2 Chronicles 24:17-22 (Part 2) – Are You A Bad Weather Fan of God?

Posted: October 7, 2020 in 14-2 Chronicles

2 Chronicles 24:17-22 (Part 2 of 2)

Jehoiada’s Reforms Reversed

Opening Illustration/Comments

I remember before I became a Christ follower, I would often call myself a Christian but I was really just a man who grew up in a preacher’s home where I never really asked Christ to be my Savior and Lord. Oh, I understood all about who Jesus was and what He stood for. I could even understand the Savior part of Savior and Lord. However, I was never really too big on Jesus being my Lord. I did my own thing. I understood the difference between right and wrong according to Christian standards. It was not in my general base nature of who I was to intentionally hurt others or to be overtly selfish. All in all, just a good, reliable guy trying to live a good life and not hurt too many people along the way.

However, I just never really wanted this whole Christian thing after I got out of the house as a young man. I just wanted to live wild and free and unshackled. After going through many personal ups and downs, bad relationships, bad situations, and all the drama and problems that come along in life when you are not truly a child of God, it took me up until age 39 to wake up to the reality of the very real Jesus. Prior to that, like I said, I lived an existence that God existed when I wanted Him to exist. I paid Him no attention much of the time. I negotiated with Him and rationalized away my overt disobedience to God’s Word when what I wanted to do was in need of spiritual rationalization. God and I have a deal on this area of disobedience – because I am generally a nice guy, ya know. Definitely, I was like a God-user. I abused the privilege of Him being my father just like a spoiled child. However, let something bad happen or be in a situation where no good ending could be seen or figured out, I would come running to God in seeking a solution – a solution, of course, that would be to my advantage or that would minimize or eliminate any pain that I would suffer.

I was a bad weather Christian, so to speak. You have heard of fair weather fans in sports. A fair weather fan is one who loves and supports his time when they are winning but abandons his team when they have a bad season. Well, a bad weather Christian is similar to that, just in reverse. A bad weather Christian is one who ignores God when times are good (by our own definitions) but comes running to God when times are bad (by our own definitions). We pray up a storm, go to church, hang out with church folk, go to mid-week church activities when times are tough. However, when the tough times have passed, we go back to our old behaviors and old sins. You may have been there yourself? I know this was me before I gave my life to Christ in December 2001.

It is that idea of abandoning God when what we define as prosperity comes to us is what I thought of this morning when reading this passage, 2 Chronicles 24:17-22. Let us read through it this morning, together, with that idea in mind:

Scripture Passage

17 But after Jehoiada’s death, the leaders of Judah came and bowed before King Joash and persuaded him to listen to their advice. 18 They decided to abandon the Temple of the Lord, the God of their ancestors, and they worshiped Asherah poles and idols instead! Because of this sin, divine anger fell on Judah and Jerusalem. 19 Yet the Lord sent prophets to bring them back to him. The prophets warned them, but still the people would not listen.

20 Then the Spirit of God came upon Zechariah son of Jehoiada the priest. He stood before the people and said, “This is what God says: Why do you disobey the Lord’s commands and keep yourselves from prospering? You have abandoned the Lord, and now he has abandoned you!”

21 Then the leaders plotted to kill Zechariah, and King Joash ordered that they stone him to death in the courtyard of the Lord’s Temple. 22 That was how King Joash repaid Jehoiada for his loyalty—by killing his son. Zechariah’s last words as he died were, “May the Lord see what they are doing and avenge my death!”

Passage Analysis

In this passage, we see that we must ask the question, “if everything went so well in Judah when the people worshiped God, why did they turn away from Him?” Prosperity can be both a blessing and a curse. While it can be a sign of God’s blessing to those who follow Him, it carries with it the potential for moral and spiritual decline. Prosperous people are tempted to become self-sufficient and proud – to take God for granted or relegate Him to an optional status. When we prosper, in whatever form that may take for you, we must not forget that God is the source of our blessings (see Deuteronomy 6:10-12 and 8:11-14).

Life Application

I think the thing that we need to takeaway this morning is that we must understand that God is sovereign over our lives in good times and bad. Also, we must remember that our definition of our situations is based on our own selfish self-interest. What we are going through, we may define as tough times, but God may be using the situation to teach us something if we are already a believer or to draw us unto Him if we are not a believer. God may be using a situation to prepare us for the greater thing that He has in store for us in the next season of our lives. Further, we must remember that when we do reach those calm water seasons of our lives that we should be shouting God’s praises for seeing us through the raging rapids and setting us upon the calm stretch of the river of life. We have a tendency to forget God when times are good. However, when we realize that all of life is interconnected and cyclical. All bad seasons are followed by good ones and all good seasons are followed by bad ones. That’s when God’s providential care over us must be celebrated when we are in the calm waters. It is there that we can stand up in our canoe and raise our paddle over our head and shout to the Lord His great praises. Because there will be another storm to come, more rough waters to come, where your canoe is taking on water and you are hanging on for dear life and God will be there with you to see you through it.

Take time in prosperity to shout to the Lord about His granting you the period of prosperity. Take time to praise Him for the calm water periods of your life. That’s the time we should be overjoyed by God’s blessing of peace and calm instead of ignoring Him til the next storm comes. Make the choice to praise God in good times and bad times and everything in between.

Amen and Amen.

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