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The life of Jehoram- a man who died to no ones regret. 2 Chronicles 21
The life of Jehoram- a man who died to no ones regret
2 Chronicles 21

This morning we are going to take a look at 2 Chronicles 21 together.

Setting the stage for our study

-Chronicles was written by Ezra around 450 BC and delivered to the beleaguered - and very much needful of encouragement group ofJews who had just returned from 70 years of captivity in Babylon
-Chronicles is a retelling of the History of Israel that has the line of David- the line of promise that ultimately leads to Jesus- as its primary focus. This is key to remember! The relevancy of Chronicles, as is every book of the Bible, is that it takes us to Jesus.

Last week we took a look at the life of Asa- despite the fact that he did not finish well, he was one of the good guys, and so was his son Jehoshaphat. Unfortunately Jehosphat's son did not carry on as his father and grandfather had done. Rather than carry on the faith, he rejected God and more than that he went out his way lead the nation away from God.

While the tone of 2 Chronicles 21 is not particularly uplifting- for it is a not a feel good passage, there is a lot for us to learn from it- as their is from every passage in the Bible.

READ 2 Chronicles 21

Things that catch our attention in 2 Chronicles

1. The gory way in which Jehoram died
2. The statement that he died to no ones regret
3. The prophecy of Elijah that was delivered to Jehoram, exposing his sins and telling him of the judgment that was coming his way (Elijah's ministry was mostly in the North- Jehoram was in the South. It also seems that Elijah had written this letter by the Spirit of the Lord before he died- for by the time of Jehoram's reign, he had already been taken to Heaven)
4. All the things that happen to Jehoram that clearly reflect the judgment of God in his life
5. The use of the word "prostitute" in v.13 (reminding us that God considers unfaithfulness to him and our dabbling in the other religious practices as a form of prostitution)
6. The utter refusal of Jehoram to repent and cast himself upon God's mercy and grace
7. The errant giving of the kingship to Jehoram- just because he was the first born (ever mindful that David and Solomon were not the first borns)
8. The heartlessness and wickedness of Jehoram- from the murder of his brothers, his marriage to a daughter of Jezebel, his leading the people in the worship of other gods
9. The faithfulness of God to his promises- seen in preserving the line of David- despite the fact that Jehoram, as depicted, had zero redeeming qualities.


LESSONS OF THE TEXT

1. Our text gives us the clear reminder that "The wages of sin is death" but it also leads us to Jesus in whom the forgiveness of sin and eternal life is found

One only needs to consider the sins of Jehoram and God's response- afflicting him, judging him, and sentencing him to death for his sins, to get that the wages of sin is death.

The good news is this- while the wages of our sin is death- and rightfully deserved- because of Jesus- who is the object of the promises of God and of the line of David that Chronicles and all the Scriptures pursue- there can be the forgiveness of sins, restoration, blessing, and eternal life. Such is found by faith in Christ alone.

If you haven't, give your life to Christ. Commit yourself to Him. Come humbly, come in faith, come confessing your sin pleading the mercy of God which is available full and free to all who do so.


2. When we sin, rather than persisting in it- we need to repent and cast ourselves upon God's mercy

In 2 Samuel 24:14, when told of the impending judgement of God in his life, David said these important words "Then David said to Gad, "I am in great distress. Let us now fall into the hand of the LORD for His mercies are great, but do not let me fall into the hand of man."

Indeed God was merciful to him, for His judgment was restrained and because of David's contrite heart, the site of the Temple of the Lord was revealed to him

In Jehoram's case, instead of heading David's example and of others, when the judgments of God fell upon him- no matter the intensity (Edom's revolt, nearly killed in battle, Libnah's revolt, prophetic word from Elijah, Attacks by the Philistines and Arabs, the death of his sons, his being looted, the bowel disease that God afflicted him with)- Jehoram held fast in his rebellion against God, refusing to call upon the Lord, refusing to humble himself, refusing to take hold of the grace and mercy of God which he could have taken hold, as others have done.

Sadly, the journey of Jehoram is one many take to this day

3. As parents, we have a sacred duty to raise our children in the ways of the LORD- though such is no guarantee that they will follow Him for each one us must make our own decision to follow Christ

In Deuteronomy 6:4-9 it says; "Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the door frames of your houses and on your gates.

Jehoram- for the most part- had a godly father and a godly grandfather. I have no doubt that he heard the word of the Lord expounded and was exhorted to follow the LORD- yet he did not follow God- instead he turned to idols and the wicked ways of the kings of the North- who save for perhaps one king, had nothing to do with God. How heartbreaking.

Though Jehoram departed from the way of the Lord, by the example of his father we are reminded of our duty as Christian parents to raise our children in the way of the Lord.

How to raise your child in the ways of Christ

- Read the word to them, get them into the Scripture
- Set a godly example
- Encourage them to commit their lives to Christ
- Set an example in service, forgiveness, generosity, grace, evangelism, your speech
- Get them to church (it doesn't matter if they are willing or not, you are charge, parenting is not democracy, you are responsible to God for bringing them under the Word of God) If they choose to not go to church after they have their own place and aren't using your money anymore, that's their business but as long as our children are under us we have our in charge
- We need to pray for our children
- Have godly standards but ensure that you set fair rules that are not unusually onerous or provocative
- Don't give up on them-- even if/when they stray- for until their lives are over, there is the opportunity to right with Christ.

4. The statement "He passed away, to one's regret" is meant to make us think about the legacy we will leave behind.

This begs the question "How do you want to be remembered" What do you want written in the bulletin for your funeral. What do you want your relatives and those attending your service to say when the eulogies and tributes are given.

In order to be remembered well we need to be about living for Christ, being generous, and serving others in the hear and now.

If I want to be remembered as a person who followed Christ, I have to make it my aim to please and live for Christ- exercising patience, forgiveness, talking about him, encouraging others to follow him, loving others, being gentle, kind, considerate. I can't be a flash in the pan either- their needs to be consistency.

As an encourgement- taken from the life of Asa - who we looked at last week-- to be remembered well, I don't have to be perfect-- but having a heart for God that takes up a good chunk of my life is important.


5. God always keeps His promises. Great is His faithfulness See v.7

Some of God's promises are conditional, some are unconditional.

God's promise to David that an eternal king would one day sit upon the throne of David (that being Christ) was an unconditional promise.

Despite Jehoram's obvious disdain for all things pertaining to godliness, to David God had made a promise. This is why in v.7 it says; "Nevertheless, because of the covenant the Lord had made with David, the Lord was not willing to destroy the house of David. He had promised to maintain a lamp for him and his descendants forever."

What an amazing statement about God-- his mercy, his grace, his love, his faithfulness.

GOD ALWAYS KEEPS HIS PROMISES. EVERY WORD OF THE LORD IS TRUE. EVERYTHING HE SAYS WILL HAPPEN- WILL COME TO PASS. So we are to hold on to God, our faith, and His promises

Trust God- Hold on to Jesus and your faith

CLOSING SONG: What a faithful God have I

BENEDICTION

"Whatever you do, whether in words or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus" Philippians 3:17