The Good & Bad In This Verse

There was something of a very interesting nature I found embedded in the verse below…

2Kings 12:2 ‘Throughout the time Jehoiada the priest instructed him, Joash did what was right in the LORD’s sight.’

I find this to have both a good and a bad ring to it, particularly in the light of the whole Joash story, which is more detailed when you open up 2 Chronicles 24.

Concerning the good part, it is clear that Jehoiada the priest was a major influence in the life of the young king. After all the wicked leaders that had ruled and led the people astray from God, it was good to see a king walking in the ways of the Lord. This is a reminder of how priceless it is to have godly people around you who will influence you in the right way. Wherever you find yourself in the sphere of life, one thing is clear: your purpose is to bring glory to God. And one way you will go far in doing such is having an inner circle that fears and loves the Lord, and seeks to obey His commandments. You are less likely to live a Christ-honouring life if that inner circle of yours couldn’t care less about Him. It is stated all too clearly in 1 Corinthians 15:26 – bad communication corrupts good manners. Of course, it isn’t to say that you should never communicate with unbelievers; that’s even impossible to begin with. If we are going to make the kind of impact we were created to make upon this earth, then our closest influences have to be of a godly nature.

Concerning the bad part, however, a further read into the story reveals why the verse is made as such. The reality is that the faithfulness of Joash was only as long as his guardian’s life. When Jehoiada was done with his earthly days, other people came round and influenced Joash, and suddenly the king who had been passionately working for God back then was now serving Asherah poles. What is most stunning is how he had his former mentor’s son stoned to death for speaking the truth.

This points out the absolute need for each and every person to be firm in their convictions and be convinced in their conscience and spirit about their faith. Clearly, Joash was not convinced enough, even with that long period of time. It seemed more like he was dependent on the faith of Jehoiada, which ultimately proved to be his moral downfall. It is all good and well to be inspired by someone else, but if they are the crutch on which you lean, taking their every conviction as yours, it’s a setup for a potential disaster. In this day and age, the Holy Spirit isn’t for just a select few; He is with every believer, and it is Him that we should lean on. Don’t make other believers the standard for how you will live, and be firm in your convictions, for that is the route to a victorious life in Christ.

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