2 Chronicles 23:16-21 (Part 1) – Calling on the People of God To Be the Change They Seek!

Posted: September 29, 2020 in 14-2 Chronicles

2 Chronicles 23:16-21 (Part 1 of 2)

Jehoiada’s Religious Reforms

Opening Illustration/Comments

Tonight, we have a presidential debate and it truly sickens me as to where we have come – Donald Trump vs. Joe Biden. Lord, help our nation if this is the best we have to offer! Republicans have gone off the rails is playing damage control over the past 4 years with Trump’s every outlandish comment. Democrats have drifted toward socialistic ideals that would make our founding fathers cringe and Joe Biden is simply the smooth talking “used car salesman” type that they have offered up to make their platform more palatable. This is where we are at. And I am not even sure that I am going to even watch the circus that will be the debate tonight.

I believe in the ideals of conservatism and those ideals are presently most generally represented in the platform and practices of the Republican party. However, it is truly sad that the image and figurehead of the Republican Party is Donald Trump. Why? Because Donald Trump is an egomaniac who thinks that only he is right and everybody else is wrong. He is not very presidential. He is like a town gossip who spews commentary without any basis in fact. I actually dread watching the debate tonight because Mr. Trump will most likely say something outrageous, say some things that are blatantly not true, and generally act like a school yard bully in his debate with Joe Biden. The media will rip him to shreds for it. Then the maniacal “it’s the end of the world if the Democrats take the White House” faction of the Republican Party’s supporters will take to the internet and spin what Trump says into the truth by multiplying what he says by 50%. It will further exacerbate the us vs. them mentality of many supporters of Trump and the Republican Party.

On the other hand, the platform and practices of the Democratic Party have drifted so far to the left that it too sickens me. Creating further and further dependance on the government is their aim it seems, with government handouts for this and that, for forgiveness of debt for this and for that. It seems to me that the Democrats feel that the Federal government and spending money that the government does not have will solve the nation’s problems and create this utopian society. Further, their positions on abortion, the forms that marriage can take, and government intrusion into our lives is simply inconsistent with my Christian faith. And then there’s Joe Biden. He is simply the best that the Democrats have to offer? He seems the classic Machiavellian politician that will promise and do anything so match the prevailing polling numbers of the traditional support base of his party and who hopes all his promises will sway the independent voters.

On the one hand you have a school yard bully who seems the necessary evil that Republicans must live with at least through January 2021 (inauguration day if he loses) if not January 2025 (inauguration day after a second term if he wins). On the other hand, you have the classic Clintonesque liberal in Biden who will do and say anything to get elected. I am so completely fed up with what the major parties are feeding up to us as candidates that it makes me want to cry.

However, I must keep reminding myself that who the President is, really is not the issue. These candidates are a reflection of who we are. They do not set the tone. We set it as the people. Our leaders are simply a reflection of who we are as a people. Therefore, we as Christians, cannot sit back and pin our hopes on presidential candidates. We must be societal influencers!

It is that idea of not pinning our hopes on presidential candidates and being the change that we seek that I thought of this morning when reading this passage, 2 Chronicles 23:16-21. Let us read through it this morning, together, with that idea in mind:

Scripture Passage

16 Then Jehoiada made a covenant between himself and the king and the people that they would be the Lord’s people. 17 And all the people went over to the temple of Baal and tore it down. They demolished the altars and smashed the idols, and they killed Mattan the priest of Baal in front of the altars.

18 Jehoiada now put the priests and Levites in charge of the Temple of the Lord, following all the directions given by David. He also commanded them to present burnt offerings to the Lord, as prescribed by the Law of Moses, and to sing and rejoice as David had instructed. 19 He also stationed gatekeepers at the gates of the Lord’s Temple to keep out those who for any reason were ceremonially unclean.

20 Then the commanders, nobles, rulers, and all the people of the land escorted the king from the Temple of the Lord. They went through the upper gate and into the palace, and they seated the king on the royal throne. 21 So all the people of the land rejoiced, and the city was peaceful because Athaliah had been killed.

Passage Analysis

In this passage, we see that Jehoiada restored the Temple procedures and its worship services according to David’s original plans (go back and look at 1 Chronicles 24-25). In this passage, we see also that they renewed their commitment to the already established covenant with God – the one set up in Deuteronomy for the righteous rule of the nation. It was meant to function basically as the constitution for the governing of Israelite society and its people. This covenant, by this point in the history of the Israelites, had pretty much been ignored for over a century. Unfortunately, after Jehoiada death, as we shall see going forward in 2 Chronicles, the reforms of the religious life of the nation died with him. There must be a desire among the people to change. There must be a willingness to do more than just quietly get along or sit on the sidelines and complain. There must be a willingness to be the change agents in society from the ground up.

Life Application

I think the thing that we need to takeaway this morning is that we, as Christians, must be the change that we seek in our nation. Presidential candidates will not do it. We must be willing to run for public office at all levels instead of complaining about the state of our country. We must be in the mission field of our country changing it from within. We must be use our biblical values to create conversations that bring people back to God. Why are our churches dying? It is the same reason that our country is drifting away from God and more toward secularism each day. It is because we have become ivory tower Christians. We sit in our ivory towers and complain about what’s going on below us but do not come down from the tower to be the change we seek. It’s easier to complain than it is to be the solution. We must become more active in our world as Christians. We no longer live in a world where Christian values dominate. We must retake the land that we have lost. We must demonstrate biblical, agape love to a world that is drifting away from God. We must be the change we seek. We cannot depend on Donald Trump or Joe Biden to save our nation. Only Jesus Christ-centered and socially active Christians loving one person at a time to the cross is the answer. Holy Spirit pour yourself out on every American Christian right now so that they will care about the community around them. Pour yourself out on them to give them courage to be out in the world loving people to the cross. Pour yourself out on us so that we can reclaim our nation and not depend on presidential candidates and political parties to save it.

Amen and Amen.

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