Summary: In our darkest moments, hear God's assurance and expect God's actions. Trust His Word and wait for His deliverance.
2 Kings 8:16-24 and 2 Chron 21
After nearly 8 chapters with the camera on the Northern Kingdom of Israel, we have now an account of the South.
• The last time we looked at the Southern Kingdom (Judah) King Jehoshaphat was King. The timeline continues from there.
• We will look at his son JEHORAM today in 2 Kings 8:16-24.
• Let us read also 2 Chron 21:1-11 to get a fuller picture of what he did.
We’ve just read a very sad commentary of a King who brought idolatry into Judah.
• The author tells us a matter-of-factly in 8:18 “He walked in the ways of the kings of Israel, as the house of Ahab had done, FOR he married a daughter of Ahab. He did evil in the eyes of the LORD.”
• We see this same line repeated in 2 Chron 21:6.
Jehoram’s marriage to Ahab’s daughter ATHALIAH (8:26) influenced him drastically.
• He was led into idolatry and brought in the godless ways of Ahab into the South.
• The passing of his dad Jehoshaphat means he has lost all countering influence.
The cancer spreads, not just from one family to another, from one nation to another, but from one generation to another.
• 8:27 says after Jehoram died, his son Ahaziah reigned and “27He walked in the ways of the house of Ahab and did evil in the eyes of the LORD, as the house of Ahab had done, for he was related by marriage to Ahab's family.”
• The close ties means that the bad influence continues to pollute.
• A marriage matters. Who you marry matters. Marriage has its rewards but also its consequences. Choose wisely because close ties affect us.
And it was not that Jehoram had a bad start to his life.
• 2 Chron 21:3 tells us his father “had given them many gifts of silver and gold and articles of value, as well as fortified cities in Judah…”
• He has the position, the power, the prestige and the possession for a decent life.
• 2 Chron 2:12 the Lord says Jehoram has not walked in the ways of his father Jehoshaphat nor his grandfather Asa.
• He has the chance to live right and stay godly, but he squandered them all.
It wasn’t that he had a very bad upbringing. We tend to think that we are the product of our past circumstances and experiences, but this is not correct.
• We can be affected but not necessarily therefore the product of the circumstances.
• We are who we are today because of the choices we make. Who we are is not determined by our past. By God’s grace, we can always choose right.
Jehoram has chosen to follow the ways of Ahab (emphasized a few times by the author), instead of his father and grandfather.
Look at what he did the moment he came into power.
• 2 Chron 21:4 “When Jehoram established himself firmly over his father's kingdom, he put all his (six) brothers to the sword along with some of the princes of Israel.”
• He consolidated his power by getting rid of all potential threats, including his brothers, whom the Lord says are better than him. (21:13) He ought to be grateful.
Jehoram lived only for himself. Even the nation could see that, because we read that two cities rebelled against his rule – Edom and Libnah.
• 2 Chron 21:10 “To this day Edom has been in rebellion against Judah. Libnah revolted at the same time, because Jehoram had forsaken the LORD, the God of his fathers.”
• He wants to build his own kingdom, forgetting that this is God’s Kingdom, not his.
2 Chron 21:11 “He had also built high places on the hills of Judah and had caused the people of Jerusalem to prostitute themselves and had led Judah astray.”
• In his 8 years of reign, Jehoram destroyed all the good that his father and his grandfather have done in Judah.
• This is how bad the situation was. If you are not a fervent believer of a sovereign God, then this is quite hopeless.
What do you do when your situation is so dark? You remember God’s Word.
BUT despite all this, the author says the light of God has not be extinguished.
• 2 Kings 8:19 “Nevertheless (Yet, ESV/KJV), for the sake of His servant David, the LORD was not willing to destroy Judah. He had promised to maintain a lamp for David and his descendants forever.”
HEAR GOD’S ASSURANCE
“The Lord was not willing…” This is not His will. It will not be the end of Judah. There is hope.
• There is hope because God has made a promise, a covenant. And He is determined to keep it.