Monday, June 10, 2019

Godly King Jehoshaphat (GL35)

    'Appreciating God's Love'

2 Chr 17:3-6  Now the Lord was with Jehoshaphat, because he walked in the former ways of his father David; he did not seek the Baals, but sought the God of his father, and walked in His commandments and not according to the acts of Israel. Therefore the Lord established the kingdom in his hand; and all Judah gave presents to Jehoshaphat, and he had riches and honor in abundance. And his heart took delight in the ways of the Lord; moreover he removed the high places and wooden images from Judah.
    Most of the kings in Judah were godly possibly because both the king's palace and the temple of God were in Jerusalem. The faith of the people in God could be seen by the sacrifices offered and the numerous testimonies of His healing and deliverance. His power and might were constantly seen especially to those living in Jerusalem.
    King Jehoshaphat being a godly king wanted to please the Lord, so he immediately removed all idolatry and abominable practices in the land for he loved the Lord.
    Similarly, when a Christian is constantly aware that because of God's great love and mercy, the Spirit of God is now living inside his physical body making it the temple of God. He will immediately forsake the former abominable practices, sinful habits and unholy worldly pursuits knowing that these trespasses will grieve the Spirit of God dwelling in him.
    Since God abides in every born again Christian, He is always near us and we have the confidence that our prayers and supplications are heard. God knows that we are weak human beings and that we need His constant comfort and encouragement to strengthen our faith in Him. He also knows that we need the empowering of His Holy Spirit to help us keep His words and commandments.

People who Knew their God
2 Chr 17:7-9  Also in the third year of his reign he sent his leaders, Ben-Hail, Obadiah, Zechariah, Nethanel, and Michaiah, to teach in the cities of Judah. And with them he sent Levites: Shemaiah, Nethaniah, Zebadiah, Asahel, Shemiramoth, Jehonathan, Adonijah, Tobijah, and Tobadonijah— the Levites; and with them Elishama and Jehoram, the priests. So they taught in Judah, and had the Book of the Law of the Lord with them; they went throughout all the cities of Judah and taught the people.
    When the Israelites witnessed their miraculous deliverance and the blessings from God, their faith in Him were greatly increased. This gave them the desire to draw closer to Him, which caused them to repent, pray and freely offer praises and thanksgiving as appreciation of His love and mercy for them.
   Because of their great desire to draw close to Him and to understand Him, they had a great hunger for God's words. So King Jehoshaphat sent the Levites and priests throughout all the land to teach the Israelites the Mosaic law directly from the book of the law.
Note: a truly born again Christian who loves the Lord will always hunger for His words. He will always rejoice reading the Bible for he finds that it is 'His love letter' to him. He will always regret that because of his worldly commitments, he could not give more time understanding His truth by reading and meditating on His words.
    The nations around Judah were fearful of Judah because the Israelites were filled with truth, knowledge and faith in God and they knew that His favour was upon them. So Judah had peace for no one dared to attack it.
2 Chr 17:10  And the fear of the Lord fell on all the kingdoms of the lands that were around Judah, so that they did not make war against Jehoshaphat.

Rebuke for Helping the Wicked
2 Chr 19:1-3  Then Jehoshaphat the king of Judah returned safely to his house in Jerusalem. And Jehu the son of Hanani the seer went out to meet him, and said to King Jehoshaphat, "Should you help the wicked and love those who hate the Lord? Therefore the wrath of the Lord is upon you. 
     Even the godly King Jehoshaphat of Judah made the mistake of fighting alongside the wicked King Ahad of Israel against the Syrians. God sent prophet Jehu to admonish King Jehoshaphat for aiding the wicked king and for that the Lord's wrath was upon Jehoshaphat.
Note: - Christian are warned not to be partaker nor approve those committing abominations such as homosexuality, covetousness, hater of God, malicious, unmerciful, heretics, etc.
Rom 1:28-32  And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a debased mind, to do those things which are not fitting; being filled with all unrighteousness, sexual immorality, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, evil-mindedness; they are whisperers, backbiters, haters of God, violent, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, undiscerning, untrustworthy, unloving, unforgiving, unmerciful; who, knowing the righteous judgment of God, that those who practice such things are deserving of death, not only do the same but also approve of those who practice them.

God Remembers Good Works
2 Chr 19:4  Nevertheless good things are found in you, in that you have removed the wooden images from the land, and have prepared your heart to seek God."
    Brethren, our Lord remembers all our good deeds especially in mercy, obedience, kindness, forgiveness, charity, evangelism, teaching and discipling.
I Tim 6:17-19  Command those who are rich in this present age not to be haughty, nor to trust in uncertain riches but in the living God, who gives us richly all things to enjoy. Let them do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to give, willing to share, storing up for themselves a good foundation for the time to come, that they may lay hold on eternal life.