Three days later Jeroboam and all the people returned to Rehoboam, as the king had said, “Come back to me in three days.” The king answered the people harshly. Rejecting the advice given him by the elders, he followed the advice of the young men and said, “My father made your yoke heavy; I will make it even heavier. My father scourged you with whips; I will scourge you with scorpions.” 1 Kings 12:12-14
As the leader goes, so goes the people.
King David was a man after God’s own heart. Full of conviction and integrity, David united a people and established the foundation his son Solomon would build upon. Even when David made a mistake, his response to his error was that of a great leader. Solomon started strong and became arguably the greatest king at the height of Israel’s most successful period in history. Great leaders characterized a united and vigorous nation. Then came Rehoboam. Solomon’s son was king and center stage at a moment that began a disastrous tailspin. He rejected sound advice, and he alone gave a bitter announcement. This leader was responsible for the great disunity that then unfolded. As he led, so went the people.
Navy Seal Jako Willink, put it this way, “the most fundamental and essential truths at the heart of Extreme Ownership: there are no bad teams, only bad leaders.” There is an important observation to be made both in present day and past: leadership has a significant effect on those being led. When you read through the monarchy period of Israel’s history, this is illustrated time and time again. Good leaders who did what was right in the eyes of God brought about great reform and grace from God. Corrupt leaders drove opposite result. As you consider your leadership in any area of life, note the importance of the role. Take ownership when wrong and seek to do what is right in God’s eyes.