Day 32

King Joash’s Apostasy



2 Chronicles 23:1-21, 2 Chronicles 24:1-27, Psalm 2:10-12

BY Seana Scott

In David Lishman’s article,  “Only God is Great,” he writes that in 1715, France’s Louis XIV died.  Louis, who had named himself the “Sun King,” wanted others to dramatize his greatness upon his death. So he wrote orders for the cathedral to be dimly lit. The only light would be a candle over the coffin. 

On the day of his funeral, he was laid in an awe-inspiring cathedral with his corpse encased in a golden casket. His body, cold. His breath, empty. Thousands were in attendance, and they awaited Bishop Massilon’s speech. To begin, the bishop slowly reached down, snuffed out the candle, and said, “Only God is great!”

Indeed, only God is great. But sometimes, like King Louis, we want to feel great ourselves. I wonder how different Israel’s history might have been if Joash, king of Israel, had kept God’s greatness in view—instead of succumbing to those who lauded King Joash’s greatness (2 Chronicles 24:1–18). 

It’s mind-boggling how a ruler could swing to such extremes. He was the baby rescued from the tip of the sword, a king in the line of David—just as God promised (2Samuel 7:16). He was practically raised by a Levitical priest, Jehoiada, and led the restoration of God’s temple. He was a God-worshiping king.

But then pride and flattery turned him into a prophet-killer. As soon as the priest, Jehoiada, died, wicked men laid a lure for the king. They paid homage to him. We can imagine what they might have said or given the king as gifts—was it camels? Gold? Oils, perhaps? Did they tell him how wonderful he was and how he needed to make his own rather than follow God’s law? Whatever they said, it enticed King Joash to abandon everything: God’s temple, God’s priests, and God’s law (2Chronicles 24:18). King Joash became an idol worshiper. 

But before we throw the king under the chariot, we might think about our own hearts. Are we just an homage away from turning our backs on living for God? Do we depend on social media likes or job promotions to validate our worth? Some days the number of times I check social media, compared to the number of times I pray, shows where my heart pays homage.

Not only does our loyalty to God affect our own hearts, but how we live for God—or not—impacts others. My dad used to say, “If you love someone, you take care of yourself.” Because what we do affects all those around us. In Joash’s case, His faithfulness at the beginning of His reign blessed Israel, but then his unfaithfulness brought trouble.  

Post Comments (42)

42 thoughts on "King Joash’s Apostasy"

  1. Jennifer Anapol says:

    Congratulations Dorothy! I will be praying for the health of your grandson and daughter. I’m sure you are feeling all of the emotions; excitement, anxiety, and joy.

  2. Jennifer Anapol says:

    Just today I was trying looking to others for validation, and I felt God tell me that he is the only one who I should be living for. It can be so hard to only love for God’s approval. I pray I would be able to do that.

  3. Rebecca W says:

    Dear sisters, I’m back to ask for prayer for my son who has a job interview tomorrow. He struggles with anxiety, so please ask the Lord to calm his soul and give him the confidence he needs. He has been through so much. Thank you so, so much!

  4. Erica Chiarelli says:

    Wow, it’s so sad to see these kings NOT follow God or start so good but eventually turn their back on Him! It’s hard! But I have done it, we all have…I pray that I would NOT be prone to wander or leave the God I love!

  5. AZ Walker says:

    I am really good about staying away from social media and just checking once every week or two, but my weakness is with reading too much news in my email and my apps. Praying for many here, Dorothy’s grand baby George, Sarah D’s upcoming interview, safety for Searching’s trip, all our loved ones coming to the Lord and keeping the faith.

  6. Josie Newby says:

    Amen

  7. Josie Newby says:

    I want to be far more humble, God, only You are great! Everything good is from the Lord, I can produce no good on my own.

  8. Dorothy says:

    Sisters, I want to start with a prayer request, by the time some of you read this I will be a grandma, yes I’m ecstatic but he wasn’t supposed to come for another 2-4 weeks. The doctors are going to do a c-section on my daughter-in-law sometime today because of blood pressure problems and the beginning of pre-eclampsia. Baby George is fully developed but he more than likely is under weight and will have to spend time in the neonatal ICU. Please pray that all goes well and he grows well.

    Seana commented on how her father told by taking care of herself she helps to care for others. I can remember my father telling me the same thing. I can also remember my parents walking the Christian walk. When my siblings and I were young we had to go to church every Sunday but when we reached our teenage and young adult years we were allowed to choose. My parents went every Sunday. When we were on vacation we would find a church to go most of the time. I can also remember taking a trip with my maternal grandparents for a couple of weeks and we went to church while on vacation. Yes, I know that may seem strange but my father would say, “We need to worship Christ wherever we go.” I also remember see both of my parents sitting reading a devotion and their Bibles sometime during the day. My mom always did it in their bedroom but my dad did it in the living room. He would leave his Bible and devotional book out on the end table — he WAS NOT ASHAMED for people to see it. I hope to be like him with my grandson.

    Be blessed and NEVER EVER be ashamed of your faith and belief in God, Christ and the Holy Spirit.

    Sorry I rambled but I guess I’m anxious.

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