Jeroboam's wife did as instructed; she arose and went to Shiloh and arrived at Ahijah's house. Now Ahijah could not see, for his eyes were dim because of his age.
I. SIN SEEKS DISGUISES.
1. Truth needs none.
(1) It is naturally open. "He that doeth truth cometh to the light."
(2) It has nothing to be ashamed of. It is self-consistent, harmonious, lovely.
(3) It ought to be displayed; its influence is elevating (Philippians 2:15, 16). The saint who hides his light wrongs his race.
(4) Churches are constituted that Christians should, to the best advantage, witness for Christ. They are the candlesticks (see Matthew 5:14-16; Revelation 1:20). Note: Christians should discourage the eccentricity that would lead them away from the Churches.
2. It is otherwise with sin.
(1) It is naturally close. The sinner has as instinctive an aversion to the light as the owl and the bat, his types.
(2) It has everything to be ashamed of. It is self-contradictory, discordant, frightfully and monstrously ugly.
(3) It ought, by the impenitent sinner, to be concealed. For he could only desire to disclose it in order to infect and demoralize others.
(4) But the true should drag it to the light, that its deformity might be seen, abhorred, and execrated.
II. GOD SEES THROUGH ALL DISGUISES.
1. Nature itself teaches this.
(1) He that formed the eye, can He not see? (Exodus 4:10-12; Psalm 94:9.)
(2) He that formed the mind, can He not perceive? (1 Chronicles 28:9; Psalm 7:9; Proverbs 15:11; Revelation 2:23.)
2. It is evinced in the visions of prophecy.
(1) How far-reaching are those visions! The end was seen from the beginning. The instalments fulfilled certify the remainder.
(2) How deep their insight into the secret workings of the heart! The secret ambition of Jeroboam, when he was yet the servant of Solomon, was read by Ahijah (1 Kings 11:37). Now he sees through the disguise of the queen and reads its motives.
3. This should be considered.
(1) How foolish are disguises where God is concerned! And where is God not concerned?
(2) Those who would deceive God only deceive themselves.
(3) What disclosures will the day of judgment make! (1 Corinthians 3:13; 1 Corinthians 4:5.) What a day of trembling to the hypocrite!
III. GOD CAN OPEN THE EYES OF THE BLIND.
(1) Miracles upon the sight were occasionally wrought in ancient times (Genesis 19:11; 2 Kings 6:18).
(2) Many such were wrought by Christ.
(1) The prophets were gifted with spiritual vision. They were therefore called seers. Their prophecies were called visions.
(2) Such vision had Ahijah. His natural sight had now failed him (ver. 4), yet he saw Jeroboam's queen before she came into his presence, saw through her disguises, and discerned the purpose of her visit.
(3) Spiritual vision is not exclusively the privilege of prophets.
(a) God gives this to the sinner when He discovers to him the exceeding sinfulness of sin. God strips him of the disguises by which he would deceive himself, and exhibits his own life likeness to his conscience.
(b) God gives it to believers, when He witnesses His pardon and their adoption, to their spirits. (See Acts 26:17, 18; Ephesians 1:18.) Have your eyes been opened? Pray God that Satan may never succeed in throwing his dust into them. - J.A.M.
Now the rest of the acts of Rehoboam.
Homilist.Though this man lived fifty-eight years in this world, and for seventeen years occupied the throne, how little is said of him! Inspired historians pay no more attention to the life of kings than to the life of ordinary men.
I. THE POWER OF EXTERNAL CIRCUMSTANCES. Whilst we are far enough from admitting that man is by necessity the creature of circumstances, we cannot gainsay the fact that they tend greatly to shape his character and determine his fortunes. Here we find them investing the most worthless man with worldly opulence and regal power. Some men amass wealth and climb to power by skillful and persevering industry. But here is a man born to it. His ancestors made his position for him. He was not the architect of his own fortune. This is the case with thousands to-day. Experience teaches that to get wealth and power in this way is as undesirable as it is unmeritorious. Many sons have had reason to curse the day when their fathers bequeathed them a fortune. Here is a man whom circumstances made a king, who had nothing kingly in his soul.
II. THE WEAKNESS OF EXTERNAL CIRCUMSTANCES.
1. They did not give him wisdom and piety.
2. They did not give him social respect. We are so constituted that we can have no true moral respect for a man, however elevated his position, if he is destitute of moral worth. To true souls corrupt men on a throne are far more contemptible than if they lived in hovels of obscurity.Conclusion: —
1. That a man's external circumstances are no just criteria by which to judge his character. To regard them as such, has been the tendency of men in all ages.
2. That man's external circumstances do not necessarily shape his character. The circumstances into which the life of Rehoboam was thrown, did not by necessity make him the vile man and ruthless despot which he became. The fact is, there is a sovereign power in the soul, to subordinate external circumstances to its own interest. It can turn apparently the most adverse circumstances into blessings.
PeopleAbijah, Abijam, Ahijah, David, Israelites, Jeroboam, Naamah, Nadab, Rehoboam, Shishak, Sodomites, Solomon, Tirzah
PlacesBethel, Egypt, Euphrates River, Jerusalem, Shiloh, Tirzah
TopicsAble, Age, Ahijah, Ahi'jah, Ahijah's, Dim, Entereth, Got, Jeroboam, Jeroboam's, Jerobo'am's, Reason, Riseth, Shiloh, Sight, Stood, Unable, Wife
Outline1. Abijah being sick,
2. Jeroboam sends his wife, disguised, with presents to the prophet Ahijah
5. Ahijah forewarned by God, denounces God's judgment
17. Abijah dies, and is buried
19. Nadab succeeds Jeroboam
21. Rehoboam's wicked reign,
25. Shishak raids Jerusalem
29. Abijam succeeds Rehoboam
Dictionary of Bible Themes1 Kings 14:4
LibrarySynopsis. --The Gradual Narrowing of the Miraculous Element in the Bible by Recent Discovery and Discussion. --The Alarm Thereby Excited in the Church. --The Fallacy Which
It is barely forty years since that beloved and fearless Christian scholar, Dean Stanley, spoke thus of the miracles recorded of the prophet Elisha: "His works stand alone in the Bible in their likeness to the acts of mediaeval saints. There alone in the Sacred History the gulf between Biblical and Ecclesiastical miracles almost disappears." It required some courage to say as much as this then, while the storm of persecution was raging against Bishop Colenso for his critical work on the Pentateuch. …
James Morris Whiton—Miracles and Supernatural Religion
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The Whole Heart
Sovereignty and Human Responsibility
The Prophet Joel.
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