Christ Triumphant


June—Kings and Prophets

Prosperity Sometimes Causes Spiritual Downfall, June 1

Then I looked on all the works that my hands had wrought, and on the labour that I had laboured to do: and, behold, all was vanity and vexation of spirit, and there was no profit under the sun. Ecclesiastes 2:11. CTr 159.1

Solomon wrote the book of Proverbs, but after a time his wisdom became mingled with chaff. Whence came the chaff? After a manhood of such glorious promise, a change came in Solomon's history. He did not continue true to his purity and allegiance to God. He broke through the barriers that God had erected to preserve His people from idolatry. The Lord had singled out Israel as a nation, making them the depositories of sacred truth to be given to the world. But Solomon cherished pride of political powers. He encouraged alliances with pagan kingdoms.... CTr 159.2

In the early part of his reign, Solomon was visited by the queen of Sheba. She came to see and hear his wisdom, and after she had heard him she said that the half had not been told her. But his wise and strictly just reign changed. He who had known God and the truth made a great outlay of means to please his godless wives. He made expensive gardens. God's money, which should have been held sacred to help the poor among the people, as God directed, was absorbed by the king's ambitious projects. It was diverted from its original channel.... The suffering ones were not given houses and food and clothing as God had specified they should be given. By his extravagant outlay of means Solomon sought to please his wives and glorify himself. Thus he used the means that had been abundant and brought a heavy taxation upon the poor.... CTr 159.3

His moral efficiency was gone, as the power is gone from a paralytic. He made an effort to incorporate light with darkness, to serve God and mammon. He felt at liberty to experiment in wild license. But Belial and purity could not mingle, and the course the king pursued brought its own penalty. He separated from God, and the knowledge of God departed from him.... CTr 159.4

People who have the use of money are to learn a lesson from the history of Solomon. Those who have a competence are in continual danger of thinking that money and position will ensure them respect and they need not be so particular. But self-exaltation is but a bubble. By misusing the talents given him, Solomon apostatized from God. When God gives people prosperity, they are to beware of following the imaginations of their own hearts, lest they endanger the simplicity of their faith and deteriorate in religious experience.—Manuscript 40, 1898. CTr 159.5