2 Kings 8:16-24 (Part 1) – If Mama Ain’t Happy, Ain’t Nobody Happy!

Posted: June 17, 2019 in 12-2 Kings

2 Kings 8:16-24 (Part 1 of 2)

Jehoram Reigns in Judah

Yesterday, we talked about raising sons and using my dad’s relationship with my brother and me as the example. Today, let’s talk about raising daughters. In Christian circles, we talk about our men as being God-ordained as being the leader of the household and that is what God’s Word in so many ways teaches us. God’s Word does not tell us that women are to be treated like second class citizens. It’s just that man and woman have different but equally important roles in the home. It is God’s design that we, as men, provide the principal provision for our homes. It is also our job to create a safe environment of a home so that our wife and our children can flourish and become what God has intended them to be. Man is charged with protecting his family’s security even to the point of giving his life for his wife or his children.

None of these qualities essential to the proper function of a home that are given to men by God diminishes in any way the responsibilities of a wife in a home. In fact, inside the home, it is where a wife has the most influence, even more so than a husband and father. The father/husband sets the stage for his family to flourish but it is the wife that makes things happen within that environment. Equally important roles. None more or less valuable than the other. That is not to say that in some marriages that the design comes out different due to the talents that God gave an individual husband and an individual wife or the balance of duties ebbs and flows over time due to the needs of the family and of the spouses. However, the general design for family is as I have stated previously.

And it is within the home that a wife and mother generally exerts great influence over the children and over the husband. Whether you are a Christ follower or not, this fact seems to be generally true for us all here in America. There is an old saying in our culture that floats around and it gets laughs each time it is said, “if momma ain’t happy, ain’t nobobdy happy!”  and the other one, “Happy wife; happy life!” There are family power structure implications in this comment. There are sexual connotations in this comment. We laugh at these old sayings with a nervous chuckle a lot of times. We laugh at comedy because the best comedy always has truth at its core. Nothing could be more true than in marital relationships between men and women. These sayings recognize a truth. There is simply the recognition that women/wives/mothers exert great influence in our families – over their children and over their husbands – and without really trying hard at it.

Thus, raising daughters, we must teach them that they are valuable not only in their careers but in their marriages as well. They have important roles to play in marriages that are critical to the success of a good marriage and we should never let them marry into a marriage where they are not going to be valued, allowed to flourish, and to exert the influence over their family that God intended for them to have, in the way that He intended them to have it. We should examine the potential son-in-law to determine if he will provide the proper balance for our daughters as wives and mothers. He must provide for her, protect her and allow her to flourish. Secondly, we must raise our daughters (1) to look for a godly man, but just as importantly (2) to use their powerful influence within the family unit in a wise and godly way and not for sport or power or greed.

The same is true when we examine the potential daughter-in-law that we will be handing our sons over to as husbands. As in any marriage, this potential daughter-in-law will exert great influence over your son. She will mold his home, where he lives, how he raises his kids, how he spends his money, what he spends it on and even the relationship he has with you. This potential daughter-in-law will also exert great influence over your son when it comes to his Christian walk. To deny these facts is simply to deny the dynamics of the influence of a woman/wife has over her man/husband. Thus, as parents it is important that we raise our sons to recognize when there is the God given right balance in a relationship with the woman that they may have fallen in love with.

There is no more important role in a family than that of a mother and wife. Who gets that role in your son’s life should be the biggest influence that you want to have over your son. It is important. We have seen throughout our lives and you know it’s true! We have seen in history and we know it’s true. Just look at our bible passage for today. The influence over an entire nation’s relationship with God, the real, one and only true God, was shaped and influenced by a wife’s influence in the home over her husband, the king. Let’s read that passage, 2 Kings 8:16-24, now for the first of two times with an eye toward the powerful influence that a wife and mother has on her family (and in this case a nation):

16 Jehoram son of King Jehoshaphat of Judah began to rule over Judah in the fifth year of the reign of Joram son of Ahab, king of Israel. 17 Jehoram was thirty-two years old when he became king, and he reigned in Jerusalem eight years. 18 But Jehoram followed the example of the kings of Israel and was as wicked as King Ahab, for he had married one of Ahab’s daughters. So Jehoram did what was evil in the Lord’s sight. 19 But the Lord did not want to destroy Judah, for he had promised his servant David that his descendants would continue to rule, shining like a lamp forever.

20 During Jehoram’s reign, the Edomites revolted against Judah and crowned their own king. 21 So Jehoram[a] went with all his chariots to attack the town of Zair.[b] The Edomites surrounded him and his chariot commanders, but he went out at night and attacked them[c] under cover of darkness. But Jehoram’s army deserted him and fled to their homes. 22 So Edom has been independent from Judah to this day. The town of Libnah also revolted about that same time.

23 The rest of the events in Jehoram’s reign and everything he did are recorded in The Book of the History of the Kings of Judah. 24 When Jehoram died, he was buried with his ancestors in the City of David. Then his son Ahaziah became the next king.

In this passage, we see that King Jehoshaphat arranged the marriage between Jehoram, his son, and Athaliah, the daughter of wicked Ahab and Jezebel. Athaliah followed the idolatrous ways of her parents in the northern kingdom, bring Baal worship into Judah and starting the southern kingdom’s decline. Where Jeroham died, his son, Ahaziah, became king. Then, when Ahaziah was killed in battle, Athaliah murdered all her grandsons except Joash and made herself queen (see 2 Kings 11:1-3). Jeroham’s marriage may have been politically advantageous, but spiritually it was deadly.

As you see here, the wife, Athaliah, had great influence over her husband. It was not necessarily that he was a weak and docile man. It is simply that if you do not recognize the influence that a wife and mother has in a marriage, you are simply kidding yourself. That’s why as parents of sons that it is highly important that we raise our sons not only to treat women well but also to discern the nature of the woman that they are going to marry. When he marries her, he is handing his home over to her. When he marries her, he is giving direct influence over 2/3 or more of his life to her. When he marries her, she will shape his views on the other third of his life as well, his job – what it is, where it is, how he views it, etc. I am not saying these things to bash women but rather to recognize their powerful influence in a man’s life.

We may be charged by God to protect our families but our wives are charged by God to make that family a family. Let us influence our children to choose wisely and let us influence them to be the kind of spouse that uses their role in a godly way and as God intended it. It can change the course of our children’s lives but who they marry. Just look at this situation in Judah’s history. This is a turning point in Judah’s history. Why? Because of a marriage.

We may not have a son or daughter entering in our a royal marriage such as this but it is just as important to your family’s history as this marriage was to Judah’s history. Let’s us raise daughters who will use their influence in marriage in a godly way that promotes the well being of her family and their family relationships and their relationships with Jesus Christ. Let us raise son who play their role in marriage appropriately by providing, protecting and creating environments for their wives and children to flourish in ways that are sacrificial in nature. Let us raise these children to recognize their roles in marriage and use them wisely. Let us raise them to choose their spouse wisely.

Amen and Amen.

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