2 Kings 13
-This chapter returns to describe the kingdom of Israel and two of the successive sons of Jehu, namely Jehoahaz and his son Joash. We also see the death of the aged Elisha in this passage. Both Jehoahaz and Joash fell short of being good kings because of their allowance of foreign gods just like Jeroboam son of Nebat. They both made Israel to sin doing evil in the sight of the LORD and walking in idolatry (2 Kings 13:2, 11). The anger of the LORD was kindled, especially with Jehoahaz, and therefore Israel was given continually into the hand of the Arameans until the king entreated the favor of the LORD and God listened because of their oppression. “The LORD gave Israel a deliverer (savior), so that they escaped from under the hand of the Arameans; and the sons of Israel lived in their tents as formerly (2 Kings 13:5).” Nevertheless, they still rebelled in their hearts toward their true and powerful God as the Asherah still was allowed to stand in Samaria (2 Kings 13:6).
-Joash showed grace and favor towards the mighty prophet Elisha as he was becoming sick to the point of his death. Joash wept over him genuinely, and the prophet blessed him with a word for victory over the Arameans. However, Joash fell short of what the prophet, and God for that matter, wanted in striking the ground with arrows as a symbol of the LORD’s destruction on Aram (2 Kings 13:14-19). After Elisha had passed away into eternity, a miracle occurred when a man who was being buried was hastily cast into the open grave of Elisha because of marauding band of Moabites. When the dead man touched the bones of Elisha, he resuscitated, revived, and stood up on his feet alive (2 Kings 13:20-21)! Now the LORD was compassionate on Israel despite their bad deeds and gave them victories over the Arameans and they recovered many of the lost cities from the time of Jehu and Jehoahaz. This happened primarily because God was gracious to them and had compassion and turned to them because of His covenant with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. He would eventually cast this kingdom from His presence, but He was showing His patience to them at this point (2 Kings 13:22-25).
-*Application* Our God is still gracious, merciful, and compassionate. He desires to show and pour out His favor on you and give you victory over every evil and enemy in your life. Don’t be like Israel though. Be whole heartedly devoted to His grace and mercy and live in such a way that pleases Him with no idolatry or compromise with temporary gods or false solutions. Our God is sufficient! His promises and covenant is true and lasting. You need no other!
Verse to Memorize: 2 Kings 13:5