Jeroboam: An Opportunity

Text: 1 Kings 11-13

History, you’ve heard is HIS-STORY.  I don’t find that to be true at all.  It may be a nice positive spin on an English word, but it’s not true.  God has intervened in men’s lives at certain points in time, but those are never the norm.  When God does something, it is always outside the normal course of history and essentially goes against the direction of history and the course of this world.  That being said, history is not HIS-STORY, but you could say history is a series of foolish decisions made by people that bring unnecessary heartache, curse, and improvised trouble to people’s lives.  A illustration of terrible decision making and a culture of corruption destroyed millions of lives was Mao Zedong between 1958-1962.  Mao’s Great Leap Forward would be one of the greatest man made disasters of the 20th century.

Ask those Chinese farmers from that time.  They’d tell you that history isn’t God’s story, but it is the corrupt stupidity of a politician who was envious of another country’s power.

Tonight we’re going to look at a man who could’ve been a second David.

Jeroboam’s opportunity

  • Industrious man.  Solomon saw in him someone who was responsible and made the most with what they had.  Kind of like Nebuchadnezzar saw it in Daniel.  When a leader finds someone like that, they
    • Character opens doors and a lack of character closes them.
  • God gives him an opportunity.  Jeroboam isn’t programmed to do evil by God as some Calvinists foolishly believe.  He has an open door set before him.

Jeroboam’s decision

  • This is why motive is so important.
  • Jeroboam listens to his fear in 1 Kings 12:27-28.
  • Jeroboam is not stupid.  He is not ignorant.  He is not a doofus in power.  He’s industrious.  That skill gets put to work by fear instead of faith.
  • Fear is the opposite of faith.

Jeroboam’s curse on his people

  • 2 Kings 17:19-24 are the dire consequences of Jeroboam’s decision based on fear, not faith.  
  • You talk about regret.  I think of Jeroboam as that rich man in hell who lifted up his eyes and begged someone to go tell his brothers not to come here.  Jeroboam would watch from hell as 250 years of generations of people would follow in his footsteps and be led right off into hell like him.
  • Jeroboam is what David would’ve been had David been motivated by fear like Jeroboam.  And David is what Jeroboam could’ve been had he been motivated by faith.

You have opportunity.  In Jesus Christ you have eternal opportunity which means eternal consequences.