Sins of Silence
I suppose that many of us have heard that phrase before.
It appears that the people of Israel heard something similar. Or perhaps they really didn’t care about the issue anyway which might have accounted for their actions—or the lack thereof.
In any case, King Solomon loved his ladies and gave in to their every whim—including the ones that dictated that they worship their own gods. We already know that he shouldn’t have married these women in the first place (1 Kings 11:2) but he not only allowed them to worship as they pleased, but he also “aided and abetted” their worship by building altars to some of the most detestable of their gods (11:7, 8). To add insult to injury, he participated in the worship of these gods (11:5).
And the people followed him, apparently without protest—after all Solomon was “City Hall.” There is no Biblical record that anyone said anything about Solomon’s choices. Where were the prophets, the priests, the righteous people who were trying to follow the Lord?
“…his heart was not fully devoted to the Lord his God…so Solomon did evil in the eyes of the Lord…The Lord became angry with Solomon because his heart had turned away from the Lord, the God of Israel” (11:4, 6, 9).
Because of Solomon’s sin the kingdom that he had brought to such heights because of God’s blessing, would be marked with violence and eventually torn out the hands of his successors and broken into pieces.
Solomon was wrong. But so were those who said nothing in the face of the wrong “City Hall” did. Perhaps it is impossible to change the minds of the powerful, of the majority. But that shouldn't stop us from trying. James 4:17 reminds us: “Anyone, then who knows the good he ought to do and doesn’t do it, sins.”
And, like in the case of Israel of old, we will have to own the consequences of our actions—or lack thereof.