Jehonadab/Jonadab is one of my heroes. Jonadab was a Rechabite. The Rechabites were Kenites: descendants of Jethro [Moses’ Midianite father-in-law]. They had settled with the Israelites on the southern border of Judah and had become followers of Jehovah. [Jdg 1:16]
Jonadab came, did his bit in getting rid of the wicked & apostate regime of Athaliah. Then disappeared from the radar. [2 K10:15-27]
No lands. No plum government positions. Why not? Jeremiah 35:6 gives a clue … Jonadab made his family promise they would never drink wine/alcohol, and that they would always live as nomads. Why?
I believe that Jonadab was one of those rare men who observed the lives of others, saw what was wrong, and then made a choice NOT to follow in their footsteps. Jonadab would have observed:
➡Ben-Hadad’s defeat after challenging Ahab in a moment of drunken bravado. 1 Kings 20:12 Lesson: Wine & alcohol leads you to make foolish decisions. Better to be sober, alert & wise.
➡ Ahab’s lack of contentment with cedar-inlaid-with-ivory palaces & flourishing vineyards. Ahab’s loss of a sense of well-being & peace, because he was denied Naboth’s little vineyard. [1 K22:39, 1 K21:1-2] Lesson: Houses, vineyards, possessions are like a drug. They take over your soul. The more you have, the more you crave… You covet… You hate… You destroy… for what? For something you cannot take with you.
Unlike Solomon, Jonadab did not just observe & gain head knowledge. Jonadab applied that knowledge. He wisely decided to forsake the worldly rat-race and taught his descendants to live in tents, always ready to move, living a life of contentment and prudence with what God has blessed them with.
➡ The Apostle Peter gave similar advice: Beloved, I urge you as sojourners [transit passengers] and exiles [expats, refugees] to abstain from the passions of the flesh, which wage war against your soul. [1Pe 2:11]
It is so easy to forget that this world is not our home & that we are just passing through. The cares & pleasures of the world rise up to cloud our vision & make us focus on the wrong things. Jehonadab lived counter-culturally.
⚓ Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth. [Col 3:2]
⚓ Put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to gratify its desires. [Rom 13:14]
⚓ Walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. [Gal 5:16]
Jehonadab’s sacrifice didn’t/doesn’t seem important in the eyes of men. But, his act of integrity influenced his descendants to be faithful to that vow for over a century & a half! All this had not escaped God’s eyes. In Jeremiah 35:1-6, God held them up as an example to Israel.
There are times when I wonder whether is any point in doing the things I do. Do they make a difference to anyone?
➡Jonadab’s life reminds me that El Roi sees and records the little acts of faithfulness… And tiny acts can influence coming generations…
We’re in year 2020… 20/20 speaks of perfect vision.
Jonadab saw with clarity what was worthless & chose NOT to pursue it. God sees every heart that is perfect towards Him, and seeks to support such hearts. [2 Ch 16:9]
What are my fixed on?
Abba Father, please would you heal my eyes… grant me 20/20 vision so that I may see YOU with clarity – what You are doing, where You are leading… I want to fix my eyes on You and walk closely with You. Help me. In Jesus Name. Amen.
2 Kings 9:2-3 "And when you arrive, look there for Jehu the son of Jehoshaphat, son of Nimshi ----- Then take the flask of oil and pour it on his head and say," Thus says the Lord, I anoint you king over Israel"
⚡ Elisha sent a prophet to Ramoth-Gilead to anoint Jehu as Israel's new king. Though it was done secretarially, it was Lord's doing. Jehu was anointed as the king of Israel and commissioned to get rid of the house of Ahab.
⚡ Elisha's statement fulfilled Elijah's prophecy made twenty years earlier that all of Ahab's family would be killed. (1 Kings: 21:17-24)
⚡ God raises people to power to fulfill his purposes. The Lord is active in the history. He is looking for persons who would obey him and take up the responsibility seriously. He needs not only people of convictions, but also being courageous. When God calls a person, He enables him or her to take up the specific commission from God.
⚡ Jehu's colleagues were making a sarcastic comment about the prophet meeting him in secret. But when Jehu told them what the Lord told through him, immediately they took action to confirm him as the new king. Jehu was encouraged by this open support from his friends. He was clear about his next step. In order to fulfill the purpose of God, he started his revenge against Ahab's family, beginning from his son Joram.
God is looking for people who could take appropriate actions and not being lazy and lethergic. Our God loves justice and hates the evil. Do we have such passion to get rid of the evil from our society? Are you the person, who is ready to take up the responsibility, if God asks for it?
Dr. Thomas David
SILVER & GOLD: Am I like an ELISHA or a GEHAZI? 2 Kings 5.
An Israeli young girl was taken as captive to Aram and she was a slave girl to Naaman's wife. Naaman was the commander in the army of the Aramean king Ben-Hadad.Though he was a mighty warrior, he had leprosy. This Israeli slave girl witnessed to her mistress that there is a prophet in Israel who can heal her master's leprosy.
When Naaman informed this to the king, he sent Naaman with gifts and a letter to Joram, king of Israel.(see 2 Kings.1:17; 3:1,9:24) The gift was ten talents of silver, 6000 shekels of gold and ten sets of clothing (5:5) (That is about 340 Kilogramme of silver and about 70 Kilogramme of gold. This was a huge amount. In 1 Kings.16:24, we read King Omri bought the hill of Samaria for 2 talents of silver and built the city of Samaria there.)
King Joram got scared about it as he thought, Aramean King was looking for a reason for a fight. Prophet Elisha when heard about it, asked the King to send Naaman to him (5:8)
Though Naaman went as a commander with horses and chariots, the prophet did not go to see him. He just sent a messenger asking Naaman to go and wash himself 7 times in river Jordan for healing. Naaman was upset that Elisha did not go to him and healed him as he expected. Finally listened to the plea of his servants and did just as Elisha told him. Immediately he got healed.
Naaman went back to Elisha and declared his new faith and placed a request before him Now I know that there is no God in all the world except in Israel. Please accept a gift from your servant. (2 Kings.5:15) Though Naaman pleaded, Elisha's reply was "As surely as the LORD lives, whom I serve, I will not accept a thing." (5:16). Naaman went back to Aram as a transformed person.
Today what is happening around us? How many people are exploiting all opportunities to earn money , name and fame.
Gehazi, the servant of Elisha thought what a foolish thing his master did by turning down all precious gifts. He went after Naaman, told some lies and got 2 talents of silver (about 68 Kilogrammes) and 2 sets of clothing for himself.
Afterwards Elisha asked him "Is this the time to take money, or to accept clothes, olive groves, vineyards, flocks, herds or menservants and maidservants?" (2 Kings.5:26). Gehazi had a desire to earn all those things with the silver he got. Elisha added that Naamans leprosy will cling to you and to your descendents forever.(5:27) Gehazi desired to get wealth for himself and for his descendants but instead he got leprosy for himself and for his descendants.
Naaman pleaded with Elisha to receive gifts worth billions of rupees but he refused to accept anything for what God did.
What could have been our response if we were in Elisha's place?
Do we have the spirit of Gehazi in us?
Am I like an ELISHA or a GEHAZI in my attitude to worldly wealth?
Waiting in obedience
Ahaziah, king of Judah, was killed by Jehu, who became King of Israel after a violent coup d'état (2 kings 9:27). Taking advantage of his death, his own mother, destroyed all the royal heirs and became queen (2 kings 11:1-3). Imagine killing all your grandchildren, children,... anyone with a claim to the throne and you can imagine the terror Athaliah was capable of!!!
6 long years she ruled over the land. And unknown to her, her 1 year old grandson was growing in hiding, saved by daughter, Jehosheba. 6 years this child hid and grew. He didn't have a normal infancy. Things looked bleak. At any point, he could be found. What a burden to have at such a young age.
And after these 6 years, when little Joash/Jehoash was hardly 7, he was made king by the priest, Jehoida. He was crowned king on the portico of the temple, between the pillars, Boaz and Joachim. He was established by His strength.
As we start a new year today, we are established by His strength. His grace is sufficient for us. However Terri the past has been is irrelevant. All that matters is Jesus and all He did for us on the cross, so that we live victoriously in His strength.