3 Biblical hints on decision making observed from the life of King Rehoboam.

3 Biblical hints on decision making observed from the life of King Rehoboam.

“Rehoboam went to Shechem, for all Israel had come to Shechem to make him king. When Jeroboam the son of Nebat heard of it (for he was yet in Egypt, where he had fled from the presence of king Solomon, and Jeroboam lived in Egypt, and they sent and called him), Jeroboam and all the assembly of Israel came, and spoke to Rehoboam, saying, “Your father made our yoke difficult. Now therefore make the hard service of your father, and his heavy yoke which he put on us, lighter, and we will serve you.” He said to them, “Depart for three days, then come back to me.”

1. He who hurries…errs. “Also it is not good for a person to be without knowledge, And he who hurries his footsteps errs.” (Proverbs 19:2, NAS95)

The people departed. King Rehoboam took counsel with the old men, who had stood before Solomon his father while he yet lived, saying, “What counsel do you give me to answer these people?” They replied, “If you will be a servant to this people today, and will serve them, and answer them with good words, then they will be your servants forever.” But he abandoned the counsel of the old men which they had given him, and took counsel with the young men who had grown up with him, who stood before him. He said to them, “What counsel do you give, that we may answer these people, who have spoken to me, saying, ‘Make the yoke that your father put on us lighter?’” The young men who had grown up with him said to him, “Tell these people who spoke to you, saying, ‘Your father made our yoke heavy, but make it lighter to us;’ tell them, ‘My little finger is thicker than my father’s waist. Now my father burdened you with a heavy yoke, but I will add to your yoke. My father chastised you with whips, but I will chastise you with scorpions.’”

2. Take advice. “Pride only breeds quarrels, but wisdom is with people who take advice.” (Proverbs 13:10)

3. Walk not in the counsel of the wicked. “Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers;” (Psalms 1:1, ESV) “But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceful, gentle, reasonable, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy.” (James 3:17)

So Jeroboam and all the people came to Rehoboam the third day, as the king asked, saying, “Come to me again the third day.” The king answered the people roughly, and abandoned the counsel of the old men which they had given him, and spoke to them according to the counsel of the young men, saying, “My father made your yoke heavy, but I will add to your yoke. My father chastised you with whips, but I will chastise you with scorpions.” So the king did not listen to the people; for it was a turn of events from the LORD, that He might establish His word, which the LORD spoke through Ahijah the Shilonite to Jeroboam the son of Nebat. When all Israel saw that the king did not listen to them, the people answered the king, saying, “What portion do we have in David? We have no inheritance in the son of Jesse; To your tents, O Israel! Now look after your own house, David!” So Israel departed to their tents. (1 Kings 12:1-14, WEB, 1 Kings 12:15-16 NASB)


Commentary

Rehoboam. “Solomon slept with his fathers, and was buried in his father David’s city; and Rehoboam his son reigned in his place.” (1 Kings 11:43, WEB)

yoke. “He said, “This will be the way of the king who shall reign over you: he will take your sons, and appoint them as his servants, for his chariots, and to be his horsemen; and they will run before his chariots. He will appoint them to him for captains of thousands, and captains of fifties; and he will assign some to plow his ground, and to reap his harvest, and to make his instruments of war, and the instruments of his chariots. He will take your daughters to be perfumers, to be cooks, and to be bakers. He will take your fields, your vineyards, and your olive groves, even their best, and give them to his servants. He will take one tenth of your seed, and of your vineyards, and give it to his officers, and to his servants. He will take your male servants, your female servants, your best young men, and your donkeys, and assign them to his own work. He will take one tenth of your flocks; and you will be his servants. You will cry out in that day because of your king whom you will have chosen for yourselves; and Yahweh will not answer you in that day.”” (1 Samuel 8:11-18, WEB) — ““Come to me, all you who labor and are heavily burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart; and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”” (Matthew 11:28-30, WEB) “For this is loving God, that we keep his commandments. His commandments are not grievous.” (1 John 5:3, WEB)

Depart three days. “Also it is not good for a person to be without knowledge, And he who hurries his footsteps errs.” (Proverbs 19:2, NAS95)

took counsel with the old men. “The way of a fool is right in his own eyes, but he who is wise listens to counsel.” (Proverbs 12:15, WEB)

who had stood before Solomon his father while he yet lived. “One who walks with wise men grows wise, but a companion of fools suffers harm.” (Proverbs 13:20, WEB) “Happy are your men, happy are these your servants, who stand continually before you, who hear your wisdom.” (1 Kings 10:8)

They replied. “Where there is no counsel, plans fail; but in a multitude of counselors they are established.” (Proverbs 15:22)

took counsel with the young men who had grown up with him. “With aged men is wisdom, in length of days understanding.” (Job 12:12, WEB) “I said, ‘Days should speak, and multitude of years should teach wisdom.’” (Job 32:7, WEB) “Rehoboam the son of Solomon reigned in Judah. Rehoboam was forty-one years old when he began to reign, and he reigned seventeen years in Jerusalem, the city which Yahweh had chosen out of all the tribes of Israel, to put his name there. His mother’s name was Naamah the Ammonitess.” (1 Kings 14:21) “Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers;” (Psalms 1:1, ESV)

answered the people roughly. “A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” (Proverbs 15:1, WEB) “An angry man stirs up strife, and a wrathful man abounds in sin. A man’s pride brings him low, but one of lowly spirit gains honor.” (Proverbs 29:22-23, WEB) “Don’t let kindness and truth forsake you. Bind them around your neck. Write them on the tablet of your heart. So you will find favor, and good understanding in the sight of God and man.” (Proverbs 3:3-4)

abandoned the counsel of the old men. “One who walks with wise men grows wise, but a companion of fools suffers harm.” (Proverbs 13:20, WEB) “The fear of Yahweh is the beginning of knowledge; but the foolish despise wisdom and instruction.” (Proverbs 1:7) “But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceful, gentle, reasonable, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy.” (James 3:17)

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