Posted by: arieliondotcom | May 29, 2013

The Hidden Gift of GOD (2 Kings 11)

GOD’s Hidden Gift
(2 Kings 11)

People think that the verse “GOD moves in mysterious ways” is a Bible verse. But it’s not. It’s actually part of a poem and hymn written by William Cowper. Cowper’s story is a fascinating one because although a Christian he suffered from severe depression and even tried to kill himself. But his Christian friend, John Newton, came alongside him and helped keep him strong when his own self of worthlessness hid his own worth, and what GOD was doing, from him. We know from Scripture that several people GOD used also became severely depressed and asked GOD to let them die. But in every case there was an answer, a way ahead, hidden from them but which GOD in His perfect purposes was working out.

We see something of that truth in our Scripture today. Remember that the people of Israel have broken in two. Most of the 12 tribes of Israel have abandoned the LORD and followed idols. Their kings took those tribes away from the tribe of Judah which remained faithful to GOD in Jerusalem. And the unfaithful kings ruled the rebel tribes from Samaria while the faithful kings led the faithful tribes of Judah and Levi from Jerusalem.

But then GOD pulled a switch. When the king of Judah, Ahaziah, joins forces with the King of Israel, Joram, and they both turn away from GOD, GOD uses Jehu the commander of Joram’s army, to kill both of them.

As we join our story today, Jehu is busy claiming kingship over most of the tribes of Israel in Samaria and fighting off the King of Syria. He has killed the King of Judah (Ahaziah) but not laid claim to the land yet. So when the King of Judah’s mother hears her son is dead, she kills off all of her son’s heirs so she can be queen. And for a time she is.

But the queen is unaware that one of her grandsons was hidden from her with his nurse by his aunt, the wife of the high priest. He’s being raised secretly by the priests in the priests’ living quarters in the Temple in Jerusalem.

The boy, Jehoash (“Gift from GOD”) was one year old when hidden but when he was 7 the high priest put a guard around him as a human shield. Surrounded by the guard and priests, the young prince was put in the customary spot of kings in the Temple, anointed and announced as King of Judah by the High Priest Jehoiada. The shouting and trumpet blowing attracted a crowd, and more shouts of joy and trumpet blowing.

The queen had been an idol worshipper of Baal, and was probably at least partly to blame for her son, King Ahaziah, leading the people back into idolatry before being killed. So she had no reason to be in the LORD’s Temple all the while the young prince was being raised there. But now she becomes curious and rushes in to see what is going on. Seeing the hidden heir to the throne publicly sworn in as King she screams “Treason!” But it is she who is recognized as the traitor now.

The High Priest has made certain the new king was sworn in under the law of the Covenant to be faithful to the LORD GOD of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. The people of Judah are called back to being faithful to GOD under a godly king. So his traitor grandmother, while screaming that the priests are traitors, is killed as a traitor herself. Rather than being killed as a queen, she’s secretly dragged through the horse gate so her blood doesn’t stain the Temple. And once outside, she is killed. The High Priest also orders that anyone who tries to follow and rescue her be killed, too, but that wasn’t necessary.

The High Priest then has the new king and the people all reaffirm their faithfulness to the LORD and to each other. And as a sign of their zeal the people destroy the temple of Baal where the queen and her evil son had encouraged them to sin against GOD.
With the queen dead, the people had a 7-year-old King, the gift from GOD, Jehoash, the leadership of the High Priest to guide him, and peace.

As the Scripture-based song says, “GOD will make a way where there seems to be no way.” You may think there is no way forward in life. But there is. Just as GOD hid that little prince in order to show His purpose at the right time, there is relief hidden from you now but soon to be revealed. It may seem impossible, like the child and grandchild of idol worshippers being hidden for 6 years and like a butterfly coming out of a coccoon suddenly revealing the unimagined beauty of GOD.

It might be like a baby born in a barn, raised quietly, who only revealed Hinself to be the Son of GOD after living in secret for three decades. And now He is known throughout the world as JESUS Christ, the Only way to eternal Life.

As another song says, “It is no secret what GOD can do.” No matter what your secret sin or shame, JESUS can and will forgive and heal you of it. No matter how overwhelming the challenge there is water in the underground spring you don’t realize that will gush up to refresh you if you ask. GOD uses His people like He did the High Priest to bring His hidden things to light. And no matter what our challenge, when we are devoted to Christ and give ourselves to Him, He will take the secret things and publicly get glory for the Father through them by saving us.

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