Reading: 2 Chronicles 11:1-23; 12:13-16

Focus: 2 Chronicles 12:14
But he was an evil king, for he did not seek the Lord with all his heart.

 

We’ve seen this story before… literally.  This is a more detailed account of the same story in 1 Kings.  And it’s repeat of what we’ve seen over and over and over as we’ve watched kings and people rise and fall in God’s favor.

Rehoboam is an interesting case.  On the outside it looks like he did a lot of good stuff – he built up a defense system, he stored food (and wine), and had lots and lots and lots of kids.  But still, in the eyes of God, he was an evil king.  “He did not seek the Lord with all his heart.”

What does that mean, “seek God with all your heart”?

In the case of Rehoboam it seems pretty obvious.  He chose to do what was best for him, and did not seek to obey or please God.  But what about for us?  Jesus commanded the same of us, and then some:

Matthew 22:37
Jesus replied: ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’

Love the Lord with all your heart.  Show your affection toward Him.

One commentator makes it really easy to understand by comparing this to Gary Chapman’s Five Love Languages:

Quality Time – Spend time with God.  Real, intimate time.

Acts of Service – Serve His kingdom.  Do something.

Words of Affirmation – In prayer, adore His goodness (don’t just ask and complain!).

Gifts – He has given each of us a gift.  Figure out a way to give it back to Him.

Physical Touch – Although we can’t physically touch God, we can touch His Church, His people.

Love the Lord with all your soul.  Be devoted to Him.

Colossians 3:17
And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

2 Corinthians 11:3
But I am afraid that, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, your minds will be led astray from the simplicity and purity of devotion to Christ.

The word “devotion” means profound dedication.  We keep His commandments.  We listen and obey Him.  We accept Him as Master.

 

Love the Lord with all your mind.  Consciously choose Him.

2 Corinthians 10:5b
…we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.

Romans 12:2
Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.

God made us to be able to reason and retain knowledge.  Have questions?  Get them answered (the Alpha Course is a great place to do that)!  Read the Bible to understand it, ask for wisdom, memorize scripture.  Use what God has given you to love Him.

We’re all familiar with Elizabeth Barrett Browning’s famous quote:  “How do I love thee?  Let me count the ways.”

There are as many ways to love God as there are people on the planet.  He made each of us to be different, with different interests, personalities, gifts, and talents that we’re to return to Him.

Don’t be counted an “evil king.”  Seek God and love Him with your heart, soul, and mind.

Prayer:

God, in my every day, help me seek you.  I don’t want to hold anything back from you.  I want to love you with my whole heart, soul, and mind.  Renew in me a right spirit, God, and increase in me every day.  I do love you.  In Jesus’ name, Amen.

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