Pardon the use of a song title that while many have heard, and is popular among many, doesn't portray a message we would want to incorporate into our lives. But that's the point.
In 1 Kings this is a recurring theme (also in 2 Kings, but that's next week), and this theme sets the stage for the destruction of the Israelite nation. 1 Kings is a tough read, but it bears our study because while this "did again theme" is applied to a nation, it applies on an individual level for us all.
"And he did that which was evil in the sight of the LORD"
7 times in judges we come across this phrase. The pattern continues through 1 and 2 Samuel although we don't see the phrase worded exactly as it is above, then 1 and 2 Kings. 29 times that phrase is quoted in these two books alone. See the pattern.
2 short points.
1.to do evil in the sight of the Lord, means much more than just doing bad things. We all mess up, that's why the Bible focuses so intently on repentance-turning from what we want to what God wants. This phrase means openly and flagrantly disregarding what God say to or not do, easy enough right? But the consequences go beyond just what happens to us! An entire nation stumbled and fell. God's plan is that all would know the grace filled gift of His Son, but when we place our purpose and plans above His, the door of salvation is slammed in the face of those needing a Savior. God takes a dim view of sin, but His anger can be kindled when we disregard the eternal destiny of others. It's in the Bible, albeit OT, but it's there. And God is still the same God He was in the OT, He doesn't change.
2. To do evil in the sight of the Lord is often called sin, but it should be called SIN. All caps, no lower case letters to take away the depth of disobedience. To do evil is a premeditated act. Meaning there was a plan to do wrong and it was carried out.
We all have and still "sin and fall short of the glory of God". But we aren't left in this sinful state. God has provided through His Son Jesus Christ the power and ability to do things differently. Yes we mess up, but from a heart changed by God come plans for good which promote Kingdom living and purpose.
So we go from Oops I did it again and again and again and again, to, Oops I messed up. Now God search my heart and show me any evil that is there and help me glorify you and love others. This is the good news, the gospel! We are saved from not only the hell that contains the devil and his entourage, but the hell we create for ourselves here on earth.
These Kings obviously didn't take seriously the promise made to their ancestor Abraham way back in Genesis and look what happened. Will we?