Be Not Wise In Your Own Eyes

"When Solomon was old his wives turned away his heart after other gods, and his heart was not wholly true to the Lord his God."

1 Kings 11:4 is one of the saddest verses in the Bible. Solomon, a man who was endowed with wisdom like no other human in history, a man through whom Israel reached the height of its dynasty, is now humiliated in the annals of time–his folly forever etched into God’s abiding word: Solomon turned away his heart after other gods and his heart was not wholly true to the Lord.

Abandoning Spirit-wrought wisdom, Solomon listened instead to the advice of his fleshly impulses. The same man who instructed his son, “the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom” is now found to be a man failing to heed his own words. God had instructed Israel, “You shall not enter into marriage with [foreigners] for surely they will turn away your heart after other gods” (1 Kings 11:2). Instead of fearing the Lord and submitting to His law, Solomon took for himself many foreign wives (hundreds of them!). 

He thought he would be ok. "I’ll be fine," he said to himself. "They won’t turn my heart away. After all, I’m the king of Israel! I’ll turn their hearts to Yahweh." Solomon believed his loyalty to God was intact despite his rejection of God's command. For years, he continued on as king, engaging in the worship rituals of Israel. He still offered sacrifices. He still prayed. He still went to the temple. But ever so subtly his heart began to drift…until eventually Solomon began to join his foreign wives in their pagan worship. 

The Apostle Paul reminds us, “the foolishness of God is wiser than human wisdom.” Where God’s command seems unnecessary, true wisdom believes that the Lord is wiser than our best reasoning. So we should trust God even when it seems silly or overboard. He always knows best. 

Where God’s command seems unnecessary, true wisdom believes that the Lord is wiser than our best reasoning

Is there any area of your life where you are trusting in your own wisdom over God’s word? Perhaps you think that everything is okay, that your rebellion is not effecting you. Your life is still together. Your faith still appears vibrant. Solomon thought the same thing, but ever gradually his heart wandered. You cannot harbor worldly wisdom and be unaffected by it. Like AIDS it will eventually spread, taking over the good cells of your soul and leaving you utterly vulnerable to something so blatantly sinful that would’ve sworn you would never end up in the rebellion in which you find yourself.  Solomon likely never saw himself ending up in idolatry, but by compromising God’s command regarding who to marry, he eventually ended up in paganism. The final word on Solomon was that his heart was not wholly true to the Lord his God, as was the heart of David his father (1 Kings 11:4). 

You cannot harbor worldly wisdom and be unaffected by it. Like AIDS it will eventually spread, taking over the good cells of your soul and leaving you utterly vulnerable to something so blatantly sinful that would’ve sworn you would never end up in the rebellion in which you find yourself. 

Oh! That Solomon would’ve heeded his own exhortation, “Trust in the Lord will all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding…be not wise in your own eyes; fear the Lord, and turn away from evil” (Prov. 3:5-7). What will the final word be on your life in God’s history book? Today, submit yourself wholly to God. Trust his wisdom. Fear him. For, “the reward for humility and fear of the LORD is riches and honor and life" (Proverbs 22:4).