoms (Israel – north, Judah – South). Jeroboam is known for being one of the evilest kings 😈to ever reign in Israel. He set up the high places for idolatrous worship, he fashioned golden calves and told the Israelites ….”This is your “god” who brought you out of Egypt!” 😲
What???? A king of Israel repeated the sin of the golden calf? Over a thousand years earlier, the Israelites had set up a golden calf and worshipped it while Moses went up the mountain to receive the ten commandments. The golden calf represented the “gods” of Egypt, from whom YHWH had delivered His people during the times of Moses. Now, over one-thousand years later, King Jeroboam created two golden calves for Israel to worship…telling them that these represent the “god” who led them out of Egypt! 😲 Jeroboam was essentially telling God’s people to go BACK into bondage. God was not pleased.
How did Jeroboam become King in the first place and what in the world caused him to stray so far from the truth? Surprisingly enough, we discover that God Himself (YHWH) established Jeroboam’s throne and gave wonderful promises to him.
The story begins with the final king of Israel’s United Kingdom – King Solomon. 👑 As King David’s son, Solomon was given great wisdom and the Throne. God even bestowed upon Solomon the HONOR and PRIVELEDGE of building a physical “House” (Temple) for Almighty God! Now at this time, Jeroboam was a merely a servant of King Solomon, gaining Solomon’s favor because of his work ethic.
1 Kings 11:28: Now the man Jeroboam was a valiant warrior, and when Solomon saw that the young man was industrious, he appointed him over all the forced labor of the house of Joseph. 2
King Solomon had God’s favor UNTIL his pagan wives led him into severe idolatry. The bible says his many wives “turned his heart away” from the True and Living God. King Solomon had 700 wives and 300 concubines! Because of God’s promises to Solomon’s father David, God decided NOT to divide Israel during Solomon’s reign. However, as soon as Solomon died and the Crown was passed to his son Rehoboam, God would THEN divide the kingdom.
1 Kings 11:9: Now the Lord was angry with Solomon because his heart had turned away from the Lord, the God of Israel, who had appeared to him twice, 10 and had commanded him regarding this thing, that he was not to follow other gods; but he did not comply with what the Lord had commanded.
11: So the Lord said to Solomon, “Since you have done this, and you have not kept My covenant and My statutes, which I have commanded you, I will certainly tear the kingdom away from you, and will give it to your servant. 12 However, I will not do it in your days, only for the sake of your father David; but I will tear it (kingdom) away from the hand of your son (Rehoboam).
13 Yet I will not tear away all the kingdom, but I will give one tribe to your son for the sake of My servant David, and for the sake of Jerusalem, which I have chosen.”
God TOLD Solomon that because of his idolatry, ten of the twelve tribes would be ripped away from his son Rehoboam and given to Solomon’s servant (Jeroboam). Instead of REPENTING over his sin, Solomon sought to end Jeroboam’s life.
Isn’t that how we (mankind) often handle the knowledge of our own sin when it is shown to us? Instead of being sorry that we grieved the heart of God, we become defensive and angry, often attempting to escape the CONSEQUENCES of our sin. This is what set Solomon’s father King David apart from much of mankind. God always said that David had a “heart after God”. David was definitely NOT perfect. God does not expect sinless perfection. He knows we are but clay. What set David apart from most of mankind is that when David was confronted with his sin, David did NOT try to hide it, blame it on someone else, brush it off as inconsequential or cover it up. Rather, David acknowledged his own sin, was truly sorry and accepted the consequences from God as Right and Just. If acknowledged and received, the consequences of our sin will be used by God to DISCIPLINE us and turn our hearts BACK to HIM so we can LIVE (ETERNAL AND ABUNDENT LIFE).
Hebrews 12:6: For whom the Lord loves He disciplines,
And He punishes every son whom He accepts.”
7 It is for discipline that you endure; God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom his father does not discipline? 8 But if you are without discipline, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate children and not sons. 9 Furthermore, we had earthly fathers to discipline us, and we respected them; shall we not much more be subject to the Father of spirits, and live?
How did Jeroboam find out that God was preparing to make him king and give him ten of the twelve tribes of Israel?
One day Jeroboam traveled out of Jerusalem where he was confronted by the Prophet Ahijah, who met him in a field. Ahijah had clothed himself with a new cloak. When Ahijah met Jeroboam, he tore his cloak into twelve pieces and gave Jeroboam ten of the pieces. He told Jeroboam “Take ten pieces for yourself, for this is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says: ‘See, I am going to tear the kingdom out of Solomon’s hand and give you ten tribes’” (1 Kings 11:31).
1 Kings 11:31: And he said to Jeroboam, “Take for yourself ten pieces; for this is what the Lord, the God of Israel says: ‘Behold, I am going to tear the kingdom away from the hand of Solomon and give you ten tribes
37 However I will take you (Jeroboam), and you shall reign over all that you desire, and you shall be king over Israel.
38 Then it shall be, that if you listen to all that I command you and walk in My ways, and do what is right in My sight by keeping My statutes and My commandments, as My servant David did, then I will be with you and build you an enduring house as I built for David, and I will give Israel to you.
Kingdoms were not generally handed to servants. This is not how things usually worked in the ancient world (or today for that matter). The normal route would be for the kingdom to be handed to a legitimate heir, a son of the king. For God to hand the kingdom to a SERVANT must have been a pretty shocking thing to hear. Did Jeroboam BELIEVE the prophet of God? We do not know. But it appears that SOLOMON BELIEVED…because after Jeroboam’s encounter with the prophet, Solomon sought to have Jeroboam killed.
Jeroboam fled to Egypt to seek safety. After Solomon died, his son Rehoboam reigned in his place over the twelve tribes of Israel. Jeroboam returned and led a revolt against Rehoboam because of some harsh labor laws that Rehoboam had enacted. The Kingdom split, and Jeroboam did indeed end up with ten of the twelve tribes, who made him king.
At this point, Jeroboam should have realized that the Word of the Lord through the prophet Ahijah had come to pass. Jeroboam had received both PROMISES and WARNINGS from the prophet Ahijah. God was giving Jeroboam the kingdom (northern ten tribes), no strings attached. The kingdom was his. He had only to believe the promise of God for that.
It would have been well for Jeroboam if he had listened to God’s messengers. The God of Israel could have blessed him and his descendants and he would never have deserved the terrible epithet, “the man that made Israel to sin.” But the promises of God were not enough for this man. He reasoned on a purely human level.
Jeroboam did NOT TRUST GOD, even though he had already SEEN a partial fulfillment of Ahijah’s prophecy! After being made king, Jeroboam STILL FEARED that because God required all sacrifices to be done in Jerusalem (which was Rehoboam’s territory), he would lose his grip on power and control over the northern ten tribes. Jeroboam schemed and sought HUMAN council and wisdom, trying to figure out a way to RETAIN POWER, rather than TRUSTING GOD. Remember, God had PROMISED that Jeroboam’s kingdom would be an enduring kingdom IF he listened to the Word of the Lord. Instead, Jeroboam LISTENED to the words of men and decided to set up two golden calves in the cities of Dan and Bethel. He figured his people (northern 10 tribes) could go up to these two locations to offer sacrifices INSTEAD of to YHWH’s prescribed location – JERUSALEM. In this way, Jeroboam encouraged the people of Israel to SIN and enter into idolatry by saying that the God of Israel dwelt inside of these GOLDEN CALVES! 😲
God (YHWH) had always said “Ye shall worship in the place that I shall choose (JERUSALEM)”. Dan and Bethel were Jeroboam’s choice. Today many seek to serve God and “worship” Him in the manner and the place that suits them, but the New Testament teaches us that the place must be of God’s choosing. THE CROSS OF jesus christ is that “place”! It’s no longer a physical location, but it is the only means through which we can approach YHWH (Almighty God the Father).
John 14:6: Jesus *said to him, “I AM the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father except through Me.
This reminds me of how much of today’s “modern” Church has set up “golden calves” (idols) in order to “grow their numbers”. Instead of relying on and teaching the pure Word of God, the modern Church has embraced sin (homosexuality) and idolatry (Emergent church/Eastern religions) in an attempt to look like the world and attract new members. God PROMISED the Church that that the gates of hell would not prevail against it, but apparently much of the modern Church does not TRUST in the promises of God. (Matthew 16:18).
Jeroboam’s doubt and unbelief of God’s SIMPLE and CLEAR words, assuming he had to somehow make things happen for himself, led him into idolatry and ultimately destroyed his house (descendants/lineage) and his kingdom.
God wants His people to BELIEVE in HIS PROMISES. If God says He will DO something, He WILL do it. Often, when we don’t see God’s promises FULFILLED IMMEDIATELY, we begin to doubt. At the same time, we as human beings often think that we must ADD to God’s promises, or “make them happen” for ourselves. For instance, God has promised that ALL people who BELIEVE in JESUS CHRIST will RECEIVE ETERNAL LIFE. This is a simple promise with NO STRINGS ATTACHED. But many of us think we have to DO something to somehow make this happen for ourselves. No, God’s GIFT of GRACE is FREE. He has offered us the KINGDOM, no strings attached. BELIEVE and RECEIVE.
Luke 12:32: Do not be afraid, little flock, because your Father has chosen to give you the kingdom.
We do not need to scheme, plot or plan HOW we will receive this kingdom. We have only to BELIEVE. God (YHWH) told Jeroboam two things. He first said…BELIEVE and RECEIVE…
- ‘Behold, I AM going to tear the kingdom away from the hand of Solomon and give you ten tribes“
Then, God said this to Jeroboam…
- “Then it shall be, that if you listen 👂to all that I command you and walk in My ways and do what is right in My sight by keeping My statutes and My commandments, as My servant David did, then I will be with you and build you an enduring house as I built for David, and I will give Israel to you.”
God FREELY gave Jeroboam the kingdom of Israel (northern ten tribes)…all Jeroboam had to do was to BELIEVE and RECEIVE. God uses David as an EXAMPLE, but David was NOT perfect. However, David did LISTEN to God and David genuinely acknowledged his own sin and repented. Jeroboam was then given a set of instructions where he was told to be LIKE DAVID. Jeroboam was told to LISTEN 👂to GOD, (which is something he would have already been doing if he had BELIEVED God) AND to WALK in God’s ways and KEEP God’s commandments (treasure them in his heart – this is something that comes naturally when we BELIEVE God) THEN God would be WITH Jeroboam and he would have an ENDURING KINGDOM
As born-again Bible believing Christians, GOD (YHWH) has PROMISED us ETERNAL LIFE in the Kingdom of God as our inheritance. This is an AMAZING PROMISE FROM GOD! All we need to do to RECEIVE this Kingdom is to BELIEVE GOD! There is nothing we can do to EARN this promise, or to KEEP it. When we fall into the trap of trying to make these promises happen on our own (as Jeroboam did), we fail to TRUST GOD, and fall into IDOLATRY. Such is the sin of legalism and relying on oneself for salvation.😲
However, when we LISTEN👂 to and REVERE the Words of God, we KNOW without a DOUBT that we have ALREADY RECEIVED the kingdom; therefore, as subjects of God’s Kingdom, we DESIRE to do what is right in our King Jesus’ eyes, to walk in His ways, and to keep His Commandments (as best we can – not through legalism, but through LOVE). Did you notice that we said that all those who have received forgiveness of sins through Jesus Christ’s shed blood on the Cross are ALREADY subjects of God’s Kingdom? Yes, this is the truth. Although we cannot yet SEE God’s Kingdom with our Physical eyes, Believers are ALREADY citizens of the Kingdom of God.💕
A citizen is a person who legally belongs to a country and has the rights and protection of that country. Citizens adopt the culture and practices of the nation or kingdom to which they belong. Every human being is born (physically) into the kingdom of this world, in which Satan rules (2 Corinthians 4:4). Consequently, we grow up adopting the culture, practices, and values that he instigates (Genesis 3:1; 1 John 2:16).
When we are born again by faith in Jesus Christ (John 3:3), we are born into the Kingdom of God (Matthew 3:2; 7:21; Romans 14:17). Speaking of those who have had that spiritual rebirth, Philippians 3:20 says, “Our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ.”
As citizens of Heaven (even while we physically reside here on earth), We BELIEVE in ALL of God’s KINGDOM PROMISES that include:
- #1 He gives strength to the weary. (Isaiah 40:31)
- #2 He will give you rest. (Matthew 11:28-30)
- #3 His kindness never fails. (Isaiah 54:10)
- #4 He has redeemed you. (Colossians 1:13-14)
- #5 He has adopted you. (Ephesians 1:5)
- #6 The Lord will fight for you. (Exodus 14:13-14)
- #7 God gives wisdom to those who ask. (James 1:5)
- #8 The devil will flee from you if you resist. (James 4:7)
- #9 He forgives us when we confess our sins. (1 John 1:9)
- #10 Your old sinful self is dead, you are a NEW CREATION in CHRIST (Romans 6:6)
- #11 He forgives us when we forgive others. (Luke 6:37)
- #12 He will exalt the humble. (Matthew 23:12)
- #13 He will never leave or forsake you. (Deuteronomy 31:6)
- #14 He has given us eternal life. (John 3:16)
- #15 He will set you free from the sin nature (remove the desire to sin) (John 8:36)
- #16 Believe you have received what you have asked for in prayer. (Mark 11:24)
- #17 He will meet all your needs. (Philippians 4:19)
- #18 Call on him and he will answer. (Psalm 50:15)
- #19 He will give you the desires of your heart. (Psalm 37:4)
- #20 He will never blot your name from the book of life. (Revelation 3:5)
- #21 All things work for good for those who love God. (Romans 8:28)
- #22 All things will be added when you seek first the kingdom. (Matthew 6:31-33)
- #23 He will make your path straight. (Proverbs 3:5-6)
- #24 He has prepared us a place. (John 14:3)
- #25 He (jesus christ) is coming again soon👑. (Rev. 22:12)
David had a heart for God. 💖 David BELIEVED GOD. David RECEIVED what God had to offer. David ACCEPTED the CONSEQUENCES of his sin and LEARNED FROM IT. David LOVED and FEARED GOD, and so should WE. 💕 David’s HOUSE (family/lineage) is an ENDURING HOUSE and so will ours be when we BELIEVE GOD.