Summary: A real Mother shows true devotion to her children.
The Heart of a Mother
Text: 1 Kings 3:16-28
1. Today we celebrate the gift of Motherhood. Mothers do many great things for us.
a. Mothers teach us about foresight: "Make sure you wear clean underwear in case you’re in an accident."
b. Mothers teach us about logic: "If you fall out of that tree and break your neck, don’t come crying to me."
c. Mothers teach us about maturity: "Eat your vegetables or you’ll never grow up."
d. Mothers teach us about religion: "You better pray that comes out of the carpet."
e. Mothers teach us about time travel: "If you don’t straighten up, I’m going to knock you into the middle of next week!"
f. Mothers teach us about contradictions: "Shut your mouth and eat your dinner!"
g. Mothers teach us about contortionism: "Will you look at the dirt on the back of your neck?"
h. Mothers teach us about perseverance: "You are going to sit here until you eat every last piece of that broccoli."
i. Mothers teach us about genetics: "You’re just like your father."
j. Mothers teach us about the weather: "It looks like a tornado swept through your room."
k. Mothers teach us about the circle of life: "I brought you into this world, and I can take you out."
2. Most of all, mothers teach us what it means to love.
3. Read 1 Kings 3:16-28
Proposition: A real Mother shows true devotion to her children.
I. A Real Mother Values Her Children (16-20)
A. Two Prostitutes
1. This story traditionally shows the wisdom of Solomon. However, it also shows the difference between a real mother and one who simply pretends to be real.
2. The text begins by saying "two women who were harlots came to the king, and stood before him. And one woman said, "O my lord, this woman and I dwell in the same house; and I gave birth while she was in the house."
a. Despite being prohibited by law, prostitution was apparently tolerated among the Israelites.
b. Solomon’s willingness to hear the case of the two prostitutes in here fits in well with his image as a “just king" (Matthews, V. H., Chavalas, M. W., & Walton, J. H. 2000. The IVP Bible background commentary : Old Testament (electronic ed.) . InterVarsity Press: Downers Grove, IL).
c. However, it also shows that a child is a gift from God no matter what the circumstances may be.
d. Ps. 127:3 Behold, children are a heritage from the LORD, The fruit of the womb is a reward.
3. Then we’re told "Then it happened, the third day after I had given birth, that this woman also gave birth. And we were together; no one was with us in the house, except the two of us in the house. And this woman’s son died in the night, because she lay on him."
a. The fact that there was no one else in the house tells us that the only who to blame was the mother.
b. She is charged with being a careless mother, but there is no one around to verify the story (Konkel, NIV Application Commentary: 1 & 2 Kings, 82).
4. The other prostitute says, "she arose in the middle of the night and took my son from my side, while your maidservant slept, and laid him in her bosom, and laid her dead child in my bosom."
a. Now both women claim the living child as their own.
b. Without other witnesses or evidence, Solomon must devise some way to solve the case. —New American Commentary
5. However, what we must notice in this is the difference between the two mothers.
a. The false mother’s only concern is for herself. She doesn’t care about the child, but is merely trying to hide her sin.
b. On the other hand, the real mother is concerned for her child.
c. Notice it was the real mother who brought the case before King Solomon because of her love for her child.
B. Above All
1. Illustration: A University of Minnesota study on Motherhood released this week said moms should get $131,000 a year for what they do! When you add together all the different jobs they do it becomes obvious how valuable mothers are in our lives. Some reports say mothers do 17 different jobs while raising their children: Here are some examples: psychologist, social worker, doctor, nurse, executive chef, teacher, police officer, judge, counselor, manager, dish washer, maid, financial manager, etc. One researcher stated, "Of course, no one can place a value on the love and affection that mothers give to their families." But it shows what they are worth far more than a 3 figure salary and their love and service to their families is “Priceless".