Saturday, March 11, 2017

Two Mother's of Solomon's Time

Women In The Days Of The Kings
"Two Mother's of Solomon's Time"

Two Mother's of Solomon's Time: "Give her the living child."

Key Scripture: 1 Kings 3:16-28

Pre Story: This story took place In the days of King Solomon of Israel. Solomon was the second son of David and Bathsheba. One of the most famous biblical stories of the outstanding wisdom of King Solomon. In this story, two women come to the king. We are not given their names. The text does this by referring to the first woman as “the one” and the second woman as "the other.”  Though we are not told their names, we are told that they are harlots. One of the things we notice is King Solomon is presented with what appears to be an unsolvable dispute. Here are two prostitutes living together who each gave birth to baby boys within three days of each other. Each mother told the same story.

The Story: Solomon faced a dilemma: Two women came before him claiming to be the mother of an infant son. Each woman was adamant the infant belonged to her. The one woman said, “Oh, my lord, this woman and I dwell in the same house; and I gave birth to a child while she was in the house. Then on the third day after I was delivered, this woman also gave birth; and we were alone; there was no one else with us in the house, only we two were in the house. And this woman’s son died in the night because she lay on it. And she arose at midnight, and took my son from beside me, while your maidservant slept, and laid it in her bosom, and laid her dead son in my bosom.
“When I rose in the morning to nurse my child, behold, it was dead; but when I looked at it closely, behold, it was not the child that I had borne.” But the other woman said, “No, the living child is mine, and the dead child is yours.” The first said, “No, the dead child is yours, and the living child is mine.” Thus they spoke before the king. Then the king said, “The one says, ‘This is my son that is alive, and your son is dead’; and the other says, ‘No, but your son is dead, and my son is the living one." The only evidence he had to go on was that of the social outcasts themselves.

In a dispute such as this, where there is no evidence or witness, King Solomon's solution is fascinating. After some deliberation, he called for a sword to be brought before him. The king, knowing real maternal instincts, Solomon called for a sword to split the child in two so both women could each be satisfied. So a sword was brought before the king. And the king said, “Divide the living child in two, and give half to the one, and half to the other.” 1 Kings 3:25

Then the woman whose son was alive said to the king, because her heart yearned for her son, “Oh, my lord, give her the living child, and by no means slay it.” But the other said, “It shall be neither mine nor yours; divide it.” Then the King answered and said, “Give the living child to the first woman, and by no means slay it; she is its mother.” And all Israel heard of the judgment which the king had rendered; and they stood in awe of the king, because they perceived that the wisdom of God was in him, to render justice.

The judgment of Solomon in this case greatly enhanced his reputation, for when the people of his kingdom heard of what had happened, “they saw that the wisdom of God was in him, to do judgment.” 1 Kings 3:28. Solomon in his wisdom indeed avoided the destruction of the subject matter of the dispute, namely the baby, and pronounced a true judgment, based on his profound knowledge of human nature.

The Place in God's Divine Plan: Solomon was concerned about these two women because God was concerned about them. God not only loved those two prostitute mothers, He also loved the little baby in this story. God dispatched His wisdom to Solomon to save the child.

The Victories: This incident demonstrates that God had given Solomon the wisdom he had requested as king. It proves that wisdom comes from God.

Lesson We Can Learn from their Legacy: The lesson in these two harlots story is the noble maternal affection displayed by the true mother. Although she was a prostitute, she retained a remnant of genuine worth. Unlike her baser companion, she was prepared for self-sacrifice and reminds us that down in the most sinful heart, feelings lie buried that grace can restore. These women were not living up to God’s ideals - yet He still loved them!