The plan continues in 2 Chronicles 23 today with the establishment of the reign of King Joash by the wisdom of the High Priest, Jehoida.
2 Chronicles 23-24
Jehoida impressed me earlier in the chapter when he spoke of doing “as the Lord hath said”. His focus was on God’s will and not his own ambition. Now, in verse 16 he makes a covenant between the people and the king that they would be the Lord’s people.
A tone of warning is struck in 2 Chronicles 24:2 when it is noted that Joash did that which was right in God’s eyes “all the days of Jehoiada the priest.” It puts us in mind of what would happen when the priest was no longer there to guide him.
The zeal of Joash, the freewill giving of the people and the skill of the workers all combined to repair the temple. A great example for the church today!
After the death of Jehoiada special interest groups, lobbyists, came and tempted Joash away from his former path. Sadly, Joash’s zeal for the Lord in his early years burns out and Joash rushes headlong into sin and judgment. Perhaps saddest of all is the treatment of the son of Jehoiada at the hands of the King.
Joash proves to be a fickle leader, much like many politicians today.
2 Chronicles 25
Amaziah ascends to the throne of Jerusalem. His is another tale of incomplete obedience. He did that which was right in the sight of God, “but not with a perfect heart.” More and more we see the uniqueness of David, a man after God’s own heart. The faithfulness of God is once again proven again. However, Amaziah receives God’s blessings but then foolishly turns aside to worship false gods.
2 Chronicles 26
A bright light in these troubled days for the divided kingdom is seen in the next king od Judah, Uzziah. He worshipped faithfully, lead wisely and expanded the city of Jerusalem as well as completing building projects across the country. Uzziah made great strides forward in civic matters but also strengthened the army. However, Uzziah fell to pride. Uzziah attempted to fulfill the role of a priest as well as king, but in the moment of his rebellion, he was struck down with leprosy. We know of only one King Priest accepted by God, and that is Jesus Christ.
2 Chronicles 29-31
After several years of instability and increasing wickedness, it is encouraging to read of the reign of Hezekiah. He demonstrates faith and leadership when he gathers the priests and Levites and seeks peace with God. A great example is set for future generations as the cleansing begins among God’s people and in the Temple before it expands out to others. A wonderful summary is found in 2 Chronicles 31:21 – “And in every work that he began in the service of the house of God, and in the law, and in the commandments, to seek his God, he did it with all his heart, and prospered.”
2 Chronicles 32
Assyria enters the narrative. The Assyrians wrongly assumed that Hezekiah’s recent destruction of idols would bring anger from those false gods. They did not understand that the destruction of false idols followed repentance and renewal with the one True God, Jehovah. As long as Israel followed Jehovah, they would be safe from the mightiest empires on earth.
2 Chronicles 33
The righteousness of Hezekiah is undone by the wickedness of his son, Manasseh. What the Assyrians could not do from outside the city walls would now be accomplished from within by Manasseh. Assyria would return at the invitation of Jehovah and through this crises, Manasseh would repent. However, the damage to the nation was done. Manasseh ended his reign believing and worshipping God.
2 Chronicles 34-35
Following the wicked reigns of Manasseh and then Amon it is surprising to find the righteous rule of Josiah. Despite the revival he led in the land, the nation was on track to judgment.