Solomon was deeply attached to these women and loved them. 1 Kings 11:2
1,000 of them, to be precise. One. Thousand. None of them knew or followed God. All were intent on their own way, turning a man of God away from God. And Solomon loved them deeply (1 Ki. 11:1-13). That disturbs me.
Lets jump past the part where it’s possible to love and have attachment to that many people. That’s a different blog post; one that might possibly target an audience of teenage boys. That’s disturbing, too, but it’s not what I’m talking about right now. I always struggled a bit with the fact that Solomon had more wisdom than sands on the seashore (1 Ki. 4:29-34), and still somehow took for himself 1,000 women. Kind of the same way I struggled with the fact that David is called a man after God’s own heart, and he committed adultery and killed a man to cover his tracks. Wisdom and 1,000 women? Passion for God and adultery and murder? It seems ironic, even unlikely, doesn’t it?
Solomon had it all – God’s blessing, God’s wisdom, influence, purpose, giftedness, wealth, honor. And none of it was enough, because He was looking for fulfillment in those things rather than in God Himself. He said he loved God, and I’m sure he believed it, but the truth was that he loved himself a little bit more.
People say things like this about their own failures: I didn’t love her! I don’t want that. It didn’t mean anything! I don’t know why I did that. This may sound harsh, but, yes, you do love her (or, at least what she represents.) Yes, it does mean something. If we didn’t love that thing more than we love God, we never would’ve gone there in the first place. Our hearts are divided; other things in our lives take priority over God. Things like self-gratification, worldly success, relationships, pride, and the freedom to choose our own way. It’s ironic and unlikely, but a problem common to us all.
Here’s what Solomon teaches me: you can have a wise and discerning heart, and still choose sin 1,000 times. It happens when you love and are deeply attached to things other than God.