The Story:This verse, while spoken to Rehoboam, seems almost like a concession on Solomon’s part. He is leaving his son a vast inheritance; he also wants very much to leave him the benefits of wisdom, in the hope that Rehoboam will be wise and leave wisdom as well as an inheritance for his own children. But – and we can almost hear Solomon sighing – even though his son seems bent on living “under the sun”, he will leave him wisdom anyway. For the wisdom of the wise benefits even those who do not believe in absolute truth or transcendent values. They who are wise – who live under the heavens – must always strive to leave wisdom behind, even though that wisdom may not be appreciated, and even though it may be squandered by those who use it without acknowledging its source.
The Structure: In a secular age such as ours, when people seem, not merely indifferent, but hostile to the things of the Lord, we might feel inclined to withhold His blessings from those who scorn His Name. But we do not have this option. Those who know the redemption which is in Christ Jesus must reflect the love of God to a lost and dying world, to whatever extent we may give them, and not withhold any of His blessings (Matt. 5.43-48). Here again Solomon’s wisdom previews the grace of God in Jesus Christ,Who, when He departed this earth, left no material inheritance for the generations to come, but the greatest blessing of all: “Father, forgive them.”
Do you ever feel inclined to withhold the love of God from unbelieving friends or acquaintances? How can you overcome that temptation?
Each week’s studies in our Scriptorium column are available in a free PDF form, suitable for personal or group use. For this week’s study, “Telling it Slant (1),” simply click here.
T. M. Moore
Scripture taken from the New King James Version. © Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.