What happens when leaders abuse their power? - Power - TouchPoints

What happens when leaders abuse their power?

1 Kings 12:6-11Then King Rehoboam went to discuss the matter with the older men who had counseled his father, Solomon. “What is your advice?” he asked . . . The older counselors replied, “If you are willing to serve the people today and give them a favorable answer, they will always be your loyal subjects.” But Rehoboam rejected the advice of the elders and instead asked the opinion of the young men who had grown up with him and who were now his advisers. “What is your advice?” he asked them . . . The young men replied, “This is what you should tell those complainers: ‘My little finger is thicker than my father’s waist—if you think he was hard on you, just wait and see what I’ll be like! Yes, my father was harsh on you, but I’ll be even harsher! My father used whips on you, but I’ll use scorpions!’” . . . When all Israel realized that the king had rejected their request, they shouted, “Down with David and his dynasty! We have no share in Jesse’s son! Let’s go home, Israel! Look out for your own house, O David!” So the people of Israel returned home.

Jeremiah 23:10For the prophets do evil and abuse their power.

Abusing power leads to abusing people—which leads to conflict and even open rebellion. God works in all these situations and sometimes intervenes directly. For example, Rehoboam, Solomon’s son, desired to show power and rejected the advice of wise men. The result was a civil war from which Israel never recovered. Later on, much of the social structure was permeated with sin, from the leaders on down, and God sent the people into exile and set aside the land.