2 Kings 22,23 & 24
The Blame Game
It’s all too common for people today to play the “Blame Game” by blaming their problems or their spiritual condition on their parents, but here was Josiah who had a horrible spiritual heritage. Both his father and his grandfather did what was evil in the sight of the Lord, yet 23.25 says:
“Now before him there was no king like him, who turned to the LORD with all his heart, with all his soul, and with all his might, according to all the Law of Moses; nor after him did any arise like him.”
Wow! In spite of his family of origin, Josiah loved and served the Lord.
We don’t limit our blaming to our parents. We blame our spouses, our heritage, our temperament, and our circumstances, even God.
No matter who our parents or grandparents were, no matter who we’re married to, we’re responsible for our choices. While other people can make it more difficult for us, nothing they do can make us sin (1 Cor. 10.13; Ezek. 18.20)! And nothing in our lives can keep us from turning to God “with all our heart, all our soul, and all our might, just as Josiah did!
A Mother’s Influence
Have you also noticed that as the history of Judah’s kings has been recounted, God included the names of their mothers, as well as, their fathers? In Josiah’s case, he was only eight years old when he began to reign. It’s unlikely that he made the decisions he did without wise counsel. And who do you suppose would be the most likely counselor of an eight-year-old boy?
Mothers and grandmothers can make a big difference in the lives of their children and grand-children—for good or for evil. Remember Athaliah who had her own grandchildren put to death so she could seize control. It’s no wonder her son Ahaziah was a wicked king.
In the New Testament Paul wrote to Timothy about “the genuine faith that is in you, which dwelt first in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice, and I am persuaded is in you also” (2 Tim. 1.5).
I’m so encouraged by so many of the mothers and grandmothers I know and many of you I know from the blogging world, who are seeking to leave behind that kind of legacy.
And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart (Gal. 6.9).
The Blame Game & God
As the psalmist’s prayer continues, he says, “Have respect to the covenant” (v.20). He came to God based on His covenant relationship with His people.
We, too, come to God, not based on anything we deserve, but on the New Covenant. That’s the reason we pray “in Jesus name.” We’re saying in effect, I come to you based on the finished work of Jesus Christ and because I’m in Him.
Twisted, fretting hearts
It started in the Garden of Eden. When faced with their sin and its consequences, Adam said, the woman you gave me, she made me sin! So it’s her fault, and by the way, it’s Yours, Lord, because You gave her to me! We’ve been doing it ever since, blaming God, as well as others, for the results of our own choices.
Jesus, whom you crucified
One of our former pastors used to say, “You won’t see people saved until they see that they’re lost.”
Sometimes that means we must be direct with people by calling sin what it is and calling them to repentance. Most of us see ourselves as basically “good”—“Most men will proclaim each his own goodness …” (Prov. 20.6), while Scripture says, “All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Rom. 3.23).
36 “Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly that God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Christ.” 37 Now when they heard this, they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, “Men and brethren, what shall we do?” 38 Then Peter said to them, “Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39 For the promise is to you and to your children, and to all who are afar off, as many as the Lord our God will call.”
Talk about direct! “… Jesus, whom you crucified …” God has called us to love people enough to share the truth of the Gospel with them, including the fact that they are sinners in need of a Savior. That sometimes means risking their friendship and favor in the short run, with a view to their eternal destiny.
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