Posted by: arieliondotcom | April 22, 2013

Puzzle Pieces (1 Samuel 4)

Puzzle Pieces
1 Kings 4

There are a lot of people who will tell you the Bible is a fantasy. Then they will take a scrap of bone the size of their hand and build a 20-foot dinosaur skeleton made of plaster and theory, cover it with a colorful skin of conjecture and finish it with feathers and fables. Everything you have ever heard so-called scientists say about the age of the earth and dinosaurs are theories and guesses based on machines built to fit those theories and guesses.

In today’s Scripture there are lots of names and places. We enjoy narratives in the Bible but why are there so many lists of names of men and women dead for generations and towns and cities and monuments we never heard of? Because each one is a puzzle piece. Each one is part of a jigsaw puzzle box telling you the Bible is true.

This is the opposite of the scientists with huge constructions built on small guesses. These are actual men and women, places, boundaries and times so that the careful person, when landmarks and names are found can check with the puzzle cover and know they hold a piece of history not fantasy or theory.

Every name in this chapter is part of the outline of historic events that happened to these real people in the places they mention. And by their description we can tell where and when that was.

This is important because it gives us the perspective of the author. (We know for example Chapter 4 is written when Solomon who was a boy himself in the last chapter has a grown, married daughter of his own.) And it is important because Solomon was so incredibly wealthy we can’t imagine it.

For some reason, we easily believe in 20-foot dinosaurs. And Scripture describes some. A lizard taller than a tree is no problem. But tell someone who doesn’t believe the Bible that Solomon had more than 40,000 horses and they’ll tell you that’s crazy.

Why? That’s a puzzle piece, too. Because nobody really wants a 20-foot lizard that will eat them. It’s an innocent fantasy. But sooner or later everyone wants to be rich. And thinking about someone being incredibly richer than we will ever be and wiser than we will ever be hurts our pride. Especially when, that moment we admit it’s true, we must also accept the cause is the reality of GOD.

This chapter describes Solomon, King of Israel, being the wealthiest man who ever lived. Wealthier than the Pharaohs like Tut we like to think about. We know Tut believed in false gods. No threat there. But this chapter also describes, by name and territory, every official and province and landmark that prove Solomon was real. And his wisdom was real. And that wisdom was to know there is only One True GOD and that we are accountable to Him.

But there’s another level to the puzzle. There’s another image on the flip side of the box. Even wisdom has its limits. Although Solomon had everything any man could ever want including physical satisfaction, he fell for the very same simple trick the devil first used on the first humans. He wanted the one thing he was told he couldn’t have. Solomon knew the true GOD, loved and worshipped Him, and had the knowledge to write about Him. But in the end, wisdom could not overcome the stupidity of sin. And sex, the thing any ignorant animal (including 20-foot lizards) can do without thinking would be the downfall of the wisest man to ever live. Lies of the senses trump wisdom of the mind.

JESUS, hundreds of years after this chapter was written, will say that He is the Truth. This chapter shows the Bible is the key to the puzzle of Life. And JESUS is its borders. If only we would accept reality on His terms and live rather than our fragments and fantasies as the solution.

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