Old Testament: 2 Kings 15:1-16:20
2 Kings 15:1-16:20 Games of Thrones
Here again is the chart of the kings. Below I have listed the kings in the order given in Scripture highlighting Yahweh’s evaluation of each of them. The name of any new king listed is also in bold print.
1) Good king in Judah: Twenty-seven years after Jeroboam II was coronated, Azariah (son of Amaziah aka Uzziah) became king in Judah. He was sixteen when he became king (see yesterday’s blog) and was king longer than any other king: fifty-two years in Jerusalem, the capital. He pleased Yahweh though he left the high places of idol worship intact. Yahweh struck him with leprosy and he had to live in a separate house from everyone while his son, Jothan, reigned as co-regent.
2) Good king in Judah: Jotham, who was co-regent with his father, took over when his father died (v. 7)
3) Bad king in Israel: In the thirty-eighth year of Azariah of Judah, Zechariah, Jeroboam II’s son, took over for only six months. He did evil like his ancestor, Jeroboam I. Shallum killed him in a conspiracy and took his place. Zechariah was the fourth of the four generations of kings that Yahweh had promised to Jehu.
4) Bad king in Israel: Shallum assassinated Zechariah in the thirty-ninth year of Uzziah of Judah. He lasted one month.
5) Bad king in Israel: Zechariah was offed by Menahem who assumed the regency.
6) Bad king in Israel: Menahem in Israel slew Zechariah coincidental with the thirty-ninth year of Azariah’s kingship in Judah. He reigned in Samaria for ten years. While Menahem was king he slaughtered everyone in Tirzah. He ripped open the pregnant women. He did not please Yahweh and did evil like so many other kings in the northern kingdom.
The king of Assyria came against Israel during Menahem’s reign. Menahem extorted money from his rich people to pay off Pul of Assyria so he wouldn’t attack. He made them each pay $380.44 so he could pay Pul $22,826,562.50.
7) Bad king in Israel: Pehahiah took over for Menahem coincidental with the fiftieth year of Azariah king of Judah. He only reigned for two years. He did evil like all his predecessors. Pekah conspired against him and offed him in his castle in Samaria. He did evil in God’s sight.
8) Bad king in Israel: Pekah followed Pehahiah in the fifty-second year of Azariah’s reign in Judah. He reigned for twenty years. He was evil, too. (Surprise.) He committed all the sins of the original northern king, Jeroboam. The king of Assyria attacked him and took seven towns in the land of Napthtali and took the inhabitants captive back to Assyria.
9) Bad king in Israel: Hoshea conspired against Pekah, killed him, and took his place. He was the last king of the northern kingdom, Israel.
10) Good king in Judah: During the second year of Pekah’s reign in Israel, Jothan took over in Judah. He was twenty-five years old and reigned for sixteen years. He pleased Yahweh though he, too, failed to tear down the high places of idol worship.
11) Bad king in Judah: In the seventeenth year of Pekah’s reign in Israel, Ahaz became the king in Judah. He was only twenty years old when he took over and lasted sixteen years in Jerusalem. He was bad and acted like the kings of Israel. He even made his sons pass through the fire as in pagan rituals. He not only allowed the idol worship on the high places but participated himself in that kind of worship. The king of Aram, Rezin, and Pekah came against Ahaz and besieged him. They did not prevail though Rezin was able to take the town Elath back.
Ahaz asked the king of Assyria for help. Ahaz sent the treasure that was in the Temple and his own house to the king as a present. The king of Assyria decided to help him and captured Damascus and took all the people back to Assyria and put Rezin to death.
Ahaz went to Damascus to meet the king of Assyria. Ahaz had his priest construct an altar in Damascus and then he came up and sacrificed on it. Then he had most everything removed before the king of Assyria got there.
12) Good king in Judah: Hezekiah was the next regent in Israel. He was a mostly good king but finished poorly.
Here is today’s tally. Four good kings who were descendants of David in Judah. One bad king in Judah. Eight bad kings in Israel that were descendants of Jeroboam I.
New Testament: Acts 19: 13 -41
Acts 19:13-41 A Bunch Of Turkeys
Some Jewish exorcists, including seven sons of the high priest, tried to cast out demons by the name of Jesus. One of the demons said, “I know Jesus and Paul but who are you?” The man the demon possessed jumped on them all and beat them up and stripped their clothes off! The story spread amongst all the Jews and Gentiles in Ephesus and caused fear in the whole area and caused people to glorify Jesus.
Many people in the area brought all their books of magic and burnt them in a large bonfire. The worth of all the books was around $6 million (cf. ESV Study Bible). The people in the area were really learning the power of the Word!
Paul wanted to go to Rome but wanted to encourage and strengthen the churches in Macedonia and Achaia in Greece first. He sent Timothy and Erastus away from him to Macedonia. Paul, himself, stayed in the Asian area of Turkey for a while.
While in Turkey, in Ephesus, Paul about ruined the business of a silversmith named Demetrius who made silver images of the goddess Diana. Demetrius was saying that Paul would ruin all the businesses associated with the Temple of Artemis aka Diana, one of the seven wonders of the world. Of course, this almost started a riot. People started shouting, “Great is Artemis of the Ephesians!” (v. 20). The people dragged Paul’s pals, Gaius and Aristarchus, into the outdoor theatre. People continue shouting and carrying on for two hours. Most didn’t even know what was going on. Finally, Alexander, one of the Jews, tried to calm everyone down and explain that the Jews weren’t responsible for any of this. But the idol worshippers hated Jews and shouted him down.
The head of the town council finally addressed the people saying that everyone in Ephesus knew that their centerpiece was the Temple of Artemis. He said that the people they had brought forward, Paul and his friends, were not going to steal anything or ruin their worship. The man said that if anyone had a legal dispute that the courts would hear them. He didn’t want any riots started for no reason at all and he told everyone to go home.