Summary: God is a God of vengeance and He will judge sin and evil. We trust God and leave it to Him to execute perfect justice, and not take matters into our own hands.
We have been reading the devastating influence of the house of Ahab, in Israel and also in Judah.
• Ahab has died but his evil ways continued to permeate the land and corrupt the people. God will act to stop this.
• In today’s passage (2 Kings 9) we are going to read the rise of a man whom God has chosen, to judge the house of Ahab.
This instrument of God is JEHU (G-hew) the commander of the army of Israel.
• He serves under King Joram, son of Ahab but will soon commit treason and kill the King.
• He will go on to take out Ahab’s wife Jezebel, and also all the seventy sons of the house of Ahab (2 Kings 10).
King Joram (ISRAEL) King Ahaziah (JUDAH)
Son of Ahab Son of Jehoram
JEHU defending Ramoth Gilead against King Hazael (ARAM)
Commander, Israel’s army
Let us read how God set JEHU apart for this task in 2 Kings 9:1-13.
The first time that this name JEHU was mentioned was in 1 Kings 19, when God first mentioned it to prophet Elijah.
• Elijah was then running from Queen Jezebel, feeling very depressed and wanted to die, telling the Lord that He was the only prophet left.
• He ran into in a cave in Mount Horeb and there the Lord spoke to him.
1 Kings 19:15-18 “15The LORD said to him, "Go back the way you came, and go to the Desert of Damascus. When you get there, anoint Hazael king over Aram. 16Also, anoint Jehu son of Nimshi king over Israel, and anoint Elisha son of Shaphat from Abel Meholah to succeed you as prophet. 17Jehu will put to death any who escape the sword of Hazael, and Elisha will put to death any who escape the sword of Jehu.”
These THREE persons are to be “anointed” (set apart) to accomplish God’s will – HAZAEL (Aram), JEHU (Israel) and ELISHA (Elijah’s apprentice and successor).
• We know subsequently in our readings that they were not “anointed” in a literal sense, with oil by Elijah. But set apart through Elijah’s ministry, broadly speaking.
• ELISHA was called in 1 Kings 19 immediately after Elijah’s meeting with God.
• HAZAEL, a court official, will become Aram’s King, declared by Elisha in 2 Kings 8.
• JEHU was anointed by Elisha’s student here in 2 Kings 9.
Clearly God has already determined these instruments of judgment against Ahab’s family, right here in 1 Kings 19.
Let’s look again at HAZAEL’S “setting apart” moment in 2 Kings 8.
• The King of ARAM Ben-Hadad was sick and he asked HAZAEL his official to seek ELISHA and find out if he would recover.
• 2 Kings 8:10-13 “10Elisha answered, "Go and say to him, `You will certainly recover'; but the LORD has revealed to me that he will in fact die."
• Both are right. He will recover (from sickness) but he will die (by assassination).
• 11He stared at him with a fixed gaze until Hazael felt ashamed. Then the man of God began to weep. 12"Why is my lord weeping?" asked Hazael.
• "Because I know the harm you will do to the Israelites," he answered. "You will set fire to their fortified places, kill their young men with the sword, dash their little children to the ground, and rip open their pregnant women."
• 13Hazael said, "How could your servant, a mere dog, accomplish such a feat?"
• "The LORD has shown me that you will become king of Aram," answered Elisha.
It looks like Hazael initiated this but we know it was God who determined it.
• HAZAEL became King of ARAM and fought Israel at Ramoth Gilead, and that’s the setting of 2 Kings 9, where we read of the “setting apart” of JEHU.
• Jehu was leading the army of Israel and laying siege at Ramoth Gilead.
• Elisha’s student prophet came to the camp, anointed JEHU as King and declared to him the will of God.
Listen to what God says - 2 Kings 9:6-10.
• “I anoint you king over the LORD's people Israel. 7 You are to destroy the house of Ahab your master, and I will avenge the blood of My servants the prophets and the blood of all the LORD's servants shed by Jezebel. 8 The whole house of Ahab will perish. I will cut off from Ahab every last male in Israel-slave or free. 9 I will make the house of Ahab like the house of Jeroboam son of Nebat and like the house of Baasha son of Ahijah. 10 As for Jezebel, dogs will devour her on the plot of ground at Jezreel, and no one will bury her.'"
Notice the I WILL of God’s intention.
This whole encounter was a divine appointment. JEHU was to be God’s instrument and he will execute God’s will.