Solomon was an exceedingly wise man. 1 Kings 3
tells us that his wisdom came directly from the LORD. And yet, Solomon was exceedingly foolish when it came to women and that was in direct disobedience of the LORD’s commands.
First, like the patriarchs and his father, King David, Solomon engaged in polygamy. He had many wives and concubines. He did not follow God’s original plans for marriage that we find in the Genesis 2 account. Instead, he followed the examples of the surrounding pagan nations and took many wives. The Bible records the negative consequences of more than one wife in multiple accounts. Polygamy never seemed to turn out well for the men or the women.
Second, the wives that Solomon took were foreign women who worshiped pagan gods. The LORD had warned them numerous times to drive them out of the land completely and not to intermarry with them. But they did not obey and it led to Israel’s downfall. Deuteronomy 17:16-17
records a warning for the future kings of Israel: “The king, moreover, must not acquire great numbers of horses for himself or make the people return to Egypt to get more of them, for the LORD has told you, ‘You are not to go back that way again.’ He must not take many wives, or his heart will be led astray. He must not accumulate large amounts of silver and gold.”
It sounds like Solomon ignored that warning in every way. Solomon’s first foreign wife was a princess from Egypt. He also acquired horses and chariots from Egypt, the very land Israel was commanded to have nothing to do with ever again. He continued to acquire foreign wives and concubines until he had 1,000 women. What started with just one foreign wife became a slippery slide into full blown idolatry. He no longer worshiped the LORD alone but followed the gods of his wives. As a result, Solomon’s kingdom eventually divided and then fell into captivity.
The WORD about women regarding Solomon’s wives is that wives have a profound impact on the spiritual life of their husbands-for better or for worse. Besides the obvious warning to avoid polygamous relationships, Solomon’s story reminds us of the importance of believers marrying other believers. Husbands and wives will influence each other spiritually. Sisters, as wives, we have the opportunity to encourage our husbands in the Lord and bolster their faith. Let’s walk beside our husbands in faith rather than leading them astray. ReflectWhat are some ways modern wives lead their husbands away from the Lord? What are some ways modern wives can positively influence their husband’s faith?PrayLord, I know that your plan for marriage is for our good. Help me to be a wife who builds up my husband’s faith instead of weakening or destroying it. Amen.