All posts by Tribal Ministries

Pride Before Destruction (2 Kings Chapter 14)

A Study in 2 KingsPride goes before destruction
And a haughty spirit before stumbling
Proverbs 16:18

In this BIBLE study of 2 Kings Chapter 14, our Beloved LORD GOD will instruct us concerning pride. We will begin by observing the behavior of king Amaziah of Judah. As we observe his behavior, we will:

  • define pride and GOD’s verdict of it
  • study sinful behaviors that spring from the root sin pride, observe how a proud heart has deceived many, and consider the outcome of those who walked in pride
  • carefully take into account how to overcome pride

Throughout The BIBLE our Beloved LORD GOD tells us of many things that are an abomination (something detestable, repugnant, loathing) to HIM; pride is one of them. Let’s take a moment and look at a couple Scriptures:

Everyone who is proud in heart is an abomination to the LORD
Assuredly, he will not be unpunished.
Proverbs 16:5

There are six things which The LORD hates
Yes, seven which are an abomination to HIM
Haughty eyes, a lying tongue
And hands that shed innocent blood
A heart that devises wicked plans
Feet that run rapidly to evil
A false witness who utters lies
And one who spreads strife among brothers
Proverbs 6:16-19

Why is pride an abomination to The LORD? It is a root sin (a sin from which many other sins grow). Pride can be defined many different ways, but we will only offer the following seven:

  1. Belief so excessive in one’s own abilities, that GOD’s grace is not recognized
  2. Arrogant (unreasonable trust in one’s own superiority, importance)
  3. Braggart (self-boasting)
  4. Conceited (exaggerated opinion of one’s self)
  5. Haughty (great pride in one’s self, disdain for others)
  6. Inordinate self-esteem
  7. Insolent (rude, disrespectful, insulting to others)

In our study of king Amaziah of Judah in 2 Kings 14:1-29 and 2 Chronicles 25:1-28, we learn that he was filled with pride. He half-heartedly obeyed GOD (2 Kin 14:3-4, 2 Chr 25:2), because of his inordinate self-esteem. Amaziah had an unreasonable conceit of his own superiority, choosing to do his own will over GOD’s. He was also insolent, disrespecting WHO our Almighty GOD is. Instead of seeking GOD’s counsel and help, when he was going to war against the Edomites, he hired 100,000 mercenaries from Israel for a current price of $3,202,800 (calculated as price per ounce of silver on 9/8/20 * 120,000 ounces or 100 talents of silver). It was only when our Beloved LORD GOD sent one of HIS prophets to warn Amaziah of the outcome of his foolish decision, that he turned from that course and sent the mercenaries home. Even when our merciful GOD helped him defeat the Edomites, he was not grateful for the blessing GOD gave him, instead he was arrogant. In his arrogance, not only did Amaziah completely forsake our GOD, to serve the lifeless idols he brought back from Edom (2 Chr 25:14-16); he also forced Israel into war (2 Kin 14:8-20, 2 Chr 25:17-28). As a result of his pride, Amaziah was badly defeated by Israel, Jerusalem ransacked, and he was murdered.

Our Beloved LORD GOD tells us “pride goes before destruction” and we have confirmation of HIS WORD with:

  • Satan ― Who wanted the glory that belonged to GOD alone (Isa 14:13-14). All that GOD had given him was not enough (Eze 28:12-19). Satan’s pride caused his fall (1 Tim 3:6). Satan was cast from heaven (Isa 14:12, Eze 28:16, Rev 12:7-9) and will spend eternity in hell (Mat 25:41, Rev 20:10).
  • Saul ― Trusted his own decisions above GOD’s commands (1 Sam 10:8, 1 Sam 13:4-15, 1 Sam 15:1-35). And was so proud of himself after his battle with the Amalekites, he built a monument for himself, at Carmel to commemorate his victory (1 Sam 15:12). Saul in his arrogance believed he could thwart GOD’s choice of a new king, by killing David (1 Sam chapters 18-24, 26-28). In this arrogance, he slaughtered eighty-five of GOD’s priests, thinking they had helped David escape from him (1 Sam 22:6-19). When he sought out a medium (necromancer or one who consults the dead), among those our LORD commanded be removed from Israel through death (Exd 22:18, Deu 18:10-11), and then vowed “as our LORD lives, he would protect her” (1 Sam 28:3-20), brought death on himself and his sons at the hands of the Philistines (1 Sam 31:1-13).
  • Nebuchadnezzar ― Looked out over his kingdom and took credit for what GOD had given him (Dan 4:29-33). GOD forewarned him in a dream (Dan 4:4-18) and by HIS servant Daniel, to break away from his sins by doing righteousness (Dan 4: 19-27). Nebuchadnezzar did not listen, and the sentence was carried out against him a year later (Dan 4:29-37).
  • Sinners and the disobedient ― Believe Satan’s lie, that they are like GOD (Gen 3:4-5, Eze 28:2), they rely on themselves instead of GOD. They trust in their own understanding (Pro 3:5, Pro 16:25, Pro 28:26, Eze 33:13), contend with GOD (Isa 45:9, 1 Sam 2:10, Rom 9:20) and HIS servants (Hos 4:4, Deu 17:12, Heb 13:17), and refuse to listen to HIS WORD (2 Ths 2:10-12, 2 Tim 4:4), or HIS messengers (Luk 10:16). Which brings both physical and spiritual death (Rev 20:14-15, Rev 21:8).

John Piper, the founder and senior teacher at desiringGOD.org, correctly expounded on Matthew 22:36-37 by stating, sinning is any feeling or thought or speech or action that comes from a heart that does not treasure GOD over all other things. A heart that prefers anything above GOD. A heart that does not treasure GOD over anything or anyone else. He also correctly defines sin according to Scripture as:

  • The glory of GOD not honored (Psa 22:22-23, Psa 50:23, Heb 13:15-16)
  • The holiness of GOD not reverenced (Lev 10:1-3, Num 20:8-13)
  • The greatness of GOD not admired (Exd 5:2, Exd 10:3-11)
  • The power of GOD not praised (Mat 12:22-31, Mrk 3:20-30, Rom 1:21)
  • The truth of GOD not sought (2 Ths 2:10-12, 2 Tim 4:3-4)
  • The wisdom of GOD not esteemed (Jer 36:1-26, Pro 1:7, Pro 23:9)
  • The beauty of GOD not treasured (Psa 27:4-5, Psa 26:8, Isa 33:17)
  • The goodness of GOD not savored (Psa 34:8, Psa 119:103-104, Isa 30:10-11)
  • The faithfulness of GOD not trusted (Deu 1:30-33, Deu 9:23, Zep 3:1-2)
  • The promises of GOD not believed (Psa 78:22-33, Psa 106:24-27, Jud 1:5)
  • The commandments of GOD not obeyed (Isa 42:23-24, Jer 7:24, Jhn 3:36)
  • The justice of GOD not respected (Pro 17:23, Pro 19:28, Luk 11:42)
  • The wrath of GOD not feared (Psa 36:1-4, 2 Kin 18:28-35, Rev 16:8-11)
  • The grace of GOD not cherished (Isa 26:10, 2 Pet 3:3-9)
  • The presence of GOD not prized (Job 21:14-15, Mat 8:34)
  • The person of GOD not loved (Jhn 8:42, 1 Jhn 5:1)

How do we overcome pride? By humbling, praying, seeking, and turning (2 Chr 7:14). When humbling yourself, you are willing to acknowledge your guilt by admitting (confessing) your sin (wrongdoing). When praying, you are not only asking our Beloved LORD GOD to forgive you (Psa 32:5-6, Pro 28:13, 1 Jhn 1:9), but you are also asking HIM to take the pride from within you. When seeking, you are seeking HIS presence. In HIS presence you will find answers to questions (2 Sam 21:1, Psa 73:16-17); In HIS presence your soul will find rest and refreshment (Mat 11:28, Act 3:19); In HIS presence you will experience peace and joy (Psa 16:11, Psa 21:6); In HIS presence you will relax in HIS safety and protection (Psa 27:5, Psa 31:20, Psa 42:5). When turning, you are repenting by turning your back on your wicked life (2 Kin 17:13, Eze 18:30-32, Eze 33:11, Act 17:30-31).

Thus says The LORD, your Redeemer, The Holy ONE of Israel,
I am The LORD your GOD, WHO teaches you to profit
WHO leads you in the way you should go
If only you had paid attention to MY commandments!
Then your well-being would have been like a river
And your righteousness like the waves of the sea
Your descendants would have been like the sand
And your offspring like its grains
Their name would never be cut off or destroyed from MY presence
Isaiah 48:17-19

The Faithful and Merciful GOD (2 Kings Chapter 13)

A Study in 2 KingsGOD is faithful, through WHOM you were called into fellowship with HIS SON
JESUS CHRIST our LORD
1 Corinthians 1:9

In this series of studies in 2 Kings, our Beloved LORD GOD has been allowing us to learn of HIS ways. In this thirteenth chapter of 2 Kings we will observe:

  • Our faithful GOD keeping the everlasting covenant HE made with Abraham, and his descendants even though wronged by Abraham’s descendants (Lev 26:43-45). HE refused to destroy the nation of Israel (2 Kin 13:23), because of the covenant HE made with HIS friend Abraham (Jam 2:23). HE confirmed the covenant with Abraham’s son, Isaac (Gen 26:1-6), confirmed it again with Abraham’s grandson, Jacob (Gen 28:10-19), and continues to confirm it through every generation (Psa 105:6-11, Luk 1:72-75).
  • Our merciful GOD extends HIS compassion to the wrongdoing descendants of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, because HE is a GOD of love (2 Cor 13:11). In fact, our GOD is love (1 Jhn 4:8). And as such, HIS mercy is always present, even in HIS anger (Hab 3:2). We witness HIS mercy for disobedient Israel throughout 2 Kings chapter 13, and in 2 Kings 14:26. All through The BIBLE we see HIS mercy extended to those who humble themselves when disciplined for their sins. We observe it:
    • all the way through the book of Judges, our Beloved LORD GOD moved to pity by the groaning of an oppressed, afflicted, disobedient Israel; HE would raise up judges to deliver them (Jdg 2:16-18)
    • during the discipline of king David, when he took a census of the fighting men of Israel (2 Sam 24:1-17)
    • during Ahab’s reaction to the LORD’s judgment pronounced against his house (1 Kin 21:17-29)
    • at the time Solomon’s son king Rehoboam, humbled himself when Egypt came against him (2 Chr 12:1-8)
    • for the paralyzed man lying at the Bethesda pool at the sheep gate in Jerusalem (Jhn 5:1-17, Act 10:38).

Why would GOD keep covenant with people who would not keep covenant with HIM? For four of many reasons:

  • HE is faithful (Deu 7:9, 1 Cor 1:9, 1 Ths 5:24). Which means HE is a GOD of truth (Isa 65:16), HE will not lie (Tit 1:2, Heb 6:18) or make deceitful promises (Jer 1:12, 2 Chr 6:4-10). HIS constant faithfulness is a result of HIS integrity, not dependent on whether man is faithful or not (2 Tim 2:13).
  • HE is The Covenant KEEPER (Dan 9:4, 2 Sam 23:5). So HE will not fail (Deu 4:31); change (Mal 3:6, Jam 1:17); and is always trustworthy (Isa 40:8, Rev 15:3).
  • HE is merciful, and has pity on those who suffer (Deu 32:36, Jdg 2:18, Psa 106:44-45). HE will act on their behalf, as HE did for Jehoahaz and Jehoash (2 Kin 13:4-5, 2 Kin 13:10-19, 2 Kin 13:24-25). HIS love and faithfulness are unfailing (Psa 86:15).
  • HE is kind to all (Mat 5:45), even those who hate HIM (Act 7:42-43, Neh 9:16-21). Yet HE will punish all who do wrong (Exd 32:35, Psa 78:1-72, Rom 2:5-8).

Are there specific practices (ongoing behavior) that causes one to break covenant with GOD? Yes, we will present four of them. First, when there is unbelief in GOD and HIS WORD. The unbeliever will not listen to GOD because of their absence of belief; lack of faith; lack of trust; skeptism; uncertainty (Exd 4:10-16, Num 14:11-12, Psa 78:21-22, Psa 106:24, Heb 3:17-18). Second when one is practicing idolatry. Idolatry is a sin of the mind and heart against GOD. With this particular sin, there is lack of acknowledgment of, devotion to, or reverence for GOD (Jos 23:16, Psa 106:34-43, Rom 1:20-23, Col 3:5-6). Third, when one walks in disobedience. They fail to obey; fail to listen; are faithless; rebellious; insubordinate (1 Sam 15:22-23, Isa 5:24-25, Rom 2:8-9, Eph 5:6, 2 Ths 1:7-9). Fourth, they grumble and complain, quietly speaking discontent; finding fault; not thankful; ungrateful (Num 4:10-16, Num 11:1, Num 14:26-33, 1 Cor 10:10, Php 2:14-15).

Is there a final outcome for the faithless? Yes, Scripture plainly states:

He who remains stiff-necked after much rebuke
Will be suddenly and incurably broken
Proverbs 29:1

Take care, brethren
That there not be in any one of you an evil, unbelieving heart
That falls away from the living GOD
Hebrews 3:12

But for the cowardly and unbelieving
And abominable and murderers and immoral persons
And sorcerers and idolaters and all liars
Their part will be in the lake that burns with fire and brimstone
Which is the second death
Revelation 21:8

The Company We Keep (2 Kings Chapter 12)

A Study in 2 KingsJehoash did right in the sight of The LORD
All his days in which Jehoiada the priest instructed him
2 Kings 12:2

As is my custom, knowing that my role is HIS messenger, I asked my Beloved LORD GOD what is YOUR message for this twelfth chapter of 2 Kings, HE promptly spoke “the company we keep”. As I carefully read 2 Kings chapter 12 and 2 Chronicles chapter 24, I meditated on HIS message. HE then began to reveal HIS message to me through Scripture, showing me how the company we keep, influences how we live and think.

Background:

  • Joash and Jehoash are the same person. He is called Joash in 2 Kin 11:2, 2 Kin 12:19-20, 2 Chr 24:1-2, 2 Chr 24:22, 2 Chr 24:24. He is called Jehoash in 2 Kin 11:21, 2 Kin 12:1-2, 2 Kin 12:4, 2 Kin 12:7, 2 Kin 12:18.
  • High places ― In 2 Kings 12:3, as in many places in the Old Testament our Beloved LORD GOD referenced the high places which were not taken away, places where people still sacrificed and burned incense. What were these high places? These were places that the wicked nations whom GOD drove out of the promise land before the nation of Israel (Deu 9:4-5), served their gods (idols). These wicked nations set up altars to sacrifice to demons, bricks to burn incense, and placed all types of idols (pillars/monuments of their gods; engraved images; carved wooden images), on high mountains, on hills, and under every green tree for worship (Deu 12:2-3, Isa 65:3-7). Before the nation of Israel ever went into the promised land, our Beloved LORD GOD told them four things:
    • drive out the wicked nations before them and utterly destroy their high places (Num 33:50-56)
    • do not learn their practices (Lev 18:3-5, Lev 20:22-24, Deu 12:29-31)
    • do not serve HIM the way the wicked served their idols (Deu 12:4)
    • be careful to only serve HIM, at the place HE put HIS NAME among the tribes (Lev 17:1-7, Deu 12:5-14)

They did not obey HIM, instead mingling with and learning the practices of the wicked nations (Psa 106:34-39). Israel became like the wicked nations they kept company with. By the above description of high places, Joash even set up a high place after the death of Jehoiada (2 Chr 34:18). Yet, four good kings in Judah, obeyed our GOD, and tore down the high places in the land of Judah (king Asa-2 Chr 14:1-8, king Jehoshaphat-2 Chr 17:1-9, king Hezekiah-2 Kin 18:1-6, king Josiah-2 Kin 23:1-25).

  • Building Fund ― king Jehoash commanded the priests to set up a fund to repair the damages to the house of The LORD (2 Kin 12:5, 2 Chr 24:5), and make utensils to replace the ones taken by Athaliah’s sons (2 Chr 24:14). He commanded the priest to do this quickly (2 Chr 24:5) by collections from three sources in Judah:
    • the census levy for every male 20 and over, to be used for the service of the place where GOD puts HIS NAME (Exd 30:11-16, 2 Chr 24:6, Mat 17:24-27)
    • vow offerings (Lev 27:1-8, an offering for a person who took a vow, to dedicate themselves to The LORD’s service; the valuation of the offering was based on the offeror’s worth as a worker for a specified period)
    • freewill offerings of money, given by those whose hearts moved them (2 Kin 12:4, Exd 35:20-29)

But these collections and the repair on the house of GOD did not happen quickly as directed by king Jehoash (2 Chr 24:5), so king Jehoash got directly involved in the building fund by taking collections out of the hands of the priests. He made a proclamation throughout Judah concerning the collection of the census levy, and had those collections deposited into a chest that stood where people coming into the house of GOD could make them. The deposits were paid directly to the repairers (2 Kin 12:9-12, 2 Chr 24:8-14).

  • Asherim ― is the plural form of Asherah (2 Chr 24:18, 1 Kin 18:17-19). Multiple Asherah or female deities in a carved wooden or tree form, are set up as an Asherim, in the despicable high places.

Overview of 2 Kings Chapter 12: Wycliffe Bible Commentary gives us a succinct overview of 2 Kings Chapter 12, through discussion of 2 Chr 24:1:

The reign of Joash serves as a personification of the whole history of Judah. In its earlier part, Joash lived righteously, honoring The LORD, and caring for the Temple, with its sacrifices that depicted GOD’s eternal plan of salvation (2 Chr 24:1-14). Yet in its later part, he forsook both The LORD and HIS Temple (2 Chr 24:15-19), murdered the prophet who rebuked him, the son of the very priest who had established and guided him (2 Chr 24:20-22), suffered a humiliating defeat to Hazael of Damascus (2 Chr 24:23-24), and died weakened by wounds and slain for his crimes (2 Chr 24:25-27).

Our Beloved LORD GOD’s personal message to each one of us as laid out in 2 Kings Chapter 12 and 2 Chronicles Chapter 24 is “the company we keep (our companions), influences how we live and think.”

2 Kin 12:2, As long as the high priest Jehoiada lived Joash did right in the sight of GOD (2 Kin 12:2, 2 Chr 24:2). He collected a building fund (2 Kin 12:4-10, 2 Chr 24:5-11); repaired the House of GOD (2 Kin 12:11-16, 2 Chr 24:12-14); replaced the holy utensils stolen from GOD’s House (2 Chr 24:14).

But sadly, once Jehoiada died, the wicked officials of Judah came and led king Joash astray. He forsook our GOD (2 Chr 24:17, 20); abandoned HIS House (2 Chr 24:18); set up a high place and served the Asherim and the idols  (2 Chr 24:18); would not listen to GOD’s prophets concerning their sin (2 Chr 24:19); murdered Zechariah (Jehoiada’s son) for speaking GOD’s message (2 Chr 24:20-22, Luk 11:51); bribed Hazael to spare Judah by giving him, GOD’s sacred things (2 Kin 12: 18).

Are there other examples in The BIBLE of being led  astray by bad company? Yes, there are plenty, but first we must tell you that our Beloved LORD GOD specifically warns about bad company corrupting good morals (1 Cor 15:33). HE strongly warns us, by saying “do not be deceived” anyone who is a partner, friend, companion of the ungodly, unbelieving, or disobedient will be affected by them (Psa 1:1, 1 Jhn 2:28-29). A godly person cannot continually spend time with the ungodly and not begin to think like, speak like, believe like, behave like, or become like them. And this corruption can come through wicked:

  • counsel like in the cases of Amnon and his cousin Jonadab (2 Sam 13:1-6, 2 Sam 13:30-33); Rehoboam and his childhood friends (1 Kin 12:1-15)
  • associations like in the cases of Solomon and his foreign wives (1 Kin 11:1-10); marriage alliances between the children of king Jehoshaphat and king Ahab (2 Chr 18:1, 1 Kin 22:44, 2 Kin 8:16-18); believers and unbelievers (2 Cor 6:14-18, 1 Cor 5:9-11)

What would cause Joash to forsake The LORD when Jehoiada died? Because his relationship was with Jehoiada not our GOD. And this will always happen when your trust and confidence is in men not GOD (Jer 17:5, Isa 2:22, Psa 146:3-5). Bad company can corrupt good morals when one does not love GOD completely (Jer 2:2, Mat 24:12, Rev 2:4), and this lack of love for GOD causes one to:

  1. easily be enticed by ungodly associations (Pro 1:10-15, Eph 5:6-17)
  2. be seduced by selfish desires (Mrk 4:18-19, Eph 2:3, 2 Pet 2:9-10)
  3. be drawn away by the world and the things in the world (1 Jhn 2:15-17, Jam 4:4)

How can one keep their lives pure, and not become a companion of the ungodly? First and foremost, by persistently loving GOD with all that is within us (Deu 6:4-5, Mrk 12:29-30); clinging to HIM (Deu 10:20-21, Psa 63:7-8); continually seeking HIS face (1 Chr 16:11); living our lives according to HIS WORD (Psa 119:9); treasuring that WORD within our hearts (Psa119:11); be companions of the wise (Psa 119:63, Pro 13:20, Pro 27:17); testify of the goodness of our BELOVED LORD GOD (Mal 3:16-18); be careful of our conduct (Pro 19:16, 2 Pet 3:11-13).

Jonathan and David are an example of two godly friends, who had faith in our GOD, in common (1 Sam Chapters 18-20). And our Heavenly FATHER was with both of them (1 Sam 18:14, 1 Sam 13:2-4, 1 Sam 14:1-23).

Listen to HIM

Precious Morsels August 07, 2020While he was still speaking
A bright cloud overshadowed them
And behold, a voice out of the cloud said
This is MY Beloved SON
With WHOM I am well-pleased
Listen to HIM!”
Matthew 17:5

This Scripture is part of an amazing passage in Matthew 17:1-13 in which our Beloved LORD JESUS allows through a vision (Mat 17:9), HIS three disciples, (Peter, James, and John):
● to see HIS appearance changed to a glorious state (transfigured). Peter and John would later testify of seeing JESUS in HIS majestic state (Jhn 1:14, 2 Pet 1:16-18, 1 Jhn 1:1-3).
● to witness Moses and Elijah alive, also in a glorious state (Luk 9:30-31), talking with JESUS about HIS soon departure from HIS earthly life (Luk 9:33). Peter was so moved by the sight of Moses and Elijah, talking with JESUS, that he sought permission for himself and the other two disciples to build a tabernacle for each one of them (Mrk 9:5).

As I meditated on the passage of Scripture concerning the transfiguration, I was amazed at all the things my Beloved LORD GOD revealed to me (I will discuss them further in The BIBLE study “Examining The Transfiguration”). Until then, I will discuss the profound truths our Precious JESUS CHRIST revealed to me about Matthew 17:5.

Peter out of fear and amazement because of the vision he and the other two disciples were witnessing, sought permission from JESUS to build three tabernacles: one each for JESUS, Moses, and Elijah. But while Peter was still seeking permission a bright cloud formed, enveloped all three disciples, and our Beloved ABBA FATHER answered Peter’s request from the cloud (Luk 9:34-35):

“This is MY beloved SON, with WHOM I am well-pleased; listen to HIM!”

Our Beloved LORD GOD’s response may not have seemed to address Peter’s request, but HE knew Peter spoke out of fear (Mrk 9:6), not realizing what he was saying (Luk 9:33). He was so overcome by astonishment at the sight of JESUS in majestic splendor, and the presence of Moses and Elijah speaking with JESUS, that he made the servants Moses and Elijah, equal to HIS SON. Our Beloved LORD GOD gently corrected Peter, by declaring JESUS as HIS only begotten heir, WHOM HE loved and delighted in (Mat 17:5). JESUS is over all things (Rom 9:5, Col 1:15-20), making HIM superior and worthy of more glory than the servants (Heb 3:1-4). HE is not a servant in the house as Moses and Elijah, HE is the SON over the house (Heb 3:5-6). Moses and Elijah were messengers, HE is the message (Act 10:34-44, Eph 1:13).

When our Beloved ABBA FATHER commanded the three disciples to listen to HIS SON, HE opened their ears to truly hear and gain understanding of the things JESUS spoke (Luk 8:9-10, Isa 6:9). You might be wondering how I knew that, because HE told me so. When I asked HIM what HE meant by “listen.” HE sent me to confirm HIS WORD by HIS WORD. I first went back to the original language to see what Greek word was used for the transliterated English word “listen.” It is “akoúete” (NT:191), and it means “hear ye”. I then carefully read all the chapters which followed after the disclosure of the transfiguration in the three gospels (Mat 17:1-13, Mrk 9:1-13, Luk 9:27-36). I noted the disciple’s questions changed from getting basic understanding in earlier chapters, to getting clarification about what was spoken.

We all, like Peter, must listen to JESUS. Before JESUS came, our Beloved LORD GOD sent HIS servants, the prophets speaking to men on HIS behalf (Jer 7:25, 2 Chr 36:15-16). But in these last days (Heb 9:26, 1 Pet 1:20), our GOD speaks to men through JESUS CHRIST, HIS SON (Heb 1:1-2). JESUS is The WORD incarnate (Jhn 1:1, Jhn 1:14), and we must listen to HIM, by carefully and prayerfully considering what HE is saying, and then obeying (Luk 6:46-49).

Where can you find “what JESUS is saying”? The BIBLE, which is The WORD of GOD. Whether someone teaches from The BIBLE, or you attentively read through it. Take care how you listen (Mrk 4:24-25, Act 17:11).

But what if I just can’t understand The BIBLE? You must then stop and evaluate some reasons why. Do you have a personal relationship with JESUS CHRIST? Have you realized your need for JESUS CHRIST? Admitted you truly are a sinner? Asked HIM to forgive you for those sins? Asked HIM to be your LORD and SAVIOR? If you haven’t, please begin there. The BIBLE is a Book of spiritual words that can only be understood when the Holy SPIRIT of GOD shares HIS thoughts (1 Cor 2:11-14). And HE only shares HIS intimate thoughts with those who are HIS own (Psa 25:14, Pro 3:32).

Today I pray each one of you will listen to HIS gentle voice and obey.     

GOD’s Purpose Will Not Be Thwarted (2 Kings Chapter 11)

A Study in 2 KingsI know that YOU can do all things
And that no purpose of YOURS can be thwarted
Job 42:2

When I asked our Beloved LORD GOD what the title of HIS message in 2 Kings Chapter 11 is. HE told me “MY purpose will not be thwarted.” I then asked HIM for a foundational Scripture, HE gave me Job 42:2. And then HE had me re-read the very first Scripture in 2 Kings Chapter 11, Wowzer! Didn’t see it until HE showed me, from verse one of 2 Kings Chapter 11, Satan tried to use Athaliah, to thwart, hinder, or stop HIS WORD from being fulfilled. Why? Good question, you will learn exactly why, as we examine that message, in addition to three more as follows:

  • Satan cannot thwart GOD’s purpose (2 Kin 11:1)
  • When Hidden in GOD (2 Kin 11:2-3)
  • GOD keeps HIS Purpose Moving to the Goal (2 Kin 11:4-19, 2 Kin 11:21)
  • People rejoice when GOD steps in (2 Kin 11:20)

I love, love, love GOD’s WORD, for so many, many reasons. And in this study of HIS WORD, HE gives four messages that will bring comfort and continue to build our trust in our Beloved LORD GOD.

Before we begin, let’s first briefly look at some historical background that will provide understanding of information, that might be overlooked.

Background:
By way of reminder, Athaliah is:
• Granddaughter of the deceased wicked king of Israel, Omri (1 Kin 16:23-26)
• Daughter of Omri‘s deceased son Ahab, and his wife Jezebel (1 Kin 16:28-33)
• Sister of Jehoram king of Israel, who is also the son of Ahab & Jezebel (2 Kin 3:1-3)
• Wife of Jehoram deceased king of Judah (2 Kin 8:16-18)
• Mother of Ahaziah king of Judah (2 Kin 8:25-27)
• Grandmother of Joash future king of Judah (2 Kin 11:2)

Carites (2 Kin 11:4) also known as the Cherethites (pronounced “KER-ih-thites”), were a tribe inhabiting the Negev, or southern country (1 Sam 30:14, Eze 25:15-16, Zep 2:5). This tribe of Cherethites, along with the Pelethites and Gittites, were the six hundred men who came with David from Gath of the Philistines (1 Sam 23:13, 1 Sam 25:1-13, 1 Sam 30:1-25, 2 Sam 15:18). These men formed his personal army of mighty men. These men continued to personally surround him, even after he became king (2 Sam 8:15-18; 2 Sam 20:7, 1 Kin 1:38). From David’s reign onward, the Carites or Cherethites became the trusted bodyguards of the king of Judah (2 Chr 17:12-19).

Satan cannot thwart GOD’s purpose (2 Kin 11:1)
We must remember that our struggles are not with flesh and blood but with Satan and his demonic angels (Eph 6:12). Satan does this by holding people captive to do his will (2 Tim 2:26). We see our Precious LORD & SAVIOR JESUS CHRIST address this when Peter was being held to declare his own interests instead of CHRIST’s (Mat 16:21-23).

As previously mentioned, this study opens up with Satan trying to thwart GOD’s purpose. Satan uses Athaliah to try and stop The WORD of our Beloved LORD GOD from being fulfilled concerning the sons of David (2 Sam 7:12-13, 2 Sam 7:16, 1 Kin 11:36, 2 Kin 8:19). He knows JESUS is the descendant of David, that will sit on his throne forever (Luk 1:32-33, Eph 2:19-22, Heb 3:6). Satan deceives Athaliah into thinking she can seize the throne if she kills all her grandsons (the royal offspring) of the house of David. Athaliah’s deadly actions, was the third time Satan tried to destroy all David’s sons. Satan first tried it through Jehoram king of Judah, when he killed all his brothers, to prevent rivals for his throne (2 Chr 21:4). Satan tried a second time, when Philistine and Arab invaders came and killed all Jehoram’s sons, with the exception of Ahaziah, his youngest, who became king in his place (2 Chr 21:16-17, 2 Chr 22:1). We have this anchor in our very soul, our Beloved LORD GOD is faithful (2 Tim 2:13, Deu 7:9) and HIS WORD will not fail (Isa 55:10-11, Hab 2:2-3, Mat 5:18).

When Hidden in GOD (2 Kin 11:2-3)
We are truly hidden in HIM (Psa 31:20)! So much so, that HE even prepares a banquet table for us in the presence of our enemies (Psa 23:5). Precious little Joash was hidden in our Beloved LORD GOD’s house for six years, right next to the palace where his grandmother resided. I am in awe how HE did it. HE used the sister of Ahaziah, Jehosheba, to rescue her nephew by taking him and his nurse to a bedroom in the house of our GOD, because she had married the high priest in Judah (2 Kin 11:2-3, 2 Chr 22:11)! GOD not only hid Joash in HIS own house, HE also hid:
• Elijah by the brook Cherith in the land of Israel (1 Kin 17:3-5, 1 Kin 18:1-10)
• Jeremiah and Baruch the scribe from the evil king of Judah, Jehoiakim (Jer 36:26)
And HE hides us who have died to sin (Rom 6:2) with CHRIST in HIM (Col 3:3, Psa 27:5, Psa 63:7-8, Psa 91:1-4)!!! If GOD is for us, who can be against us? (Rom 8:31)

GOD keeps HIS Purpose Moving to the Goal (2 Kin 11:4-19, 2 Kin 11:21)
This BIBLE study so blessed me!!! Watching our powerful, amazing GOD keep HIS WORD moving toward its goal. If we could only see, how HE moves the promises in our lives forward to fulfillment! I was so blessed to watch our Beloved LORD GOD at work in the 11th chapter of 2 Kings. Our Awesome GOD delivered David’s young descendant safely to his rightful throne by:

  • Making sure baby Joash escaped death (2 Kin 11:2, 2 Chr 22:11)
  • Moving on the heart of Jehoiada the high priest in Judah (2 Chr 24:6), in the seventh year of Joash’s young life, to sit him on his father’s throne. Jehoiada did this by:
    • First gathering the Carites, personal bodyguards to the king of Judah (2 Kin 11:4)
    • Making a covenant with them, putting them under oath, and revealing Joash to them (2 Kin 11:4)
    • Sending them throughout Judah to gather all the scattered Levites and heads of every tribe to the House of GOD (2 Chr 23:1-2)
    • Assembling the Priests, Levites, Carites, and Tribal heads, in the House of GOD to make a covenant with Joash and declare The WORD of The LORD concerning the sons of David. (2 Chr 23:3)
    • Assigning the Priests, Levites, and Carites particular duties to guard Joash and get him safely to his throne on the very next Sabbath. The one day of the week, our Beloved LORD GOD set aside as holy (Exd 20:11); the day when all the people of Judah, would be gathered together at the House of GOD to worship (2 Kin 11:5-12, 2 Chr 23:4-11):
      • The Priests and Levites were broken down into groups:
        1. the group coming on duty for the Sabbath, would guard the palace or king’s house in three different places (2 Kin 11:5-6, 2 Chr 23:4-5)
        2. the group scheduled to go off duty on the Sabbath, would remain at the House of GOD, in three groups. Two groups would guard the HOUSE of GOD (2 Kin 11:7), and a third group would completely surround Joash with weapons in their hands to protect him (2 Kin 11:8, 2 Chr 23:7).
      • The Carites received King David’s weapons in the House of GOD from Jehoiada, some guarded the Levites (2 Kin 11:9-10), some guarded the House of GOD (2 Kin 11:11, 2 Chr 23:9-10)
    • Crowning Joash as king of Judah (2 Kin 11:12), placing the written WORD of GOD in his little hands (Deu 17:14-20), and anointing him to serve GOD as king in Judah (2 Kin 9:6)
    • Removing the new king’s enemy by death (2 Kin 11:13-16, 2 Chr 23:12-15)
    • Setting the nation in order, by having every citizen enter covenant with GOD to be HIS people (2 Kin 11:17, 2 Chr 23:16); every citizen enter covenant with their new king, to be loyal (2 Kin 11:17); destroyed Baal worship in Judah (2 Kin 11:18, 2 Chr 23:17); set the House of GOD in order (2 Chr 23:18-19); and finally placed the king on David’s throne in David’s palace (2 Kin 11:19, 2 Chr 23:20)

People rejoice when GOD steps in (2 Kin 11:20)
Our Beloved LORD GOD tells us “when a wicked man rules, people groan” (Pro 29:2), and hide themselves (Pro 28:12). Why? Because they are cruel taskmasters (Exd 1:8-14), their compassion is heartless (Pro 12:10); they strike fear in the hearts of those who are ruled by them (Pro 28:15); they lack understanding (Pro 28:16). Athaliah was a wicked daughter from a long line of wicked people. In her wickedness, she:

  • tried to destroy the royal household of Judah (2 Kin 11:1, 2 Chr 22:10-12)
  • brought Baal worship into Judah (2 Kin 8:16-19)
  • allowed her sons who were murdered by the Philistine and Arab invaders (2 Chr 22:1), to break into the house of GOD and use HIS holy things in the house of Baal (2 Chr 24:7)

Our Beloved LORD also tells us “when the wicked perish, there is joyful shouting” (Pro 11:10). The people are shouting for joy because their time of suffering has passed. When Athaliah was put to death, a young king from the house of David, who had been directed and protected by the high priest, was crowned (2 Kin 11:12-16, 2 Chr 23:11-15). However, we must not miss the compassion of our Beloved LORD GOD on full display, in 2 Kings 11:20. GOD tells us all the people of the land rejoiced, and the city was quiet. For they had put Athaliah to death with the sword at the king’s house. They rejoiced that GOD had moved on their behalf, but they did not rejoice that the life of their oppressor was taken (Pro 24:17-18). HIS desire is to preserve life, not destroy it (2 Sam 14:14, Jhn 6:37-40), to save life, not have it perish (Eze 18:23, Eze 33:11, 2 Pet 3:9).

Just one final thought before we end this study. Our Precious ABBA FATHER throughout The BIBLE teaches us:

  • the power of words (Pro 18:21, Pro 13:3, Pro 12:18)
  • the source of the words we speak (Mat 15:18, Isa 32:6, Mat 12:34-35, Luk 6:45)
  • how to use words (Eph 4:29, Col 4:6)
  • how not to use words (Eph 5:4, Col 3:8-9)
  • when to restrain words (Pro 17:27, Mat 7:6, Jam 1:19)
  • the consequences of unrestrained words (Pro 10:19, Mat 12:36-37, Jam 3:1-12)

Therefore, knowing the weight our Beloved ABBA FATHER gives words, and that each one of HIS WORDS are tested and refined (Psa 12:6, Pro 30:5, ), and they serve a purpose that will be accomplished (Isa 55:10-11, Rom 15:4, 2 Tim 3:16, 2 Pet 1:20), and they will stand forever (Psa 119:89, Psa 119:151-152, Isa 40:8). I asked my Beloved LORD GOD about 2 Kin 11:21. Why did HE close this chapter with a single Scripture, “Jehoash was seven years old when he became king.” HE has not yet revealed it to me, so I can’t discuss it with you. I am HIS humble messenger and patiently wait for HIS message. When HE reveals it to me, with HIS permission I will reveal it you.

It is HE who reveals the profound and hidden things
HE knows what is in the darkness
And the light dwells with HIM
Daniel 2:22

A Blameless Conscience Before GOD and Men

Man sitting in a crowdHaving a hope in GOD
Which these men cherish themselves
That there shall certainly be a resurrection of both the righteous and the wicked
In view of this
I also do my best to maintain always, a blameless conscience
Both before GOD and before men
Acts 24:15-16

In Acts chapter 24, the apostle Paul was standing before the governor Felix (a roman who had been given the authority and responsibility to govern over Judah and Samaria at Caesarea), giving his defense against the false charges brought by the Sanhedrin (council of Pharisees and Sadducees who had been given limited authority over certain religious, civil, and criminal matters by Rome).

Paul denied being guilty of the false charges brought against him, and confessed that he served GOD, and believed in The LAW of GOD that was written in the prophets (Act 24:10-14). He further confesses that he has the same hope in GOD, that the Council did, concerning the resurrection of both the righteous and the wicked (Act 24:15). Paul then brings us to the basis of this message, because he believed in the resurrection of JESUS (Act 24:21), and the resurrection of all men, he did his best to always maintain a blameless conscience both before GOD and men.

What did Paul mean by a blameless conscience? This question is best answered by looking at the definition of each word separately:

  • To be blameless is to be free from blame; without fault; without guilt; innocent; refrain from sin.
  • The conscience is a personal awareness of right and wrong that is used to guide your actions to do right; a knowledge or sense of right and wrong; an inner feeling or voice as a guide to the rightness or wrongness of behavior.

How can you know if you have a conscience? Our Beloved LORD GOD wrote HIS Law on our hearts (Rom 2:15), so we know when we are doing right or wrong as confirmed by the following Scriptures:

For our transgressions are multiplied before YOU
And our sins testify against us
For our transgressions are with us
And we know our iniquities
Isaiah 59:12

“Although our iniquities testify against us,
O LORD, act for YOUR NAME’s sake!
Truly our apostasies have been many,
We have sinned against YOU.
Jeremiah 14:7

By means of the hypocrisy of liars seared in their own conscience as with a branding iron
1 Timothy 4:2

Is there a difference between a blameless conscience before GOD and before men? For the godly there is no difference. Our love of CHRIST controls us (2 Cor 5:14), so our private walk is the same as our public profession. We serve our Beloved LORD GOD from our soul or innermost being (Psa 51:6, Psa 15:1-2). We know our GOD sees all and will bring every act to judgment (Pro 15:3, Jer 16:17, Ecc 12:14). For the ungodly and disobedient their private life is shameful, and their public life is praiseworthy. We see this demonstrated by the Pharisees (Mat 6:1-6, Mat 23:27-28).

Why do the ungodly and disobedient walk this way? There are at least ten reasons, they:

  1. Don’t think GOD sees them (Psa 94:3-7) as demonstrated by the elders in the temple of GOD (Eze 8:7-12)
  2. Think their sins are hidden (Jhn 3:19, Eph 5:11-13) though those very sins are exposed before GOD (Psa 90:8, Heb 4:13)
  3. Seek glory (honor and respect) from men, instead of GOD (Jhn 5:41-44, Jhn 7:18)
  4. Love the approval of men, rather than the approval of GOD (Jhn 12:43)
  5. Are men pleasers (Gal 1:10, 1 Ths 2:4)
  6. Obey unrighteousness, lusts, the sinful nature (Rom 2:8, Rom 6:12, Rom 6:16)
  7. Serve self and money (Php 2:3-4, Mat 6:24)
  8. Love self, money, pleasure, the world, and the things in it (2 Tim 3:2-4, 1 Jhn 2:15-16)
  9. Continually walk with the ungodly (1 Cor 5:9-11, Eph 5:11-12)
  10. Fear man, rather than GOD (Pro 29:25, Luk 12:4-5, Jhn 12:42-43)

Points of clarification:

From 1 Timothy 4:2, a seared conscience is one that has become insensitive to what is right and wrong. As an example, if you do something that is wrong, for example binge watching, gaming, gambling or adultery, at first your conscience bothers you, because GOD has written in your heart that it is wrong (Rom 2:15). But if you continue to do it, you are no longer convicted of your wrongdoing, in fact you begin to justify it.

To obey GOD means to:

  • Listen to HIS Voice (Psa 81:11-16, Pro 1:33, Pro 8:34)
  • Do HIS Will (Mrk 3:35, Luk 6:46, 1 Pet 4:2)
  • Act upon HIS WORD (Luk 6:47-49, Jam 1:22-25)

To serve means to seek after. To serve self means seeking after one’s own interests (Php 2:21); selfish, looking out for their own personal interests (Php 2:3-4). And serving money means to seek after it (Pro 23:4, Luk 12:21, 1 Tim 6:9, 1 Tim 6:17).

To walk with means to hang out with; occupy one’s time with; follow as a companion; how one conducts themselves (Amo 3:3, Gen 5:22-24, Gen 6:9, Gen 48:15, Jhn 14:23, Jhn 15:4-10, 1 Jhn 2:4-6).

 

Now, Israel
What does The LORD your GOD require from you
But to fear The LORD your GOD
To walk in all HIS Ways and love HIM
And to serve The LORD your GOD
With all your heart and with all your soul
And to keep The LORD’s Commandments
And HIS Statutes
Which I am commanding you today for your good?
Deuteronomy 10:12-13

GOD’s WORD Accomplished (2 Kings Chapters 9 and 10)

A Study in 2 KingsFor as the rain and the snow come down from heaven
And do not return there without watering the earth
And making it bear and sprout
And furnishing seed to the sower and bread to the eater
So will MY WORD be which goes forth from MY Mouth
It will not return to ME empty
Without accomplishing what I desire
And without succeeding in the matter for which I sent it
Isaiah 55:10-11

In this BIBLE study of 2 Kings Chapters 9 and 10, we will observe the accomplishment of GOD’s WORD concerning the house of Ahab the king of Israel. Because Jezebel his wife incited him, Ahab did more evil in the sight of our Beloved LORD GOD than all the kings of Israel before him (1 Kin 16:29-33, 1 Kin 21:25-26). As a result, the following judgments were pronounced against all who belonged to his house:

  • Jehu, the son of Nimshi, would be anointed king over Israel in Ahab’s place (1 Kin 19:16).
  • Jehu would put to death anyone that escaped from the sword of Hazael (1 Kin 19:17).
  • The place in Jezreel where Naboth and his sons’ blood were spilled for their vineyard, the blood of Ahab’s sons who lived in Jezreel, would be spilled (1 Kin 21:19).
  • The dogs would eat Jezebel in the district of Jezreel (1 Kin 21:23).
  • Every male in the house of Ahab, whether free or bond, would be cutoff or killed (1 Kin 21:21-22).

Beginning with 2 Kings Chapter 9, judgments come to pass, accomplishing GOD’s WORD concerning the House of Ahab:

  • In 2 Kings 9:1-6, Elisha sent one of the sons of the prophets to Jehu, a servant of the king of Israel (Jehoram aka Joram) and one of the captains in his army). Elisha instructed the young man to take Jehu into an inner room (2 Kin 9:2, 2 Kin 9:6), anoint him with oil from a flask he brought with him (2 Kin 9:3, 2 Kin 9:6), speaking ‘Thus says The LORD, “I have anointed you king over Israel.”’ (2 Kin 9:3, 2 Kin 9:6), and flee, do not wait (2 Kin 9:3). Thus, accomplishing our Beloved LORD GOD’s WORD that Jehu would be anointed the next king of Israel (1 Kin 19:16).
  • In 2 Kings 9:10, Jehu is instructed to accomplish GOD’s WORD concerning the house of Ahab.
  • In 2 Kings 9:11-13, the captains in the army of Israel, along with their troops at Ramoth-gilead, acknowledge Jehu as the king of Israel and support him, by throwing their garments under his feet. Through this act, our Beloved LORD GOD has given Jehu the army needed to accomplish the overthrow of the house of Ahab.
  • In 2 Kings 9:15, we are shown three things. First, king Jehoram was injured in the battle against Hazael, king of Aram. Second, king Jehoram left his army at Ramoth-gilead and went to Jezreel (a city north of the capital city of Samaria where one of the King’s residences was located–1 Kin 21:1) to recuperate from his wounds. And third, Jehu instructed the captains of the Israel army to let no one either escape or leave Ramoth-gilead to go announce he had been made king. Jehu wanted to catch his enemies by surprise.
  • In 2 Kings 9:16-37, we witness six events and four prophecies fulfilled:
    • 2 Kin 9:16-17, Jehu was a captain (or a commander) the army of Israel, and he had a company (two or more platoons of soldiers) whom he led. He rode in his chariot, taking his company with him to Jezreel to kill Jehoram (Joram), and defeat any uprising.
    • 2 Kin 9:16, Ahaziah, the wicked king of Judah, had come down to see king Joram of Israel. Ahaziah was actually checking on the well-being of his uncle, as his mother was Joram’s sister. Joram and Athaliah were both the children of Ahab and Jezebel (2 Kin 3:1, 2 Kin 8:18).
    • 2 Kin 9:17-20, there was a watchman standing on the tower in Jezreel, doing exactly what a watchman should be doing:
      • keeping watch; he was aware Jehu and his company headed toward Jezreel (2 Kin 9:17).
      • notified the one who could do something about it (the king of Israel), informing him of an incoming company of warriors (2 Kin 9:17).
      • kept the king apprised of what was happening; letting the king know the messengers he sent out, did not return, instead they joined the warriors (2 Kin 9:18-20).
      • identified the enemy upon closer approach; the leader of the incoming company of warriors, drives like his servant Jehu (2 Kin 9:20).
    • In 2 Kings 9:21-26, we witness the interaction between Jehu and Joram, the death of Joram by Jehu’s hand, and the fulfillment of three prophecies:
      • Jehu and his company stopped at the property of Naboth, the Jezreelite (2 Kin 9:21), where king Joram personally met him. He inquired was the mission one of peace. Jehu informed Joram there could be no peace as long as idolatry and witchcraft existed in Israel through his mother the queen (2 Kin 9:22).
      • King Joram tried to turn and flee, as he warned his nephew Ahaziah, the king of Judah (2 Kin 9:23). But Jehu killed Joram.
      • Jehu had Joram’s body thrown into the property of the field of Naboth, the Jezreelite (2 Kin 9:24-26), beginning the fulfilment of GOD’s judgment against the house of Ahab (2 Kin 9:7-9), and fulfilling three prophecies. The first prophecy, the dogs will lick up Ahab’s blood in the same place the dogs had licked up Naboth’s blood (1 Kin 21:19)*; the second prophecy, the blood of Ahab’s descendants who die in the city, the dogs will eat (1 Kin 21:24); the third prophecy, the destruction of Ahab’s house, would happen in the days of his sons (1 Kin 21:29).      
    • In 2 Kings 9:27-29, Ahaziah is killed by Jehu. With Ahaziah’s death, two things occur, a male from the house of Ahab is cutoff, even though he is king of Judah. He might have lived, as his son after him would live, but he died. Because he led Judah in the same evil practices as the house of Ahab (2 Chr 22:1-4)
    • In 2 Kings 9:30-37, the judgment against Jezebel is carried out because she incited her husband Ahab in wickedness (1 Kin 21:25), murdered the prophets and servants of The LORD (2 Kin 9:7), and had an innocent man and his sons, murdered for their vineyard (1 Kin 21:7-15, 2 Kin 9:25-26). Jezebel was:
      • the wife of Ahab and mother of Joram (1 Kin 16:29-31, 2 Kin 9:22)
      • the daughter of a Sidonian king (1 Kin 16:31-33), brought Baal worship into Israel (1 Kin 16:32, 1 Kin 18:17-19).
      • aware that Jehu had come to Jezreel and killed her son. But instead of humbling herself, she put on makeup and waited at the window for Jehu’s arrival (2 Kin 9:30). As Jehu entered the gate to the palace, she taunted him, by calling him Zimri, the fifth wicked king in Israel, who like Jehu was a commander that killed his master, the fourth king of Israel (2 Kin 9:31, 1 Kin 16:8-10). Though Zimri was only king for 7 days (1 Kin 16:15-19), GOD used him to complete the destruction of the house of Baasha (1 Kin 16:8-20).
      • in an upper palace window, when Jehu carried out GOD’s judgment against her, fulfilling a fourth prophecy concerning the house of Ahab (2 Kin 9:32-37, 1 Kin 21:23, 2 Kin 9:10).

As we continue on to 2 Kings Chapter 10, we see Jehu completing his mandate against the house of Ahab. Our Beloved LORD GOD gives us insight into why HE chose Jehu to execute HIS judgment, why the other captains of the army of Israel quickly accepted him as king, and why they kept his initial instructions to keep his appointment as king of Israel quiet. In this chapter, we will witness Jehu’s expert skills in warfare (strategy, tactics, and techniques of combat), in bringing down the house of Ahab.

  • In 2 Kin 10:1-7, Ahab had seventy sons in the capital city of Samaria, where they were being protected, cared for, and prepared for places of leadership by the rulers, elders, guardians, and prominent men in that city (2 Kin 10:1, 2 Kin 10:6). Jehu chose a strategy of psychological warfare against the leaders and guardians in Samaria. He knew by now, that all of Israel and Judah, were aware that he had killed their reigning kings and Jezebel. So Jehu sent a letter to the leaders and guardians in Samaria, noting they had the things necessary to go to war against him (horses, chariots, a city fortified with walls, and weapons), and suggested they choose one of Ahab’s best and most upright sons and make him king. Then they and their new king of Israel could engage him in warfare (2 Kin 10:2-3). The psychological warfare was effective, because without the need to go to physical battle against Samaria, the leaders, and guardians:
    • refused to fight against Jehu (2 Kin 10:4)
    • acknowledged Jehu as the king of Israel, and promised obedience (2 Kin 10:5)

Jehu then sent a second letter, calling the leaders and guardians to decapitate all seventy sons, and come to him the next day at Jezreel (2 Kin 10:7). The leaders and guardians carried out Jehu’s instructions, and slaughtered all seventy of Ahab’s sons, but sent the heads to Jezreel without accompanying them (2 Kin 10:7).

  • In 2 Kin 10:8-10, Jehu continues his psychological warfare in Jezreel. He had the seventy heads of Ahab’s sons piled up in two heaps until morning, on either side of the entrance gate to Jezreel. The next morning, he publicly admits to killing Jehoram, but he questions who killed the seventy sons of Ahab in Samaria and shipped them to Jezreel. He then testifies that every single word GOD spoke through HIS prophet Elijah against the house of Ahab would be accomplished. In one announcement he garnered support for himself and removed any resistance to a commission he was carrying out on behalf of GOD and HIS servant Elijah.
  • In 2 Kin 10:11, Jehu completed his commission in Jezreel by putting to death all remaining males (free or bond) in Ahab’s family. But Jehu went beyond GOD’s instructions and killed any man who had any type of relationship with Ahab’s family. This sin would not go unpunished, our Beloved LORD GOD would punish the family of Jehu for the bloodshed in Jezreel not belonging to Ahab’s family (Hos 1:4). Rightly did king David say, “Let us now fall into the hand of The LORD for HIS mercies are great, but do not let me fall into the hand of man” (2 Sam 24:14). David understood the cruel heart of man, without mercy, not willing to forgive, and full of judgment.
  • In 2 Kin 10:12-14, Jehu departs for Samaria to complete his mandate and claim his throne. As he and his men were traveling south from Jezreel to Samaria (both cities are located in the map at the end of lesson four), they run into relatives of Ahaziah, king of Judah. Jehu asks them who they are, they identified themselves as relatives of Ahaziah. These forty-two men state their business, “they are going down to greet the sons of the king, and the sons of the queen mother.” These forty-two men also traveling down to Samaria, had not heard what had been happening with the house of Ahab, or even who Jehu was. They essentially identified themselves as part of the house of Ahab, relatives of Ahaziah the grandson of Ahab, and the queen mother (either the daughter of Ahab and Jezebel (Athaliah) or Jezebel herself). As such, they were also put to death.
  • In 2 Kin 10:15-16, Jehu and his men continued their journey to Samaria, when he meets Jehonadab son of Rechab. Jehu and Jehonadab knew each other, as demonstrated by Jehonadab coming to meet Jehu, and Jehu greeting him, instead of asking him to identify himself. Jehu then asks Jehonadab is he in agreement with what he is doing, Jehonadab says yes. Jehu asks him for confirmation by taking his hand and riding in his chariot into Samaria. Jehonadab does (2 Kin 10:15). So, who is Jehonadab? And why is his public allegiance important to Jehu? Jehonadab:
    • Also known as Jonadab (Jer 35:6), belonged to a tribe of scribes who were Kenites (1 Chr 2:55), Jethro the father-in-law of Moses belonged to this tribe (Jdg 1:16), and this tribe showed kindness to the Israelites when they came out of Egypt (1 Sam 15:6) by going with them into the wilderness (Num 10:29-32).
    • A godly man who served only the true GOD of Israel as demonstrated by Jehu’s invitation for him to come see his zeal for The LORD (2 Kin 10:16), and his accompanying Jehu to the house of Baal, to destroy Baal worship in Israel (2 Kin 10:23-28).
    • A man who honored and was honored by GOD (Jer 35:18-19), by walking as a Nazirite (Num 6:1-4, Jdg 3:7) and instructing his descendants after him to walk as Nazirites forever, symbolizing their dedication to GOD (Jer 35:1-6).
    • Was among those faithful saints who considered himself as a sojourner, a stranger, an exile on earth. His permanent home was in the city of GOD (Heb 11:9-10, Heb 11:13-16), instructing his descendants after him to live accordingly (Jer 35:7-11).
  • In 2 Kin 10:17, Jehu entered Samaria and completed his destruction of the house of Ahab, by killing all the remaining males in the capital city.
  • In 2 Kin 10:18-28, Jehu eradicated Baal worship out of Israel by:
    • pretending to serve Baal in a far greater capacity than Ahab (2 Kin 10:18)
    • summoning all the worshippers of Baal (every prophet, priest, and worshipper) in Israel to a solemn assembly; and threatening to kill any worshipper who did not show up (2 Kin 10:19-21)
    • clothing all the worshippers of Baal in garments, so they could be clearly identified, then removing any servants of The LORD (2 Kin 10:22-23)
    • sending in all the worshippers of Baal into the temple to offer sacrifices and burnt offerings (2 Kin 10:24), while stationing eighty soldiers outside, with explicit instructions not to let any Baal worshipper escape (2 Kin 10:24)
    • killing every worshipper of Baal as soon as the burnt offering was finished (2 Kin 10:25)
    • bringing out sacred pillars in the temple of Baal, and burned them (2 Kin 10:26)
    • demolishing both the sacred pillar and temple of Baal, and turned the ruins into a public toilet (2 Kin 10:27)
  • In 2 Kin 10:29-33, we see the justness of our Beloved LORD GOD (Deu 32:4). HE rewarded Jehu for total obedience in completely destroying the house of Ahab, and eradicating Baal worship out of Israel. GOD allowed the house of Jehu to sit on the throne of Israel for over a century. Jehu reigned as king over Israel for twenty-eight years, and his sons after him for four generations (2 Kin 10:30, 2 Kin 10:36, 2 Kin 13:1, 2 Kin 13:10, 2 Kin 14:23, 2 Kin 15:8-12). However, because Jehu continued leading Israel in idolatry (worshipping the golden calves Jeroboam made — 2 Kin 10:29, 2 Kin 10:31), GOD used the Arameans and the Assyrians to continually war with Israel, temporarily reducing their territory (2 Kin 10:32-33, 2 Kin 13:22-25).
  • In 2 Kin 10:34-36, we close this chapter with the death of Jehu and the succession of his son Jehoahaz to the throne of Israel.

In conclusion, in studying chapters nine and ten of 2 Kings, we see GOD repaying the wicked. HE brings a violent end, to a house whose hands are covered with the blood of the righteous (2 Kin 9:7) and the innocent (2 Kin 9:26). We are also given understanding of why our Beloved LORD GOD commands the righteous to separate themselves from the wicked (Psa 1:1, Pro 4:14-17, 2 Cor 6:14-18). When one has a relationship of any level with the wicked, they are influenced by them (1 Kin 11:1-8, Pro 13:20), and will be swept away in their sin (Gen 19:15, Num 16:25-26, Rev 18:4). And in case we still lack understanding, HE strongly tells us in 1 Corinthians 15:33-34:

Do not be deceived

“Bad company corrupts good morals”

Become sober-minded as you ought, and stop sinning

For some have no knowledge of GOD

I speak this to your shame

 

 

 

*it should be noted that when Ahab received the prophecy concerning himself in 1 Kings 21:19, he humbled himself before The LORD, and so our merciful GOD spared him, but the prophecy would be fulfilled with his sons (1 Kin 21:27-29).

The Righteous are Bold as a Lion

Precious Morsels July 7, 2020The wicked flee when no one is pursuing,
But the righteous are bold as a lion.
Proverbs 28:1

King Ahab of Israel was a wicked king, who married an exceedingly wicked Sidonian woman (Jezebel). She brought the worship of her false god Baal into Israel and tried to destroy worship of the true and living GOD, by killing all HIS prophets (1 Kin 18:13).

Under their leadership, the people of Israel tried to combine worshiping GOD and worshipping Baal. This idolatry prevented their hearts from being united to our GOD (Psa 86:11), loving HIM only (Mrk 12:30), worshiping and serving HIM alone (Deu 6:10-13, Mat 4:10).

As a result, GOD sent HIS prophet Elijah, to the king and the nation of Israel to:
1. confront the king and the nation with their sin (1 Kin 18:21)
2. turn their hearts back to the true and living GOD (1 Kin 18:37-39)
3. demonstrate there was only one true and living GOD in Israel (1 Kin 18:22-36)
4. destroy Baal worship (1 Kin 18:40)
5. end the famine, HE called because of the idolatry (1 Kin 18:41-46)

Ahab told Jezebel all that Elijah had done, and how he killed all the prophets of Baal and Asherah with a sword. Jezebel sent a message to Elijah threatening that she would end his life the next day. Elijah was afraid and ran for his life (1 Kin 19:1-3).

Elijah’s fear of Jezebel the enemy before him, caused him to forget the powerful GOD beside him. His fear brought depression and discouragement. Our loving GOD met Elijah right where he lay down in disheartenment, raised him up, and provided the sustenance he needed for the journey to meet with HIM at Horeb, the mountain of GOD (1 Kin 19:4-14).

After GOD met with Elijah, HE sent him back to Israel (1 Kin 19:15). What??? Yes, GOD sent him back to continue his ministry. Elijah would continue to stand before his enemies, delivering The WORD of our GOD (1 Kin 21:1-29, 2 Kin 1:1-18).

As my thoughts were full of amazement at what our loving GOD just pointed out to me, in this particular testimony of Elijah; HE gently said “the righteous don’t run from their enemies, they stand before them.” And then HE said “Proverbs 28:1”

The wicked flee when no one is pursuing,
But the righteous are bold as a lion.

The word “bold” in Proverbs 28:1 literally means “confident.” And why are we confident as a lion? Because GOD HIMSELF is our confidence (Pro 3:26, Psa 71:5). If HE is for us, who is against us? (Rom 8:31, Psa 116:6-8, Isa 54:17)

If you are fearful, worried, discouraged, disheartened, get up and put your trust in The LORD. HE is your help and shield (Psa 115:11). HE knows everything that is happening to you (Heb 4:13), HE knows all your needs (Mat 6:31-32). When you take your eyes off your circumstances and place them on HIM, HE will give you HIS peace that surpasses all understanding (Php 4:6-7).

It Will Surely Take Place – 2 Kings 8:1-29

A Study in 2 KingsDeclaring the end from the beginning,
And from ancient times things which have not been done,
Saying, ‘My purpose will be established,
And I will accomplish all My good pleasure
Isaiah 46:10 (Nasb)

From Genesis to Revelation our Beloved LORD GOD has specifically spoken to us about events that would take place, their location, their timing and even their duration. HE also spoke with us about people who were born, who would be born, who are yet to be born, where they would live, what they would do, and how long they would be among us. Truly HE is omniscient, and we will once again state the WORDS of our GOD from Isaiah 46:10 using the Message translation:

From the very beginning
Telling you what the ending will be,
All along letting you in on what is going to happen,
Assuring you, ‘I’m in this for the long haul’
“I’ll do exactly what I set out to do”

In this BIBLE study of 2 Kings Chapter 8, we will witness the continual certainty of our Beloved LORD GOD’s WORD, with the fulfillment of HIS WORDS spoken to two of HIS prophets, Elijah and Elisha. We will do this by studying events surrounding a Shunamite woman, and four kings (two in Aram and two in Judah). In this study we will see that our GOD’s WORD:

  • will accomplish what it was sent to do (Isa 55:11, Isa 14:24, Mat 5:18)
  • is pure and blameless truth (2 Sam 22:31, Psa 12:6, Psa 119:140, Pro 30:5, Tit 1:2, Heb 6:18-19)
  • is sure— certain, trustworthy, always effective (Psa 19:7, Psa 93:5, Psa 111:7-8, 2 Cor 1:20)

Truths reflected in events around the Shunamite woman (2 Kings 8:1-6):

  • In 2 Kings 8:1-2, Elisha is speaking directly to the Shunamite woman who provided meals and accommodations to him and his servant (2 Kin 4:8-13). He tells her that our Beloved LORD GOD has called for a seven-year famine in Israel where she is living. The famine will be severe, and she with her household, should temporarily stay in another land for its duration. In these first two Scriptures of 2 Kings chapter 8, we see three truths:
    • Our GOD makes HIS plans known to HIS servants the prophets (Amo 3:7). Here in 2 Kings 8:1 we see HE made them known to Elisha, and throughout the BIBLE, HE made HIS plans known to Elijah (1 Kin 19:15-17), Noah (Gen 6:13), Abraham (Gen 18:17-21), Isaiah (Isa 9:6-7), Jeremiah (Jer 19:2-15), Daniel (Dan 9:20-27)…, including those today who obey HIS WORD (Jhn 15:14-15).
    • We are preserved and protected through obedience (Psa 37:18-19, 1 Kin 17:1-16). The Shunamite woman obeyed the instruction of Elisha, rising up and going into the land of the Philistines with her household, until the famine was over (2 Kin 8:2).
    • HE prepares a table for us, in the presence of our enemies (Psa 23:5). The Shunamite woman went into the land of Israel’s enemies, the Philistines, and yet for seven years our Blessed LORD GOD took care of her and her household there (2 Kin 8:2).
  • In 2 Kings 8:3-6, at the end of the seven years the Shunamite woman returned to Israel and went to the king to appeal to him to get her home and land back. Not only did the king appoint and officer to restore all that was hers, he also commanded that all that her land produced during her absence was restored. What powerful truths our Beloved LORD GOD reveals to us in 2 Kings 8:3-6:
    • No matter the time period, HE does not forget our service to HIS people (Mat 10:42, Heb 6:10) or our compassion for others (Pro 19:17, Deu 15:7-8, Pro 28:27, Mat 25:34-40, Heb 13:2-3). The Shunamite woman provided for GOD’s servant Elisha and his servant in their time of need, our Beloved LORD GOD provided for her and her household.
    • Our Awesome GOD goes before us, taking care of us and moving on our behalf (Deu 1:30-33). In HIS perfect timing, HE went before the Shunamite woman to the king, making her introduction to the king through the mouth of Gehazi (2 Kin 8:3-5).
    • All things work together for good, including those situations we consider so horrific that we wonder how our loving GOD could possibly be working in those situations (Rom 8:28). Our Beloved LORD GOD miraculously gave the Shunamite woman a son (2 Kin 4:14-17, Psa 127:3), and then he died (2 Kin 4:18-20). HE used her son’s death and miraculous restoration to life, as a testimony to the king, causing him to restore all that belonged to her, plus some (2 Kin 4:21-37, 2 Kin 8:6).
    • Our Beloved LORD GOD is a Restorer (Job 42:10-17, Joe 2:25-27). Our GOD restores that which is lost by giving it back, bringing it back, or putting it back to a former condition. At the advice of Elisha, the Shunammite woman temporarily moved herself, and her household to a neighboring land without famine, for the seven years. At the end of them, our Beloved LORD GOD not only restored what belonged to her, but also provided for her and her household for the next seven years (2 Kings 8:1-6).

The WORD of GOD surely took place concerning 2 kings in Aram (2 Kings 8:7-15). When Elijah was running for his life, full of fear, discouragement, and weariness, he came to the mountain of GOD, seeking the presence of GOD (1 Kin 19:1-9). After a discussion between Elijah and GOD, GOD told Elijah to return to Israel by way of the wilderness to Damascus, he would anoint Hazael king over Aram (1 Kin 19:15). In 2 Kings 8:7-15 the prophecy was fulfilled through Elijah’s servant Elisha. Ben-hadad the current king of Aram sent word by his servant Hazael to the prophet Elisha, inquiring if he would recover from his sickness. Though Ben-hadad could have recovered from his sickness, he would die at the hands of his servant Hazael (2 Kin 8:7-9). Our Beloved LORD GOD showed Elisha all the evil Hazael would do (2 Kin 8:10-15), from murdering his master, to the great evil he would do against Israel all of his days. Our GOD repays according to deeds done (Rom 12:19), and HE used Hazael to repay Israel, for all the evil they committed (1 Kin 19:10, Eze 7:9, Hos 4:9, Mat 16:27).

Before we move on to the two kings in Judah, there is a single powerful Scripture (2 Kin 8:19), tucked between the history of the two kings of Aram and the two kings of Judah. This Scripture simply states, “however, The LORD was not willing to destroy Judah, for the sake of David HIS servant, since HE had promised him to give a lamp to him through his sons always.” Our GOD promised David that one of his descendants would sit upon his throne forever (1 Chr 17:11-12). And that descendant is our Precious LORD and SAVIOR JESUS CHRIST (Luk 1:31-33). Though David had descendants who were evildoers, our GOD repaid or removed them, while retaining the throne of David in the city of Jerusalem. Our Beloved LORD GOD retains those who are HIS (Psa 4:3, Psa 145:20, Jud 1:24) and all that belongs to HIM (Zec 8:1-9).

We close this study with two descendants of David (Jehoram and his son Ahaziah), whom GOD removed, because they were wicked kings in Judah (2 Kin 8:16-29). Jehoram was the son of the righteous king Jehoshaphat (2 Chr 17:1-6), but he became wicked when he married king Ahab’s daughter and began to live like Ahab and all the evil kings in Israel (2 Kin 8:16-18). Jehoram and his wife Athaliah, raised their son Ahaziah, to also live wickedly (2 Kin 8:25-27). Through death, my Beloved LORD GOD removed Jehoram from reign after eight years (2 Kin 8:17, 2 Chr 21:5-20), and his son Ahaziah after one year (2 Kin 8:25-26). Our GOD removes evildoers (Psa 34:16, Psa 37:9-10), and throughout The BIBLE HE instructs us not to associate with evildoers (1 Kin 11:1-2, Psa 1:1, Psa 119:115, 1 Cor 15:33-34, 2 Cor 6:14-18), so that we will not be destroyed along with them (Jer 51:6, Jer 51:45, Rev 18:4).

In conclusion, though there are many mockers concerning the times we are living in (2 Pet 3:3-9, Jud 1:17-18), our GOD’s WORD will not fail, it will surely take place (Hab 2:2-3).

All Things Work Together For Good!

Precious Morsels 2 June 27, 2020And we know that GOD causes all things to work together for good
To those who love GOD
To those who are called according to HIS purpose
Romans 8:28

In 2 Kings 4:8-37, our Beloved LORD GOD tells us about a gracious Shunammite woman who provided food and lodging for HIS prophet Elisha. She did not do it for profit, she did not do it to get something in return, she did it because she perceived he was a man of GOD.

Elisha wanting to repay the Shunammite woman for her kindness, called her and asked what he could do for her, she basically told him “nothing” and departed. She indeed appeared to have everything, but the prophet’s servant noticed that she had no son, and her husband was an old man. Elisha called her back and told her that at this season next year she will be holding her own son, in her arms. And indeed, my GOD blessed her with a son that very next year.

One day after her son had grown into a young boy, he went out to the fields with his father, but began to experience a severe headache. The boy’s father instructed his servants to take the boy to his mother, where after a few hours he died. The Shunammite woman carried her dead son up to the room, she and her husband had built for the Elisha and his servant to sleep in. She placed her son on Elisha’s bed and then went to find Elisha. She found him and did not leave his side until he returned to her home with her. Elisha entered his room, closed the door behind him and prayed to our Beloved LORD GOD. When the boy’s life was restored, Elisha gave him back to his mother.

Why would our loving GOD allow this child to die in the first place? The Shunammite woman had not asked for him, though she loved him, and was very blessed to have him. And even though our Beloved LORD GOD restored this boy’s life, why would this faithful woman be allowed to experience such heartbreak?

Later, in 2 Kings 8:1-6, our Beloved LORD GOD tells HIS servant Elisha, that a severe famine would come up on the land of Israel where the Shunammite woman lived. And upon the advice of Elisha, she and her household temporarily moved to a neighboring land without famine, for seven years. At the end of seven years, she and her household returned, but she needed help from the king to get her home and field back. Just before she went to the king to appeal for her home and field, he heard about the death and restoration of her son’s life. Shortly after, she came to the king, he was told, “this is the woman whose son had died, and his life restored through the prophet Elisha.” Once she confirmed the events that actually happened to her son, the king appointed a certain officer to restore all that was hers, and all the produce of the field during the entire time of the famine. So, our Beloved LORD GOD not only restored what belonged to her, but also provided for her and her household for the next seven years.

Truly through the testimony of the Shunammite woman, we witness all things work together for good. Even a situation so horrific and hurtful, that in the midst of the suffering, would cause you to wonder how our loving GOD could possibly be working in that situation. And yet we see that HE did!

Be encouraged. If you love the LORD (which means both loving HIM and obeying HIS Will – John 14:15), indeed every situation, every circumstance in your life, HE is working out for good.