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Passage: 2 Chronicles 25-27

On Monday, May 25, 2015, Yujin wrote,

But Amaziah would not listen, for it was from God, that He might deliver them into the hand of Joash because they had sought the gods of Edom (2 Chronicles 25:20).

There is a very consistent refrain with respect to the kings of Judah. When they were faithful to the LORD, they prospered, but when they became unfaithful, they were judged by God.

Amaziah was judged by God because he turned away from the LORD to worship the worthless gods of Edom. What is noteworthy here is that God not only ordered the circumstances that led to Amaziah's demise, but He also moved Amaziah's heart to make the foolish choices that would lead to his destruction. What a frightful prospect?!

Friends, when our hearts are not right with God and we forsake Him through stubborn disobedience, while we may not imperil our eternal inheritance, we set ourselves up for His temporal judgment. This judgment affects not only our circumstances but even our very choices, so that where we would have made good ones when aligned with God's will, we make bad ones, which also serve God's purposes, but for our harm. 

On the other hand, if we are aligned with God's will, even our "bad" choices and outcomes can become good, because the LORD can make it so. When we are aligned with the LORD, we fall under the protection and guidance of His providence and grace, and "if God is for us, who can be against us!" (Romans 8:31)

Passage: 2 Chronicles 25-27

On Sunday, May 26, 2013, Yujin wrote,

He continued to seek God in the days of Zechariah, who had understanding through the vision of God; and as long as he sought the Lord, God prospered him (2 Chronicles 26:5).

So Jotham became mighty because he ordered his ways before the Lord his God (2 Chronicles 27:6).

The Chronicler's account of the kings makes it very clear that God supernaturally prospered those kings that carefully obeyed Him and sooner or later opposed those kings that failed to do so. God employed a carrot and stick method of motivation in the Old Testament. Obey and you will be rewarded. Disobey and you will be punished. 

However, when it comes to the dispensation of grace in the New Testament, there is no definite one-to-one correspondence, for by virtue of its very definition, grace is unmerited. Those who trust in Jesus do not get what they deserve but eternal life, and those that do not trust in Him may not ultimately get their just punishment until they die. While there are temporal consequences for a sinful lifestyle and temporal blessings for a generous and kind lifestyle, these are only in keeping with the laws of nature and are not forgone outcomes. In other words, many who are righteous may suffer intensely while many who are wicked may prosper greatly. Therefore, Christians should not put much stock in temporal, earthly outcomes. 

If the primary motivation for obedience in the Old Testament was rewards and punishment, what then is the primary motivation in the New Testament. I suggest that rather than an external motivation, true Christians are motivated by an internal motivation. As Paul wrote,

We are those who have died to sin; how can we live in it any longer. Or don’t you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life. (Romans 6:2-4).

Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory (Colossians 3:1-4).

We do not obey God because of what we might receive for obedience but because of what we have already received in Christ by grace. We do not obey God because of what we might get for obedience but because of who we are declared to be in Christ. 

Before we came to know Christ, we disobeyed because that was what was in our nature to do (cf. Ephesians 2:1-3); however, now we pursue obedience because that is what is in our new identity to do. We are no longer self-determined objects of God's wrath, who have prepared ourselves for destruction. We are God-predestined objects of God's mercy, whom God has prepared in advance for glory (cf. Romans 9:22-23).

Therefore, we have an internal motivation to obey God. We find the greatest peace and fulfillment in life when we are so driven, not by external carrots and sticks but by a longing love for God, which is its own reward. Therefore, we are not sidetracked by deep suffering or distracted by great prosperity, for these are not our reasons for obeying God. They are merely par for the course, which God orders into each life according to His design to achieve His highest glory.

Friends, as God's chosen people, who have received the gift of faith and have been predestined for eternal glory, let us no longer live to gain pleasure in this life, nor to avoid pain in this life, but instead, to simply give all glory to our God:

So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God (1 Corinthians 10:31).


Passage: 2 Chronicles 25-27

On Saturday, May 26, 2012, Yujin wrote,

Jotham, King Uzziah's son, reigned in Jerusalem sixteen years (2 Chronicles 27:1). We are told both in the Chronicles and the Kings that Jotham did what was right in the eyes of the LORD (2 Chronicles 27:2; 2 Kings 15:34). We are even told in 2 Chronicles 27:6 that "King Jotham became powerful because he was careful to live in obedience to the LORD his God." 

However, he only reigned for sixteen years, and presumably he only lived till he was 41 years old. This is a relatively short reign and life compared to even some of the wicked kings. Why so short? 

Well, we also discover that while King Jotham was faithful, the people were not:

"But the people continued in their corrupt ways" (2 Chronicles 27:2).

"The high places, however, were not removed; the people continued to offer sacrifices and burn incense there" (2 Kings 15:35).

What this suggests to me was that while Jotham was devoted to the LORD, he was unable to influence the people to follow his lead. This may be the reason for his short reign and life. God wanted to the judge the people, but, according to God's normal practice, He does not do so if there is a faithful king in power. He holds off the judgment until after the king's death. And according to the account in Kings, God had already prepared two enemies to come against Judah:

In those days the Lord began to send Rezin king of Aram and Pekah son of Remaliah against Judah (2 Kings 15:37).

So, God needed to remove Jotham so that He might inflict judgment on Judah. Sometimes, a short life may be a blessing and not a curse. If you recall, among those that lived really long lives in the early days of human history, Enoch lived the shortest life, but he also "walked faithfully with God" (Genesis 5:24). This is the message of Isaiah:

The righteous perish, and no one takes it to heart; 
the devout are taken away, and no one understands
that the righteous are taken away to be spared from evil
Those who walk uprightly enter into peace;
they find rest as they lie in death (Isaiah 57:1-2).

In the New Testament, Stephen, the faithful deacon, who had the face of an angel, was likely killed early in life. How about John the Baptist and Jesus. Therefore, long life is not always to be associated with blessing. Sometimes a short life is a blessing. For after this life, we will be with the Lord, which is always better by far (Philippians 1:23).

We don't get a lot of information about Jotham, other than that he was a good and powerful king who lived a short life; however, it is not how much that is written about him that counts but the content of what is written. If my history in the eternal annals was simply that "he lived as a good and faithful servant of the LORD," I would be ecstatic. But more than likely it will be more like, "he trusted in the LORD to the end."

What will your spiritual obituary say? That is the only thing that really counts. In the annals of the kings of Israel and Judah, the kings were basically identified as either "those who did what was pleasing in the LORD's sight" or "those who did not do what was pleasing in the LORD's sight." At the end of the ages, we will be identified either as "those who trusted in Jesus as their Lord and Savior" or as "those who did not trust in Jesus as their Lord and Savior":

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life... Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son (John 3:16,18).

Friends, have you made this confession of faith in the Lord Jesus Christ?

If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved.

Have you recognized your need for Him and embraced the gift of His sacrifice on the cross to pay for your sins?

For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God... But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us... For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 3:23; 5:8; 6:23).

Friends, I hope every one of you that reads these posts of mine have trusted in Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, that you believe that He died for your sins and rose again. In believing this you are saved, and as He rose, you will also rise with Him in the age to come:

Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him (Romans 6:8).

For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory (Colossians 3:3-4).

Hallelujah! What a wonderful Savior we have! All glory be to our God!

Passage: 2 Chronicles 25-27

On Friday, May 27, 2011 (Last Updated on 5/26/2012), Yujin wrote,

Friends, there is a valuable lesson in 2 Chronicles 25. Amaziah, the King of Judah, followed the word of the LORD in not aligning with Israel against Edom. However, the Israelites he did not enlist were so angry by this rebuff that they attacked the cities of Judah. Now, it is certainly possible that Israel might have attacked them anyway, but I think it is also possible that Amaziah blamed the LORD for the slaughter in the cities of Judah. Didn't Israel attack because they were rebuffed by Amaziah, who was merely following the word of the LORD? This may be one reason that Amaziah so quickly turned to other gods for help. In so doing he incurred the wrath of God.

Friends, do we only follow God because doing so is expedient for us? Is He only God when it is to our benefit? Let us understand that even when God does not deliver, even when He chooses not to help us, He is still God. And it is always in our ultimate best interest to continue to trust and obey God. For He alone is God and there is no other.

Passage: 2 Chronicles 25-27

On Friday, May 27, 2011, Unmi wrote,


It seems King Uzziah was a gifted military leader. He had a well trained, well armed army, he built towers and invented devices to help protect the walls of the city. However, this God-given gift for military ingenuity gets the better of him as victory upon victory puffs up his pride.  He forgets who gave him success. "God gave him success" (2 Chronicles 26:5) Uzziah's pride leads to his downfall and his unfaithfulness is not tolerated by the LORD. Uzziah is afflicted with leprosy and dies alone. 


What I find remarkable is the courage of Azariah and the other 80 priests. They boldly confront King Uzziah in his sin.  They confronted King Uzziah and said, “It is not right for you, Uzziah, to burn incense to the LORD. That is for the priests, the descendants of Aaron, who have been consecrated to burn incense. Leave the sanctuary, for you have been unfaithful; and you will not be honored by the LORD God.” (2 Chronicles 26:18) However, instead of humbling himself when confronted with sin, Uzziah became angry. It was because of his rebellious attitude that the LORD afflicted him with leprosy. 


 Pride is such a destructive force. Even when we know we are in the wrong, it is difficult to admit it and it is especially difficult when others point it out to us.  At the end, as in Uzziah's example, this kind of pride brings more destruction into our lives than any good.  Isn't it pride that makes so many reject Jesus.  It is their pride that makes themselves their own god. Even within the Christian circle, spiritual pride is a huge problem. Just like Uzziah, many Christians take pride in their God-given spiritual gifts. Many use spiritual gifts to judge the spiritual maturity of a person, and certain gifts are given a higher status within the pecking order than others, but ultimately all this comparison is because of pride. Let us remain humble before the LORD remembering that every gift is from God, and our greatest gift is that of Jesus Christ himself. 

Passage: 2 Chronicles 25-27

On Thursday, May 26, 2011, Stephen wrote,

King Uzziah's Zeal for the Lord was great but not based on knowledge. He was blinded by his pride but the Lord's mercy was on him and he may have been given a chance to repent instead of being killed instantly. But it is still my speculation! Success in our lives may not be a good thing after all if it leads us to destruction. I thank God for allowing storms in our lives so that I may clearly see who I am all the time. Let us be steadfast to what we've had when we first believed- the humble heart that knows our unworthiness of His salvation and His infinite mercy on us.