2 Chronicles 35
As the kingdom of Judah draws closer to judgment it is encouraging to see that even in those days there could be a revival. Under the godly reign of King Josiah, a Passover was held that was unequaled Israel’s history.
2 Chronicles 36
Surprisingly, the son of Josiah turned out to be an evil king. During his reign, King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon conquered the land and a time of exile and judgment began. Even though judgment had began God still had compassion on His people (16), but the king and the people mocked the messengers of God. Verse 16 gives a sad commentary on those days, “the wrath of the LORD arose against His people, till there was no remedy.” Full judgment was no certain, according to Jeremiah’s prophecy the land would no enjoy her sabbaths, denied to her by the people for so many years.
Even as the Chronicles of the nation of Israel end, the last verse strikes a chord of hope by including the proclamation of King Cyrus of Persia to rebuild the temple, the city, and the walls.
Under the proclamation of Cyrus, every Israelite had a responsibility to rebuild. Some were to go, others were to send, but all had a part to fulfill.
Also, it is a blessing to see God turning the heart of the king for His own purposes.
We do not know much about the people mentioned in Ezra 2, but we know they answered the call to return to the land. I like verse 69 which says, “They gave after their ability unto the treasure of the work…” Each did what they could according to their own ability, not in comparison to one another. All that made the difference was willingness.
What an incredible event to see the beginnings of the temple, yet also how said it was in comparison to what had been lost. And even as the work began, opposition arose. The same is true for believers today.
The inconsistency and frailty of human government make them poor allies for the people of God. We can rejoice when God uses them, but our trust and hope should never be in them.
Disobedience to God’s commands always brings heartache and suffering. However, we should never condemn God when we endure the consequences of our own sin.
My readings today began with a list of the obedient, but ended with a list of the disobedient. If such lists were made today, which one would I be on?