Trying to Make Bad Behavior Look Good
2Chr. 8:11 Solomon brought Pharaoh’s daughter from the city of David to the house that he had built for her, for he said, “My wife shall not live in the house of King David of Israel, for the places to which the ark of the LORD has come are holy.”
Solomon had a problem with women. He married far too many wives and married outside of Israel. This sin is especially difficult to accept for he marries Pharoah’s daughter. This means that he developed ties back to Egypt, the very place from which God had freed his people. This man of wisdom — Solomon — proved to be very foolish when it came to his own personal relationships.
At the same time he realized that there was something improper about this relationship. He saw that the places where God resided were holy and there was something “unholy” about an Egyptian woman in the midst of God’s dwelling. Trying to make himself look better he built a separate house for her to keep her away from God’s holy presence.
I believe that Solomon was going a long distance to try and justify his behavior. What he had done was clearly in disobedience to God but somehow he was justifying that if he didn’t contaminate God’s holy place with his wife’s presence, he was going to be okay. He goes out of his way to build her a separate house so that he could boast about the fact that she was not living in the dwelling place of the presence of God.
Instead of addressing the real root of his personal problem, Solomon was trying to make himself look good.
This practice continues today and quite frequently among “Christians.” When our concern becomes focused on what others will think of us, rather than our personal relationship before God we will do anything to cover up bad behavior and try to make things look good. Somehow we soothe our conscience when we keep up a good front, but underneath there is a decay which will ultimately prove to be destructive.
Solomon’s love of women had horrible consequences for all of God’s people. If we refuse to deal with the real issues and continue to try and make things look good, then we, too, will have to live with the consequences. God never told us to try to look good for the world…he told us to love him and love our neighbors…and that requires honesty and transparency which includes repentance and forgiveness.
Lord, please help me to be honest and transparent. Amen.