Oct. 27, 2016
2 Kings 17-Part 2
LET IT GLOW
During Solomon's reign as king, Israel became a divided nation-the Northern Kingdom of Israel and the Southern Kingdom of Judah. Both had 20 kings who ruled over them and both fell into idolatry.
Israel was conquered by the Assyrian Empire in 722 BC when its capital of Samaria fell. Had Israel's first king Jeroboam walked in the ways of God and led his nation to obey the Law, their history could have been different. Baal worship and Molec worship (pagan idols) were continued throughout the 209 years. Although God had sent several prophets to warn Israel of His judgment-Elijah, Elisha, Amos, Hosea, and Isaiah warned them of captivity unless they repented of their sins, Israel did not heed. Their sins caught up with them.
Sins always bring discipline, and the consequences of that sin are sometimes irreversible. God's patience and mercy are beyond our ability to understand. He will pursue us until we either respond to Him or, by our own choice and hardness of heart, make ourselves unreachable. Then God's judgment is swift and sure. The only safe course is to turn to God before our stubbornness puts us out of His reach. (Life Application Study Bible)
Verse 23 says, ...the Lord removed Israel out of His sight.
After the Israelites were deported, foreigners from the Assyrian Empire were sent to resettle the land. This policy helped Assyria in keeping peace in conquered territories. (LASB, verse 24)
LET IT GROW
What happened next?
- The Lord sent lions among the foreign inhabitants and killed them. (verse 26) There was no religious faith in Samaria.
- They recognized the lions as God's judgment, so they requested from the king that he send a Jewish priest from Jehovah to teach them the manner of the God of the land. (verse 27)
- Then the unusual request was granted as the Assyrian king sent an Israelite priest back to Samaria to teach them to fear Jehovah, where contaminated calf worship was. (verses 27-28)
- Well, it was a compromised religion in the land and nations that was once Israel's land. They feared the LORD and served their own gods (verse 33)
Sadly, Jehovah was worshiped merely as another god. All the transplanted peoples still worshiped their local deities. (Falwell)
Did Israel loose sight of the only One True God and the importance of following Him? Since they never completely destroyed the pagan influence, Israel came to ruin. Some worshiped God to appease Him rather than please Him. He was one of several gods, just another, instead of The One and Only God.
Do we need reminding that God requires being first place in our life? He will be the only God in our life.
Blessed is the nation whose god is the Lord.
LET IT GO
Search my heart and life to see if there be any gods other than Jehovah.
Fear God and only serve Him.