Ellen G. White Writings

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Christ Triumphant, Page 157

Exercise Care in Forming Friendships, May 30

If any of you is lacking in wisdom, ask God, who gives to all generously and ungrudgingly, and it will be given you. James 1:5, NRSV.

All the wisdom that people possess is God's gift, and He can and will impart wisdom to every person who asks it of Him in faith. Solomon sought wisdom from God, and it was given him in large measure. But how did the universe of heaven look upon him when he perverted that wisdom and employed God's great and holy gift to exalt himself? God chose him to build the temple, but how he perverted the sacred trust! He leagued himself with idolatrous nations. Thus he, who at the dedication of the temple had prayed that their hearts might be undividedly given to the Lord, himself began to separate his heart from God. He imperiled his soul's interest by the formation of friendships with the Lord's enemies.

What carefulness should be exercised in the formation of friendship! Companionship with the world will surely lower the standard of religious principle. Solomon's heathen wives turned away his heart from God. His finer sensibilities were blunted, and he became hardhearted, for he lost his sympathy for humankind and his love for God. His conscience was seared, and his rule became tyranny.

Solomon prepared the way for his own ruin when he sought for wise artisans from other nations to build the temple. God had been the educator of His people, and He designed that they should stand in His wisdom, and with His imparted talents they should be second to none. If they had the clean hands, the pure heart, and the noble, sanctified purpose, the Lord would communicate to them His grace. But Solomon looked to worldlings instead of God, and he found his supposed strength to be weakness. He brought to Jerusalem the leaven of the evil influences that were perpetuated in polygamy and idolatry. It was no question as to who made Israel to sin.

Although Solomon afterward repented, his repentance could not abolish the idolatrous practices that he had brought into the nation. We shall individually transmit an inheritance of either good or evil. The silver of Tarshish and the gold of Ophir were obtained by Solomon at a terrible expense, even the betrayal of sacred trusts. The evil communications with heathen nations corrupted good manners. When the Lord's people turn from the God of all wisdom, and look to people who love not God, in order to obtain wisdom and arrive at decisions, the Lord will allow them to follow that wisdom that is not from above but from beneath.—Manuscript 44, 1894 (The General Conference Bulletin, February 25, 1895).

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