August 14

II Kings 23:36-I Chronicles 1

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Commentary by Dr. Drake Travis

Lord may we be found faithful, worth defending, worth investing your Holy Spirit in in immeasurable amounts. I pray we learn from these poor examples that we read about today.  We know what not to do. And we thank you for these sobering reminders and teaching.  Amen.
There are three invasions of Judah that are within the finale of Kings today. There are also three Judean Kings that witnessed the violence as this transpired.

23 – Jehoiakim was installed as king in 608 B.C.  He turns out to be evil (you think these guys would develop some horse-sense after a while, but hey! )

24 – The city of Jerusalem is stormed by Babylon-/-Nebuchadnezzar-the-King and the Temple is raided of immense amounts of treasures and valuables -that was 605 B.C.  Also many prominent Hebrews are taken to Babylon as prisoners <– it isn’t mentioned here in Kings but it is what happened at this exact point when all the biblical material is compared.  A young “Daniel” is among the lads who marched the hundreds of miles to Babylon (he was 13 at the time – the Lion’s Den event is 57 years later!)  Jehoiachin is put in charge as king. By now Egypt is a non issue as Babylon had taken control of much of the area for nearly 1000 miles in all directions. J-chin is 18. He rules in a full-on evil manner for three months….and…guess what…yea…Nebuchadnezzar comes again and takes the rest of the Temple gold and valuables and 10,000 princes, officials, prominent educated skilled citizens, men of valor and they go to Babylon too. It was now 597 B.C.  Among those taken in this haul is Ezekiel the prophet.  Nebuchadnezzar then put Zedekiah in charge as ‘king’.  He was J-chin’s uncle.  He was evil as the rest of the final kings except that he was a bit of a scheming scammer that eventually infuriated King Neb.
25 – Jerusalem falls and this has to be one of the saddest turns of events in world history – it’s 586 B.C.   Zedekiah’s escape, capture, torture, murdered children is too gruesome to recount.  You heard it the first time through. Just take a lesson from all this and shun evil, eh?! The Hebrews must have thought, “it’s over?? but God!!?”  So perplexing to be taken on a several hundred mile march to Babylon to live out ones days as a slave.  The details of the rest of the trip to Babylon and the dismal events that transpired you have read already in other chapters and it will be read again at the end of II Chronicles when we get there in November.  It is hit from many angles for God is driving it home –> that ungodliness, willful ignorance of God’s Will, disobedience will leave us groaning, “God what has become of us/me/our nation?”
I Chr. 1 – understand that I Chr. starts with Adam and the long genealogy since it is telling us all “The Times” [the definition of –>CHRON-ih-clz].  These are the Times of the Hebrews; the people that God chose.  When Samuel and Kings were written is was originally penned as a long single tome – 1 & 2 Sam. plus 1 & 2 Ki. were [all four] were a single book.  Chronicles is a rewrite with a more spiritual focus.  Chron. is written from a much more southern perspective.  They ended up being sinful just like the north was, but their founding was for the purpose of walking with God.  The north kingdom was founded for the purpose of running away from God.  1-2 Sam. = I Chr.  and 1-2 Kings = 2 Chr.      I Chr. is a lengthy genealogy for 9 chapters and then resumes with the Hebrew’s story at the end of Saul’s life.   II Chr. completely omits the history of the northern kingdom.  It was too gruesome and lurid in detail for the Chronicler to keep track of. In his mind who wanted to rehash all the ungodliness of the northern kingdom? Not one of their kings sought the Lord. So the Chronicler saw fit to ignore them and their pursuits.  Pardon all the extra detail but it is best to understand this prior to launching further into this pivotal book.

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