2 Kings 24:1-17 – No Turning Back

Read 2 Kings 24:1-17

Picture of a man jumping between two ledges, high up in the air, moutains behind

Jehoiakim had adversity coming to him from all directions with the Egyptians and Babylonians invaded and controlling things. Do you think Jehoiakim had a sense of dread following him around? I know how that feels to sense something bad is going to happen. Perhaps he had been stuck in a pattern of non-belief for long enough he began to lose hope. Either way, feeling that dread or fear is not a pleasant experience.

Jehoiakim had his hands full. We see God moving in an unbelievable way. “Then the Lord sent bands of Babylonian, Aramean, Moabite, and Ammonite raiders against Judah to destroy it, just as the Lord had promised through his prophets.” Unbelievable from the perspective that God would orchestrate the evil necessary to destroy his people. Certainly, it was believable because it was promised through the prophets.

Seeing these events transpiring before their eyes had to have had some effect. Even Jehoiakim’s son, Jehoiachin, who became the next king faced the coming of this new reality. Again, I’m thinking about the man here and his thoughts and feelings. What were these kings feeling? How could they be so blind? Were they afraid? Who were they blaming? This is the ultimate example of “I told you so!” But would Judah’s kings realize these attacks were because of God’s leading?

The Babylonians were now in charge. The land of Judah would not look the same ever again. They even appointed a new king. Interesting that it was an uncle of Jehoiachin. Would that make him yet another son of Josiah perhaps? The text doesn’t say.

How does it make YOU feel? If you’re like me, you’ve felt a bit akin to God’s people in this history. I hope that I would have been one of the ones that stayed true, probably having to hide my faith to survive in a society filled with idols and false gods.

God’s will had been made clear for years. Yet the people seemed to pay little or no attention. I know how it feels to be the parent getting ignored by my child. Anger certainly plays into that. But imagine God’s anger and how powerful that is. My anger is just a little steam blowing off, kids being grounded for a month, etc. God’s anger involved removing his people from everything they had known and sending them into exile, starting with the most powerful and elite. Certainly not a pleasure trip for the privileged.

How can we take this story and relate it to our lives today? We could be fearful of the God who did this to the people he loved. We could understand totally and wonder why it took so long to come to pass. There was no turning back. Sometimes we just have to go with the flow and trust God is there with us.

praying hands looking up

Let’s pray …
Lord, thank you for your faithfulness. Despite the evil that surrounds us in the world, you are our safe refuge. There is plenty of suffering in this world, and I am grateful for your promise of salvation and that one day all of this will pass away for a grand eternity with you. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

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