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A Mother Among Women

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INTRODUCTION

1 Kings 3:16–27 ESV
16 Then two prostitutes came to the king and stood before him. 17 The one woman said, “Oh, my lord, this woman and I live in the same house, and I gave birth to a child while she was in the house. 18 Then on the third day after I gave birth, this woman also gave birth. And we were alone. There was no one else with us in the house; only we two were in the house. 19 And this woman’s son died in the night, because she lay on him. 20 And she arose at midnight and took my son from beside me, while your servant slept, and laid him at her breast, and laid her dead son at my breast. 21 When I rose in the morning to nurse my child, behold, he was dead. But when I looked at him closely in the morning, behold, he was not the child that I had borne.” 22 But the other woman said, “No, the living child is mine, and the dead child is yours.” The first said, “No, the dead child is yours, and the living child is mine.” Thus they spoke before the king. 23 Then the king said, “The one says, ‘This is my son that is alive, and your son is dead’; and the other says, ‘No; but your son is dead, and my son is the living one.’ ” 24 And the king said, “Bring me a sword.” So a sword was brought before the king. 25 And the king said, “Divide the living child in two, and give half to the one and half to the other.” 26 Then the woman whose son was alive said to the king, because her heart yearned for her son, “Oh, my lord, give her the living child, and by no means put him to death.” But the other said, “He shall be neither mine nor yours; divide him.” 27 Then the king answered and said, “Give the living child to the first woman, and by no means put him to death; she is his mother.”
The Apostle Paul told his young protige Timothy that, “All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching...” ()...
1 Timothy 3:16 ESV
16 Great indeed, we confess, is the mystery of godliness: He was manifested in the flesh, vindicated by the Spirit, seen by angels, proclaimed among the nations, believed on in the world, taken up in glory.
2 Timothy 3:16–17 ESV
16 All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, 17 that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.
As we look at these scriptures,... We see the great WISDOM of SOLMON on display, but buried in the narrative is the story of an amazing mother who was unlikely to be the envy of any woman.
The focus of these verses is the wisdom of Solomon.
The only mention of their profession; otherwise, they are referred to as “the (other) woman.” Despite their low social standing, the women are allowed to appear in court; the text even describes one positively (v. 26)
Despite their low social standing, the women are allowed to appear in court.
Secondary to the display of Solomon’s wisdom (but no less important) is the story of an amazing mother who was unlikely to be the envy of any woman.
The bible doesn’t tell us her name, but simply refers to her by her decisions...-she is described as a “prostitute”; otherwise, also referred to as “the (other) woman” in other tranlsations.
FCF: Because she may have fallen/engaged in sin doesn’t mean she is a sinner.... “for though the righteous fall seven times, they rise again!!!”
The bible describes.... “When I looked closely at him” The Hebrew phrase used here can be translated “I discerned him” or “I was attentive to him.”
Barry, J. D., Mangum, D., Brown, D. R., Heiser, M. S., Custis, M., Ritzema, E., … Bomar, D. (2012, 2016). Faithlife Study Bible (). Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press.

When I looked closely at him The Hebrew phrase used here can be translated “I discerned him” or “I was attentive to him.”

When I looked closely at him The Hebrew phrase used here can be translated “I discerned him” or “I was attentive to him.”
FCF: That’s what the enemy want’s you to do…to live behind shame and unforgiveness....
“We’ve been saved by grace through faith...”
Keep in mind, this incident took place only three days after giving birth yet, she was able to know the child belonged to her.
Susannah Wesley (mother of the great John & Charles Wesley) spent one hour each day praying for her 17 children. In addition, she took each child aside for a full hour every week to discuss spiritual matters. No wonder two of her sons, Charles and John, were used of God to bring blessing to all of England and much of America.
But behind every success is a story of determination not to give up.
Susanna experienced many hardships throughout her life:
. Her husband left her and the children for over a year because of a minor dispute.
To her absent husband, Susanna Wesley wrote:

Susannah Wesley, for example, spent one hour each day praying for her 17 children. In addition, she took each child aside for a full hour every week to discuss spiritual matters. No wonder two of her sons, Charles and John, were used of God to bring blessing to all of England and much of America.

...I am not a man nor a minister, yet as a mother and a mistress I felt I ought to do more than I had yet done. I resolved to begin with my own children; in which I observe the following method: I take such a proportion of time as I can spare every night to discourse with each child apart. On Monday I talk with Molly, on Tuesday with Hetty, Wednesday with Nancy, Thursday with Jacky, Friday with Patty, Saturday with Charles.
She became the primary source of her children’s education
Their house was burned down twice and after the second fire, she was forced to put her own children in different homes for nearly 2yrs while they were rebuilding.
Despite the conditions of themselves or what they have to contend with, MOTHERS DO WHAT IS NECESSARY.
Their house was burned down twice;
She was the primary source of her children's education.
After the second fire, Susanna was forced to place her children into different homes for nearly two years while the rectory was rebuilt. During this time, the Wesley children lived under the rules of the homes they lived in.
…And to do what is necessary, you have to recognize when God is trying to streatch your greatness.
Some mothers don’t know when their job is finished. They figure the longer the kids hang around, the better parents they are.
I see children as kites. You spend a lifetime trying to get them off the ground. You run with them until you’re both breathless...they crash...you add a longer tail. You patch and comfort, adjust and teach—and assure them that someday they will fly.
Finally they are airborne, but they need more string, and you keep letting it out. With each twist of the ball of twine, the kite becomes more distant. You know it won’t be long before that beautiful creature will snap the lifeline that bound you together and soar—free and alone. Only then do you know you did your job.
Erma Bombeck, from “Forever, Erma,” quoted in Reader’s Digest, March 1997, p. 148
10,000 Sermon Illustrations I Loved You Enough

Some mothers don’t know when their job is finished. They figure the longer the kids hang around, the better parents they are.

I see children as kites. You spend a lifetime trying to get them off the ground. You run with them until you’re both breathless...they crash...you add a longer tail. You patch and comfort, adjust and teach—and assure them that someday they will fly.

Finally they are airborne, but they need more string, and you keep letting it out. With each twist of the ball of twine, the kite becomes more distant. You know it won’t be long before that beautiful creature will snap the lifeline that bound you together and soar—free and alone. Only then do you know you did your job.

Erma Bombeck, from “Forever, Erma,” quoted in Reader’s Digest, March 1997, p. 148

“Someone once asked "who was greater, Thomas A. Edison or his mother? When he was a young lad his teacher sent him home with a note which said, ‘Your child is dumb. We can’t do anything for him.’ Mrs. Edison wrote back, ‘You do not understand my boy. I will teach him myself’. And she did, with results that are well known.
10,000 Sermon Illustrations The Greatest Are Those Unknown

“I ask you, who was greater, Thomas A. Edison or his mother? When he was a young lad his teacher sent him home with a note which said, ‘Your child is dumb. We can’t do anything for him.’ Mrs. Edison wrote back, ‘You do not understand my boy. I will teach him myself’. And she did, with results that are well known.

POINT: Mothers don’t give in or give up…They get over it and do what is necessary.
· ( ESV) “For a prostitute is a deep pit; an adulteress is a narrow well. She lies in wait like a robber and increases the traitors among mankind.”
Lets look again at the two women.... The bible said two prostitutes came before Solomon (THE FIRST POINT)
· Prostitution was forbidden and frowned upon by Levitical law but the woman

SHE PRESSED PASS THE SHAME

1 Kings 3:16 ESV
16 Then two prostitutes came to the king and stood before him.
1King 3 16Then two prostitutes came to the king and stood before him.” Not just one
Then two prostitutes came to the king and stood before him.” Not just one
To a Mother, her condition/situation is secondary to the needs of her children.
The real mother of the child was not standing before any king, but she was standing before a King whose own mother (Bathsheba) was caught in adultery, and was accessory to murder yet came to be a trusted and loving wife.
I got a chance to visit the national Holocaust Museum this past week and heard the story of a jewish family that was hiding under the floorboards when a Nazi Soldier entered their house to kill them. If they were found out, they would have been executed on the spot. When the mother’s baby started crying because she was thirsty, the baby’s mother urinated in her hand to give to the baby to keep her quiet…they survived.
ILLUSTRATION 2
In the dispute, Solomon knew there was a real mother among them despite their circumstances, because of his own mother’s love despite her past.
In December 2005, an apartment building in the Bronx caught fire. With flames engulfing her third-floor bedroom, the mother leaned out the window with her baby and let the child go. The infant tumbled three stories down into the waiting arms of Felix Vazquez, who performed mouth-to-mouth resuscitation on the baby until paramedics arrived.
The mother was later rescued and when asked why she would drop her own baby, she said, “I prayed that someone would catch him and save his life. I said, ‘God, please save my son.’ And he did.”
FCF: The lesson is from these mothers is that you must be resolute to approach Jesus despite being marred.
A Mother will do whatever necessary to save her children, even if it means
“For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin.”
Despite her sin, she is found advocating for her child and what is right.
In reading the story of the origin of Mother’s day and Anna Marie-Jarvis (the founder of Mother’s Day), its easy to miss that she was caring for both sides of the war…both her friends and her enemies.
ILLUSTRATION 1
§ “Bless those that curse you, pray for those who abuse you”
In December 2005, an apartment building in the Bronx caught fire. With flames engulfing her third-floor bedroom, the mother leaned out the window with her baby and let the child go. The infant tumbled three stories down into the waiting arms of Felix Vazquez, who performed mouth-to-mouth resuscitation on the baby until paramedics arrived.
The mother was later rescued and when asked why she would drop her own baby, she said, “I prayed that someone would catch him and save his life. I said, ‘God, please save my son.’ And he did.”
§ “Bless those who persecute you bless and do not curse them.
The bible said that the real mother, driven by her love/compassion for her son, opted to give her child away to save his life. EXPOUND
We talk a lot about forgiveness in the church and loving your enemies but today marks the recognition of a woman who lived what she said!
(Story of Charles Carl Roberts barricading himself in the West Nickels Mines Amish School)
Again, a good mother advocates for what is right.

1 Kings 3:24–26 ESV
24 And the king said, “Bring me a sword.” So a sword was brought before the king. 25 And the king said, “Divide the living child in two, and give half to the one and half to the other.” 26 Then the woman whose son was alive said to the king, because her heart yearned for her son, “Oh, my lord, give her the living child, and by no means put him to death.” But the other said, “He shall be neither mine nor yours; divide him.”
1King 3 24
24And the king said, “Bring me a sword.” So a sword was brought before the king. 25And the king said, “Divide the living child in two, and give half to the one and half to the other.” 26Then the woman whose son was alive said to the king, because her heart yearned for her son, “Oh, my lord, give her the living child, and by no means put him to death.” But the other said, “He shall be neither mine nor yours; divide him.”
Here is a mother that knows she is right, yet puts the safety and welfare of her child first. (Sounds like common sense but >5 children every day die from child abuse 90% of which are under the age of 4yrs).
The bible said that the real mother, driven by her love/compassion for her son, opted to give her child away to save his life. EXPOUND
(Illustration)
Years ago, a mother was walking across the hills of southern Wales carrying her baby when she was overtaken by a blizzard. When the storm subsided, her body was found beneath a mound of snow. Before she died, however, she had taken off all her outer clothing and wrapped it around her baby.
When unwrapped, the baby boy was found alive and well. Years later, that child, David Lloyd George, became the prime minister of Great Britain and one of England’s greatest statesmen.
— J. John and Mark Stibbe, A Box of Delights (Kregel, 2001)
Godly mothers give freely of themselves to those in need

SHE FOUND HER STRENGTH IN HER SURRENDER

1 Kings 3:24–27 ESV
24 And the king said, “Bring me a sword.” So a sword was brought before the king. 25 And the king said, “Divide the living child in two, and give half to the one and half to the other.” 26 Then the woman whose son was alive said to the king, because her heart yearned for her son, “Oh, my lord, give her the living child, and by no means put him to death.” But the other said, “He shall be neither mine nor yours; divide him.” 27 Then the king answered and said, “Give the living child to the first woman, and by no means put him to death; she is his mother.”
24
28And all Israel heard of the judgment that the king had rendered, and they stood in awe of the king, because they perceived that the wisdom of God was in him to do justice.”
Not only did they hear of the wisdom of Solomon, but they heard of the courage and sacrafice of a mother.
ILLUSTRATION 1
Years ago, a mother was walking across the hills of southern Wales carrying her baby when she was overtaken by a blizzard. When the storm subsided, her body was found beneath a mound of snow. Before she died, however, she had taken off all her outer clothing and wrapped it around her baby.
When unwrapped, the baby boy was found alive and well. Years later, that child, David Lloyd George, became the prime minister of Great Britain and one of England’s greatest statesmen.
— J. John and Mark Stibbe, A Box of Delights (Kregel, 2001)
Godly mothers give freely of themselves to those in need
ILLUSTRATION 2
I got a chance to visit the national Holocaust Museum this past week and heard the story of a jewish family that was hiding under the floorboards when a Nazi Soldier entered their house to kill them. If they were found out, they would have been executed on the spot. When the mother’s baby started crying because she was thirsty, the baby’s mother urinated in her hand to give to the baby to keep her quiet…they survived.
In December 2005, an apartment building in the Bronx caught fire. With flames engulfing her third-floor bedroom, the mother leaned out the window with her baby and let the child go. The infant tumbled three stories down into the waiting arms of Felix Vazquez, who performed mouth-to-mouth resuscitation on the baby until paramedics arrived.
The mother was later rescued and when asked why she would drop her own baby, she said, “I prayed that someone would catch him and save his life. I said, ‘God, please save my son.’ And he did.”
A Mother will do whatever necessary to save her children, even if it means going without herself.
FCF: This is why when older women hear of young mother’s putting their own needs above their children, mothers will say “she’s not ready.”
God told Isaiah to tell the people, “As one whom his mother comforts, so I will comfort you; you shall be called comforted.
THE VIRTUOUS WOMAN
( ESV) “Her children rise up and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her: “Many women have done excellently, but you surpass them all.””
Interestingly her testimony starts within her own determination, and then it starts at home! EXPOUND…her family calls her blessed before anyone else (blessed: to be made happy)
Isaiah 49:15 ESV
15 “Can a woman forget her nursing child, that she should have no compassion on the son of her womb? Even these may forget, yet I will not forget you.

INVITATION TO CHRIST

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