GOOD MORNING SIBLINGS! So much to digest in the Word today!
Today’s readings are 1 Kings 15-17
Click here to ready today’s passages on BibleGateway.
Something to consider moving forward: Kings and Chronicles (once one book) used to be widely attributed to Ezra, but many scholars now attribute these books to an anonymous author, most likely a Levite, with additional editors helping and working on it later.
Once we get to Chronicles, which we have been told repeatedly in Kings contains further information for us, we will see some contradictions and perhaps stories told from different angles or with varying degrees of emphasis. It is important to keep in mind that the people working on these books would have had different sources of information and sometimes even different ideas about what to emphasize in each story. There are times in which one might have interviewed entirely different witnesses to an event and that event may have even been remembered differently to them than it was by other people. This does not make the information any less valuable but, if anything, it adds additional depth and richness to our history as a people.
SO MANY KINGS!
We’re seeing a lot of kings in a short period of time. The thing to know is that at this point there were two kingdoms of Israel and Judah, so some of our passages go back and forth between kings of these different kingdoms. If you pay really close attention you’ll see a bit of overlap from time to time and that is because we are talking about kings in different kingdoms serving at the same time and being talked about simultaneously. Hey, it keeps us on our toes! If you missed the charts in yesterday’s notes, make sure you go back to look at them and print out the printable one. Click here to do that.
Origin of Elijah – Most of the time when we meet a new prophet we are told their lineage or there is some sort of storyline that explains where they came from, not so with Elijah. Elijah just appears on the scene, out of the blue it seems. We do not know where he came from, what was in his past, but we know who he is then – and that is what essentially matters most to YHWH. Let this be an encouragement to all of us!
Earth shattering, mind blowing point
(Hang on so I can give it a proper lead up to the big reveal):
We see time and again David held up as the example of a man who is righteous in YHWH’s eyes and Jeroboam held as the example not to follow.
Check out these verses:
1Ki 15:33-34 In the third year of Asa king of Judah, Baasha the son of Ahijah began to reign over all Israel at Tirzah, and he reigned twenty-four years. He did what was evil in the sight of the LORD and walked in the way of Jeroboam and in his sin which he made Israel to sin….
1Ki 16:1-2 And the word of the LORD came to Jehu the son of Hanani against Baasha, saying,“Since I exalted you out of the dust and made you leader over my people Israel, and you have walked in the way of Jeroboam and have made my people Israel to sin, provoking me to anger with their sins…
And when Zimri saw that the city was taken, he went into the citadel of the king’s house and burned the king’s house over him with fire and died, because of his sins that he committed, doing evil in the sight of the LORD, walking in the way of Jeroboam, and for his sin which he committed, making Israel to sin.
1Ki 16:25-26 Omri did what was evil in the sight of the LORD, and did more evil than all who were before him. For he walked in all the way of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, and in the sins that he made Israel to sin, provoking the LORD, the God of Israel, to anger by their idols.
1Ki 16:30-31 And Ahab the son of Omri did evil in the sight of the LORD, more than all who were before him. And as if it had been a light thing for him to walk in the sins of Jeroboam …
1Ki 22:51-52 Ahaziah the son of Ahab began to reign over Israel in Samaria in the seventeenth year of Jehoshaphat king of Judah, and he reigned two years over Israel. He did what was evil in the sight of the LORD and walked in the way of his father and in the way of his mother and in the way of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, who made Israel to sin.
–Some of the references to David remaining true to YHWH (there are probably more but these are the first I grabbed)
1Ki 11:4 For when Solomon was old his wives turned away his heart after other gods, and his heart was not wholly true to the LORD his God, as was the heart of David his father.
1Ki 15:3 And he walked in all the sins that his father did before him, and his heart was not wholly true to the LORD his God, as the heart of David his father.
And then in 15:14 we read of Asa, who, despite not taking away the high places during his reign, was still counted as Wholly true to YHWH.
1Ki 15:14 But the high places were not taken away. Nevertheless, the heart of Asa was wholly true to the LORD all his days.
It’s easy to see why Jeroboam would be the one not to follow. Just yesterday we discussed how he organized a complete system of worship that was set up to be a counterfeit copy of YHWH’s.
But why is David repeatedly touted as righteous and upright in YHWH’s eyes?
I mean, we all know about Bathsheba and the murder of Uriah.
We’ve discussed David’s admittance of his sin and his repentance, and the lack of both in Jeroboam. However, beyond that there is another HUGE difference between the two and it lies in what YHWH sees as righteous.
Now, recall that He has been a God of grace since Genesis 1. He shows grace, He forgives, He teaches, He leads. But still, over and over David is being held up as the ultimate example (in his time) of a righteous king. Both sinned but David’s heart was always counted as wholly unto YHWH.
There is a big difference is in how David sinned vs how Jeroboam sinned.
Both were sinners.
But there are two things to note about David:
When he did sin, he wholeheartedly repented.
David never worshipped other gods.
As for Jeroboam:
Despite everything that happened, Jeroboam never did repent of his evil practices. ~1 Kings 13:33 (ISV)
Test everything, hold tight to what is good.~ 1 Thess 5:21
We are saved by Grace alone: Obedience is not the root of our salvation, it is the fruit!
May YHWH bless the reading of His Word!
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