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Bible Pathways - May 4, 2006

May 4, 2006

Read II Kings 9 -- 10

In Today's Reading:

Jehu anointed king of Israel; Jehu kills Joram and Ahaziah; Jezebel killed; Ahab's family killed; Baal worshipers executed

After Ahab's death, his son Ahaziah reigned over Israel for two years, followed by the 12-year reign of another son, Jehoram (also known as Joram). These two kings zealously promoted Baal worship, which had been initiated by their wicked mother Jezebel. Baal worship had also become popular in the southern kingdom of Judah due to its king, who was also named Jehoram. The southern king had married Jezebel's daughter Athaliah, and their son, also named Ahaziah, was equally wicked.

During this time of spiritual decline, the Lord was preparing Jehu, the military commander of the armies of the northern kingdom, as His instrument of judgment. God had earlier revealed to Elijah that Jehu would become king of Israel (I Kings 19:16). Perhaps 20 years passed before the Lord directed Elisha to send a young prophet east of the Jordan River to Ramoth-gilead, where Jehu was stationed with his army. The prophet anointed Jehu as king of Israel and the God-appointed executioner of Israel's evil King Jehoram and all the descendants of Ahab.

Jehu drove his chariots furiously to Jezreel where he executed Joram (Jehoram), king of Israel, and then Ahaziah, king of Judah. Then Jehu had Jezebel thrown out of a window and he trampled her with his horse. And, as foretold by Elijah, the dogs ate her body (II Kings 9:33-37).

Jehu zealously executed all the family of Ahab in Samaria (I Kings 21:17-24). However, Athaliah, the daughter of Jezebel, continued to promote Baal worship as queen in Judah. Jehu had bragged to Jehonadab: Come with me, and see my zeal for the LORD (II Kings 10:16). But Jehu's zeal for the LORD was just enough to achieve his own selfish ends. Jehu took no heed to walk in the Law of the LORD God of Israel with all his heart: for he departed not from the sins of Jeroboam, which made Israel to sin (10:31-32). This illustrates that it is possible for one to be used by God and yet never be in submission to Christ as Lord of one's life. Hypocrites serve the Lord for their own self-interests. This is the will of God. . . . That every one of you should know how to possess his vessel (control his body) in sanctification and honour. . . . For God hath not called us unto uncleanness, but unto holiness (I Thessalonians 4:3-4,7).

Christ Portrayed:

By Elisha who sent one of the sons of the prophets with oil to anoint Jehu (II Kings 9:1-6). Oil symbolizes the Holy Spirit, and the Lord sent the Holy Spirit to anoint believers (John 14:16-17; 16:13; Acts 1:8; compare I Samuel 16:13). The anointing which ye have received of Him abideth (lives) in you (I John 2:27).

Word Studies:

9:23 treachery =b> treason; 9:30 tired her head =b> adorned her hair; 10:3 Look even out the best and meetest =b> Select the best and most capable; 10:27 draught house =b> public toilet.

Prayer Needs:

Pray for The English International Shortwave Radio Broadcast sponsored by Sara Hummelgard · Staff: Barbara Bivens · Country: Sudan (34 million) at the eastern end of the Sahara Desert · Major languages: Arabic and Nubian · Limited religious freedom · 74% Muslim; 15% king worship, spirit-possession cults, and ancestral spirit worship; 5% Roman Catholic; 3% Protestant · Prayer Suggestion: Realize that your life is in God's hands, and ask Him to deliver you from all evil (Luke 11:4).

Optional Reading: Romans 7

Memory Verse for the Week: I Kings 11:9

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