Monday, June 14, II Kings 13
- 14 — Elisha is called the chariot and horseman of Israel by King Jehoash. That means Elisha, as Elijah, was like a line of defense against the terrible sin-wickedness in Israel. They were a breath of spiritual fresh air in a sin-darkened society. God grant that we be such chariots and horsemen of Israel in our country!
Tuesday, June 15, II Kings 14
- 8 — Amaziah’s chief mistake here was in not seeking counsel from the Lord. You can see the sad results in this chapter. In our lives as Christians, when there are troubles and problems, we shouldn’t act rashly as Amaziah did. Instead we are to seek counsel and wisdom from God’s Word. That alone brings us peace, success and happiness.
- 12 — Why did God permit Amaziah’s defeat? He appeared to be a faithful king (v. 3) We learn the answers in II Chron. 25:14, 15. After his victory over the Edomites, he began worshipping their gods. His trust in himself and their gods led to his humiliating defeat. God did that in love to humble him and bring him to repentance. “The Lord disciplines those He loves.” (Heb. 12:6)
Wednesday, June 16, II Kings 15
- 5 — Why was Azariah, also called Uzziah, struck with leprosy? It was because he burned incense in the temple. This was strictly forbidden by God. Only the priests were to do this. Cf. II Chron. 26:16-23 and Num. 16:40.
- 29 — This is the beginning of the end of Northern Israel. Deportation of the best citizens left the country weak and unable to resist an invader. The reason God permitted this to happen should be evident from Northern Israel’s continual flagrant rejection of God and their involvement in idolatry and vile, immoral sins (vv. 16-18)
Thursday June 17, II Kings 16
- 3-4 — In wickedness, Ahaz was a rival to King Ahab. “He even sacrificed his son in the fire,” meant he offered his son up as a human sacrifice to a heathen, false god. How can anyone sink so low into sin? It happens when we turn away from the Word of God. Faith can then be lost. When we continually refuse God’s invitation to repent, the same thing can happen to us as it did to Judas. Satan entered him. However, that will never happen to those who are faithful to the Gospel in Word and Sacrament. (Rev. 2:10)
- 10-13 — How can something like this happen in a Christian country? The problem is utter unfaithfulness to the Word of God. We daily need the Word of God to keep our sinful flesh under control. The Apostle Paul speaks of this struggle in Romans 7:14-25.
Friday, June 18, II Kings 17
Vv. 24-33 — God’s dreadful punishment upon Northern Israel’s sin is that most of them were deported into Assyria and never returned. The Assyrians who repopulated Northern Israel and intermarried with the Jews who were there, left Samaria a mixture of Jews and Gentiles. Due to God’s intervention, the Word of God didn’t completely die out in Northern Israel. This is the reason why the Samaritan woman that Jesus brought to faith knew about a coming Messiah. Cf. John 4:4-26.
Saturday, June 19, II Kings 18
- 4 — On the high places, Judah practiced gross idolatry. King Hezekiah completely destroyed that evil worship. (Num. 33:52). Israel was to worship God only at the temple. (Deut. 12:2-7, 11)
- 25 — Not only did King Sennacherib through Rabshakeh brazenly defy God (v. 33), but he even misrepresented himself as an ambassador for God when he said, “The Lord said to me, ‘Go up against this land and destroy it.’”