(11 verses, :56 to read)
What I’m about to READ
- Jehoshaphat returns to Jerusalem, is reproved for his alliance with Ahab, but is also commended for the good that he did. The rest of the reading describes the good reforms of judges that Jehoshaphat directed.
MARK & LEARN
- 1-3: Kings are often rebuked for their alliances. The rebuke is ultimately a First Commandment rebuke – they failed to fear, love, and trust in God alone. They decided to not have faith in the promises of the Lord. In this case, Jehoshaphat’s alliance confirmed Ahab in his sin and disobedience rather than call him to repentance.
- 4-7: Jehoshaphat appoints faithful judges for the towns around Jerusalem. These are the lower courts.
- 8-11: Jehoshaphat appoints faithful judges from among the Levites and priests and heads of Israel in Jerusalem. This is the highest courts.
- Their are consistent themes in these appointment of judges: 1.) Don’t take bribes (7), 2.) Always remember that you are under the authority of the living God. He judges through you. Thus, judge faithfully according to His impartiality and justice found in His Word (6, 9) 3.) When you are warning and punishing others, you are attempting to prevent them from incurring greater wrath from the Lord, and 4.) The call to faithfulness is a call to the heart (9). All this will take courage (11).
- Luther: “You see, therefore, what attitude he must have whose duty it is to discharge the office of judge and sword, namely, to subdue all feelings of love, fear, favor, sympathy, greed, ambition, reputation, life or death, and to be a simple lover of simple truth and just judgment….A judge must bear the hatred of many; he must be in peril because of hostility and be tempted by sympathy and gain. He will not be able to overcome these shocks and stand first unless he looks to God.” (AE 9:163) Reference found in TLSB, pg. 691.
- Judges in Israel were called to judge according to the Divine Word. Justices in the United States are called to judge according to laws and especially, the constitution. We can see how tempting it has always been for judges to judge according to feeling, reputation, or bribery and not according to words that contain simple truth.
Thoughts? Comments? Questions? Post below, or join the conversation in our Facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/dailybiblemeditation/ or if reading on facebook, check out the blog: https://rightlydividedbible.wordpress.com/
Christopher Stout, Pastor of Mount Calvary Lutheran Church, Kannapolis, NC & Abundant Life Lutheran Church, Charlotte, NC