Amaziah became king in Judah while Jehoash was still on the throne in Israel. After conquering the Edomites in Seir, Amaziah foolishly returned to Judah with “idols taken from the people of Seir. He set them up as his own gods, bowed down in front of them, and offered sacrifices to them! This made the Lord very angry, and he sent a prophet to ask, ‘Why do you turn to gods who could not even save their own people from you?’” (II Chronicles 25:14b-15, NLT).
“But the king interrupted him and said, ‘Since when have I made you the king’s counselor? Be quiet now before I have you killed!’ So the prophet stopped with this warning: ‘I know that God has determined to destroy you because you have done this and have refused to accept my counsel’” (II Chronicles 25:16).
Amaziah had a hard lesson to learn. Some time later, “After consulting with his advisers, King Amaziah of Judah sent this challenge to Israel’s king Jehoash, the son of Jehoahaz and grandson of Jehu: ‘Come and meet me in battle!’” (II Chronicles 25:17).
Amaziah had become so full of himself that he wanted to fight his fellow Israelites. When did he come up with such an idea? “After consulting with his advisers.” Folks, the people you take advice from can help you or ruin you. Be very careful to seek only godly counsel. Amaziah would have done well to listen to the prophet the Lord sent him.
Amaziah issued his challenged and Jehoash responded, saying, “You have indeed defeated Edom, and you are very proud of it. But be content with your victory and stay at home! Why stir up trouble that will only bring disaster on you and the people of Judah?” (II Kings 14:10).
“But Amaziah refused to listen, for God was determined to destroy him for turning to the gods of Edom” (II Chronicles 25:20). Twice we’ve seen Amaziah receive wise counsel; and twice we’ve seen him refuse it.
So what did Amaziah do? He “refused to listen, so King Jehoash of Israel mobilized his army against King Amaziah of Judah. The two armies drew up their battle lines at Beth-shemesh in Judah. Judah was routed by the army of Israel, and its army scattered and fled for home. King Jehoash of Israel captured Judah’s king, Amaziah son of Joash and grandson of Ahaziah, at Beth-shemesh. Then he marched to Jerusalem, where he demolished 600 feet of Jerusalem’s wall, from the Ephraim Gate to the Corner Gate. He carried off all the gold and silver and all the articles from the Temple of the Lord. He also seized the treasures from the royal palace, along with hostages, and then returned to Samaria” (II Kings 14:11-14).
Nothing else is mentioned of Jehoash after this, except his death: “When Jehoash died, he was buried in Samaria with the kings of Israel. And his son Jeroboam II became the next king” (II Kings 14:16).
And what about Judah’s king? Amaziah, had made himself more than a little unpopular by involving his country in a war against Israel – particularly one where they’d been soundly defeated and humiliated. Amaziah had only begun to pay for his arrogance.
“God sends no one away empty except those who are full of themselves.” (Dwight L. Moody)
Copyright © 2013
Judy Woodward Bates