Today's devotion from 1 Kings 4.
Welcome to the golden age of Israel. 1 Kings 4 details the extent of blessing on the people of God when they walk with God. That's really all this chapter is about. The descriptive phrases paint an unmistakable picture. The nation was united. The organization was strong. The leaders were competent. The population was numerous. Former enemies were now forced into servitude. The provisions were bountiful. The king was truly blessed. So blessed, in fact, that other kings were forced to marvel at the grace of God evident in Israel.
Now, don't be mistaken, there were issues in the land. However, the purpose of this section of the Kings is to encourage and inspire. The author's intention is to communicate the extent of God's blessing on His people. However, we cannot forget or overlook the importance of this description. This is not just about the blessings enjoyed by a people. This account outlines and highlights the glory of God.
When God blesses and moves within the community of believers, nonbelievers will take note. Through God's blessing on Solomon all manner of kingdoms and peoples flock to Israel to experience his wisdom in person. Now, imagine what awaited them. In the previous chapter we read of Solomon's great love of God and the overflow of that love in the worship of God. When these nonbelievers came to Israel, they got to experience much more than Solomon's wisdom. They saw an active and vibrant community, the generous hand of God, and result of His blessing.
When God blesses you, it is not only for your benefit. Your story of salvation isn't just beneficial to you, but to everyone who hears it. When God's hand rests upon your life, others can see His powerful presence. When God's peace comforts you in times of trouble, it is a witness for others who are seeking the same. In blessing or suffering, your life is not just about it. It is a canvas upon which the grace and glory of God is vividly displayed for the world to see.