Read 162.) II Kings 9:1 thru 10:17 and II Chronicles 22:1 thru 9. This reading is filled with political intrigue. It largely revolves around that which Elijah the prophet had prophesied by the Word of the Lord concerning Ahab, king of Israel. We had read of Ahab, beginning with I Kings 16:28 and about 874 BC. The specific prophecies referred to in today’s reading, and cited by Jehu as coming from Elijah, are recorded for us in I Kings 21:17 thru 29. These involved the utter destruction of Ahab and all his line, as well as the downfall of his wicked wife, Jezebel, who had put Ahab up to so much of his evildoing. We learned of how and when Ahab died from I Kings 22:34-38. Ahab had reigned over Israel for almost 20 years, and he died probably about 853 BC. With our reading, we learn of all this newly anointed king in Israel, Jehu by name, did to seemingly purge Israel of her shame, and to make right all that had been made wrong since Jeroboam and 930 BC. To read Jehu’s words and of his exploits, he certainly seems to be zealous for the Lord! Is he? And, for how long will it last? From all that we read today, this all seems to be a good thing, and that the kingdom of the 10 northern tribes of Israel would be coming back to the Lord! Is it?
Jehu was the commanding officer of Israel’s army, and is anointed to be her next king by a prophet sent by Elisha unto Jehu. Jehu’s first acts are to assassinate the present king of Israel, Joram, a son of Ahab; and all Ahab’s descendants, relatives, friends and faithful servants. He kills Ahaziah, king of Judah besides, who was allied with Joram, and present with him at the very time Jehu had come to kill Joram. What we read in the II Chronicles account is a brief synopsis that contains a few other details.
The point in all of this is, of course, that the people of Israel are God’s chosen, and He wants them to be a holy people, who love Him and are fully devoted to him; beginning with their kings, who were to lead them in matters of holiness and righteousness, and in fully keeping with all the terms of the covenant they had entered into with the Lord at Sinai 600 years before. They are so woefully unfaithful and far from God, that He can do no more than to warn them by His prophets, and bring judgment down upon them. Jehu seems to be bringing about great reforms so as to accomplish a great revival of faithfulness unto the Lord. Let’s see if, in fact, he does! They who are the Lord’s, are to be a holy people, separate, and apart from the world, and solely unto Him. Righteousness… It’s what the Book is all about!
Harold F Crowell