Deciding . . .

Vol.5, No. 07 – March 8, 2020

Leadership in a Time of Crisis

And Rehoboam grew strong in Jerusalem and reigned. . . . and he did evil, for he did not set his heart to seek the Lord. –2 Chronicles 12:13-14

Sons of leaders are not always, what one expects.

Rehoboam, a son of Solomon, is a self-willed, godless leader. A leader like many business, political, and church leaders who learn nothing about the high cost of marginal living.

With just one insolent and swaggering word, King Rehoboam lost forever 80% of his empire . . . . “I am going to be tougher on you, not easier. My father used whips, but I will use leaded thongs.” All of his insane and suicidal history is written in our Bible, for the admonition and instruction of all hot-headed, ill-natured, and insolent-spoken men among ourselves. –Alexander Whyte

We do not find in Scripture that this man, in his youth, was malicious, cruel, or even possessed a root of bitterness. Yet something happened. Certain worthless scoundrels gathered about him and defied Rehoboam, the son of Solomon, when Rehoboam was young and irresolute, and could not withstand them (2 Chronicles 13:7).

Then for 17 years he was king (president, premier, CEO), from the age of 41. In the beginning, not everything was bad. Stability, piety, and prosperity abounded. His building operations took in 15 cities of Judah and Benjamin. He encouraged restoration of Temple worship. Interestingly, we read that four times Rehoboam and the people of Judah humbled themselves (12:6, 7, 12).

That is good news, is it not?

Religious traditions can become like the Christmas ornaments we placed on our trees in December. They are like mementos, little statues, china teacups – too good to use.

However, what is it that caused the dam to break for David’s grandson?

2 Chronicles 12:1 gives us a clue. When the rule of Rehoboam was established and he was strong, he abandoned the law of the Lord, and all Israel with him.

Often leaders, like people, and nations travel from the heights to the depths. Rehoboam established his kingdom, but not his heart. It is always impossible to please the Lord and still worship idols.

In our culture, there is a great amount of idol worship. We find it prevalent in the political climate of our day. It distorts truth. It substitutes a devious worldview in place of God’s absolute truths. The culture binds itself into an eisegetic mode, carrying opinions into their truths. Truth becomes situational ethics. Like Rehoboam, today’s culture is heading for tragedy. It seems as though it is coming quickly.

Look out!

Life Application

Personal disloyalty and defection from God is always tragic. The abandonment of a personal relationship with God always results in redirected worship.

Judah did what was evil in the sight of the Lord, and they provoked Him to jealousy with their sins that they committed, more than all that their fathers had done. For they also built for themselves high places and pillars and Asherim on every high hill and under every green tree, and there were also male cult prostitutes in the land. They did according to all the abominations of the nations that the Lord drove out before the people of Israel. –1 Kings 14:22-24

If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. –1 John 1:9

Leadership in a time of crisis is always available—if we would but ask our Almighty God!

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Written by Dr. Larry Lightner

March 8, 2020

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