“Also the children of Israel secretly did against the Lord their God things that were not right, and they built for themselves high places in all their cities.” —2 Kings 17:9 NKJV
By Leslie M. Grant
This book continues the history of the two separated kingdoms, with the prophet Elisha replacing Elijah as God’s witness both of truth and grace. Other prophets also witnessed and suffered for their faithfulness. The book of Kings gives special prominence to the ministry of the prophets in contrast to the books of Chronicles where the priests and Levites are more often noticed.
Again, no believing king is found in Israel (the ten tribes) in spite of the grace of the prophet Elisha. Israel’s growth in evil led to the invasion of the land by the king of Assyria, who carried them captive out of their land. Since that time the ten tribes have been lost sight of, and only God knows where to find them and bring them back to their land as He will do in days yet to come.
Judah continued in the land for some time longer. The reigns of two godly kings, Hezekiah and Josiah, stand out beautifully in contrast to the general downward trend. Yet both these reigns ended in the sadness of human failure; and eventually Judah was carried captive by the Babylonians.
This is another book of solemn admonition in its application to us. It again emphasizes equity and truth in government. It shows that the true place of man is one of thorough subjection rather than of prominence and authority, which in every case proved beyond the capacity of men – even godly men – to be entrusted with. How all this cries out for the coming of the one true and faithful King, the Lord of Glory!
This column is taken from the book: The Bible, Its 66 Books In Brief.
It is available from the publisher: Believer’s Bookshelf USA.