“As for you, go back home. When you set foot in your city, the boy will die. All Israel will mourn for him and bury him. He is the only one belonging to Jeroboam who will be buried, because he is the only one in the house of Jeroboam in whom the Lord , the God of Israel, has found anything good. (1 Kings 14:12-13 NIV)
King Jeroboam, once in power, was concerned to maintain his power. In doing so he turned away from God and towards idol worship. His disregard for the Lord who had put him in his position was to have devastating consequences for his lineage.
The fourteenth chapter of 1 Kings outlined the consequences in a fascinating encounter between Jeroboam’s wife and the prophet Ahijah. As their son was sick, now Jeroboam wanted to get some support from God. It is not unusual for people who had rejected God to turn to him when things go wrong. It is no surprise either, that Jeroboam looks to the same man who had prophesied about his ascent to rule Israel. His scheme to get the support through his wife in disguise, however, indicates how he knew the degree to which he had gone a long way in the wrong direction since the encounter with Ahijah.
So God ensures the ageing Ahijah whose sight is failing can see through the subterfuge and get to the heart of the matter. Ahijah was given the insight and foresight to announce to Jeroboam the consequences of his disobedience. Even in the light of the previous occasion when Jeroboam had his hand withered, his defiance of God would have repercussions that would mire his name and legacy in blood, death and disaster.
Every individual is responsible for their actions, but those actions can still have an impact on the generations to come. Failure to heed the word of the Lord may not just affect you. It may not even be left to your family. It’s important for those reasons to be mindful to remember the word of the Lord.
For His Name’s Sake
C. L. J. Dryden