Skip to content

12. Jehoshaphat, King of Judah

October 12, 2010

Text:    II Chronicles 17:1-19

Harmony Texts:          I Kings 22:41-47;  II Chronicles 19:1-11; II Chronicles 20:31-39

Outline:           I.     His Policies                                              II Chronicles 17:1-9

II.    His Results                                              II Chronicles 17:10-19

Context/Discussion/Comments:

These texts summarize the reign of Jehoshaphat from God’s perspective.  Jehoshaphat followed in the footsteps of his father, Asa, leading the people back to the Lord and discouraging the worship of idols.  We begin to understand just how much idolatry has crept into the life of the people when we read the accounts of all the high places destroyed but yet not all were destroyed.  It’s like they keep popping up just as fast as they are destroyed.  Jehoshaphat began his rule at age 35 and ruled for 25 years.  His rule began in the 4th  year of King Ahab, king of Israel, the northern kingdom, with whom he had peace.  He was also at peace with Edom.  Even though he had a very good relationship with Ahab, he did not trust Ahab’s son Ahaziah and, aided by God, refused Ahaziah’s overtures to let his men sail on Jehoshaphat’s ships and participate in this commercial endeavor.  According to II Chronicles 20, God’s hand had much to do with wrecking Jehoshaphat’s ships and helping him decide to refuse Ahaziah’s request because the ships were wrecked before they sailed.

Under Jehoshaphat, Judah strengthened her cities with troops to discourage Israel from attacking them and even taking back the cities in Ephraim captured by his father Asa.  Jehoshaphat walked with God like his ancestor David and refused to allow the people to worship idols.  Therefore, the Lord blessed his reign by establishing unity within Judah such that the people brought gifts to him and honored him.  He continued to remove the places used for idol worship, sending officials to the cities to judge the people based on their civil laws.  He also sent Levites to teach the people God’s Law and to judge the people based on God’s covenantal  laws [II Chronicles 19:1-11].

As a result, the nations surrounding them began to fear the Lord and Judah had peace [see my commentary on Proverbs].  They even brought Jehoshaphat gifts, increasing his wealth.  Jehoshaphat used this wealth to fortify cities and amass a large fighting force of over one million soldiers.

Lessons/Applications:

  1. Walking with God is the most important commitment a “leader” can make.
  2. To know peace one must know Peace; that is know the Lord, the One who is Peace and can bring peace to our mind, heart, and soul.
  3. God honors those who honor Him [I Samuel 2:30].
  4. Confronting and removing evil practices brings unity, especially when one leads by example.  People refuse to follow those in leadership who refuse to follow their own rules and regulations.  All people are created equal and all people want to be and must be treated equally.  Review the rules in your home and verify that they apply equally to all living under your roof/command.  This also applies to the workplace and to organizations including government.
  5. A righteous lifestyle based on righteous principles is an effective means of influencing others to consider whom to worship.   It is an effective evangelism tool for we who believe in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, for we who call ourselves the Church.
  6. People willingly give to righteous causes and perform for righteous leaders.  Being fair, moral, righteous, and just brings peace and unity within any organization/governing body.
  7. Use the wealth [money, peace, unity] because of your righteous policies to ensure continued support for your policies of peace, justice, and  unity.
Advertisements

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: