WISDOM FOR LIVING DAILY DEVOTIONAL
MAY 12, 2021
TOPIC: FOOLISH FONDNESS
BY T. O. BANSO
“And her sister Aholibah saw this; yet she was more corrupt in her foolish fondness than she, and in her harlotries she was more wanton than her sister in her harlotries” (Ezekiel 23:11 Amplified Bible).
I have just finished reading 1 Kings 11 and, again, I felt sober. I always feel like that each time I read the story especially verses 1-13. It amazes me that a man could have such wonderful opportunities of spiritual encounters and be so greatly favoured by God, yet later turn his back against God.
It makes me afraid that the fact that someone has built a mighty cathedral for God does not mean that he would continue to worship the same God. It does not mean that just as someone has built a magnificent Temple for God, he cannot go and build shrines and temples for other gods!
It does mean that each person must be careful and examine himself. “Examine yourselves as to whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Do you not know yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you? — unless indeed you are disqualified” ( 2 Corinthians 13:5 New King James Version).
It also means that the fact that someone loves the Lord today does not mean that he will love Him tomorrow. Jesus said that the Church of Ephesus had left her first love – love for Him (Revelation 2:4). That someone is on fire for the Lord today does not mean he will automatically continue to be.
The church of the Laodiceans became neither cold nor hot; it was lukewarm (Revelation 3:15). Many have fallen and even many more have fallen away. Let him who thinks that he stands, take heed lest he falls (1 Corinthians 10:12)
You must guard your heart with all diligence (Proverbs 4:23). You must ensure that only the love of God reigns in your heart. Don’t allow any lust for anything that God forbids. Beware of foolish fondness that will turn your heart against God and His Word. Foolishness proceeds from the heart (Mark 7:22).
Foolish fondness is lust and lust is “sinful longing; the inward sin which leads to the falling away from God (Easton’s Bible Dictionary). Lust is also a “desire for what is forbidden” and “the desire for things that are contrary to the will of God” (Nelson’s Illustrated Bible Dictionary). Guard your heart against this. It is foolish fondness to love what the Lord hates or desire what the Lord forbids.
1 Kings 11:1-2 says, “But King Solomon loved many foreign women, as well as the daughter of Pharaoh: women of the Moabites, Ammonites, Edomites, Sidonians, and Hittites — from the nations of whom the LORD had said to the children of Israel, ‘You shall not intermarry with them, nor they with you. Surely they will turn away your hearts after their gods.’ Solomon clung to these in love” (New King James Version).
This was foolish fondness, stupid affection, or sinful longing on the part of Solomon. If the Lord had forbidden something, he should not have loved it. When you begin to violate the Word of God, you have no control over how far you will go in your disobedience. As it has been rightly said, “Sin will take you farther than you want to go, keep you longer than you want to stay, and cost you more than you want to pay.” Avoid foolish fondness.
See how far Solomon went with disobedience to God once he started: “And he had seven hundred wives, princesses, and three hundred concubines; and his wives turned away his heart. For it was so, when Solomon was old, that his wives turned his heart after other gods; and his heart was not loyal to the LORD his God, as was the heart of his father David” ( 1 Kings 11:3-4 new King James Version). Foolish fondness!
Mark you, Solomon was the wisest man who ever lived. But wise people sometimes act foolishly. Solomon did. Of what use were the many wives and concubines he had? His foreign wives brought their foreign gods into Israel and, at his old age, he probably succumbed to the pressure they had been mounting on him to promote publicly and nationally the worship of their gods, which they had been doing privately. Therefore, Solomon acted more foolishly.
1 Kings 11:5-8 says, “For Solomon went after Ashtoreth the goddess of the Sidonians, and after Milcom the abomination of the Ammonites. Solomon did evil in the sight of the LORD, and did not fully follow the LORD, as did his father David. Then Solomon built a high place for Chemosh the abomination of Moab, on the hill that is east of Jerusalem, and for Molech the abomination of the people of Ammon. And he did likewise for all his foreign wives, who burned incense and sacrificed to their gods” New King James Version).
Did you see that? Solomon had built a magnificent Temple for God, which took him seven years to complete, and at its dedication, when the priests came out of the holy place, the cloud filled the Temple so that the priests could not continue ministering, for the glory of the LORD filled the house of the LORD (1 Kings 8:10-11). But Solomon later built high places for the foreign gods of his foreign wives.
Solomon behaved as if he didn’t know God, the God of Israel. The God who appeared to him early in his reign as king at Gibeon in a dream and gave him wisdom, understanding, riches, and honour (1 Kings 3:12-13). After Solomon had finished building the Temple and the royal palace and completed all he wanted to do, the LORD appeared to him the second time (1 Kings 9:2).
The consequence of Solomon’s foolish fondness, sinful longing, or the turning of his heart from the God of Israel, who had appeared to him twice was the division of the nation into two kingdoms during the reign of his successor, Rehoboam, his son, as God had promised in 1 Kings 11:11-13.
Beware of lusting after other gods. Beware of sinful longing to do what God forbids which will take you on an endless journey away from Him.
In Ezekiel 23, the prophet Ezekiel spoke the Word of the Lord concerning two harlots (spiritual harlots), Oholah and Oholibah, and how, despite the punishment that Oholah suffered for her harlotry, Oholibah became even more corrupt in her lust and harlotry. Samaria is Oholah, and Jerusalem is Oholibah (verse 4).
The LORD said in verse 11, “And her sister Aholibah saw this; yet she was more corrupt in her foolish fondness than she, and in her harlotries she was more wanton than her sister in her harlotries” (Amplified Bible). Did you see the phrase “foolish fondness”?
The sin of Israel and Judah (Oholah and Oholibah) was idolatry – forsaking God for other gods, lusting after idols. God said to Oholibah, “And because you have forgotten me and turned your back on me, says the Sovereign LORD, you must bear the consequences of all your lewdness and prostitution” (Ezekiel 23:35 New Living Translation).
Love the Lord; don’t love the world. “Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world — the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life — is not of the Father but is of the world. And the world is passing away, and the lust of it; but he who does the will of God abides forever” (1 John 2:15-17 New King James Version).
Love the Lord with all your heart, soul, and mind (Matthew 22:37; Mark 12:30; Luke 10:27). Don’t lust after the world. Don’t love the world; love the Word. Give no room for idols in your heart. Whatever comes before God in your life is your idol and you can’t worship your idol and worship God at the same time. David prayed, “O God, You know my foolishness; and my sins are not hidden from You” (Psalm 69:5 New King James Version).
Repent of your foolish fondness today.
If you are not born again, you need to give your life to Jesus now. I urge you to take the following steps: *Admit you are a sinner and you cannot save yourself and repent of your sins. *Confess Jesus as your Lord and Saviour. *Renounce your past way of life – your relationship with the devil and his works. *Invite Jesus into your life. *As a mark of seriousness to mature in the faith, start attending a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church. There they will teach you how to grow in the Kingdom of God.
Kindly say this prayer now: O Lord God, I come unto you today. I know I am a sinner and I cannot save myself. I believe that Jesus is the Son of God who died on the cross to save me and resurrected the third day. I repent of my sins and confess Jesus as my Lord and Saviour. I surrender my life to Jesus now and invite Him into my heart. By this prayer, I know I am saved. Thank you, Jesus, for saving me and making me a child of God.
I believe you have said this prayer from your heart. Congratulations! You will need to join a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church in your area where they will teach you how to live your new life in Christ Jesus. I pray that you flourish like the palm tree and grow like the cedar of Lebanon. May you grow into Christ in all things and become all God wants you to be. I will be glad to hear from you. The Lord be with you
PRAYER POINTS: I repent of my foolish fondness. Father, forgive me of any sinful longing in my heart. I shall love what the Lord loves and hate what He hates. I shall not love what the Lord forbids in Jesus’ name. Holy Spirit, help me not to forsake my love for God; help me not to become lukewarm. As for me and my family, we shall serve God to the end; we shall never serve Satan.
(For over 600 in-depth and powerful messages by T.O. Banso, visit www.cedarministry.org).
T. O. Banso is the President, Cedar Ministry International, Abuja, Nigeria.
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