Posts Tagged 'Leadership'

1 Chronicles Chapter 21

David had been chosen by the Lord and then prepared to become the king of Israel. The Lord had given rules and instruction to the kings, so that they could receive his blessing and continued guidance in leading the children of Israel. One of the instructions given, was that Israel was only to be numbered according to the commandment of the Lord. Numbering the people, was much like performing a census for today and it did things such as counting the number of men who would go to war for Israel. The kings of other nations would number the people whenever they desired. This chapter begins:

1 And Satan stood up against Israel, and provoked David to number Israel.
2 And David said to Joab and to the rulers of the people, Go, number Israel from Beer-sheba even to Dan; and bring the number of them to me, that I may know it.
3 And Joab answered, The Lord make his people an hundred times so many more as they be: but, my lord the king, are they not all my lord’s servants? why then doth my lord require this thing? why will he be a cause of trespass to Israel?
4 Nevertheless the king’s word prevailed against Joab. Wherefore Joab departed, and went throughout all Israel, and came to Jerusalem.

Satan tempted David to number Israel, which he did in his weakness. Joab and the rulers over the people were instructed to do it and report back to him. Joab, who knew the Lord would make so much more of the people then the number they were, asked why David would go against the Lord in this thing. Nonetheless, David’s command won out and Joab went and numbered the people as he had been told to do. When he was done, he returned to Jerusalem. (see also 2 Samuel 24)

5 And Joab gave the sum of the number of the people unto David. And all they of Israel were a thousand thousand and an hundred thousand men that drew sword: and Judah was four hundred threescore and ten thousand men that drew sword.
6 But Levi and Benjamin counted he not among them: for the king’s word was abominable to Joab.
7 And God was displeased with this thing; therefore he smote Israel.
8 And David said unto God, I have sinned greatly, because I have done this thing: but now, I beseech thee, do away the iniquity of thy servant; for I have done very foolishly.

Joab reported to David and the men who could bear arms totaled something like 1,100,000 men in Israel and 470,000 men in Judah. (This number is different then listed in 2 Samuel 24.) Joab found his duties were abominable, so he did not include the count for Levi or Benjamin. As a result of the numbering, God smote Israel. David recognized his sin against God and begged to be forgiven by the Lord.

9 And the Lord spake unto Gad, David’s seer, saying,
10 Go and tell David, saying, Thus saith the Lord, I offer thee three things: choose thee one of them, that I may do it unto thee.
11 So Gad came to David, and said unto him, Thus saith the Lord, Choose thee
12 Either three years’ famine; or three months to be destroyed before thy foes, while that the sword of thine enemies overtaketh thee; or else three days the sword of the Lord, even the pestilence, in the land, and the angel of the Lord destroying throughout all the coasts of Israel. Now therefore advise thyself what word I shall bring again to him that sent me.
13 And David said unto Gad, I am in a great strait: let me fall now into the hand of the Lord; for very great are his mercies: but let me not fall into the hand of man.

David had a seer named Gad, whom the Lord spoke to with a message for David. David was given a choice between three consequences for his sin. First, three years of famine (seven years according to 2 Samuel), second, three months of their enemies being allowed to over take them, or third, three days of fighting with the sword through all the land of Israel. Gad told David to think about it and tell him what he should tell the Lord. David knew he was in a difficult situation and he knew that the Lord could be merciful to him, so he asked to be dealt with by the Lord and not by the hands of men.

14 So the Lord sent pestilence upon Israel: and there fell of Israel seventy thousand men.
15 And God sent an angel unto Jerusalem to destroy it: and as he was destroying, the Lord beheld, and he repented him of the evil, and said to the angel that destroyed, It is enough, stay now thine hand. And the angel of the Lord stood by the threshingfloor of Ornan the Jebusite.
16 And David lifted up his eyes, and saw the angel of the Lord stand between the earth and the heaven, having a drawn sword in his hand stretched out over Jerusalem. Then David and the elders of Israel, who were clothed in sackcloth, fell upon their faces.
17 And David said unto God, Is it not I that commanded the people to be numbered? even I it is that have sinned and done evil indeed; but as for these sheep, what have they done? let thine hand, I pray thee, O Lord my God, be on me, and on my father’s house; but not on thy people, that they should be plagued.

The Lord allowed pestilence to effect the land of Israel, and they lost 70,000 of their men. An angel was sent by the Lord, to destroy Jerusalem, and when he saw that their was sincere repentance in Jerusalem, the angel was stopped. (see also Joseph Smith Translation 1 Chronicles 21) David saw the angel near the land of Ornan the Jebusite, with his sword prepared to destroy Jerusalem. (Side note: Jebus was the ancient name of Jerusalem, so a Jebusite was likely one who natively lived in Jerusalem.) David and the elders of Israel, who were in mourning, fell down upon their faces. David recognized that the sin was upon him, for his commandment to number the people, and he prayed for the Lord to punish him and his family, not the people of Israel.

18 Then the angel of the Lord commanded Gad to say to David, that David should go up, and set up an altar unto the Lord in the threshingfloor of Ornan the Jebusite.
19 And David went up at the saying of Gad, which he spake in the name of the Lord.
20 And Ornan turned back, and saw the angel; and his four sons with him hid themselves. Now Ornan was threshing wheat.
21 And as David came to Ornan, Ornan looked and saw David, and went out of the threshingfloor, and bowed himself to David with his face to the ground.
22 Then David said to Ornan, Grant me the place of this threshingfloor, that I may build an altar therein unto the Lord: thou shalt grant it me for the full price: that the plague may be stayed from the people.
23 And Ornan said unto David, Take it to thee, and let my lord the king do that which is good in his eyes: lo, I give thee the oxen also for burnt offerings, and the threshing instruments for wood, and the wheat for the meat offering; I give it all.
24 And king David said to Ornan, Nay; but I will verily buy it for the full price: for I will not take that which is thine for the Lord, nor offer burnt offerings without cost.
25 So David gave to Ornan for the place six hundred shekels of gold by weight.
26 And David built there an altar unto the Lord, and offered burnt offerings and peace offerings, and called upon the Lord; and he answered him from heaven by fire upon the altar of burnt offering.
27 And the Lord commanded the angel; and he put up his sword again into the sheath thereof.

The angel gave instruction to Gad, to tell David that he was set up an altar to the Lord in the land belonging to Ornan. David went as instructed. Ornan and his four sons were working on his threshingfloor. The sons saw the angel and hid, while Ornan had his back turned and was working with his wheat. Ornan saw David approaching and left his work to meet him. Ornan bowed to the ground. David requested the use of Ornan’s threshingfloor to build an altar to the Lord. He would buy it at full price and hopefully the Lord would then have mercy on the people of Isreal. Ornan offered the place to David as well as oxen for a burnt offering, tools to prepared the wood and wheat to go along with the meat offereing, without asking for a price. Daivd told him he would pay him full price for it, because it was to belong to the Lord and not to David himself. He paid Ornan and did as he had been instructed in building an altar. David offered burnt offerings and peace offerings as he prayed to the Lord. The Lord responded with fire upon the altar. In accepting the offering, the Lord commanded that the angel put away his sword against Israel. (As a side note: This location would be the future site of the temple built by Solomon – see 2 Chronicles 3:2.)

28 At that time when David saw that the Lord had answered him in the threshingfloor of Ornan the Jebusite, then he sacrificed there.
29 For the tabernacle of the Lord, which Moses made in the wilderness, and the altar of the burnt offering, were at that season in the high place at Gibeon.
30 But David could not go before it to inquire of God: for he was afraid because of the sword of the angel of the Lord.

David made a sacrifice upon the altar when he saw that his prayer had been answered. He did it at the threshingfloor of Ornan because the tabernacle of the Lord was quite a distance away in Gibeon (about five miles north of Jerusalem). David was not willing to go there, in the presence of the Lord, for fear of the destruction of the angel of the Lord.

The events of this chapter occurred after David had committed great sins against the Lord. It is likely that David was not living in a way that would have allowed for the spirit to be as strong of an influence to him. In this state, David had allowed himself to be tempted by the adversary to do those things that he knew were against the statutes of the Lord. He may have justified his need to know the number of men who would go to battle for Israel, but the army of Israel was not to be handled this way according to the ways of the Lord. After the consequences came upon the people of Israel, David recognized the error of his ways. David saw this and desired to take the punishment upon himself. When we make bad choices, the consequences often times effect the lives of those around us. This can be hard to witness when we finally step away from our own selfish desires, especially with those we love. It is far better for us to think of what may result from our choices before we do something we would regret. David sought the Lord’s forgiveness through his own repentance and sacrifices to the Lord. He was forgiven and the plague of destruction was stopped from being upon others in Jerusalem. No matter how far we turn from the Lord, He will always be there to accept us when we repent and return to him.

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1 Chronicles Chapter 20

At this point, the host of Ammonites, which fought against the Israelites, had been defeated and no longer had the help of the Syrians in their fight. There was a time of peace between the two nations. This chapter continues with the following:

1 And it came to pass, that after the year was expired, at the time that kings go out to battle, Joab led forth the power of the army, and wasted the country of the children of Ammon, and came and besieged Rabbah. But David tarried at Jerusalem. And Joab smote Rabbah, and destroyed it.
2 And David took the crown of their king from off his head, and found it to weigh a talent of gold, and there were precious stones in it; and it was set upon David’s head: and he brought also exceeding much spoil out of the city.
3 And he brought out the people that were in it, and cut them with saws, and with harrows of iron, and with axes. Even so dealt David with all the cities of the children of Ammon. And David and all the people returned to Jerusalem.

A year passed, and when the time came for the king to lead his people to battle, he sent Joab to lead his army against the children of Ammon. Joab surrounded Rabbah, a chief Ammonite city, and destroyed it, while David stayed in Jerusalem. David removed the crown from the king of the Ammonites. He took the crown for himself because of its gold and jewels, and then took a lot of goods from them. He had the people of Ammon cruelly destroyed in all of their cities, and then returned with his army to Jerusalem. (see also 2 Samuel 11)

4 And it came to pass after this, that there arose war at Gezer with the Philistines; at which time Sibbechai the Hushathite slew Sippai, that was of the children of the giant: and they were subdued.
5 And there was war again with the Philistines; and Elhanan the son of Jair slew Lahmi the brother of Goliath the Gittite, whose spear staff was like a weaver’s beam.
6 And yet again there was war at Gath, where was a man of great stature, whose fingers and toes were four and twenty, six on each hand, and six on each foot: and he also was the son of the giant.
7 But when he defied Israel, Jonathan the son of Shimea David’s brother slew him.
8 These were born unto the giant in Gath; and they fell by the hand of David, and by the hand of his servants.

Then, the Philistines came to war against Israel at Gezer. The Philistines were subdued, when Sibbechai, the Hushathite, killed Sippai, of the Philistine giants. They fought again, and Elhanan killed Lahmi, the brother of Goliath. Again, they fought with the Philistines at Gath, a previous place of refuge for David. The fight included the son of a giant, with six fingers on each hand and six toes on each foot. Jonathan, David’s nephew, killed the Philistine giant. And so, Israel had defeated the Philistines. (see also 2 Samuel 21)

David continued to show that he was a king who could lead his men to protect Israel from their enemies. Sadly, at this time he made some awful choices that led him to be without the spirit of the Lord. It could have been avoided if he had chosen to physically lead his men into battle as was the tradition of the king, rather than allowing Joab to do it for him. In many things, however, David was a good leader for Israel and they were blessed during his reign.

1 Chronicles Chapter 17

David had moved the ark of the covenant and had called men of the priesthood to serve in the tabernacle and with the ark. The manner of worshipping the Lord had not been strictly according to what the Lord had commanded the Israelites when they entered the promised land. David was seeking to set things right, or to put things in order. David was devoted to the Lord and it seems that he knew that they would be a better nation if they worshipped the Lord properly. This chapter begins with the following:

1 Now it came to pass, as David sat in his house, that David said to Nathan the prophet, Lo, I dwell in an house of cedars, but the ark of the covenant of the Lord remaineth under curtains.
2 Then Nathan said unto David, Do all that is in thine heart; for God is with thee.

David felt that he was living well in the home built for the king, but that the ark of the covenant needed a permanent home as well. He consulted with the prophet Nathan, who told him that the Lord would be with David as he went forward with his plans.

3 And it came to pass the same night, that the word of God came to Nathan, saying,
4 Go and tell David my servant, Thus saith the Lord, Thou shalt not build me an house to dwell in:
5 For I have not dwelt in an house since the day that I brought up Israel unto this day; but have gone from tent to tent, and from one tabernacle to another.
6 Wheresoever I have walked with all Israel, spake I a word to any of the judges of Israel, whom I commanded to feed my people, saying, Why have ye not built me an house of cedars?
7 Now therefore thus shalt thou say unto my servant David, Thus saith the Lord of hosts, I took thee from the sheepcote, even from following the sheep, that thou shouldest be ruler over my people Israel:
8 And I have been with thee whithersoever thou hast walked, and have cut off all thine enemies from before thee, and have made thee a name like the name of the great men that are in the earth.
9 Also I will ordain a place for my people Israel, and will plant them, and they shall dwell in their place, and shall be moved no more; neither shall the children of wickedness waste them any more, as at the beginning,
10 And since the time that I commanded judges to be over my people Israel. Moreover I will subdue all thine enemies. Furthermore I tell thee that the Lord will build thee an house.

However, the word of the Lord came to Nathan that night and told him to tell David that he was not to build the temple. The Lord made it clear that the tabernacle was designed for its purposes and that it would suffice. The Lord had never asked the Israelites to build a house to him. The Lord told Nathan to remind David that he had been raised by the Lord to be the king, and that the Lord had been with him, protecting him and causing him to become a mighty man. The people of Israel had been given their place to dwell and the promise of their safety continued.

The prophets were and continue to be blessed with the Lord’s trust. When Nathan told David to go ahead, it was not the wrong thing to do. The Lord trusts those who lead his people, to make wise decisions, but if or when those things are not what the Lord would have his people do, He will make his will known to His prophet, as he did with Nathan. (see also 2 Samuel 7)

11 And it shall come to pass, when thy days be expired that thou must go to be with thy fathers, that I will raise up thy seed after thee, which shall be of thy sons; and I will establish his kingdom.
12 He shall build me an house, and I will stablish his throne for ever.
13 I will be his father, and he shall be my son: and I will not take my mercy away from him, as I took it from him that was before thee:
14 But I will settle him in mine house and in my kingdom for ever: and his throne shall be established for evermore.
15 According to all these words, and according to all this vision, so did Nathan speak unto David.

Once David was ready to pass away, his son would have the kingdom of Israel, and would then build a house for the Lord. The son would be blessed with the throne and with the blessings and mercy of God.

16 And David the king came and sat before the Lord, and said, Who am I, O Lord God, and what is mine house, that thou hast brought me hitherto?
17 And yet this was a small thing in thine eyes, O God; for thou hast also spoken of thy servant’s house for a great while to come, and hast regarded me according to the estate of a man of high degree, O Lord God.
18 What can David speak more to thee for the honour of thy servant? for thou knowest thy servant.
19 O Lord, for thy servant’s sake, and according to thine own heart, hast thou done all this greatness, in making known all these great things.
20 O Lord, there is none like thee, neither is there any God beside thee, according to all that we have heard with our ears.
21 And what one nation in the earth is like thy people Israel, whom God went to redeem to be his own people, to make thee a name of greatness and terribleness, by driving out nations from before thy people, whom thou hast redeemed out of Egypt?
22 For thy people Israel didst thou make thine own people for ever; and thou, Lord, becamest their God.
23 Therefore now, Lord, let the thing that thou hast spoken concerning thy servant and concerning his house be established for ever, and do as thou hast said.
24 Let it even be established, that thy name may be magnified for ever, saying, The Lord of hosts is the God of Israel, even a God to Israel: and let the house of David thy servant be established before thee.
25 For thou, O my God, hast told thy servant that thou wilt build him an house: therefore thy servant hath found in his heart to pray before thee.
26 And now, Lord, thou art God, and hast promised this goodness unto thy servant:
27 Now therefore let it please thee to bless the house of thy servant, that it may be before thee for ever: for thou blessest, O Lord, and it shall be blessed for ever.

David praises the Lord for blessing him and his house in raising him up to be the king and allowing his posterity to rule. Additionally, David was blessed to have these things revealed to him by the mouth of the prophet. David recognized that the Lord is the only true and living God, and that the nation of Israel was greatly blessed to be His people. The Lord had removed other nations for them, after delivering them from the land of Egypt. David was willing to do according to the will of the Lord for the blessings of the Lord to be with his family.

It would be such a blessing and honor to have the Lord tell me that my children and their families would be blessed after my time. What a sweet comfort that would be. David’s desire to build a temple, was sincere and a show of his devotion and love for the Lord. However, the Lord will do His work in His own time, and this work was not to be in the days of David. David would still be blessed for his desire to do good, even though he was not given the honor of building the temple. In meekness, David accepted that his son would be the one to do that work. He was a good king, who recognized that the honors belonged to God and those to whom God wanted to bless. Good and faithful people, should seek to have meekness as David did at this time. Even though we know we are capable of doing good, even great things, it is better to recognize when we should allow someone else the opportunity to learn, grow and be blessed by doing them. With meekness, all involved are uplifted and blessed.

1 Chronicles Chapter 14

The reign of King David in Israel began with things such as attempting to relocate the ark of the covenant. It continued with those things found in this chapter. David had already made a well-known name for himself, by leading armies with great strength and having many victories over their enemies. Moreover, he had reigned in Judah for 7 1/2 years. Once he was anointed king of Israel, he and his family, including his two wives Ahinoam and Abigail, had relocated from Hebron to Jerusalem. This chapter begins with the following:

1 Now Hiram king of Tyre sent messengers to David, and timber of cedars, with masons and carpenters, to build him an house.
2 And David perceived that the Lord had confirmed him king over Israel, for his kingdom was lifted up on high, because of his people Israel.

Workers from Tyre were sent along with messengers of the king, Hiram, who was a friend of King David. They brought cedar to build David a house in Jerusalem. David could tell that he was being blessed by the Lord and therefore knew his anointing as their king was confirmed by God.

3 And David took more wives at Jerusalem: and David begat more sons and daughters.
4 Now these are the names of his children which he had in Jerusalem; Shammua, and Shobab, Nathan, and Solomon,
5 And Ibhar, and Elishua, and Elpalet,
6 And Nogah, and Nepheg, and Japhia,
7 And Elishama, and Beeliada, and Eliphalet.

David married more wives while in Jerusalem, in addition to his two wives from before becoming king of Israel. These wives bore him children, including Shammua (Shimea, of Bathsheba), Shobab (of Bathsheba), Nathan (of Bathsheba), Solomon (of Bathsheba and successor of David), Ibhar, Elishua, Elpalet, Nogah, Nepheg, Japhia, Elishama, Beeliada (Eliada), and Eliphalet (Eliphelet). (see also 2 Samuel 5 and 1 Chronicles 3)

Modern revelation teaches that the wives were given to David in a manner acceptable by God, by a prophet of God called Nathan, except for the case of Bathsheba, who was the wife of Uriah (see Doctrine and Covenants 132:38-39). In our current times, this act of having multiple wives has, in His wisdom, not been considered acceptable to the Lord.

8 And when the Philistines heard that David was anointed king over all Israel, all the Philistines went up to seek David. And David heard of it, and went out against them.
9 And the Philistines came and spread themselves in the valley of Rephaim.
10 And David inquired of God, saying, Shall I go up against the Philistines? and wilt thou deliver them into mine hand? And the Lord said unto him, Go up; for I will deliver them into thine hand.
11 So they came up to Baal-perazim; and David smote them there. Then David said, God hath broken in upon mine enemies by mine hand like the breaking forth of waters: therefore they called the name of that place Baal-perazim.
12 And when they had left their gods there, David gave a commandment, and they were burned with fire.
13 And the Philistines yet again spread themselves abroad in the valley.
14 Therefore David inquired again of God; and God said unto him, Go not up after them; turn away from them, and come upon them over against the mulberry trees.
15 And it shall be, when thou shalt hear a sound of going in the tops of the mulberry trees, that then thou shalt go out to battle: for God is gone forth before thee to smite the host of the Philistines.
16 David therefore did as God commanded him: and they smote the host of the Philistines from Gibeon even to Gazer.
17 And the fame of David went out into all lands; and the Lord brought the fear of him upon all nations.

The Philistines heard of David’s anointing and decided to go after him. David went against them and found them spread about in the valley of Rephaim (the giants). David asked the Lord if he should fight the Philistines, and if he did, if the Lord would deliver them into his hands. This was something that had happened a number of times before, because David turned to the Lord for his strength. The Lord answered David and told him to go against them, because the Lord would deliver them into his hand. David led his men and they were victorious in Baal-perazim, recognizing that God had done this for him and his people (see also 2 Samuel 5:19-20). The idols that the Philistines had brought with them, were burned at David’s command. Once again, the Philistines were in the valley and David went to God again. However, this time, God told him not to go after them in that valley. Instead, he was to go to a place that had mulberry trees. Once he heard the sound of their going, or marching, from the tops of the trees, he was to take his army against them. This would be a sign that God had gone before them to destroy the Philistines. David followed the commandments of God, and they were able to defeat the Philistines (see also 2 Samuel 5:22-25). Then the fame of David spread to all the nations and others feared him.

The message of faith and trust in God rather than in the arm of the flesh, that is found in this story of David, is such a good example to us today. David had already shown that he was a skilled fighter and leader of armies. He had grown in these talents over the years and had been continually successful in it. However, he was meek in his own power and in humility, turned to the Lord for guidance, knowing that God would help him if it was the right thing to do. God blesses the meek and humble with the power to overcome their challenges. It may not happen in the timing or way that we would expect. I imagine that David’s wisdom would not have led him to listen from the trees before attacking the Philistines. I don’t imagine that this was how he had initially expected to have victory over his enemies. However, it was God’s wisdom and it proved successful. We will be greatly blessed if we can demonstrate a level of faith and trust in God compared with our own challenges in life.

1 Chronicles Chapter 10

The children of Israel had been led by judges, chosen by God and under His direction. This went on for many years, until the Israelites allowed the influence of surrounding nations to persuade them to have a king instead of following after the Lord’s pattern. This was around 1095 B.C. As their first king, the Lord chose a Benjamite named Saul. He was a very good, humble, young man when chosen by God. However, he gave in to personal weaknesses over time, and lost the favor of God (see 1 Samuel 15:23).

The Philistines had risen in power during the reign of Saul and he became afraid. He tried to pray for answers, but because of his disobedience, they were not answered. He went to the witch of Endor, and the spirit of Samuel told Saul he and his sons would die (see 1 Samuel 28). This chapter of Chronicles occurs somewhere around 1047 B.C. (according to the chronology of the Bible), after Saul had been told he would die. It begins as follows:

1 Now the Philistines fought against Israel; and the men of Israel fled from before the Philistines, and fell down slain in mount Gilboa.
2 And the Philistines followed hard after Saul, and after his sons; and the Philistines slew Jonathan, and Abinadab, and Malchi-shua, the sons of Saul.
3 And the battle went sore against Saul, and the archers hit him, and he was wounded of the archers.
4 Then said Saul to his armourbearer, Draw thy sword, and thrust me through therewith; lest these uncircumcised come and abuse me. But his armourbearer would not; for he was sore afraid. So Saul took a sword, and fell upon it.
5 And when his armourbearer saw that Saul was dead, he fell likewise on the sword, and died.
6 So Saul died, and his three sons, and all his house died together.
7 And when all the men of Israel that were in the valley saw that they fled, and that Saul and his sons were dead, then they forsook their cities, and fled: and the Philistines came and dwelt in them.

The Philistines went against Israel and fought them hard. The Israelite army retreated to mount Gilboa, but the Philistines pursued them and killed many, including the sons of Saul. The Philistines chased after Saul and he was shot by an arrow. Saul asked his servant to kill him, so that he would not be tortured by their enemies, but the servant refused to do it because he was afraid. Saul chose to do it himself (see also 1 Samuel 31). Once the servant saw it, he also killed himself. The men of the land where this happened, saw that Saul and his sons were dead, and they ran away, leaving their cities for the Philistines to take and live in them. (see also 2 Samuel 1:10 for another witness of Saul’s death)

8 And it came to pass on the morrow, when the Philistines came to strip the slain, that they found Saul and his sons fallen in mount Gilboa.
9 And when they had stripped him, they took his head, and his armour, and sent into the land of the Philistines round about, to carry tidings unto their idols, and to the people.
10 And they put his armour in the house of their gods, and fastened his head in the temple of Dagon.

The Philistines went to the dead to take what they could from them, and they found the bodies of Saul and his sons. They stripped Saul, took his head and armor, and sent word to their people. They displayed his armor in their temple (the house of Ashtaroth) and his head in the temple of Dagon. (see also 1 Samuel 31:8-10 – his body was displayed on the wall of Beth-shan).

11 And when all Jabesh-gilead heard all that the Philistines had done to Saul,
12 They arose, all the valiant men, and took away the body of Saul, and the bodies of his sons, and brought them to Jabesh, and buried their bones under the oak in Jabesh, and fasted seven days.

The men of Jabesh-gilead heard of the things that the Philistines had done to body of Saul. The valiant men went to the place where the bodies of Saul and his sons had been disrespected, and took their bodies to Jabesh where they buried them. Then they fasted for seven days, which was tradition according to the law of Moses. In the law, the Lord declared that any who touched the dead, were unclean for seven days. (see Numbers 19:11)

13 So Saul died for his transgression which he committed against the Lord, even against the word of the Lord, which he kept not, and also for asking counsel of one that had a familiar spirit, to inquire of it;
14 And inquired not of the Lord: therefore he slew him, and turned the kingdom unto David the son of Jesse.

The reason that the Lord allowed Saul to die in battle, was because he had transgressed and gone against the word of the Lord. He had knowingly turned to the forbidden choice of seeking after speaking with the dead, instead of turning to the Lord. In the law found in Leviticus 20:6, we read, “And the soul that turneth after such as have familiar spirits, and after wizards, to go a whoring after them, I will even set my face against that soul, and will cut him off from among his people.” As a result, Saul was not protected in battle and the kingdom was then given to David, the son of Jesse, whom the Lord had chosen to be his successor. This was fulfillment of the prophecy of Samuel to Saul which said, “But now thy kingdom shall not continue: the Lord hath sought him a man after his own heart, and the Lord hath commanded him to be captain over his people, because thou hast not kept that which the Lord commanded thee.” (see 1 Samuel 13:14)

I have been thinking about the description of the men in verse 12, which says they were valiant men. Which means men showing courage and determination. At first glance, it may seem to mean that these men had the courage necessary to enter the land of the Philistines, at the risk of their own lives, to gather the bodies of their royal family. This would indeed make them men worthy of the description of being valiant. However, I think it is possible that the recorder of this event felt something more about these men. As I said above, it was law that a person who touched the dead were considered unclean. It would seem that more often than not, those who could avoid even looking upon a dead body, would avoid it, so as to avoid all possibility of uncleanliness. Yet these men had such a respect for Saul and his sons (this does not mean they supported him or followed him, but that they respected that he was their leader who had been chosen for them by the Lord), that they were willing to make a personal sacrifice of cleanliness, in order to give them the honor they deserved and no longer be mistreated by their enemies. They were valiant men, because they honored the law of Moses in a time when many of their brethren were not faithful to the law. They made their choice knowing it would have personal consequences both physical and spiritual, but also knowing that their leaders deserved more in death then they had received. They were definitely valiant men of Israel.

1 Chronicles Chapter 8

Benjamin was the son of Jacob and his beloved wife Rachel. His mother died just after his birth. He was the brother of Joseph, and made a bargaining chip for Joseph before he revealed himself in Egypt. This chapter of Chronicles (which I have done my best to understand, but it may not be a perfect understanding) lists the sons of Benjamin and it begins with the following:

1 Now Benjamin begat Bela his firstborn, Ashbel the second, and Aharah the third,
2 Nohah the fourth, and Rapha the fifth.
3 And the sons of Bela were, Addar, and Gera, and Abihud,
4 And Abishua, and Naaman, and Ahoah,
5 And Gera, and Shephuphan, and Huram.
6 And these are the sons of Ehud: these are the heads of the fathers of the inhabitants of Geba, and they removed them to Manahath:
7 And Naaman, and Ahiah, and Gera, he removed them, and begat Uzza, and Ahihud.
8 And Shaharaim begat children in the country of Moab, after he had sent them away; Hushim and Baara were his wives.
9 And he begat of Hodesh his wife, Jobab, and Zibia, and Mesha, and Malcham,
10 And Jeuz, and Shachia, and Mirma. These were his sons, heads of the fathers.
11 And of Hushim he begat Abitub, and Elpaal.

Benjamin had five sons named Bela, Ashbel, Aharah, Nohah, and Rapha. His firstborn, Bela, was the father of Addar, Gera, Abihud, Abishua, Naaman, Ahoah, Gera, Shephuphan, and Huram. Bela’s sons were the sons of Ehud, who lived in Geba. In the Bible Dictionary, it says that Ehud was the son of Gera. Ehud was raised up by the Lord, to deliver Israel. They had been oppressed by Eglon, king of Moab, for 18 years. Ehud took a present to Eglon, but when left alone after he delivered it, he killed the king and then escaped. He went on to lead Israel to subdue Moab and have peace for 80 years. (see Judges 3-4) The sons of Ehud were relocated to Manahath. Naaman, Ahiah, and Gera were removed, and he became the father of Uzza and Ahihud. After they were sent away, Shaharaim had children in Moab. He was married to Hushim and Baara. Shaharaim was the father of Jobab, Zibia, Mesha, Malcham, Jeuz, Shachia, and Mirma, by his wife Hodesh. By his wife Hushim, he was the father of Abitub and Elpaal.

12 The sons of Elpaal; Eber, and Misham, and Shamed, who built Ono, and Lod, with the towns thereof:
13 Beriah also, and Shema, who were heads of the fathers of the inhabitants of Aijalon, who drove away the inhabitants of Gath:
14 And Ahio, Shashak, and Jeremoth,
15 And Zebadiah, and Arad, and Ader,
16 And Michael, and Ispah, and Joha, the sons of Beriah;
17 And Zebadiah, and Meshullam, and Hezeki, and Heber,
18 Ishmerai also, and Jezliah, and Jobab, the sons of Elpaal;
19 And Jakim, and Zichri, and Zabdi,
20 And Elienai, and Zilthai, and Eliel,
21 And Adaiah, and Beraiah, and Shimrath, the sons of Shimhi;
22 And Ishpan, and Heber, and Eliel,
23 And Abdon, and Zichri, and Hanan,
24 And Hananiah, and Elam, and Antothijah,
25 And Iphedeiah, and Penuel, the sons of Shashak;
26 And Shamsherai, and Shehariah, and Athaliah,
27 And Jaresiah, and Eliah, and Zichri, the sons of Jeroham.
28 These were heads of the fathers, by their generations, chief men. These dwelt in Jerusalem.

Elpaal was the patriarch of Eber, Misham, Shamed (builder of Ono and Lod), Beriah and Shema (fathers of the people who lived in Aijalon, who drove away the people of Gath); Ahio, Shashak, Jeremoth, Zebadiah, Arad, Ader, Michael, Ispah, and Jona (sons of Beriah); Zebadiah, Meshullam, Hezeki, Heber, Ishmerai, Jezliah, and Jobab (sons of Elpaal); Jakim, Zichri, Zabdi, Elienai, Zilthai, Eliel, Adaiah, Beraiah, and Shimrath (sons of Shimhi); Ishpan, Heber, Eliel, Abdon, Zichri, Hanan, Hananiah, Elam, Antothijah, Iphedeiah, and Penuel (sons of Shashak); and Shamsherai, Shehariah, Athaliah, Jaresiah, Eliah, and Zichri (sons of Jeroham). These men were the chiefs of the tribe of Benjamin, and they lived in Jerusalem.

29 And at Gibeon dwelt the father of Gibeon; whose wife’s name was Maachah:
30 And his firstborn son Abdon, and Zur, and Kish, and Baal, and Nadab,
31 And Gedor, and Ahio, and Zacher.
32 And Mikloth begat Shimeah. And these also dwelt with their brethren in Jerusalem, over against them.

The father of Gibeon, who lived there, was married to Maachah. He was the father of Abdon, Zur, Kish, Baal, Nadab, Gedor, Ahio, and Zacher. Mikloth was the father of Shimeah, and they lived in Jerusalem with their family.

33 And Ner begat Kish, and Kish begat Saul, and Saul begat Jonathan, and Malchi-shua, and Abinadab, and Esh-baal.
34 And the son of Jonathan was Merib-baal; and Merib-baal begat Micah.
35 And the sons of Micah were, Pithon, and Melech, and Tarea, and Ahaz.
36 And Ahaz begat Jehoadah; and Jehoadah begat Alemeth, and Azmaveth, and Zimri; and Zimri begat Moza,
37 And Moza begat Binea: Rapha was his son, Eleasah his son, Azel his son:
38 And Azel had six sons, whose names are these, Azrikam, Bocheru, and Ishmael, and Sheariah, and Obadiah, and Hanan. All these were the sons of Azel.
39 And the sons of Eshek his brother were, Ulam his firstborn, Jehush the second, and Eliphelet the third.
40 And the sons of Ulam were mighty men of valour, archers, and had many sons, and sons’ sons, an hundred and fifty. All these are of the sons of Benjamin.

Ner was the father of Kish, who was the father of Saul. (In 1 Samuel 9:1, we learn that Kish was the son of Abiel, who was the son of Zeror, who was the son of Bechorath, who was the son of Aphiah. Then in chapter 14, it says that Ner was the uncle of Saul, not the grandfather. This would make Ner the son of Abiel as well.) Saul was the first king of Israel, who was eventually rejected by the Lord for disobedience to counsel and was succeeded by David. Saul was the father of Jonathan, Malchishua, Abinadab, and Esh-baal. (In 1 Samuel 14:49, it says that Saul was the father of Jonathan, Ishui, and Melchi-shua.) Jonathan was the beloved friend of David. (see 1 Samuel 18:1) Jonathan was the father of Merib-baal (Mephibosheth), who was the father of Micah. Merib-baal was the surviving son after the death of Jonathan and his father Saul. (see 2 Samuel 4) Micah was the father of Pithon, Melech, Tarea, and Ahaz. Ahaz was the father of Jehoadah, who was the father of Alemeth, Azmaveth, and Zimri. Zimri was the father of Moza, who was the father of Binea. Binea was the patriarch of Rapha, Eleasah, and Azel. Azel was the father of Azrikam, Bocheru, Ishmael, Sheariah, Obadiah, and Hanan. Eshek, the brother of Azel, was the father of Ulam, Jehush, and Eliphelet. Ulam was the father of mighty men of valor. His sons and their sons totaled 150, and they were archers.

There were not a lot of men from Benjamin who were mentioned in the scriptures other than being named on this list, but the few of note were significant in the history of the children of Israel. Ehud, Saul and Jonathan were all men of valor, who led the people in battles and served to deliver Israel from their enemies. While, Saul’s personal ambitions and weaknesses led him down a path of self-destruction, he did lead for years as the Lord had intended him to do. It shows again, that leadership, strength, and courage came from more than just one tribe in Israel. The Lord continues to raise people from different families, groups, and nations to lead his people today. He is no respecter of persons, but looks within for those who have faith and courage to follow Him.

1 Chronicles Chapter 5

A Family Tree

A genealogy record of the children of Israel is given in this chapter of Chronicles. A record of the sons of Judah and Simeon were recorded already, and this chapter will list some of the line of Reuben. (Note: The wording of these genealogies is not always easily understood, but this is what I gather from these verses.) It begins as follows:

1 Now the sons of Reuben the firstborn of Israel, (for he was the firstborn; but, forasmuch as he defiled his father’s bed, his birthright was given unto the sons of Joseph the son of Israel: and the genealogy is not to be reckoned after the birthright.
2 For Judah prevailed above his brethren, and of him came the chief ruler; but the birthright was Joseph’s:)
3 The sons, I say, of Reuben the firstborn of Israel were, Hanoch, and Pallu, Hezron, and Carmi.
4 The sons of Joel; Shemaiah his son, Gog his son, Shimei his son,
5 Micah his son, Reaia his son, Baal his son,
6 Beerah his son, whom Tilgath-pilneser king of Assyria carried away captive: he was prince of the Reubenites.
7 And his brethren by their families, when the genealogy of their generations was reckoned, were the chief, Jeiel, and Zechariah,
8 And Bela the son of Azaz, the son of Shema, the son of Joel, who dwelt in Aroer, even unto Nebo and Baal-meon:
9 And eastward he inhabited unto the entering in of the wilderness from the river Euphrates: because their cattle were multiplied in the land of Gilead.
10 And in the days of Saul they made war with the Hagarites, who fell by their hand: and they dwelt in their tents throughout all the east land of Gilead.

Reuben was the firstborn son of Israel (Jacob), by his first wife Leah, but his birthright was taken from him when he slept with his father’s concubine, Bilhah. The birthright, which as the firstborn was a double-portion, was given to the two sons of Joseph, Ephraim and Manasseh. Joseph was the firstborn of Jacob’s second wife. The genealogy is not continued with the birthright, because the tribe of Judah became the chief tribe. It is the tribe of the King of Kings, even Jesus the Christ. The sons of Reuben were Hanoch, Pallu, Hezron and Carmi. The sons of Joel were Shemaiah, Gog, Shimei, Micah, Reaia, Baal, and Beerah. Beerah, prince or leader of the Reubenites, was carried away captive by Tilgath-pilneser of Assyria. The genealogy continued with the leader, Jeilel, Zechariah, and Bela, the son of Azaz, who was the son of Shema, who was the son of Joel of Aroer. At the time of the rule of Saul, the Reubenites made war with the Hagarites, who were defeated. They lived in the eastern part of the land of Gilead, which was apart from the majority of the land belonging to the tribes of Israel and separated by the Jordan.

11 And the children of Gad dwelt over against them, in the land of Bashan unto Salchah:
12 Joel the chief, and Shapham the next, and Jaanai, and Shaphat in Bashan.
13 And their brethren of the house of their fathers were, Michael, and Meshullam, and Sheba, and Jorai, and Jachan, and Zia, and Heber, seven.
14 These are the children of Abihail the son of Huri, the son of Jaroah, the son of Gilead, the son of Michael, the son of Jeshishai, the son of Jahdo, the son of Buz;
15 Ahi the son of Abdiel, the son of Guni, chief of the house of their fathers.
16 And they dwelt in Gilead in Bashan, and in her towns, and in all the suburbs of Sharon, upon their borders.
17 All these were reckoned by genealogies in the days of Jotham king of Judah, and in the days of Jeroboam king of Israel.

The descendants of Gad lived near them, in he land of Bashan. Their leader were Joel, Shapham, Jaanai, and Shapha in Bashan. Their seven brothers were Michael, Meshullam, Sheba, Jorai, Jachan, Zia, and Heber. Abihail, son of Huri, was the patriarch of the son of Jaroah, the son of Gilead, the son of Michael, the son of Jehishai, the son of Jahdo, the son of Buz, Ahi the son of Abdiel, and the son of Guni who was the leader of their family. These people lived in Gilead. They were counted in the days of Jotham of Judah and Jeroboam of Israel.

18 The sons of Reuben, and the Gadites, and half the tribe of Manasseh, of valiant men, men able to bear buckler and sword, and to shoot with bow, and skilful in war, were four and forty thousand seven hundred and threescore, that went out to the war.
19 And they made war with the Hagarites, with Jetur, and Nephish, and Nodab.
20 And they were helped against them, and the Hagarites were delivered into their hand, and all that were with them: for they cried to God in the battle, and he was entreated of them; because they put their trust in him.
21 And they took away their cattle; of their camels fifty thousand, and of sheep two hundred and fifty thousand, and of asses two thousand, and of men an hundred thousand.
22 For there fell down many slain, because the war was of God. And they dwelt in their steads until the captivity.

A war was made with the Hagarites, Jetur, Nephish and Nodab. 44,760 valiant and able fighters from the tribes of Reuben, Gad, and half the tribe of Manasseh, gathered together to fight this war. They cried to God and were helped for putting their trust in Him. The Hagarites were delivered into their hands. They also took their cattle, 50,000 camels, 250,000 sheep, 2,000 donkeys and 100,000 men. Many of their enemy died because God fought for them. They lived in their homes, until captivity.

23 And the children of the half tribe of Manasseh dwelt in the land: they increased from Bashan unto Baal-hermon and Senir, and unto mount Hermon.
24 And these were the heads of the house of their fathers, even Epher, and Ishi, and Eliel, and Azriel, and Jeremiah, and Hodaviah, and Jahdiel, mighty men of valour, famous men, and heads of the house of their fathers.

The children of the half tribe of Manasseh lived in the land and increased in number. Their leaders were Epher, Ishi, Eliel, Azriel, Jeremiah, Hodaviah, and Jahdiel. There were famous and mighty men.

25 And they transgressed against the God of their fathers, and went a whoring after the gods of the people of the land, whom God destroyed before them.
26 And the God of Israel stirred up the spirit of Pul king of Assyria, and the spirit of Tilgath-pilneser king of Assyria, and he carried them away, even the Reubenites, and the Gadites, and the half tribe of Manasseh, and brought them unto Halah, and Habor, and Hara, and to the river Gozan, unto this day.

Eventually, the Reubenites, Gadites and half of Massaeh, transgressed against God. They turned to idolatry, as did so many of the children of Israel. The spirit of Pul, king of Assyria, was stirred up against these tribes, and he carried them away captive to Assyria, to Halah, Habor, Hara, and the river Gozan.

It is important that every tribe of the children of Israel recorded a genealogy of their family, however the reason why there is little in this record of the Reubenites, is because the tribe of Judah became the leaders of the land. King David was from Bethlehem and his kingdom was established in Jerusalem. A king reigned in Judah until the time of capture when Zedekiah reigned. Most ancient records that we have of genealogy, contain records of kings and leaders. As for the tribe of Reuben, I think that this chapter includes those who were leaders of the tribe as well. Not much can be learned of these individuals of the children of Reuben, from the Bible, but this chapter teaches me the importance of keeping these records for all people, even if all we have is a name. A single name can connect us to the generations of the past, all the way back to Adam and Eve. I may not become anything great in the grand picture of mankind, but I hope that my name is at least known to my family in the generations to come.

1 Chronicles Chapter 3

A Family Tree

A genealogy of a portion of the Israelites was recorded in the book of Chronicles. The first two chapters of 1 Chronicles, covered the family from Adam down to David, King of Israel. This chapter covers the family from the sons of David through the kings being taken captive to Babylon and when they were allowed to return. Mainly it is a record of the kings of the people of Judah. The genealogy continues with the following:

1 Now these were the sons of David, which were born unto him in Hebron; the firstborn Amnon, of Ahinoam the Jezreelitess; the second Daniel, of Abigail the Carmelitess:
2 The third, Absalom the son of Maachah the daughter of Talmai king of Geshur: the fourth, Adonijah the son of Haggith:
3 The fifth, Shephatiah of Abital: the sixth, Ithream by Eglah his wife.
4 These six were born unto him in Hebron; and there he reigned seven years and six months: and in Jerusalem he reigned thirty and three years.
5 And these were born unto him in Jerusalem; Shimea, and Shobab, and Nathan, and Solomon, four, of Bath-shua the daughter of Ammiel:
6 Ibhar also, and Elishama, and Eliphelet,
7 And Nogah, and Nepheg, and Japhia,
8 And Elishama, and Eliada, and Eliphelet, nine.
9 These were all the sons of David, beside the sons of the concubines, and Tamar their sister.

David had several sons. When King David began his reign in Judah, he lived in Hebron. While there he became the father to six sons beginning with Amnon, whose mother was the Jezreelite wife of David, named Ahinoam. Amnon was killed by the servants of his brother, because he took advantage of his sister (see 2 Samuel 13). The next sons were Daniel (Chileab), whose mother was a Carmelite named Abigail (the wife of Nabal, who was an evil man that did wrong to David and was slain by the Lord); and Absalom, whose mother was Maachah, daughter of the king of Geshur, Talmai. Absalom was the son who conspired against David and took over his kingdom in Israel. (See 2 Samuel 15) He was eventually killed for this. (See 2 Samuel 18)

The next son of David was Adonijah, whose mother was Haggith. He had tried to take the kingdom for himself, before David had announced his successor, but failed. When his brother, Solomon, became king, he tried to gain from it because he would have been next in line for the throne. He used Bathsheba (see below) to ask to be given one of David’s wives. Solomon saw through his tricks and Adonijah was put to death for his attempts. (See 1 Kings 1 and 2)

David’s next son was Shephatiah, whose mother was Abita, and then Ithream, whose mother was the wife of David, Eglah. After David had reigned for seven and a half years in Hebron, he began to rule in Jerusalem. While there, he became the father to four sons, including Shimea (Shammua), Shobab, Nathan (the ancestor of Joseph, as in Mary and Joseph), and Solomon, whose mother was Bath-shua (Bathsheba), the daughter of Ammiel (Eliam) and wife of Uriah (Urias) Solomon was a righteous leader and was blessed with great wisdom and understanding. He was also given the duty to build the temple in Jerusalem. (see 2 Samuel 11:3, 1 Kings 3, 6, and Matthew 1:6). David also fathered nine other sons named Ibhar, Elishama (Elishua), Eliphelet (Elpalet), Nogah, Nepheg, Japhia, Elishama, Eliada (Beeliada), and Eliphelet. There were other sons born by his concubines and he had a daughter, named Tamar. Tamar was the sister of Absalom, who was taken advantage of and shamed by Amnon (see above). (See also 1 Samuel 25, 2 Samuel 3, 5, and 1 Chronicles 14)

10 And Solomon’s son was Rehoboam, Abia his son, Asa his son, Jehoshaphat his son,
11 Joram his son, Ahaziah his son, Joash his son,
12 Amaziah his son, Azariah his son, Jotham his son,
13 Ahaz his son, Hezekiah his son, Manasseh his son,
14 Amon his son, Josiah his son.
15 And the sons of Josiah were, the firstborn Johanan, the second Jehoiakim, the third Zedekiah, the fourth Shallum.
16 And the sons of Jehoiakim: Jeconiah his son, Zedekiah his son.

Solomon, the son of David and Bathsheba, and successor of the kingdom, had hundreds of wives and concubines in his life. He specifically was the father of Rehoboam (Roboam), whose mother was Naamah. Rehoboam was king of Israel, when ten of the tribes of Israel revolted and the kingdom was divided. Rehoboam was then the king of Judah. Rehoboam was the father of Abia (along with 27 other sons and 60 daughters), and Abia was the father of Asa. Asa, son of Maachah, was the third king of Judah, and he reigned in righteousness. Asa was the father of Jehoshaphat (Josaphat). Jehoshaphat also ruled in righteousness.

Jehosphat was the father of Joram (Jehoram). Joram married the daughter of Ahab, king of Israel, which led him to ruling in wickedness. He was cursed for his wicked leadership. He was the father of Ahaziah (also called Azariah and Jehoahaz). Ahaziah was the son of Athaliah, the daughter of Omri, king of Israel. Ahaziah ruled in wickedness. He made league with Joram, king of Israel, and because of it he was killed by Jehu, a man who conspired against the king of Isreal. His mother, Athaliah, destroyed all the royal seed, except for Joash, who was hidden until he was seven years old. Joash, the only remaining son of Ahaziah, and son of Zibiah of Beer-sheba, became the king at seven. He ruled in righteousness, doing things like repairing the temple. His servants conspired against him and killed him.

Joash was the father of Amaziah, son of Jehoaddan of Jerusalem. Amaziah became king when he was twenty-five. He ruled in righteousness for 29 years. He destroyed those who went against his father. Later he was overcome by the king of Israel. His people conspired against him, he fled and was killed. Amaziah was the father of Azariah (Uzziah, also called Ozias, according to the Bible Dictionary), son of Jecholiah of Jerusalem. The people made him the king when he was sixteen. In his 52-year reign, he ruled in righteousness and prospered. However, pride led him to transgress in the temple and he was cursed to become a leper. Then his son, Jotham (Joatham), took over the reign of king. (Side note: Isaiah, Amos, and Hosea lived at the time of Uzziah, as well as his posterity through Hezekiah) Jotham was the son of Jerusha, the daughter of Zadok. He ruled in righteousness. (Side note: Michah lived at the time of Jotham, as well as his posterity through Hezekiah)

Jotham was the father of Ahaz (Achaz). Ahaz did not rule in righteousness, but did great wickedness such as sacrificing his own son to heathen gods. He defiled the temple of the Lord. Ahaz was the father of Hezekiah (Ezekias), son of Abi, the daughter of Zachariah. He ruled in righteousness, to the point of removing all the high places where idolatry was practiced. He was known for trusting in the Lord, keeping the commandments, and helping Judah to be free from serving other nations for several years. Moreover, the people of Judah trusted King Hezekiah. He sought the word of the Lord from the prophet, Isaiah. When Hezekiah prayed for help in the temple, the Lord blessed him with a promise that his enemy would not attack Jerusalem. Hezekiah was also blessed to live when he was deathly ill. Hezekiah was the father of Manasseh (Manasses), son of Hephzi-bah. He ruled in wickedness and undid the work of his father to remove idolatry from the land. He sacrificed his own sons to heathen gods and defiled the House of the Lord. He was among the most wicked leaders of the people of Judah, if not the worst, and caused that a great curse was placed upon his people, which would bring their destruction.

The son of Manasseh was Amon, who was the son of Meshullemeth, the daughter of Haruz of Jotbah. He followed after his father and ruled in wickedness until his servants conspired against him and killed him. His son, Josiah (Josias), was made king by the people. He was the son of Jedidah, the daughter of Adaiah of Boscath. He ruled in righteousness and studied the law of Moses. He was promised to live in peace, but the curse of Manasseh would remain. He read the law to the people and made covenants with the Lord. He destroyed all things related to idolatry and reinstituted the passover. He was killed by the king of Egypt. He was the father of Johanan (possibly Jehoahaz), Jehoiakim (Eliakim), Zedekiah (Mattaniah), and Shallum. Jehoahaz was made king when Josiah died. Jehoahaz was the son of Hamutal, the daughter of Jeremiah of Libnah. He was wicked and only ruled for 3 months, when the king of Egypt captured him and caused Jerusalem to pay tribute. Jehoahaz died in captivity. Pharaoh made Jehoiakim the next king in Jerusalem. Jehoiakim was the son of Zebudah, the daughter of Pedaiah of Rumah. He did not rule in righteousness. He became a servant to Babylon, rebelled against them after three years of being in bondage to them. Several nations came against him, as fulfillment of the curse against them. He killed prophets, such as Urijah, who spoke against Jerusalem. It was prophesied that Babylon would come against him and that his seed would not rule in Jerusalem. He was carried away captive by Nebuchadnezzar. (Side note: Jehoiakim lived at the time of the prophet Jeremiah.)

Jehoiakim was the father of Jeconiah (Jehoiachin, Coniah, Joachin, Jechonias) and Zedekiah. Jeconiah was the son of Nehushta, the daughter of Elnathan of Jerusalem. He ruled in Judah and was an evil king (though he was mentioned as being 8 when he became king), who was taken captive to Babylon by Nebuchadnezzar. (37 years after his captivity, he was raised as a king in Babylon) When he was taken captive, his uncle (according to 2 Kings 24, or brother, acccording to 2 Chronicles 36), Zedekiah, was made king by Nebuchadnezzar. His mother was Hamutal, the daughter of Jeremiah of Libnah. Zedekiah was the last king of Judah and he did not rule in righteousness. (Side note: Zedekiah lived at the time of Jeremiah. He was the king, when Lehi and his family left Jerusalem.) He rebelled against Babylon. Jerusalem was besieged and eventually Zedekiah was taken captive to Babylon. (See also 1 Kings 11, 12, 14, 15, 22, 2 Kings 8, 9, 11, 12, 14, 15, 16, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 2 Chronicles 21, 22, 24, 26, 27, 28, Jeremiah 22, 26, 36, and Matthew 1)

17 And the sons of Jeconiah; Assir, Salathiel his son,
18 Malchiram also, and Pedaiah, and Shenazar, Jecamiah, Hoshama, and Nedabiah.
19 And the sons of Pedaiah were, Zerubbabel, and Shimei: and the sons of Zerubbabel; Meshullam, and Hananiah, and Shelomith their sister:
20 And Hashubah, and Ohel, and Berechiah, and Hasadiah, Jushab-hesed, five.
21 And the sons of Hananiah; Pelatiah, and Jesaiah: the sons of Rephaiah, the sons of Arnan, the sons of Obadiah, the sons of Shechaniah.
22 And the sons of Shechaniah; Shemaiah: and the sons of Shemaiah; Hattush, and Igeal, and Bariah, and Neariah, and Shaphat, six.
23 And the sons of Neariah; Elioenai, and Hezekiah, and Azrikam, three.
24 And the sons of Elioenai were, Hodaiah, and Eliashib, and Pelaiah, and Akkub, and Johanan, and Dalaiah, and Anani, seven.

Jeconiah, the captive king of Judah, was the father of Assir, Salathiel, Malchiram, Pedaiah, Shenazar, Jecamiah, Hoshama, and Nedabiah. Pedaiah was the father of Zerubbabel (Zorobabel or Sheshbazzar) and Shimei. In the footnote to verse 19, it reads, “According to these verses, Zerubbabel was the grandson of Jeconiah through Pedaiah; elsewhere he is called the son of Shealtiel.” (Salathiel) (See Ezra 3:2, Ezra 5:2, Haggai 1:1, and Matthew 1:12) Zerubbabel was the appointed leader (governor) when Cyrus allowed the people of Judah to return. In his leadership, he did things such as rebuild the temple.

Zerubbabel was the father of Meshullam, Hananiah, and a daughter named Shelomith. He was also the father of five sons named Hashubah, Ohel, Berechiah, Hasadiah, and Jushab-hesed. Hananiah, son of Zerubbabel, was the father of Pelatiah and Jesaiah. He was also the patriarch of the sons of Rephaiah, the sons of Arnan, the sons of Obadiah, and the sons of Shechaniah. Shechaniah was the father of six sons named Shemaiah (who helped Nehemiah to build east gate of Jeruselem), Hattush, Igeal, Bariah, Neariah, and Shaphat. Neariah was the father of three sons named Elioenai, Hezekiah and Azrikam. Elioenai was the father of seven sons named Hodaiah, Eliashib, Pelaiah, Akkub, Johanan, Dalaiah, and Anani.

At least one record of my own family is recorded to include, “Salomao de Israel” (Solomon), “Roboao de Juda” (Rehoboam), “Abias de Juda” (Abia), “Asa de Juda”, “Jeosafa de Juda” (Jehoshaphat), “Jorao de Juda” (Joram), “Ocozias de Juda” (Ahaziah), “Joas de Juda” (Joash), “Amasias Rei de Juda” (Amaziah), “Uzias de Juda” (Azariah), “Jotao Rei de Juda” (Jotham), “Acaz Rei de Juda” (Ahaz), “Ezequias Rei de Juda” (Hezekiah), “Manassah 14th king of Judah” (Manasseh), Amon, “Josiah o Jose Rey de Judah” (Josiah), “Jehoikin Eliaquim o Joaqim” (Jehoiakim), “Joaquín de Judá o Jeconíah primer Exilarca en Babilonia” (Jeconiah), “King Shealtiel” (Salathiel), “(Pedaiah) ben Neri” (Pedaiah), and then to “Esli Zerubbabel” (Zerubbabel). My line returns to Jerusalem with “Naum Abiud ben Zerubbabel Ha David” (Abuid as in Matthew 1:13), “Amos Eliakim … ben Abiud” (Eliakim), and here is where I no longer have my line following that in the scriptures. It instead continues on in Jerusalem through the time of Christ, until it eventually breaks off to my ancestors from Wales in about 85 AD, when the Romans began to rule there. This, of course, makes a study of the individuals in this chapter seem more interesting and personal to me.

I am grateful for the records of genealogy included in the scriptures. I know that they have purpose and are of great value. Many of these men will be brought up again as my study of the Old Testament continues, and I am glad to have taken this time to make connections in my own personal understanding, so that the stories of their lives can have a place in my heart.

1 Chronicles Chapter 1

A Family Tree

The books of Chronicles are a record of the history from the creation of man to the time when the Jews were allowed to return to the promised land. Much of what is included is another record of things that had already been included in the earlier books of the Old Testament. In that way, they are a second witness of the events recorded. This first chapter follows the pattern of records of ancient times, in that the people often began records with a genealogy of the families. One may wonder why this is. There is no given answer for this, so far as I can tell, but it is a testimony to the importance of maintaining a record of our own genealogies. Personally, I believe that these records are a part of the work of the Lord. With these records, people today can connect themselves directly to our first parents, Adam and Eve, and therefore to all who have ever lived on this earth. This is a wonder and a blessing to all mankind.

The list found in this chapter, really is simply a list of names broken into families. It does not contain all the children of the earth, and only contains the sons born. With that, only some sons are listed here, which shows that not all records were passed down in the same way. The names listed were possibly those who had lineage to those keeping the records generations later. There are likely other records that have been made, which record different genealogies leading back to father Adam.

1 Adam, Sheth, Enosh,
2 Kenan, Mahalaleel, Jered,
3 Henoch, Methuselah, Lamech,
4 Noah, Shem, Ham, and Japheth.

This book begins with Adam, who was the first man on earth and the father of all men, but in his lifetime, he was the father of Sheth (Seth*), who is recorded here. Sheth was the father of Enosh (Enos) and Enosh was the father of Kenan (Cainan). Both Seth and Enos were good men who followed after Adam, were ordained to the priesthood, and taught the people during difficult times of evil and war. Kenan, which the land of Canaan was named after, was the father of Mahalaleel, Mahalaleel (Maleleel) was the father of Jered (Jared) and Jered was the father of Henoch (Enoch). Jered had been a good father to Henoch and taught him “all the ways of God”. This lead Henoch to becoming a good ruler, who taught his people and led them to righteousness and the reward of his city being lifted up and translated by God. Henoch was the father of Methuselah (Mathusala) and Methusaleh, who was left when the city was taken to fulfill prophecy, was the father of Lamech. Lamech was the father of Noah (Noe). Noah was called to be a prophet to the people of the world, who were living in wickedness, to call them to repentance and warn them of the coming destruction. Noah was the father of Shem (Sem), Ham, and Japheth. Noah and his sons were called the sons of God, because they lived according to the word of God. They, along with their father, were delivered from the flood. (See also Genesis 5, Luke 3, Hebrews 11:5, Doctrine and Covenants 107, and Moses 6) These are the patriarchs known from before the flood, and the line directly to Adam for all who have been born since the flood.

5 The sons of Japheth; Gomer, and Magog, and Madai, and Javan, and Tubal, and Meshech, and Tiras.
6 And the sons of Gomer; Ashchenaz, and Riphath, and Togarmah.
7 And the sons of Javan; Elishah, and Tarshish, Kittim, and Dodanim.

Each of the three sons of Noah are listed with their sons. Japheth, who was actually the oldest of the three sons, was the father of Gomer, Magog, Madai, Javan, Tubal, Meshech, and Tiras. Gomer was then the father of Ashchenaz (Ashkenaz), Riphath, and Togarmah, While Javan was the father of what is believed to be the greek nations. His sons were Elishah, Tarshish, Kittim, and Dodanim. (See also Genesis 10) These are the patriarchs of the gentile nations (modern day Europe and Asia).

8 The sons of Ham; Cush, and Mizraim, Put, and Canaan.
9 And the sons of Cush; Seba, and Havilah, and Sabta, and Raamah, and Sabtecha. And the sons of Raamah; Sheba, and Dedan.
10 And Cush begat Nimrod: he began to be mighty upon the earth.
11 And Mizraim begat Ludim, and Anamim, and Lehabim, and Naphtuhim,
12 And Pathrusim, and Casluhim, (of whom came the Philistines,) and Caphthorim.
13 And Canaan begat Zidon his firstborn, and Heth,
14 The Jebusite also, and the Amorite, and the Girgashite,
15 And the Hivite, and the Arkite, and the Sinite,
16 And the Arvadite, and the Zemarite, and the Hamathite.

The second son of Noah was Ham. After the flood, he was cursed for disrespecting his father. His descendants were those of the southern nations, such as Africa, specifically Egypt, and the orginal inhabitants of Canaan. He was the father of Cush, Mizraim, Put (Phut), and Canaan. The sons of Cush who lived in upper Egypt, were Seba, Havialh, Sabta (Sabtah), Raamah, and Sabtecha. The sons of Raamah were Sheba and Dedan. Cush was also the father of Nimrod, who was a mighty hunter and the ruler and builder many cities, such as Babel and Nineveh. Ham’s son Mizraim was the father of lower Egypt. His sons were Ludim, Anamim, Lehabim, Naphtuhim, Pathrusim, Casluhim (father of the Philistine nation), and Caphthorim. The last son of Ham, Canaan, was the father of Zidon (Sidon), Heth (father of the Hittites), the Jebusite (ancient Jerusalem), Amorite, Girgashite (Girgasite), Hivite, Arkite, Sinite, Arvadite, Zemarite, and Hamathite. The children of Canaan were known as the Canaanites. (See also Genesis 10)

17 The sons of Shem; Elam, and Asshur, and Arphaxad, and Lud, and Aram, and Uz, and Hul, and Gether, and Meshech.
18 And Arphaxad begat Shelah, and Shelah begat Eber.
19 And unto Eber were born two sons: the name of the one was Peleg; because in his days the earth was divided: and his brother’s name was Joktan.
20 And Joktan begat Almodad, and Sheleph, and Hazarmaveth, and Jerah,
21 Hadoram also, and Uzal, and Diklah,
22 And Ebal, and Abimael, and Sheba,
23 And Ophir, and Havilah, and Jobab. All these were the sons of Joktan.

Shem, the final son of Noah listed here, is believed to be the father of the semetic races, which included the Hebrews, Syrians, Babylonians and Assyrians. He was the great high priest“, and was the father of Elam, Asshur, Arphaxad, Lud, and Aram (father of the Syrians, possibly). Then, Uz, Hul, Gether, and Meshech (Mash), which may have been the children of Aram according to Genesis 10. Shem’s third son, Arphaxad, was the father of Shelah (Salah/Sala), who was the father of Eber (Heber). (In Luke 3, it says that Sala was the son of Cainan, who was the son of Arphaxad.) Eber’s line were known as the children of Eber and among that line were the Hebrews. This line started with his sons, Peleg (Phalec) and Joktan. Peleg was called such, because he lived at the time when the continents were divided. Joktan was the father of Almodad, Sheleph, Hazarmaveth, Jerah, Hadoram, Uzal, Diklah, Ebal (Obal), Abimael, Sheba, Ophir, Havilah, and Jobab. The children of Joktan were from the south of Arabia. (See also Genesis 10, Genesis 11, and Luke 3)

24 Shem, Arphaxad, Shelah,
25 Eber, Peleg, Reu,
26 Serug, Nahor, Terah,
27 Abram; the same is Abraham.
28 The sons of Abraham; Isaac, and Ishmael.

Peleg, great-great grandson of Shem, was the father Reu (Ragau). Reu was the father of Serug (Saruch), Serug was the father of Nahor (Nachor), Nahor was the father of Terah, and Terah (Thara) was the father of Abram, who became known as Abraham. He was regarded as the father of the covenant people of God. Abraham was the father of Isaac (the child of promise) and Ishmael. (see also Genesis 11, Genesis 16, Genesis 21, and Luke 3)

29 These are their generations: The firstborn of Ishmael, Nebaioth; then Kedar, and Adbeel, and Mibsam,
30 Mishma, and Dumah, Massa, Hadad, and Tema,
31 Jetur, Naphish, and Kedemah. These are the sons of Ishmael.

Ishmael, who was Abraham’s firstborn, but not of Abraham’s first wife, was the father of the Ishmaelites, who were nomadic. Ishmael was the father of Nebaioth (Nebajoth), Kedar, Adbeel, Mibsam, Mishma, Dumah, Massa, Hadad (Hadar), Tema, Jetur, Naphish, and Kedemah. These sons became princes of 12 nations. (see also Genesis 25)

32 Now the sons of Keturah, Abraham’s concubine: she bare Zimran, and Jokshan, and Medan, and Midian, and Ishbak, and Shuah. And the sons of Jokshan; Sheba, and Dedan.
33 And the sons of Midian; Ephah, and Epher, and Henoch, and Abida, and Eldaah. All these are the sons of Keturah.
34 And Abraham begat Isaac. The sons of Isaac; Esau and Israel.

Abraham’s first wife died and he later married again. His other sons were Zimran, Jokshan, Medan, Midian, Ishbak, and Shuah. Abraham’s son, Jokshan, was the father of Sheba and Dedan. Another of his sons, Midian, was the father of Ephah, Epher, Henoch (Hanoch), Abida, and Eldaah. Abraham’s son Isaac, was the father of twins named Esau and Israel, who was actually given the name of Jacob at birth. Israel became the father of the Israelite nation. (see also Genesis 25)

35 The sons of Esau; Eliphaz, Reuel, and Jeush, and Jaalam, and Korah.
36 The sons of Eliphaz; Teman, and Omar, Zephi, and Gatam, Kenaz, and Timna, and Amalek.
37 The sons of Reuel; Nahath, Zerah, Shammah, and Mizzah.
38 And the sons of Seir; Lotan, and Shobal, and Zibeon, and Anah, and Dishon, and Ezer, and Dishan.
39 And the sons of Lotan; Hori, and Homam: and Timna was Lotan’s sister.
40 The sons of Shobal; Alian, and Manahath, and Ebal, Shephi, and Onam. And the sons of Zibeon; Aiah, and Anah.
41 The sons of Anah; Dishon. And the sons of Dishon; Amram, and Eshban, and Ithran, and Cheran.
42 The sons of Ezer; Bilhan, and Zavan, and Jakan. The sons of Dishan; Uz, and Aran.

Abraham’s older son, Esau (known also as Edom, for asking food of Jacob and then selling his birthright for that food), was the father of the Edomites located in Mount Seir. His sons were Eliphaz, Reuel, Jeush, Jaalam, and Korah. Jeush, Jaalam and Korah became chiefs. Eliphaz was the father of Teman, Omar, Zephi (Zepho), Gatam, Kenaz, (Timna is listed here, but this was the name for the concubine of Eliphaz) and Amalek. Teman, Omar, Zephi, Kenaz, Gatam and Amalek became chiefs. Reuel, son of Esau, was the father of Nahath, Zerah, Shammah, and Mizzah. All four became chiefs in the land of Edom.

Seir, who was a Horite living in the land of Edom, was the father of Lotan, Shobal, Zibeon, Anah, Dishon, Ezer, and Dishan. The were all chiefs of the children of Seir. Timna was the sister of Lotan. Lotan was the father of Hori, and Homam (Hemam). Shobal was the father of Alian (Alvan), Manahath, Ebal, Shephi (Shepho), and Onam. Zibeon was the father of Aiah (Ajah) and Anah. Anah, son of Seir, was the father of Dishon. Dishon, son of Seir, was the father of Amram (Hemdan), Eshban, Ithran, and Cheran. Ezer was the father of Bilhan, Zavan (Zaavan) and Jakan (Akan). Dishan, son of Seir, was the father of Uz and Aran. (See also Genesis 36)

43 Now these are the kings that reigned in the land of Edom before any king reigned over the children of Israel; Bela the son of Beor: and the name of his city was Dinhabah.
44 And when Bela was dead, Jobab the son of Zerah of Bozrah reigned in his stead.
45 And when Jobab was dead, Husham of the land of the Temanites reigned in his stead.
46 And when Husham was dead, Hadad the son of Bedad, which smote Midian in the field of Moab, reigned in his stead: and the name of his city was Avith.
47 And when Hadad was dead, Samlah of Masrekah reigned in his stead.
48 And when Samlah was dead, Shaul of Rehoboth by the river reigned in his stead.
49 And when Shaul was dead, Baal-hanan the son of Achbor reigned in his stead.
50 And when Baal-hanan was dead, Hadad reigned in his stead: and the name of his city was Pai; and his wife’s name was Mehetabel, the daughter of Matred, the daughter of Mezahab.

There were rulers in the land before it became the land of the Edomites. The list of the kings was Bela of Dinhabah, Jobab, Husham, Hadad of Avith, Samlah of Masrekah, Shaul of Rehoboth, Baal-hanan, Hadad (Hadar) of Pai (Pau). Hadad of Avith, was known for smiting the Midians in Moab. (See also Genesis 36)

51 Hadad died also. And the dukes of Edom were; duke Timnah, duke Aliah, duke Jetheth,
52 Duke Aholibamah, duke Elah, duke Pinon,
53 Duke Kenaz, duke Teman, duke Mibzar,
54 Duke Magdiel, duke Iram. These are the dukes of Edom.

The chiefs of Edom were Timnah, Aliah (Alvah), Jetheth, Aholibamah, Elah, Pinon, Kenaz, Teman, Mibzar, Magdiel, and Iram. (See also Genesis 36)

(Note: Names found in parenthesis are variations found in other books of the bible.)

Genealogy is the record that ties all people on the earth to one another. It shows that we are all family no matter what race or religion we are today. There are multiple records combined in the bible, which witness to the same heritage of the Israelite people. This book of Chronicles is a record of certain things that happened with the generations of Israel.

I have always had an interest in my own family line, and recently have followed a few lines back to Adam. Chapters like this in the scriptures, hold more personal meaning to me now, because I can see names of those who are likely my ancestors. So, if all the information that has been collected is correct, I am related to the Israelite people on at least two lines and specifically those who lived in Jerusalem during the times that the record will cover. Related to this first chapter of Chronicles, my genealogy shows I am related Israel, Isaac, and Abraham. Then back through Shem to Noah and on from there. I imagine that someday when all things are revealed and our knowledge is made sure, I will have a greater love for my ancient ancestors because I have come to know them through studying the scriptures.

2 Kings Chapter 12

While Jehu ruled in Israel, Joash began his reign in Judah. Joash, according to the header in this chapter, was also known as Jehoash. He was annointed to be the king, by the high priest Jehoiada. Jehoash made covenants with the Lord to be the ruler of the people of the Lord, and he began his rule in righteousness, at the age of seven. This chapter begins as follows:

1 In the seventh year of Jehu Jehoash began to reign; and forty years reigned he in Jerusalem. And his mother’s name was Zibiah of Beer-sheba.
2 And Jehoash did that which was right in the sight of the Lord all his days wherein Jehoiada the priest instructed him.
3 But the high places were not taken away: the people still sacrificed and burnt incense in the high places.

Jehoash was king for forty years. He was a righteous leader, and did all the things that Jehoiada instructed him to do. Even so, the places where the people could worship other false gods, were not taken from the people. So, the people continued to use those places to worship with sacrifices and burnt incense.

4 And Jehoash said to the priests, All the money of the dedicated things that is brought into the house of the Lord, even the money of every one that passeth the account, the money that every man is set at, and all the money that cometh into any man’s heart to bring into the house of the Lord,
5 Let the priests take it to them, every man of his acquaintance: and let them repair the breaches of the house, wheresoever any breach shall be found.
6 But it was so, that in the three and twentieth year of king Jehoash the priests had not repaired the breaches of the house.
7 Then king Jehoash called for Jehoiada the priest, and the other priests, and said unto them, Why repair ye not the breaches of the house? now therefore receive no more money of your acquaintance, but deliver it for the breaches of the house.
8 And the priests consented to receive no more money of the people, neither to repair the breaches of the house.
9 But Jehoiada the priest took a chest, and bored a hole in the lid of it, and set it beside the altar, on the right side as one cometh into the house of the Lord: and the priests that kept the door put therein all the money that was brought into the house of the Lord.
10 And it was so, when they saw that there was much money in the chest, that the king’s scribe and the high priest came up, and they put up in bags, and told the money that was found in the house of the Lord.
11 And they gave the money, being told, into the hands of them that did the work, that had the oversight of the house of the Lord: and they laid it out to the carpenters and builders, that wrought upon the house of the Lord,
12 And to masons, and hewers of stone, and to buy timber and hewed stone to repair the breaches of the house of the Lord, and for all that was laid out for the house to repair it.
13 Howbeit there were not made for the house of the Lord bowls of silver, snuffers, basins, trumpets, any vessels of gold, or vessels of silver, of the money that was brought into the house of the Lord:
14 But they gave that to the workmen, and repaired therewith the house of the Lord.
15 Moreover they reckoned not with the men, into whose hand they delivered the money to be bestowed on workmen: for they dealt faithfully.
16 The trespass money and sin money was not brought into the house of the Lord: it was the priests’.

Jehoash commanded the priests of the temple, to use the offerings brought to them, to repair the breaches of the temple, instead of taking the offerings for themselves. This money was like the tithing of their day. In doing so, the temple walls would be strong again. The priests would not take money from the people to repair the walls, but Jehoiada took a chest and drilled a hole in the top of it. He put it to the side of the altar at the entrance of the temple. Those priests who welcomed people into the temple, were to put all the money from those who came into the temple, into the chest. The volunteer donations of the people of God, would go towards the repair of the temple. When the chest was full, they gathered the money and gave it to those who would do work on the temple, and it was given out to carpenters, builders, masons, stone workers, and others who would do this work. The priests were faithful with the donations, and anything brought as offereings specifically for trespass money or sin money, was given to the priests for their own.

17 Then Hazael king of Syria went up, and fought against Gath, and took it: and Hazael set his face to go up to Jerusalem.
18 And Jehoash king of Judah took all the hallowed things that Jehoshaphat, and Jehoram, and Ahaziah, his fathers, kings of Judah, had dedicated, and his own hallowed things, and all the gold that was found in the treasures of the house of the Lord, and in the king’s house, and sent it to Hazael king of Syria: and he went away from Jerusalem.

Gath, which was a city that had been taken by the Israelites in the time of David, was taken by Hazael of Syria. Hazael prepared to go against Jerusalem. Jehoash gathered all the items that had been hallowed and set aside by the kings of Judah, his own consecrated items, as well as all the gold remaining in the treasuries, and he sent it to Hazael. Hazael went away from Jerusalem, and their safety was maintained. Jehoash had done what he could to protect the people and land from their enemies.

19 And the rest of the acts of Joash, and all that he did, are they not written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Judah?
20 And his servants arose, and made a conspiracy, and slew Joash in the house of Millo, which goeth down to Silla.
21 For Jozachar the son of Shimeath, and Jehozabad the son of Shomer, his servants, smote him, and he died; and they buried him with his fathers in the city of David: and Amaziah his son reigned in his stead.

The servants of Joash conspired against him, and killed him in the house of Millo. His son Amaziah became king of Judah.

One of the things that this chapter leads me to think about, is the need to follow the Lord with exactness. It is not the main idea of this chapter, and I may be off in my interpretation of these verses, when reading the first few verses, I think about this. The king of Judah was a righteous leader himself, but he left the high places in the land. This is based on the use of the word “but” in verse 3. These places that were left would possibly be an opportunity for wickedness to continue in the land. I can think of a few reasons for doing this. First, is that he may have felt that the people were subject to the Lord and would not turn to other gods, or simply was not mindful of these places. Second, is that he may have wanted to give the people the ability to choose for themselves, if they would follow after the Lord. In ancient times, God commanded that all these other temples with their idols and groves and such, be destroyed out of the land and so leaving the temples was not the king’s best choice for his people. On the other hand, I do wonder if the places of worship that he left, were those that were still used to worship the Lord, just not with the level of commitment as was done at the temple. This is not entirely clear to me. In either case, it is important for us to be strict with our obedience to God. This is how we can stay safe from the traps that Satan will most certainly leave for us. In the case of ancient Israel, they needed to remove any temptation to worship in any other way than what the Lord had instructed them. That is the only way they could have remained the people of the Lord. The Lord had told the people to go to His temple, and to worship by making sacrifices and offerings there. There are many who choose for themselves their own way to worship God, rather than doing it in the manner that God has instructed us to do so. This does not mean that they will definitely be led astray, but it does give greater opportunity for the adversary to sneak in and lead good people away from God. Obedience with exactness provides the best ways for safety and success in this life.


About My Scripture Study Buddy

I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. I love the scriptures, but I am not a scriptorian. I've been told that I'm too "deep" for some, but if you are willing, I'd love to have others join me in my quest for a greater understanding of the gospel. Please feel free to leave me comments and hopefully we can help each other to learn.
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