Who's a good boy? Well in our OT passage we read about one who started off good, but didn't finish so well. It happens in the sports world where a promising young prospect is drafted to a team, but never suits up with their jersey. In golf, we saw the quick rise of Tiger Woods to the point where his competition viewed him as unstoppable, to the quick collapse when he was caught in his personal life making bad choices. Unfortunately, this pattern is not limited to the sports world as it happens to people spiritually too. I'm sure we have all seen it, and we always ask ourselves the same question....."why?".
King Joash was a boy with huge potential. God had a plan for Joash's safety as he was rescued from his grandmother Athaliah and was also raised secretly in the temple precincts by godly people - his uncle Jehoiada and aunt Jehoshabeath. At the young age of seven, he was anointed as king. #nbd This left his whole lifetime to serve the Lord and to lead His people. He began to lead the people by restoring the temple which had been desecrated and had fallen into ruin under Athaliah. Joash organized the funding, and saw to it that the work would be completed, and that it would be restored as quick as possible. Things went well as long as Jehoiada had lived.
Unfortunately after Jehoiada died, the leaders of Judah tempted Joash and he listened to them. Things went from bad to worse as they abandoned the house of the Lord and fell into the trap of idolatry (24:18).
The downward spiral did not stop there. Joash resisted the attempts of the prophets to call him back to the Lord (24:19).
Then when Joash is confronted by Zechariah, Jehoiada's son - his own cousin, he kills him.
Joash does not "get away" without consequence in his disobedience to God:Joash abandoned God - God abandoned Joash in the invading army.
A few points that we can take out of the story of Joash: Joash was blessed with a spiritual privilege - so are we;Joash demonstrated early spiritual zeal - so should we;Joash faced spiritual testing - so will we;Joash was given the opportunity to repent - so do we;Joash reaped the consequences of his rebellion again God - so will we if we do not repent.
In our NT passage, verse 23 which is well known stood out to me - If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.
We can't pick and choose which days work for us to follow God. It's daily. We can't choose to lead or take charge. We follow. We're not in the driver's seat. We're the passenger.
It's like a race. It's not about how you start, it's how you finish!
Tomorrow's Bible In a Year Passage passage: 2 Chronicles 25-27; Luke 9:37-62