The Rise and Fall of Jeroboam

Text: 1 Kings 12:20

Jeroboam was the first king over the northern tribes when the kingdom divided. There were reasons why he was chosen. There were also reasons why he would later fall. There are lessons that we can learn from the rise and fall of Jeroboam.

Before His Rise

  • He was a valiant warrior (1 Kings 11:28) – brave, courageous, willing to risk death; qualities we must have (1 Peter 3:14)
  • He was industrious (1 Kings 11:28) – hard-working, as we must be in secular work (Ecclesiastes 9:10) and in the Lord’s work (1 Corinthians 15:58)
  • He was Solomon’s servant (1 Kings 11:26, 28) – willing to submit to authority; we must as well to parents (Ephesians 6:1), masters (Ephesians 6:5), and leaders (1 Peter 2:13-15)

During His Rebellion

  • By God’s decree (1 Kings 11:29-31) – God’s people should not be “given to change” (Proverbs 24:21); not rebellious for the sake of rebellion; any refusal to submit to leaders must be on the basis of God’s word (1 Peter 2:15-16; Acts 5:29)
  • Because of Solomon’s sin (1 Kings 11:33) – this should have been a warning; we must learn from the sins of others (1 Corinthians 10:1-6)
  • God’s promise (1 Kings 11:37-38) – promise to be with him and build him an enduring house was conditional (listen, walk, do, observe); God’s promises to us are conditional as well (Hebrews 4:1, 11)
  • Solomon’s persecutions (1 Kings 11:40) – Solomon sought to kill Jeroboam, just as Saul sought to kill David; God’s people should expect persecution (2 Timothy 3:12); the more wicked the ruler, the greater the likelihood and severity

He is Made King

  • Foolishness of Rehoboam – he had a chance to preserve the kingdom (1 Kings 12:1, 4-5); but he refused to serve the people (1 Kings 12:7-8) and valued the advice of peers over the wisdom of elders (1 Kings 12:13-15)
  • The people made Jeroboam king (1 Kings 12:20)

His Fall

  • He corrupted worship (1 Kings 12:28-31) – motivated by fear (1 Kings 12:26-27); appealed to convenience (1 Kings 12:28)
  • He tried to persecute God’s prophet (1 Kings 13:1-4) – truth is a threat to wicked rulers
  • He refused to learn from his sins – realized he was wrong (1 Kings 13:4-7), but did not repent (1 Kings 13:33); we have sinned in the past, we must repent and not go back to the same sins (2 Peter 2:20)
  • God’s promise was revoked – the enduring house (1 Kings 11:38) was destroyed (1 Kings 13:34; 15:25-30); if we are unfaithful, we will lose our salvation (Hebrews 10:35-39)

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