2 CHRONICLES 21
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1 Now Jehoshaphat slept with his fathers, and was buried with his fathers in the city of David. And Jehoram his son reigned in his stead.

...All we have to do,‭ ‬therefore,‭ ‬is simply to surrender to the belief of what we read.‭ ‬This will produce faith and all the other excellent fruits of the spirit-love,‭ ‬joy and peace in the mind,‭ ‬and righteousness in the life in preparation for the kingdom.

One thing which the apostles declare is that the things written were‭ "‬written for our learning.‭" ‬It was of the Old Testament this was said‭; ‬and of course,‭ ‬if true of the Old,‭ ‬it is true of the New.‭ ‬This being the case,‭ ‬let us spend a little time in getting out of the portions that have been read the‭ "‬learning‭" ‬they were intended to afford.

It might not seem at first sight that we could get much out of the first reading concerning the reign of Jehoram,‭ ‬the son of Jehoshaphat.‭ ‬It is a story of murder and wickedness:‭ ‬what good can it do us‭? ‬He,‭ ‬Jehoram,‭ ‬came to the throne when Jehoshaphat died.‭ ‬Jehoshaphat had many sons,‭ ‬and had made a good settlement for them all.‭ ‬He left a handsome fortune to each,‭ ‬and had distributed them among various cities of the realm,‭ ‬so that each was a prince in his own district.‭ ‬To Jehoram he had given the headship over all as king.‭

This wise arrangement ought to have worked well for all,‭ ‬but the very first thing that Jehoram did was to kill all his brothers,‭ ‬and to put also to death their friends and sympathisers-filling the land with mourning and woe.‭ ‬Not only so,‭ ‬but he established idolatry throughout the land,‭ ‬and led the nation away from the right ways of God.

What is the explanation of this extraordinary sequel to a reign so excellent as Jehoshaphat's‭? ‬Why did the son of a good king turn out such a monster‭? ‬Is it not true that if you‭ "‬train up a child in the way in which he should go,‭ ‬when he is old he will not depart from it‭?" ‬Yes,‭ ‬it is true.‭ ‬Wherein was Jehoshaphat lacking then‭? ‬Here is the point,‭ ‬and here is where we shall find our‭ "‬learning.‭"

Jehoshaphat did not take a firm attitude with those who were in a wrong position.‭ ‬He was friendly with the ten tribes who,‭ ‬though Israelites,‭ ‬had departed from the right way.‭ ‬He granted co-operation with Ahab,‭ ‬which he ought to have declined.‭ ‬He allowed his son,‭ ‬Jehoram,‭ ‬to marry a daughter of Ahab,‭ ‬which he ought to have forbidden.‭ ‬A prophet of God reproved him on the subject:‭ "‬Shouldest thou help the ungodly and love them that hate the Lord‭?" (‬2‭ ‬Chron.‭ xix. ‬2‭)‬.

‭ ‬Jehoshaphat was a good man,‭ ‬but lacking in the firmness towards evil-doers.‭ ‬He could not refuse their friendly advances.‭ ‬He consented to matrimonial alliance with the family of Ahab.‭ ‬His son‭ "‬had the daughter of Ahab to wife.‭" ‬The consequence was‭ "‬Jehoram walked in the way of the‭ (‬wicked‭) ‬kings of Israel,‭ ‬to whom his wife belonged,‭ ‬and he wrought that which was evil in the eyes of the Lord.‭"

Here is a bit of‭ "‬learning‭" ‬through which we get from this as from many other parts of scripture:‭ ‬it is our duty to decline religious co-operation with those who are not in full submission to the way of the Lord.‭ ‬Above all,‭ ‬we ought not in marriage to be‭ "‬unequally yoked with the unbeliever.‭" ‬Any other line of conduct is not only displeasing to the Lord,‭ ‬but most hurtful to those who pursue it.‭

From the days of the flood down to the corruptions of the captivity in the times of Ezra,‭ ‬the scriptural narrative affords many illustrations of the evil that comes from‭ "‬the sons of God‭" ‬marrying‭ "‬the daughters of men.‭" ‬It is our duty to marry‭ "‬only in the Lord,‭" ‬that in the fusion of two lives,‭ ‬equally dedicated to wisdom,‭ ‬there may be mutual help in the way of holiness,‭ ‬and family life based on the fear of the Lord and submission to his word.

Sunday Morning No. 260

‭The Christadelphian Dec 1894.



4 Now when Jehoram was risen up to the kingdom of his father, he strengthened himself, and slew all his brethren with the sword, and divers also of the princes of Israel.

What an appalling introduction is this to the new King of Judah! Though a son brought up in the way he should go, of what advantage was it when a serpent was placed in his bosom?

This sanguinary character would not be hereditary from his father; we look to the other side and we see the leaven of Jezebel working the old animus. Those "princes of Israel" slain by Jehoram were not men according to his murderous heart, otherwise they would not have been slain. There was a wholesale clearing away of those obstacles to the purpose he ultimately attained.

The revolution that has now taken place in Judah makes the prospect for the future dark for the Lord's people. The probable reason for exterminating his brethren was to obtain

"the gold, silver, and fenced cities"

Jehoshaphat had given them, and this seems the reason for its being recorded. No doubt such gifts were not uncommon, though unrecorded, in the history of other kings.

The act shows its author; the Jezebel instinct in murdering Naboth for his possession finds its expression in Athaliah's moving her husband to do likewise. Again, these "brethren and princes" would be faithful men, worshipping the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. *



5 Jehoram was 32 years old when he began to reign, and he reigned 8 years in Jerusalem.

His marriage with Athaliah must have taken place at a very early age, his youngest son, who succeeded him, being twenty-two (2 Kgs. 8:26) when he began to reign.

It is necessary to note this in order to account for the great difference between the character of Jehoram and that of his father. Immediately the latter died, we look for the uprightness of the father in the son with a faithful adherence to the law of the Lord, having been in his early days brought up in that fear which is the beginning of wisdom - but we find it not; the days of peace and prosperity ended with Jehoshaphat. No longer could Judah rejoice in the blessing God gave through a righteous reign.

The direct operation of Deity for good or evil is the spirit of these records of His people. How could they be His people apart from this? Thus it is that their history is equally for God as the doer, and of Israel as the instrument. The divine character of the events recorded is imprinted upon the text recording them in the rigid, concise, yet all-embracing style.

In the histories we have a mass of facts, with little or no comment capable of indefinite expansion, this makes their study so interesting and absorbing, things new and old continually arising from this storehouse of the Spirit. *




6 And he walked in the way of the kings of Israel, like as did the house of Ahab: for he had the daughter of Ahab to wife: and he wrought that which was evil in the eyes of Yahweh.

Whatever Jehoram's disposition was, we are sure his wife, as a worshipper of Baal, was filled with all the deadly hatred that Jezebel exhibited against the people of the Lord. Having the power now in her hands in the authority she exercised over the king, we see it at once taking effect when Jehoram reigns.

That the influence of the wife was over the husband, and was the cause of these evils *





6 And he walked in the way of the kings of Israel, like as did the house of Ahab: for he had the daughter of Ahab to wife: and he wrought that which was evil in the eyes of Yahweh.

What is the explanation of this extraordinary sequel to a reign so excellent as Jehoshaphat's‭? ‬Why did the son of a good king turn out such a monster‭? ‬Is it not true that if you‭ "‬train up a child in the way in which he should go,‭ ‬when he is old he will not depart from it‭?" ‬Yes,‭ ‬it is true.‭ ‬Wherein was Jehoshaphat lacking then‭? ‬Here is the point,‭ ‬and here is where we shall find our‭ "‬learning.‭"

Jehoshaphat did not take a firm attitude with those who were in a wrong position.‭ ‬He was friendly with the ten tribes who,‭ ‬though Israelites,‭ ‬had departed from the right way.‭ ‬He granted co-operation with Ahab,‭ ‬which he ought to have declined.‭ ‬He allowed his son,‭ ‬Jehoram,‭ ‬to marry a daughter of Ahab,‭ ‬which he ought to have forbidden.‭ ‬A prophet of God reproved him on the subject:‭ 

"‬Shouldest thou help the ungodly and love them that hate the Lord‭?" (‬2‭ ‬Chron.‭ xix. ‬2‭)‬.

‭ ‬Jehoshaphat was a good man,‭ ‬but lacking in the firmness towards evil-doers.‭ ‬He could not refuse their friendly advances.‭ ‬He consented to matrimonial alliance with the family of Ahab.‭ ‬His son‭

 "‬had the daughter of Ahab to wife.‭" ‬

The consequence was‭ "‬Jehoram walked in the way of the‭ (‬wicked‭) ‬kings of Israel,‭ ‬to whom his wife belonged,‭ ‬and he wrought that which was evil in the eyes of the Lord.‭"

Here is a bit of‭ "‬learning‭" ‬through which we get from this as from many other parts of scripture:‭ ‬it is our duty to decline religious co-operation with those who are not in full submission to the way of the Lord.

Bro Roberts - ‭The Christadelphian Dec 1894.



19 And it came to pass, that in process of time, after the end of two years, his bowels fell out by reason of his sickness: so he died of sore diseases. And his people made no burning for him, like the burning of his fathers.

No language can describe the horror of such a death, the merited reward of an iniquitous life; an example of the apostolic teaching that the Lord is not mocked, and that he that soweth to the flesh shall reap corruption.

Had the commandments of Moses been observed, no such cause would have been possible. Strange marriages constituted the fruitful source of idolatry in Jacob, which ultimately enveloped them in the darkness that altogether obscured for them

"the Light that came into the world."

Jehoram's fatal marriage was the cause of all.

By the death of Jehoram, Athaliah is left a widow; the throne vacant by her husband's death is filled by his youngest son, the only one who escaped death at the hands of the

"band that came with the Arabians."

We recognize the hand of Yahweh in thus preserving one of the house of David to fulfill God's promise to him. *

*Bro Growcott - A woman on David's throne