1Chronicles 29:19: Grant to Solomon my son a whole heart that he may keep your commandments, your testimonies, and your statutes, performing all, and that he may build the palace for which I have made provision.” (ESV)
Eventually it seems that David’s prayer was not answered. Solomon’s heart when he grew older was not perfect towards God has he choose to engage in idol worship laying a bad precedent in Israel which on the long run led to the carting away of the nation from their land.
Even Saul did not participate in idol worship, neither did David, Solomon’s father. Why did Solomon go the wrong way, while he somewhat had no compelling reason to do so?
Israel was not suffering oppression from any nation, or else we might say that he was lured to worship a more powerful god than Jehovah because of that. No nation was richer than Israel at that time, or we might say he sought to be linked to other gods who gave those nations more prosperity.
The bible says that he loved many women and they lured him to do the wrong thing. This was a repetition of what happened in the Garden of Eden, where Adam had everything going for him but he was lured away from the obedience to God through the influence of his wife (Genesis 3).
The issue with the two of them (Adam and Solomon) was that they wanted peace by all means, even if it involved going against the commandment of God. Solomon wanted to please his wives (while Adam wanted to please Eve) so he became an idol-worshipper, following their evil lead, laying the wrong seed for the evil harvest of the future.
What about you? What ground are you giving for the enemy just to keep the peace? What are you permitting because you do not want to put up a fight in order to do the right thing? Who are you yielding to so that you can still have them around you, fearful of losing them?
Adam exhibited the fear of his wife, while Solomon feared his wives, and the bible says the fear of man brings a snare (Proverbs 29:25).
What compromise are you making? What are you giving up for “peace,” if it means you lose your peace with God?
The devil only asked Jesus to bow down and worship him, and he will give him the whole world. He did not bite (Luke 4:1-17). You should be like Jesus. You should stand firm like him against all pressures. He was tempted on all points yet without sin (Hebrews 4:15).
The writer of the book of Hebrews said that we should look to Jesus the author and finisher of our faith who endured the contradiction of sinners against himself, who in the course of obeying God shed his blood (Hebrews 12:1-3). He added: you have not resisted sin to the shedding of your own bloods like Jesus did, so do not be faint in your heart.
Solomon’s “peace at all cost” cost him his relationship with God. He dabbled into things diabolical because the worship of idols is worship of demons (1Corinthians 10:20). And the bible says that God does not want us to have fellowship with evil spirits. Jesus has come to set us free, and we should not go into bondage in the name of seeking for peace.
This also goes for the need to resist peer pressure in order to do God’s pleasure. Peer pressure comes in many forms and across all ages. It is the pressure to conform to this world, while the call of God is that we are transformed by the renewing of our mind (Romans 12:1-2).
We cannot afford to yield to every suggestion that we hear no matter how good-intentioned the source is.
Peter who was a good buddy of Jesus told him to forget about the idea of going to the cross to die (Mark 8:31-33). But Jesus put sentiment aside and said to Peter: get behind me Satan. He was not going to make a choice to avoid pain but to do the will of God, no matter the cost.
What influences our hearts influences our life. So we need reject the wrong influence and embrace the right.
The heart has its desire, ambition and motivation. Understanding these three will help us to understand our heart and how to avoiding evil influence on it.
Out of the heart comes evil desires, the bible says (Matthew 15:19). The bible says that the heart of man is desperately wicked, who can know it (Jeremiah 17:8)? We have desires because of our innate encoding. Our desires is based on our innate wiring.
The sinful heart, is wired with sinful desires; which finds output in the evil deeds. But God can purify our desires, so that we want what he wants. That is what it means to be in union with God, to be one after God’s heart (Acts 13:22).
Desires do not have to have reasons, but that doesn’t make them right, desires are potent because of their ability to circumnavigate the reasoning and get hooked on the will. All medically wrong addiction operate this way. These are desires gone haywire, putting the owners in bondage. Paul said that: everything is lawful for me but I will not be put in bondage to any (1Corinthians 6:12, 10:23).
From the base of desire we have motivation. This is where the reasoning comes in, the imagination and analysis. Your motivation determines what moves you or not.
They determine what you are susceptible to. The temptation of Jesus was a check on his motivations (Luke 4:1-14). The devil taunted him: if you are the son of God, turn stone into bread,… jump from a height. Jesus proved that he was motivated by the word of God, by the will of God, and not by a desire to prove himself to anyone. The bible talked about the thoughts and intent of the heart which lies in the realm of motivation (Hebrews 4:12) why we do what we do.
Ambition is what drives you. It is located in the will component of your soul, while desire is locate in the emotion component of your soul, and motivation in the mind component.
There is something called inordinate ambition. That is an ambition not amenable to the will of God.
The bible says we should do nothing from selfish ambition but regarding others as more significant that we are (Philippians 2:1-11).
Paul said that some people proclaim Christ out of selfish ambition and not because they love him (Philippians n), but they use his name as a platform to get themselves noticed. It was all about them. The bible also talks about selfish ambition being of the heart (James 3:14). Being motivated by service cancels out selfish ambition in our lives.
Motivation is about what we have seen in the past while ambition is what we want to see in the future. It is about the destination we want to arrive at.
The bible says that the law of the Lord is perfect converting the soul. Since the will, emotion and mind are components of the soul, they need to be converted, they need the software on which they run changed, upgraded, aligned with the Spirit of God, become united with God, connected to his essence. James wrote that we need to take in the engrafted word of God which is able to save our soul (James 1:21).
The more we interact with the word the better the reformation of our heart components of the desire, motivation, and ambition to align with God. That is when we have positive desires (passion for God), motivation (principles of God) and ambition (purpose of God).
- John 11:45-53, “Made-Up Minds, Hardened Hearts” (ezracommentary.wordpress.com)
- The Consolation of Israel – What Consolation is it to You? (fellowshiproom.org)
- Maranatha Come Lord Jesus! (thepassionists.org)