Getting the Right Counsel :
(1 Kings 12:1-15)
In this lesson we are going to look at an Old Testament passage that concerns a king of Israel and getting wise counsel. Everyone needs counsel and especially teenagers. Sometimes we are afraid to ask for counsel and many times we are just simply to proud to ask for counsel, both of which get us into trouble. We should always be desirous of good counsel even in situations where we do not think that we need it. As you may have already discovered when you think you don’t need it is usually when you need it the most.
The important thing in getting counsel is to get the right counsel. As we will see in this lesson there is a right counsel and a wrong counsel, and we must be careful in determining which is which.
1 Kings 12:1-15
What is happening in this passage is that Solomon has died and Rehoboam is reigning over Israel. Jeroboam and all of Israel come to Rehoboam and ask him to lighten up the yoke that his father had put on them (Solomon had put a levy on them 1 Kings 5:13). Rehoboam’s answer was for them to depart and in 3 days he would answer Jeroboam and Israel (verse 5).
In verses 6-11 we see that Rehoboam gets counsel from the old men that stood before his father Solomon and he got counsel from some young men that he grew up with. The counsel from the old men was to serve Israel and they would serve him. The counsel from the young men was to make their burdens much heavier.
In verses 11-15 we see that Rehoboam rejects the counsel of the old men and chooses the counsel of the young men. As a result of this decision Israel refuses to follow him and he eventually looses the kingdom to Jeroboam. (see rest of the chapter)
Let us look at some spiritual applications from this passage that we can apply to ourselves :
1) It is always wise to seek counsel (Proverbs 1:5)
- Rehoboam started out good in verse 5. He told them to come back in 3 days. This means that he was not going to make the decision in a hurry. This is a good practice for us any time that we have to make important decisions we should give it some time and get good counsel.
2) Getting counsel is very important to making the right decisisons.
Proverbs 11:14 (The easiest way to fall is to not get counsel)
Proverbs 15:22 (Without counsel our purposes are disappointed)
Proverbs 20:18 (The way to have our purposes established is with counsel)
- From these verses we see that counsel is extremely important. It keeps us from falling and establishes our purposes. Everyone has planned something or had expectations about something that did not happen the way that we wanted to. Had we gotten some counsel things might have been different.
3) There is a right counsel and a wrong counsel.
- In this case the right counsel was found with the old men and the wrong counsel was found with the young men. From this we can see a very important lesson we should not get our counsel from our friends that are our age only. Chances are they do not have the experience to give us good counsel.
- Note that the old men had stood before Solomon and he was the wisest man to ever live. They not only had their own experience but they also had the value of his wisdom.
4) There is a danger in following the wrong counsel (Psalms 33:10)
- Following the wrong counsel cost Rehoboam the kingdom. Following the wrong counsel will always have consequences. Remember that we reap what we sow (Galatians 6:7).
How do we know what is the right counsel :
Many times we may find ourselves in the same position as Rehoboam with some people telling us one thing and some other people telling us something totally different. So the question becomes how do we know which counsel is right?
The best way to know what counsel is right is to see which counsel matches the word of God (Proverbs 19:21 & 21:30). If anyone gives you counsel that is contrary to the word of God you can guarantee that is the wrong counsel. Now the problem with this is that you are going to have to spend some time in God’s word to know whether the counsel you are receiving is scriptural or not. Now if you have not been saved very long or do not know much Bible it is always wise to get your counsel from your pastor or someone who will back up what they are telling you with the word of God so you can see it for yourself.
Remember that the Lord Jesus Christ is the best Counselor that has ever been or will ever be, that is his name. Isaiah 9:6
Getting the Right Counsel : Handout
(1 Kings 12:1-15)
1) Was Rehoboam wise to seek counsel? Give a verse to prove your answer.
2) Why should getting counsel be so important to us? Give some verses to prove this.
3) Which counsel in this passage was the right counsel?
4) What can we learn from this as a young person?
5) What is the danger of the wrong counsel?
6) How do we know what is the right counsel? List some verses to go with your answer.
7) What is significant about Jesus being our counselor?