Read: 2 Chronicles 28-31
Marked: 2 Chronicles 28:19, For the LORD brought Judah low because of Ahaz king of Israel, for he had encouraged moral decline in Judah and had been continually unfaithful to the LORD.
There are many things that can bring an individual, even a nation, down. Such as moral decline. The Ten Commandments are called the moral law for a reason. Morality is the distinction between right and wrong, good and bad, determining the extent to which an action is right or wrong.
God is concerned about morality and takes great care to express and exemplify moral standards in the Bible. But man is redefining God’s standard of morality to suit himself. And by redefining morality they do not glorify God, nor are thankful, but are becoming more futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts are darkened(Romans 1:21).
It is becoming increasingly difficult to to tell right from wrong, and good from evil, because man adheres to no standard. Anything goes. We are being tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine.
No person can live an immoral life for long. Neither can any society or nation be sustained in it.
Read: 2 Chronicles 25-27
Marked: 2 Chronicles 25:4, However he did not execute their children, but [did] as [it is] written in the Law in the Book of Moses, where the LORD commanded, saying, “The fathers shall not be put to death for their children, nor shall the children be put to death for their fathers; but a person shall die for his own sin.”
Deuteronomy 24:16 gives the statute which Amaziah followed. We are each responsible for our own sin and will be held accountable to the law. We aren’t condemned because we didn’t accept Jesus. We aren’t condemned because of doubt, uncertainty, not even because we may never have heard about Jesus; we are condemned because we have broken God’s law.
Hebrews 9:27 says that it is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment. No one is judged based on the actions of another. Yet, we so often compare ourselves to others. “I’m not as bad as him”, or, “It’s not like I’m a Hitler or something”.
If we compare ourselves let us compare ourselves to Jesus who Paul says is our standard of righteousness apart from the law (Romans 3:21). It is a righteousness available through faith in Jesus to all and on all who believe “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” (Romans 3:23)
Read: 2 Chronicles 21-24
Marked: 2 Chronicles 24:20, Then the Spirit of God came upon Zechariah the son of Jehoiada the priest, who stood above the people, and said to them, “Thus says God: ‘Why do you transgress the commandments of the LORD, so that you cannot prosper? Because you have forsaken the LORD, He also has forsaken you.’ ”
We can’t live our lives in Christ through someone else. Joash appeared to be a good king, but only as long as Jehoiada the priest lived.
When he died Joash quickly listened to the leaders of Judah and turned to false images and idols so that wrath came upon Judah and Jerusalem (V17-18).
Though we may begin to follow God through the ministry of another, we must remain faithful to God alone. We have an individual responsibility to live for God because it is right, not because someone else says we should.
Joash forsook the Lord, and therefore God forsook him. Eventually his own servants killed him (V25). A tragic story.
Read: 2 Chronicles 18-20
Marked: 2 Chronicles 18:15, So the king said to him, “How many times shall I make you swear that you tell me nothing but the truth in the name of the LORD?”
Micaiah was known as a man who told the truth according to the Word of God even when counselled to go along with the false prophets (V12-13). When he answered the king in agreement with the false prophets Ahab knew right away that Michaiah wasn’t telling him the truth.
But knowing the truth and acting on it are not the same thing. I can know the truth through the Word of God, His Word is truth, and yet not act on it. Wisdom dictates not only hearing the Word of God but doing it.
The events that unfolded impacted Jehoshaphat that when he almost lost his life in the battle against the king of Syria (V31) that on his return he instituted many reforms to ensure his kingdom knew the truth.
He even commanded the Levites and priests and the leaders in Israel to act only in the fear of the Lord, faithful and with a loyal heart according to the law and commandment, statutes or ordinances (C19:9-10).
Read: 2 Chronicles 13-17
Marked: 2 Chronicles 17:6, And his heart took delight in the ways of the LORD; moreover he removed the high places and wooden images from Judah.
Jehoshaphat walked in the former ways of his father David and sought God and walked in His commandments (V3-4). He brought reforms and ensured his people knew the Word of God even as he delighted in the ways of God (V6-7).
Do I delight in God’s Word? Or do I only look at it once in a while, or ever? How I live my life, manage my affairs, do business, is it done as I see fit or do I consider what God says about these things?
Jehoshaphat and his leaders and Levites had the book of the Law of the Lord with them. Do we do the business of God without the Book of the Word of God? How many of us go about our day and week without once looking into or considering the Law of the Lord?
We even attend church, Bible study, and prayer without having the Book of the Law of the Lord with us.
Read: 2 Chronicles 9-12
Marked: 2 Chronicles 9:6, “However I did not believe their words until I came and saw with my own eyes; and indeed the half of the greatness of your wisdom was not told me. You exceed the fame of which I heard.”
The Queen of Sheba had heard of the fame of Solomon (V1), and had come to check out what she’d heard. Once she had seen for herself she realized that what she heard concerning Solomon’s words and wisdom was true (V5), but admitted she hadn’t really believed what she’d heard.
People claim to have read the Bible, yet reject its words and wisdom showing that they’ve never really read the Bible for themselves. We can hear about what the Bible has to say, but until we look into it for ourselves, we don’t really know.
There is much in the Bible that is hard to understand. It must be digested and chewed over. The various parts of Scripture must be considered and compared to one another. If one part is unclear, another part will give clarity and understanding.
This isn’t accomplished through a cursory reading. It takes time. Questions must be asked and we must consider the answers before we make up our minds.
Even after years of study we will discover we haven’t even mined half of the wisdom it contains. The Bible is more than what we’ve heard it is.
Read: 2 Chronicles 6-8
Marked: 2 Chronicles 6:7, “Now it was in the heart of my father David to build a temple for the name of the LORD God of Israel.”
Having something on my heart and acting on it are two different things. David had on his heart to build a temple (a house) for God and spent much of the last years of his life gathering the necessary materials so his son Solomon could build it.
Jesus said, “Follow me.” Some say they will and then hold back (Luke 9:57-62). Jesus said those who look back are not fit for the kingdom.
Once we’ve decided in our hearts to follow Jesus we must build upon that conviction and allow Him to build us up in the faith.
We must learn what it means to be in Jesus (John 15:4) because without Him we can’t bear fruit. We must abide in Him and His word (John 15:7). We must learn to obey Him (John 15:10).
Our temple must glorify God and we can’t do that if the Spirit of God doesn’t fill our temple. Without Jesus in us we can do nothing (John 15:5).
Read: 2 Chronicles 2-5
Marked: 2 Chronicles 3:1, Now Solomon began to build the house of the LORD at Jerusalem on Mount Moriah, where [the LORD] had appeared to his father David, at the place that David had prepared on the threshing floor of Ornan the Jebusite.
David had made much preparation for the building of the temple. But prep isn’t enough. There comes a time when construction must start.
I can prepare for the building of my faith in Christ, but at some point I have to give myself over to the build. Philippians 1:6 says that God who has begun a good work in me will complete it.
The work God wants to do in me is to conform me into the image of His Son (Romans 8:29; 2 Corinthians 3:18). This takes time and a determined effort as I give myself over to the work of being built up into a spiritual house acceptable to God (1 Peter 2:5).
Read: 1 Chronicles 28-29; 2 Chronicles 1
Marked: 1 Chronicles 28:11-12, Then David gave his son Solomon the plans for the vestibule, its houses, its treasuries, its upper chambers, its inner chambers, and the place of the mercy seat; and the plans for all that he had by the Spirit, of the courts of the house of the LORD, of all the chambers all around, of the treasuries of the house of God, and of the treasuries for the dedicated things;
Though David would not be the one to build the house of the Lord he did prepare for its building and gave the plans for it to his son Solomon.
1 Peter 2:5 says we, like living stones, are being built up into a spiritual house, a holy priesthood, to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus.
Our spiritual house must be built according to the plan of God whose blueprint is the Word of God. Jesus says in Matthew 7:26 that if we hear His words, and don’t do them, we are like foolish men who built a house on sand. Or we will be like the man in Luke 6:49 who heard but did nothing and built his house without a foundation
A strong well built house has a strong foundation and our foundation is built upon the apostles and prophets with Jesus Christ Himself being the chief cornerstone. The quality materials with which we build our spiritual house are the sixty-six books of the Word of God.
Read: 1 Chronicles 25-27
Marked: 1 Chronicles 25:8, And they cast lots for their duty, the small as well as the great, the teacher with the student.
In these chapters we see the divisions of various families in service to the temple. What strikes me is that as father served so did son.
Many younger people turn away from the faith once they begin to make their own way in the world. Perhaps one reason is we’ve not included them in helping us in service to the church.
Do we think that children should do children’s things while the adults are doing what adults do? But involving our children while we serve at church teaches them to serve. Children like to be included and we should include them in things such as they are able.
But including them in service isn’t enough. Are we adults modelling other Christian disciplines? Do our children see us praying, reading the Bible, and discussing the things of God? How can we involve them in these things? As they grow do they see that God, and the things of God, are important to us?
Perhaps our children turn from the faith because we haven’t shown them that these things are important to us, so why should it be to them.