Season 2, Episode 2
For Friday, August 14, 2015
“Go Tell Jeroboam”
HOST: Wade Webster
King Jeroboam did many things contrary to the will of God. Chief among his sins was making wholesale changes to the worship of God. As we go to worship each Sunday, we must examine our own worship to make sure that we are worshipping God in spirit and in Truth.
When Jeroboam’s son was sick, he sent to inquire of Ahijah the prophet what would become of the lad (1 Kings 14:1-3). Like so many people today, the wicked king had no use for God or His servants until he needed something.
Fearing that a faithful seer might not want to help an unfaithful sovereign, Jeroboam sent his wife in a disguise to the prophet (1 Kings 14:2). Although the prophet was old and couldn’t see, the disguise didn’t work. After all, nothing was hidden from the eyes of the God that Ahijah the prophet served. In the book of Hebrews, we read, “Neither is there any creature that is not manifest in his sight: but all things are naked and opened unto the eyes of him with whom we have to do” (Heb 4:13).
When the prophet heard the footsteps of the wife of Jeroboam, he said, “Come in, thou wife of Jeroboam” (1 Kings 14:6). Can you imagine how surprised she must have been at his salutation? The same prophet who had years earlier predicted Jeroboam’s rise to power (1 Kings 14:2), now predicted his fall. Jeroboam had done evil in the sight of God and was now going to reap what he had sown. He had provoked God to anger and was now going to feel the heat of God’s wrath. He had cast God behind his back and was now going to be cast off (1 Kings 14:9-10; cf. Neh. 9:26; Psa. 50:17; Ezek. 23:35; Rom. 1:28; 3:18). Although Jeroboam did many things contrary to the will of God, his most grievous transgressions were the changes that he made to the worship of God (1 Kings 14:9; 1 Kings 12:25-33). In this study, we want to consider four areas where he changed the worship of God. As we consider these changes, we should examine our own worship to make sure that we are not guilty of doing the same.
First, Jeroboam Changed The Aim Of Worship. Jeroboam changed the aim of worship from God to golden calves (1 Kings 12:26-28). In his pride, he even went so far as to suggest that the golden calves had brought the people out of Egyptian bondage. As you may recall, Aaron had earlier provoked God to anger in this same way (Ex. 32:1-6, 25-29).
Today, many are making the same mistake that Jeroboam made. They are changing the aim of worship from God to man. In the fourth chapter of John, we read, “But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him. God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth” (John 4:23-24). More and more today, worship is directed at pleasing men rather than at pleasing God (John 12:43).
Second, Jeroboam Changed The Address Of Worship. Jeroboam changed the address of worship from Jerusalem to Dan & Bethel (1 Kings 12:26-29). As you recall, Jeroboam was afraid for the people to go to Jerusalem to worship, lest their hearts turn again to Rehoboam.
In like manner today, many are changing the address of worship. They are trying to glorify God outside of the one place that He has designated (Eph. 3:21). As you know, the address is no longer the city of Jerusalem (John 4:19-21), but rather, the church founded in Jerusalem (Isa. 2:2-3; 1 Tim. 3:15).
Third, Jeroboam Changed The Attendants Of Worship. Jeroboam changed the attendants or those who served in worship from the sons of Levi to the lowest of the people (1 Kings 12:31). “Whosoever would,” he consecrated to be a priest (1 Kings 12:33-34).
Today, many are still changing the attendants of worship. For example, they are using women in positions that God has designated for men. As you know, there are some places where only men can lead. To Timothy, Paul wrote, “I will therefore that men pray every where, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and doubting” (1 Tim. 2:8). The Greek word translated as “men” in this passage is not a generic word that could be used for “people” in general. It is a specific word referring to males. In the context, Paul continued his discussion by writing, “Let the woman learn in silence with all subjection. But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence. For Adam was first formed, then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression (1 Tim. 2:11-15). Some would argue that this prohibition is no longer binding on us today because culture has changed. However, this prohibition is not based on culture. It is based on two things that transcend culture – the order of creation and transgression. It never will be the case that the woman was formed before the man. It never will be the case that Adam was the first to eat of the forbidden fruit. Since this is the case, it never will be permissible for the woman to teach or to usurp the authority of the man
Fourth, Jeroboam Changed The Anniversary Of Worship. Jeroboam changed the anniversary of worship from the seventh month and the fifteenth day to the eighth month and the fifteenth day (1 Kings 12:32-33; cf. Lev. 23:33-44).
As you know, there are many today who are doing the same thing that Jeroboam did. Some have changed the anniversary of worship from the first day of the week to the last day of the week, while others have changed the commemoration of the Lord’s death from a weekly observance to a monthly, quarterly, or yearly observance (Acts 20:7; 1 Cor. 16:1-2).
The message that Jeroboam’s wife was to deliver to her husband, needs to be delivered to many today. Those who provoke God to anger and cast Him behind their backs will one day be cast into outer darkness (Mt. 25:30; Mk. 9:45, 47). Let’s make sure as we get ready to worship that our worship matches up to the pattern given in the New Testament.
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